If I may be so geeky to quote Obi-wan Kenobi from Star Wars, "Who's the more foolish? The fool or the fool who follows him?" I really can't feel bad about someone so stupid that they feel the need to read my stuff and then complain about it. "Doctor, it hurts when I do this, what should I do?" "Stop doing that." Who are they complaining to? Me? Someone else who reads? There's a line we shout at Rocky Horror when Dr. Scott talks to the camera, "Who are you talking to?" you say, then you exclaim like an afterthought, "Hell, who am *I* talking to?" Every day, I see some dumb post in a message board, or some web page that has what I think are the dumbest opinions in the world, but I don't post in their comments section some sarcastic snide remark, because, wow ... that's so pathetic. I can't even feel bad about this "Trinity7" guy because it's his fault he keeps reading my stuff.
Yeah, he's a troll. I know. And I shouldn't have engaged a troll, like rule #3 on public forums. But part of me has this naive sense of justice that I can stick it to him. But like I told a friend of mine once, when he got caught in a verbal insult war at a movie theater between obnoxious preteens, "Even if you win, they won't know. They're 12!" Trinity7 won't know. He's a pathetic wannabe of a has-been. Most people like that use sarcasm because they don't actually have anything useful to say, so they say it aggressively and patronizingly, hoping you'll buy in on their superiority mask. But it's all for show.
Of course, *I* was using sarcasm as well in my replies. And I'd be a liar if I said it was different when *I* used sarcasm. No, it's just as dumb, but I couldn't help myself ... it was so fun, and I had just drank a cup of coffee, so I was a bit punchy. It was like a challenge, even though I know it was pretty useless and setting a bad example. Still, I am the one who still has an Atari ST. And I wanted him to keep posting so I could triangulate a tricky connection trace (I had to capture it live, not in post-trace), and I knew he'd take the bait. I REALLY wanted to say slimy sarcastic stuff like, "Please stop posting mean things, your words are like fists..." but I that seemed a little too manipulative, and I didn't want my friends to think I was hurt, because then they'd be all over this guy, like the regrettable incident of the BBS-that-shall-not-be-named. Of course, he made my wife mad, but she can handle her own. I have seen what she's capable of. Who's the bear now? Doh!
I love her. Christine's response was like icing on the cake.
Still, when incidents like this happen, I question the wisdom of a comments section. I get some good, quality input (like Malle Babbe and Andy), but then I get people like Benny and Trinity7. I wonder what other bloggers do? Do they just delete rude comments? What's the criteria? I'd hate to think I just remove comments that make me mad, that seems like cheating and false advertising. "Look, people only say good things about me..." But none of those comments had anything to do with marriage, and I feel if someone was to want to read the comments, thinking they'd get good marriage tips, they'd be put off by what is essentially a flame war between an idiot and the idiot that followed him (me).
I looked at other blogger's sites, and looked for negative comments. None. Now, I know that comments sections get trolls and spams. So they must be weeding them out, right? I know, I'll ask the Internet's Wil Wheaton! He'll know what to do! [Batman swirly music]
[ Meanwhile, back at the Bat Cave... ]
One of my friends jumped in on this, and dug up a wealth of speculation. He's up to something...
This entry was originally posted at http://www.punkwalrus.com/blog/archives/00000307.html