the need for hospitality, tolerance, and polite civil discourse

MUAing: A Café regular popped up on the Skin Care Board. Asking a perfectly sensible question. Answers, whole conversation, and approaches to modes of discourse well worth screenshotting and posting up here. I wasn’t avoiding: I was working, popped over for a quick break in the Allley, and came upon this juciy joy too late for any contribution to be possible and not Thread Necrophilia. Something I despise and rail against and therefore must be very careful not to engage in myself. Otherwise I’d be a hypocrite who doesn’t practise what she preaches, and Dame Folly would be proud, but not in the way I’m normally looking for.

On the one hand:

  • if someone asks a question, it’s polite to answer
  • if you’ve never met them before, and/or they’re either not a board regular (but a regular on another board) or even (shock horror) a complete newbie: be nice. In civilized society, amongst civilized human beings, we practise these things called “tolerance,” “good manners,” and “generosity.” And this wonderful thing called “welcoming strangers.” OK, maybe not in the sorts of nasty excuses for places where conversations start with “you’re not from around here, are you?”
  • epic failure on exercising common fucking courtesy. A.k.a. the opposite of what’s often referred to as “cuntiness.” FFS.
  • if it’s a stupid question (which this wasn’t), ignore it: there’s no obligation to respond to everything you see on a discussion board where you’re a regular
  • joining in to tell someone off when you disapprove of what they’ve asked/said/etc.? often looks very like queueing up to join the fight, adding yourself to the pile-up, bullying, and a cowardly safety in numbers. Bandwagon-jumping, too.
  • that kind of bullying–even if you’re right or in the right–is bullying: bullying is bullying is bullying, and as far from rose-like as one can get
  • bullying is at best infantile, at worst High School Cliquey Girly
  • bullying is despicable and bullies are shits, the lowest of the low
  • whence: Hoist By Own Petard
  • SCBers look doubly mean and churlish when compared to Café people who’ve had the good grace and graciousness to pop in and explain the situation gently, and take their friend away nicely by the hand
  • and compared to dual-nationals, regulars on both boards: most notably duchessofgrapes, who comes out of this as Lady of the Year (and it’s only February)
  • SCB as a whole, and some individuals in particular: needs to be nicer, and learn a lesson in kindness and humanity from this whole calamitous fiasco

On the other hand:

  • provocation, intention, malice aforethought (but: a sensible question is a sensible question is a sensible question)
  • trolling (but: distinct from “being a troll”)
  • not saying “thank you” to the person who kindly supplied you with an answer
  • behaving like a sulky teenager (but: if someone IS a teenager–as many MUAers are–why shouldn’t they behave normally and appropriately: as teenagers?)
  • throwing tantrums and strops (but: see above re. teenagers; and adding in: tired at end of day, drunk, being silly, THANK GOD IT’S FRIDAY)
  • re. “calamitous fiasco”: it’s an online discussion-board about beauty stuff. FFS. Get a grip and sense of perspective.

from a classic café thread on the subject

Probably not too much harm done to the unfortunate Urgently Shouty One: Café moves at breakneck speed, moves on at the same speed, and this often also means forgiving and forgetting quickly; heating up and colling down fast. But harm done to SCB reputation: something that SCBers should care about. And not just by going over to Café and standing up for themselves and their board’s differences there (though that’s important too: tolerance and acceptance go both ways).

And it was nice to see this being the longest (and united) sub-thread in the conversation, and the last word (3:01 p.m.) bar the splendid duchessofgrapes then posting a very sweet (and proper) reply ust after she’d joined in the LOLling around here:

Mind you, speaking as a simpler sort of soul: I had a good giggle at the mix of epic SOH fail, non-LOL being rewarded with LULZ, and then whole aftermath and continuation. Warmed the cockles of my heart. I am, I admit, flippant and facetious and have a simple (and even, puerile) sense of The Funny. My one peeve here: there weren’t enough puns. You know, the kind most people label as “terrible” and then groan at. Well, call me a humour pervert, but I love puns and there’s not enough of them around. Dash it all to perdition.

But back to our exercise in peace, toleration, and universal harmony.

Here’s some more, because situation, circumstances, context, and the before and after usually help interpretation and judgement in such cases:

(There’s more and there’s more: yes, there’s the Eva and BBB business; but that, alongside the way Café often functions, is sorts kinda fictional anyway–and whatever else is going on, plays and functions by different rules; even within “the online world” not being the same as “the real world” and its interactions being different… aaaanywhichway…)

A minute before the abovementioned post on the Skin Care Board:

Then: the SCB post and resulting frothing at the mouth, growling, gnashing of teeth, yapping and yelping, snapping at heels, biting of shins, etc. And, yes, I’m afraid that I am indeed picturing Yorkies rather than great noble hounds there.


Further follow-up on Café: includes some nice meta-stuff, in the form of embedding the original post within this post, and another reference within that. A Shady character (like the fine duchess, another holder of two passports) will be responsible for some hysterical clutching of pearls back on that original post … a mere minute after posting this here below. That, ladies and gentlement of the Skin Care Board, is what is meant by “rapid response,” quick-witted, quipfire:

Later: some anthropologically and socio-linguistically fascinating exchanges:

Note for the record: NOT A TROLL. Just trolling. Completely different thing.

In other news: coming up next week, we have

  • pinkness, including roses being roses (just like the bullies above, but sweeter-smelling)
  • scent (on which topic of sweet smells)
  • bags and what’s in them, inc. travel bags (no pink bags, but there will be scent)

Ah, happy days. Sweetness and light. Puppies, flowers, rainbows, unicorns, and sparkles: optional. Here’s some non-fluffy stuff to end this post and the week:

Care to reply?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s