‘Black Mirror’ Outed Me In The Worst Way Possible
But, in private it relieves my socially inept tantrums
I heard about Black Mirror while working at a place that cares a lot about Black Mirror and why people give a shit. I didn’t have the time or energy to care until I became emancipated — and then it all came crashing up.
I took the time away from my obsession to dive into the obsession of a character that looked nothing like me but shared my shameful characteristics.
I’m a machine, a non-living thing who parades around as if you can touch her but you will only tend to the rough surface that hasn’t succumbed to the fibrous weight of earthly negligence.
I know who I am and I can’t hide under the sheets of disbelief when I spend sweaty nights alone — perusing pornhub for fun — until I feel real again with the click of the activity that reignites me.
Those pulses are few because the great escape lies in the torment of my slow-growing hair that boasts various shades of red to hide the gray that won’t be thwarted and Instagram.
I love Instagram.
It is the toy that toys with me in ways that allow brutal assessment and putrid lines of regret that wait their turn with patience and assignment. I spend free time scrolling through the familiar and unfamiliar, the friends and the friends who don’t know we’re friends, the shameful and the dignified, the privileged and the undermined, the beautiful and the not so hot, the normal and the ordinary, the popular and the ones who can’t be ranked, the thrill seekers and the hidden gems, the breath of fresh air and the ones who suffocate, the deprived and the over-stuffed.
Everything, but the evidence of my survival and the right to be amongst the represented, which I actually love the most for fucked up reasons.
There is no reason to insert yourself in a narrative that includes images of people that you once knew but no longer abide by or compete with. Why try to play a game that you lost way before you knew you were a contestant. Is it worth aligning your interests with what doesn’t exist? How do you reconcile being a silent outsider on the outside because the inside knows you are on the outside?
SPOILER ALERT FOR SEASON 3 BECAUSE I DON’T WANT YOU TO HATE ME.
Black Mirror follows a young woman who is a victim of a society that has pretty much sold her into the fantasy of numeric indulgence. I know this an episodic fare so let me direct.
In this episode, Bryce Dallas Howard who reportedly gained weight for this role for reasons that are not clear to me — is invited to serve as Maid-of-Honor for her childhood friend’s marriage ceremony to an asshole. She is determined to make the event on the basis that her speech will be emotionally stirring enough to increase her ranking.
She is flailing and she desperately needs a save. Her fake friend invited her because, at the time she was winning — but as the day draws nears and eventually arrives, our heroine is disinvited by phone because her status has dipped beyond repair.
I spend hours trying to imagine what it would be like to post a picture of me in a customized caftan and my once gorgeous black tresses bunched up in a bun with the Red Sea splashing behind me.
My allegiance to Instagram isn’t quite that bad. It’s worse.
I hated Facebook because the shape of my face didn’t fit into the square that expands to include all the accompaniments that enhance your presence amongst the friendships that you nurtured and neglected.
The interface has devilish plans for my demise and I abandoned its code for an even more debilitating premise but this time I like it.
I like it all.
I like the pictures, the memories, the memories that will be hatched, the statements of purpose that are always armed with vivid reinforcements, the alighted vacations that fill me with even more ammunition for pathetic involvement — and the reassurance that I am still socially inept — beyond repair.
I carry my phone and rate you in my mind. I wish that I were the millennial with flowing hair and flawless skin judging how you will never match my disposition. I am the one sitting in the bus with the sun streaming in — scrolling for the afternoon punishment to feast on before facing the firing squad of a job that I am twenty years too old to accomplish.
I am Black, staring into the mirror that holds the answers to my imprisonment but refuses to offer the packets of healing that certifies the hope circling in my eyeballs.
Just one more click and scroll, and we are friends.
And you don’t even have to like me.