It is no longer cool to LOL (Laugh Out Loud). It may have actually been uncool several months ago, but I tend to be the last to know about this sort of thing. In fact, I’m not even sure it’s cool to say “cool” any more, but let’s take one outdated phrase at a time.
Now I’m well aware that such phrases have a life cycle. A cool phrase starts with the cool people, of course, usually the teenager or the college student. Next, it’s adopted by the others, i.e. the wannabes, the nerds, and the younger kids. The parents then catch on and what was once a cool phrase finds its way onto t-shirts, bumper stickers, advertisements and in cheesey novelty music. Eventually, the cool kids retire the phrase, giving way to something fresh and new, and the rest of the world catches wind.
So why am I wasting a post on the loss of my favorite go-to response? Because LOL is hard for me to give up completely. First of all, it’s really easy to type. No explanation required there. Secondly, if a friend just said something funny (see below) which really does make me laugh out loud, I feel the responsibility to express that via text/chat/email/Facebook comment.
Person 1: I just farted.
Person 2: LOL
Thirdly, even when I’m NOT laughing out loud and maybe just chuckling, smiling to myself or even sneering, the use of LOL at least gives the friend the illusion that I find their statement comical and that I’m engaged somewhat in the conversation. Next example:
Person 1: I just spilled hot coffee on my pants and am a hot mess.
Person 2: LOL
Finally, and this is the one I’ll miss the most, there is the statement to which I really don’t know how to reply at all, such as the one below. Perhaps I don’t even want to bother to finish reading it. Perhaps I’m distracted, I’m multi-tasking…or maybe I just don’t give a rip. But at first glance, I already know that the stock go-to response is in order.
Person 1: Great day today! I wrecked my car and was late for work. Then I spilled hot coffee on my pants, which burned through the top layer of my skin, and I farted. My co-workers complained, I was written up for being late, making a mess in the break room, and farting, and I told my boss where to go. That’s when I got fired. I was mugged on the bus. And to top it all off, when I finally got home, I learned my pet gerbil had died.
Person 2: lol
Now you see my dilemma. What do I say now? If I’m really laughing out loud, do I revert to the tried-and-true “hahaha”, “heh hehe” or “tee hee”? This could get tiresome after a while, and I feel some variety is in order. There are the emoticons but these require too much effort and a risk 0f being too cutesy. I could add a (wink, wink) at the end, but that could be misconstrued if directed at the wrong person. Or I could skip all of the above and just say what I need to say. PERIOD. The problem with THAT is that my sarcasm doesn’t always translate on the world wide web and I risk being defriended, blocked, or (gasp) shunned in the real world. Assuming JK (just kidding) is also being retired, I’m not seeing any viable options here.
Until I sort this whole thing out, I think I’ll just play it safe and plead the 5th, LOL.
If you liked this post, you might like Guess What? I’m A Facebook Creeper.