It began with an incredible game of football and a Facebook livestream controversy and it ended with #WomensMarch. Steve Carrell joked that “The Office” was returning, before stating that his “account had been hacked by Toby Flenderson” and that this was in fact a humorous hoax. We now know the two teams who will contest the Superbowl. Oh, and there was the small matter of an inauguration thrown in there, too. Last week was a news-heavy week! And it was made all the more enjoyable by my ever-trusty companion. No, I don’t have a dog. I have something better: a Twitter account.
Truth be told, social media genuinely makes things more enjoyable for me. Twitter’s coverage of Trump’s election win in November was the only thing keeping me sane, as the worst possible outcome reared its head. Watching soccer is more fun with the jokes and analysis between fans and pundits alike. Twitter has such a world of possibilities; I can’t help but love it. I understand criticisms of social media, but it gives me so much entertainment, I can’t accept it being seen as a negative influence on society.
So following the incredible Cowboys-Packers game, came the slightly less fun Steelers victory over the Chiefs. Then, Steelers’ wide receiver and all-round entertainer Antonio Brown was fined for live streaming 17 minutes of his team’s post-match locker room meeting following their divisional playoff round victory. As an athlete, I do think that certain elements of the locker room should remain sacred and between the team, but I did like that Brown was attempting to open up the locker room game day experience to the fans “¦ until I heard that he may have been encouraged to do the stream by Facebook executives. That put a bit of a downer on it. But Brown, who famously said being fined $25,000 for twerking in the endzone was “nothing to a boss,” is naturally an entertainer and wasn’t trying to do any harm. But it was certainly a big sports social media story last week. Furthermore, if you’re a sports fan, especially NFL or NBA, and you’re not already following Shea Serrano, what are you doing with your life? Not only is he a superb writer “” I’m currently reading “The Rap Yearbook” which is his masterpiece on the history of hip hop since 1979 “” but he is hilarious with a capital H when tweeting about sports. Follow him.
And then came the inauguration, which gave me a weekend full of social media gems. Melania Trump, pictured giving Michelle Obama a gift, with the tag line, “Here, have your speech back” was wonderfully put together, coupled with Michelle’s (accidental?) face of bemusement at the whole situation. George Takei pointed out that the White House had almost immediately removed its climate change, health care, civil rights and LGBT webpages. To me, that shows the kind of administration Trump and Pence are going to run. It’s a travesty for America that after the forward progress of the Obama administration, we seem now to be jumping back 50 years in terms of civil liberties and tolerance. The mirroring of Trump’s “give the power back to the people” segment of his inauguration speech with Bane’s saying the same line following his destruction of Gotham City in “The Dark Knight Rises” brought a chuckle to my life in amongst all the worry. The Sean Spicer alternative facts and “Period.” memes were also a real highlight to come out of the Republican’s party interesting first few days in power. My personal favourites were “The Death Star had no design flaws. Period.”, and “Harambe would still be alive if Trump had been president last May. Period.” Good honest humour.
An immediate reaction to Trump’s ascension to power, #WomensMarch drew deserved worldwide attention. I was immensely happy and proud of the global community that these protests were not exclusive to the U.S. It was a special display of human pride and unity. My favourite images were of the signs being held up in the massive crowds. One relatively unenthusiastic protester’s sign said “Not usually a sign guy, but geez.” This to me just exemplified the frustration and disbelief that was being expressed by the masses that this could come to pass. Though I do think I should mention the young boy walking at the protest, standing up for what he believed in, with a sign that said “I <3 trains.” Good for you. Stand up for what you believe in. And don’t bash social media. It gives birth to powerful movements and a vent for disgruntlement. We might need it over the next four years. Miss you already, Barack.