Wednesday, December 21, 2011


This really deserves its own post. Tribute, more like. 

LOL has been around for a long time now.  I remember it my freshman year of college. This was in 1998.  Internet was exciting and still new, IM'ing was the new craze.  I remember using lol but after a while I think i decided to loathe it and switched over to the more literal "hahaha" or one of its variants  ("Ha," sometimes "haha," for example.) 

For a really long time, I pretty much hated it, but didn't really see too much of it and so it was largely out of my mind.  Then i became friends with someone who would mock people and she had this really awesome mocking voice that was soft and high and would use "lol" in a mocking statement and i really started to love it.  Then, after joining Facebook and slowly figuring out how I would use it, I started to realize there were vastly different ways one could structure a status update.  The days and weeks would pass and I would become "friends" with more and more people and I noticed the different styles they had.  Some styles I thought were ok.  Others, i looooathed. At first. But when I introduced my initial feelings to a friend regarding a particular way to status-update, she and I took it and ran with the jokes. I told my sister who joined in on the jokes, and now one of my favorite pastimes is to use LOL the way these people seem to.  I only hold it against them a little bit, and am aware that they are good people with good intentions but have a horrible habit: the overuse/inappropriate use of LOL.  But if i'm laughing at them, then i love it. I really really love it. Let's talk about why.

1. first, there's all caps vs lower case.  lol vs. LOL.   Anyone who's used a computer will [hopefully] understand that using all-caps = shouting.  People who use all caps all the time must have some sort of  social disability.  I'm sorry, it's how I feel, and i know it's how you feel too, admit it.  p.s. I just asked Sean if that previous statement was harsh and he said, "Ha. Well, as i recall, when we first began IM'ing, [which was how we began to court] I may have used all caps."

Me: What?!? You did? And i kept talking to you??

Sean: I quickly stopped.

Me: Why? How?

Sean: You asked me to.  You told me it was the equivalent of shouting. 

Oh man.  Well, I'm glad that is the basis for our relationship, my teaching him that important lesson. I commend myself. And really, way to look beyond people's faults and try to see the person who they are deep inside.  Because if anything is a fault, TYPING IN ALL CAPS IS A BIG ONE, AM I RIGHT? THIS IS HURTING ME RIGHT NOW BUT I CONTINUE IN ORDER TO PROVE A SERIOUS POINT, THAT POINT BEING THAT I AM GREAT.

Anyway, so obviously if you're going to use LOL, it is better to do it in all-caps.

2) And if you're going to do it in all-caps, you might as well as tack on a few exclamation points. This works better if you've put at least 3 exclamation points on every phrase in your status update.

3) And why put in one LOL when you can put in two or three? The more you have, and the more inappropriate they are, the better. Write a status update without the LOLs.  Say it outloud. Ask yourself, would I laugh after (or before/during) this statement? If the answer is no, then put them in!

 I really love it when the status update (or text--really, it applies to both) is not in the SLIGHTEST meant to be one of enthusiasm or excitement or happiness.  An example would be "ok, see you soon! lol"   I have gotten this exact text before.  What does it mean?? Is it a joke? Will I NOT see them soon? Will i see them soon and they're going to do something to me? Is it meant to be menacing? Menacing laughter??   And suddenly I'm scared.  But I love it still.

4) Speaking of "before," I am particularly fond of the bookend LOLs.  Let's start the status update off right with immediate preemptive laughter. And of course, by the end you're laughing yourself into hysterics, so you've got to seal it up with a final LOL.  

So let's take these tips for the perfect LOL status-update and construct one of our own. This is completely fictional but you can bet i could go copy/paste one 50 times better from Facebook at this very moment.  But i won't.

Example sentence:

Soooo excited for my friend to visit!!! LOL!!! It's going to be So Much FUN!!! CanNOT wait!!! LOL

Let us examine:   a) the multiple o's in soooo.  Now, i've used soooo before. It's a great way to express the way you're actually saying something. And, the more o's you add, the more you mean it.  b) the not one but two LOLs (I cut the person a little slack and left off the LOL at the beginning. And by "cut them slack" i mean "held them back in all their glory")  c) multiple words in all-caps. I'm a fan. You know I am.  and d) as an added bonus-- the randomly Capitalized words.

All of these combined create the status update that [now] pleases me the most. If you want me to love you more and more, do these things, together or separate. I love them all.  

Now, i wander back and forth between genuine love and sarcastic love, but in the end, it's all real. Normally, the Random capitalization is an abomination, but when combined with LOL and multiple exclamation and all of these other elements, it is acceptable. More than, welcomed.  

So in emails or texts i can't quite bring myself to incorporate all of these elements, but instead just tack on an LOL or sometimes an lol to whatever i'm saying.  Whatever it is.  It really spices up my message and leaves the recipient and myself laughing, i mean lol'ing.

Thanks for reading. You guys are great, i mean it.  lol!!

p.s. if anyone has any LOL sentence examples of their own, please share. 


)en said...

I forgot to mention, someone sent me a link to this and I pretty much love it. Pay special attention to The Giggler.

Kim said...

Jen, I think you'll like this video.

Alanna said...

And this post is a perfect example of why I love your blog. I love that you a) bothered to come up with these rules and then b) blog about them. Awesome. Maybe now I can start to not cringe every time I see some write lol. (Maybe.)

Speaking of facebook statuses (statusi?), I have an acquaintance who spells every word wrong in her status updates. It's difficult to even figure out what she's saying, it's so wrong. It's funny, but in a "hurts my heart" sort of way. She's from Idaho. 'Nuff said.