If I Took #YOLO Seriously

As of late I’ve had a plethora of my Facebook friends update their status along the lines of something similar to:

“Like OMG it’s Friday night! With all my [girlz/boyz] downtown getting crunk! Black out or back out! #YOLO”

And after I defriend them, I wonder to myself, is “YOLO” really about going downtown, taking pictures of yourself getting (or pretending to get) plastered, and blacking out in a pool of your own vomit in a public bathroom? Is life really about taking shots? Maybe they were thinking to themselves, “We’re totally YOLO-ing guys!” whenever Kimmy decides to go comatose and needs a helicopter EVAC to the hospital. Now, don’t get me wrong, who doesn’t like to party? But does this situation really deserve the honor of “You Only Live Once?” Apparently there’s a world full of “YOLO-ers” that have figured out life’s greatest moments, and my view of life seems to be a little shy of that.

Call me old-fashioned, but I never brag on Facebook. The whole thing just seems too… pretentious-asshole, attention-seeking, really-crying-inside. And as much as I love my friends, doing dumb things with them, and having a great time, it probably wouldn’t deserve a “YOLO.” YOLO’s implications should be much more positive. “You Only Live Once” conveys a message similar to that of the saying “I realize my life is temporary, and someday I will either ascend to the great beyond or simply cease to exist. I need to investigate as much of my own and the world’s potential in order to fulfill myself as a spiritual and physical entity of the universe.” And whether or not it may be true, you only live once. And while raging like a fiend may be a part of that, hopefully there’s more to life than tequila and regurgitated pizza.

If someone were to force me to update my Facebook status with the moments when I thought “YOLO” was a necessary hash tag, these would be included, at some point in my life:

  • “I just married the only woman that would ever complete me. #YOLO”
  • “Adopted a son. #YOLO”
  • “Started donating 50 cents a day for homeless animals. #YOLO #sarahmclachlan”
  • “I learned that money isn’t the answer, but family is. #YOLO”
  • “I just made the best Bananas foster crêpes. #YOLO #pauladeen”
  • “I just changed my name to Nickolai Zelovanokoff. Moving to Russia #YOLO #lovethosefurhats”
  • “A man’s left testicle hangs lower than the right to account for the scissor motion of the legs. I love having the opportunity to go to college. #YOLO”
  • “I came out to my parents and friends. I’m not ashamed to be gay. YOLO#” *
  • “Just revived my old high school band, Karmel Karl and the Milk Man. #YOLO”

*Homosexuality not a personal preference but something I respect for others. TC mark


More From Thought Catalog

  • http://raymondthimmes.com/ Raymond Thimmes

    Now these are things that can be considered a motto.  yolololololol

  • womp

    “*Homosexuality not a personal preference but something I respect for others.”

    someone is going to jump on this.

    • Leslieloves11

      feel free to check my response below

  • http://summerslowrunner.wordpress.com/ Summer

    The photo for this article has me LOLing like cray cray. #YOLO

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1552230509 Blake Austin

    If my FB friends treated “YOLO” with the same reverence as you suggest here, I might not have unfriended them either. 

  • N Looman

    “After I defreind them…” awesome

  • Yasmin

    people who use hashtags on facebook have no true friends in real life 

    • Anonymous

      This is going on my tombstone.

    • Anonymous

       Meh.  I use hashtags on Facebook because… I feel like it.  I like the way they look.

  • Leslieloves11

    **”Homosexuality is not a personal preference because I’m not a gay, piece of shit fucking faggot who likes to suck dick and lick asshole for a living, but I once knew a guy who went to college with a gay man, and I guess he was okay.”  You’re an asshole for saying that

    • confused

      he’s an asshole because he respects others’ decision to be gay?

      • Andrew Rowland

        Yeah, acceptance = typical asshole behavior. duh.

      • Sorry.

        That’s not what was problematic about what he said. The commenter was calling him an asshole because he felt the need to point out he wasn’t gay as though that would be a bad thing. It stands out because he makes a list of hypothetical status updates, but the only one he takes the time to point out as being untrue is the one that says he’s gay.

        Or he really did change his name, move to Russia, adoped a baby boy, got married and revived his high school band etc. and his being gay really is the only status update that was made up for the purposes of the article.

        Could be, I guess. :)

    • David McClane

      What are you angry about?  If you think I don’t like gay people that wasn’t my intention.  The sentence you’re referring too means that “I’m not gay myself, but I respect people that are gay.”  I thought it necessary to clarify because an earlier point talks about marrying women.  

    • Sunxofxnothing

      I don’t get why he’s an asshole for saying that…is it because you wanted him to just leave off the note at the bottom and be comfortable about people possibly thinking he’s gay even when he’s not? That’s the only thing I can see you calling out and even that’s a bit much.

      • Sorry.

         He doesn’t comment saying that he didn’t really revive his old high school band, or he didn’t really adopt a son. His comment about homosexuality is given a treatment that none of his other comments are given. Because of the society we live in, this is extremely problematic. It suggests the author is more at ease with the reader being unsure if the author actually did adopt a son, than if the reader were to think he was gay. A shame, because I really didn’t have a problem with the rest of the article and I thought it was quite funny.

      • Sunxofxnothing

        yeah I assumed that’s what it was for, but just wanted to be clarified.

    • Andrew Rowland

      You just filled in some imaginary blanks there! GO YOU!

      Also, you are very weird.

    • //////

      I had the same reaction when I read that. Are the other things you wrote on that list true? No? Why did you feel the need to single out the one about being gay and make sure that people didn’t think you were? I got that they were all hypothetical updates. 

      • Katie

        My reaction was that all of these are legitimate statuses he has had or may one day have. If he is not gay, then saying he is homosexual would likely not be a Facebook status. Conversely, he hopes to one day be able to say he married his dream woman. Seems 100% reasonable to me.

  • Bep

    Seems like “along the lines of something similar to” is redundant.
    Sorry, ill read the whole thing now.

  • Sarah Fusaro

    Thanks for the voice of reason. 

  • Anonymous

    I just can’t stand the term.

    And it’s a new way to repeat a sentiment that has been stated a million times through platitude after platitude. Nothing new, nothing that we weren’t doing before someone made a new catchy term for it.

  • Anonymous

    There’s nothing wrong in him stating he’s not gay. No offence, but the whole homosexuality sensitivity here on Thought Catalog is getting on my nerves. Everytime an article is posted by a hetereosexual person, a homosexual would state that it’s an article for heterosexual people. Why so serious? I have homosexual friends myself, so I have no problem with it at all. Just please, calm the fuck down.

  • Calm Down

    Well said. I had no idea why everyone had been yelling YOLO all the time until recently, but it’s always been how I live my life anyway. Getting drunk and fucked up on the weekend isn’t a good example, it’s what everyone already does. It’s not unique.

    And people, calm down. Homosexuality is technically still a preference. Gay men genuinely prefer sleeping with/ dating men. It’s not like they hate it every time. The fact that they don’t sleep with women means they don’t PREFER women sexually, romantically, etc. Simple English.

  • Guest

    i’ve always seen YOLO as more of, “you only live once, so why not do that really stupid thing that you’re always gonna wonder about for the rest of your life and possibly die with regret for not doing it?!” but that’s in the most extreme cases.

  • meh

    Maybe his family does read this and it was done so it won’t be discovered and talked about among other people while he wasn’t around as if this was him actually coming out to the entire internet before his own family?  Preventing a whole fiasco over it.

    People read too much out of people’s intentions.  It could be any number of reasons and people assume the worst.  Meh.

    Not everyone’s families feel the same way about things, so while they do have respect for different lifestyles (or whatever you want to call this instance of “GASP” was over), they still need to account for intolerance from people they actually know and care about (even though they have different beliefs than he does).

  • http://www.facebook.com/radflux Robert Neale

    this blog fucking sucks

  • http://fourpageletter.wordpress.com/2012/07/27/qotw-what-dont-you-want-to-regret-when-older/ QOTW: what don’t you want to regret when older? « fourpageletter

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