Fragments of a life I call mine

How quickly our lives have adapted to the practice of scrolling social media feeds on a daily basis. Our daily input of information from social media is astounding, news stories intermingled with smiling family photos and announcements of upcoming events. Page after page, we scroll through people’s lives.

That’s the inspiration for this next song, “Pixalated World.”

Personal posts are posted in real time: “I am checked in here at this place with these people doing this,” which still strikes me as funny that we feel a need to report on our whereabouts. On some days, my news feed is filled with heartbreaking news stories, though they are interspersed with photos of a friend’s cute puppy or an acquaintance’s toddler’s birthday party. I chose to be “friends” with the people showing up on my news feed and I chose to “follow” or “like” the other pages so this information is what I chose to see (not counting the promoted posts.)

Here I am today, don’t know where I’ll be tomorrow
As far as I can see, a world tinged with sorrow
And yet the sunny snapshots smile on my troubled timeline
Fragments of a life I call mine

Is what we are seeing real? I know that for nearly every one of our posted family photos, there are at least eight or nine other photos that were not posted. Either one kid was making a face or someone had their eyes closed or somebody was complaining that somebody else stepped on their foot on purpose. (Or the photographer was screaming “Come on, I just want one good photo, get your hand off your brother’s head and get your fingers out of your mouth!”)

We live in a pixelated world
Presenting images of how we’d like to be
We live in a pixelated world
Hiding behind the scenes

In case it’s not clear, the phrase “we live in a pixelated world” refers to our world of pictures. We have thousands of digital photos of our family. I have about 160 photos from a recent five-day trip to California and it wasn’t even a sightseeing trip. The line “presenting images of how we’d like to be” refers to the photos that we choose to share with the world by posting them.

It’s not unusual to hear somebody whose Instagram account portrays a fun, exciting life is actually severely depressed to the point of considering suicide. Why is this platform that aims to connect people making us feel so disconnected? What if we were to stop pretending our lives are so perfect and be there to encourage each other? Some of my favorite friends on Facebook are the ones who post REAL tidbits from their lives (especially when done with a sense of humor).

Who are we if not for each other
Interconnected like never before
What can we be if we work together
Find a hidden treasure to explore

This is one of my favorite songs to sing, although I don’t think it fits any of the songwriting rules I’ve learned. It’s been awhile since I’ve played it on guitar, I don’t even know if I remember how to play it.

We live in a pixelated world
Presenting images of how we’d like to be
We live in a pixelated world
Hiding behind the scenes.

And yet the sunny snapshots
Smile on my troubled timeline
Fragments of a life
I call mine.


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