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September Surrender: Day 13

What I’m Letting Go: Oh No You Didn’t

I don’t photograph well. I pretended to. But I don’t. That’s why I’d never in a million years take an engagement photo. Or any that celebrates my relationship. I just don’t get it. I don’t get how people don’t die of cringe when they’re asked to pose. It just doesn’t feel natural to me. Maybe I’m just pretentious, but I’m also not going to do something that goes against what lives at my core. And the last thing I want to live there is a feeling of never ending uncomfortability.

Years ago, I became Facebook friends with all the interns I worked with at HBO. I remember one guy who would seemingly only post about wanting a relationship. Kind of like that guy from How I Met Your Mother. I mean whatever, that wasn’t the cringe part, believe it or not. Eventually he did find a lady who he was very much in love with. At least that’s what it looked like online. They were living in Atlanta. He had gotten a job at CNN. One day I was scrolling my Facebook feed at work and saw they had bought a house. They posted a photo standing on their front stoop holding a cardboard sign saying “We’re Home.” And of course they were kissing. My mind is betraying me because I can picture his leg lifted in a very 50s movie aesthetic. But no, they were just kissing and holding a sign, declaring their love while touting a new life milestone. I was so squicked out that I literally called over a co-worker and said, “Please feel the same way I feel about this.“ She didn’t, of course. She seemed to enjoy it. Yet I stood firm in just how cringe I thought this was.

Now, I’m not saying couples should never do things like this; People are going to do whatever makes them happy. However, the visceral upheaval that accompanied my viewing of this photograph has been unmatched since then. I’m not sure what has become of him. I do know they ended up getting married and I hope they’re happy to this day. What I do regret is asking my co-worker to feel how I felt. I have to remember that not everybody feels the same way I do, especially when it comes to things that seemingly everybody does, and I’m the weirdo for not wanting it.

Perhaps it’s just my bitterness showing, but I have it in my head that if I ever were to take engagement photos, I would ask a photographer to follow me and my significant other around on one of five pre-determined days. I won’t know which day it is he photographs us, That way, I’m as candid as I could possibly be. And who knows. Maybe I’ll just naturally do cringey things anyway. Or at least things that others would certainly think so.

What I’ve Discovered: Political Horsepucky

The more I think about it, I probably would make a very shitty public servant. It’s a funny thought for me to go up against Congressman Jerry Nadler in a debate, but maybe women of my caliber don’t need to be in politics. Perhaps I’m suited elsewhere, because when you run on emotions too much, you get the results picture above. Pure, unadulterated, misleading and phony cringe.

The alleged New York City mayor has been partaking in all sorts of cringe things lately, from telling New Yorkers the city is “back” to being photographed out at the club every chance he possibly could get. He also blows kisses to people heckling him, and if I had it my way he would be heckled every single place he ever goes until the end of time. But I digress.

Either way, he’s been doing this stupid hand gesture with people There’s something very sinister about this. Perhaps it’s because I saw Damar Hamlin do it from his hospital bed after collapsing in January. Or maybe I’m just paranoid. Either way, I don’t understand what this accomplishes. Why would anybody do something like this and think it makes them look cool? There’s no way people just organically decide to throw up hand signs like this or any other one on the list. Sometimes this cringe-by-proxy can be even more detrimental to any personal cringe felt. Why can’t these people just govern? Why do we have to be subjected to cringe faux celebrities too?

I would love to see a world where all special interests are out of politics, and we just have people who want to lead us. All of us, not just our friends. Until then, we are seemingly stuck with a whole bunch of obnoxious posing prostitutes who wouldn’t know realness if it shoved a middle finger in their faces. Perhaps I’m lucky I’m not in public service right now. I can only take so much squick before I just want to combust.

What I Hope to Find: Television Tremble

I think live television as we know it is on its way out. People just aren’t as interested. They’ve got longform podcasts where they can just sit and listen to people express their thoughts unfiltered, without all that being beholden to corporate rules. I’m not worried about what I’ll do, though. I’m an Annunziato. We always land on our feet. But while I’m here, there’s still a lot of things that need to be desired.

We still use Skype connections even though we’ve been post-pandemic for a long while now. It’s time to get people back into our studio or at least a remote studio where the connection is always solid. Because Skype or Virtual Cable connections aren’t the most reliable, and if a guest’s internet connection is bad, it makes for some really terrible TV. Sometimes our guests’ shots will break up, or they have a delay in their speaking, or the host and them all step on each others’ sentences, making it awkward as hell. When things like this happen, I physically revulse. I put my hands up to my ears and nearly screech, since I can’t handle the cringe. I’m like an autistic kid with sensory issues. But I just can’t take how uncomfortable I am in that moment. But that’s live TV, baby. Anything could happen. Which leads me to what I wish would.

Considering the kind of news cycle we’re in, we’re circling toward something absolutely massive dropping in everyone’s lap. Not just Americans, either. I’m talking worldwide shakeup. What I hope to be lucky enough to get is the chance to cover that breaking news live as it’s happening. A chance for a real moment where all my cringe and screeching goes out the window, because I’m there watching history happen. I saw it when President Trump left the White House lawn on January 20th. I felt something unprecedented occur that I was simply brought to tears. And yet, there I was, staying on air, keeping it calm, cool, and collected for our viewers. I’m still on a morning show, and not too much breaks that early in the morning. But who knows. The only cringe we may have to deal with is listening to all those shmucks going on about how “I told you so!” And no one likes them any way.

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