Thursday, September 8, 2011

On Humblebragging

"Everybody has to feel superior to somebody," she said. "But it's customary to present a little proof before you take the privilege."
- Truman Capote, Breakfast at Tiffany's

I love it when you're having your morning coffee and perusing CNN, by which I mean Facebook, and it pops up that someone can't believe he went for an early morning run in the rain, even though he got no sleep last night because he was working on his green energy startup. Or that she was sooo embarrassed that her professor showed that Faulkner paper to his publisher, or that he's invited to soo many parties that he doesn't know how he'll choose (sadface emoticon). That right there is a humblebrag.

Yeah, it sounds like something Larry David would think up (Seinfeld or Curb, doesn't matter) but unfortunately they're everywhere, in the non-TV world. My generation excels at the humblebrag, so much so that somebody had to coin a word for it. It's those little declarations where you simultaneously put yourself down and, well, brag. And we should all stop it, right now.

If you're going to brag, just brag. When you have a real win, just be a teeny bit braggy about it. Just drop the coyness, we all know what you're trying to do. A girl I went to high school with just got a job at Google, and you know what her status was? "Jane Doe will be working at Google next year!" I mean, that is awesome. Brag about it, girl. Four for you, Glen Coco! (And speaking of Google: ladies--or really everyone, but especially girls-- read the New Yorker's profile of Sheryl Sandberg. I love her advice to women about knowing when to talk yourself up).

But yeah, on the other hand, freaking stop asking for validation for doing normal shit like exercising or cooking. I know we were all raised to think we're special snowflakes but really, no one gives a shit. Stop bragging about being a functional human.


  1. Seriously, I've just tried to post on this like 100 times with no success. Ok...deep breath, try again. Just stumbled upon this blog from the UNH Nonsensical blog and noticed that you mentioned how you read everything, down to the shampoo bottle and wondered if you might be interested in reading a novel in progess? Say, one set at a University much like UNH? Parties and all? Lots of cussin too cause I have a problem. I'm associated with UNH in several ways and have been trying to find readers for my novel. Anywhoo...if you're interested, hit me up...

  2. In the middle of setting up my own blog, just found yours and it's AWESOME. I agree with everything you say except you say it way better than I ever could. I am also an English Grad trying to make a living in a world that hates creativity. Tried to add you on Twitter but it couldn't find your account. Sad face. Hope you start to blog more! Corinne.