For the past few years, a trend called “30 Day of Being Thankful” has emerged on social media during the month of November. Because I’m a general proponent of holiday cheer and expressions of gratitude, I try to stay open-minded about this month-long stint of status update sincerity. This isn’t easy considering how trite the status updates can be. Friends who might spend the majority of the rest of the year bitching about traffic or politics will suddenly take the time out to thank their children’s bus driver or reflect upon how much they love their kids’ sweet, smiling faces. A little manufactured, but nice all the same. Some parents take the “30 Days” updates very seriously, dutifully posting each day about friends and relatives in heartfelt tributes as though they were Facebook sacraments. Others (especially toward the end of the month, when source material is scarce) will extend public thanks for reasons like “thankful for FroYo” or “thankful that my baby’s poop is a healthy consistency.” There’s no right or wrong way to rock the “30 Days” vibe, so long as you’re committed to annoying your friends on a daily basis near the peak of the holiday season.
That said, I’m reticent to call people out simply for being outwardly thankful. Who am I to say what people can and can’t be thankful for on Facebook? The point is that they’re just participating in the “30 Days” fad because it makes them feel good, and there’s nothing inherently offensive about that. …Or is there? Based on the emails I’ve received, I’ve no doubt that many people hate — and I would go so far as to sayreally fucking hate — the “30 Days of Being Thankful” trend, and they’re completely unable to take their friends’ incessant and maudlin updates seriously. Is there something so wrong with hating the shit out of a craze that encourages love and appreciation? I’d estimate at least half of all social media users think the repetitive and occasionally sanctimonious nature of the posts only serves to make people feel badly about themselves. The exercise feels more self-important than it does charitable. To everyone who shares this opinion about “30 Days,” you are not alone.
See? Let’s check out some examples to better understand why some folks aren’t fans of the “30 Days” trend despite its benevolent purpose.