Saturday, January 19, 2013

Acid in the face

This is "Acid in the Face".

Working Title : How to not deal with criticism, how to fan flames, and how to fail at life in general.

Step 1) Out of the blue, use unrelated subject to slide the knife into your opponents

Original text:

"The Bolshoi sounds like “the atheist community.”The artistic director got acid thrown in his face yesterday. Apparently the Bolshoi is riven with deeeeep rifts. (That’s good, isn’t it? Riven with rifts? Same root, no doubt. I can’t say I use “riven” much. Every now and then though – well it’s the word that fits in the slot.)
…even before police find the culprits – if they ever do – many will connect the attack to the ongoing squabbles and infighting that have been plaguing this jewel of Russian culture.

Most of the squabbles that have affected the theatre have not been about money, but about personal competition, and they appear to have degenerated into nasty attacks on the talented dancer-turned-director.
Before acid was used in Friday’s attack, Sergei Filin had already received numerous phone threats, and his email and Facebook accounts had been hacked.
Interesting. One minute it’s just hacked Facebook accounts, the next it’s acid attacks. Maybe I should start wearing protection."

Make it clear - things are fucked up, and its everyone else's fault! Make it clear that everyone else is an acid-throwing terrorist.

Step 2)  Repeat Step 1

Add to the post the following text:
Update for you creeps [invective] from the mildew pit [invective] -
No it’s not that I think I’m that important, you assholes. [invective] It’s that you do. You’re the ones [deflect blame] who act as if I’m pretty much the most important person in the world! Along with eight or ten others. You’re the ones who monitor my every move every hour and every day. You’re the ones who focus a creepy amount of attention on me. [pot, kettle, black] I don’t think I’m that important at all! I don’t think I’m worth that kind of attention – not from people who like me and not from people who hate me. No, I don’t think maybe someone will eventually attack me because I’m so important – [then why post it?] I think that because you people are so fucking unhinged and obsessive and you keep ratcheting up the hatred. [defect blame] I am very small potatoes, yet there you are, staring and frothing and hating.
I hope that clears that the fuck up. [invective]
Funny how someone who doesn't want attention will post 3-4 times per day, with 50% of content devoted to all this drama.

Step 3) Drop an F-bomb on someone... or everybody.

@OpheliaBenson 13h  
@[redacted] Fuck off.

Three minutes later she received this reply:
@OpheliaBenson Maybe a vial of acid would do you some good. You already look like you were set on fire and put out with a wet rake.
OB explains her policy in a comment on her blog:
"I told him to fuck off after he turned up from nowhere to harass me. I tell them all to fuck off." 

Step 4) Retweet "threat"

By many accounts, OB retweeted the message which would definitely appear to someone without any context to be a completely undeserved threat, (where did this reference to acid come from?) instead of an insult directed at OB's appearance. 

Step 5) Blog "threat"

Caption of screenshot of the "threat" received: "Gee I don’t know why you’re always making such a fuss about all this stalking and hate-mongering."

Step 6) Be completely oblivious

Ophelia comments on her own blog:
What’s so stupid is – they’re pitching fits at me for being so self-important. But they’re the ones who spend their lives tracking my every move!! They treat me as if I were earth-shakingly important – evil, and hugely important. If they were not stalking me every minute of every day, I wouldn’t be talking about possible shifts into violence. I don’t have delusions of reference. THEY KEEP FUCKING TALKING ABOUT ME.
And you keep talking about them. See a connection?

and finally,

Step 7) Pat self on back and applaud your own genius

Yet another comment:
I’ll just read my response to Shermer again. That will cheer me up.
 Yes, you really stuck it to that misogynist, didn't you Ophelia?

And that's a wrap. Really good conflict resolution skills, right?

You may be wondering - why is the twitter handle [redacted] above?

Here's the crazy status of all this: After this exchange, the person Ophelia was communicating with deleted his Twitter.

He knew that the comment could get him into a whole lot of trouble. The text and the gender of its target are so off-limits that it is absolutely indefensible - that it could cause serious problems for his career, etc.

Here is the disconnect in behavior - can you imagine this exchange happening between two males?

Here's how it could go down -
  1. Party A and Party B are arguing about which person is the biggest obsessive lame asshole
  2. Party A tells Party B to "fuck off"
  3. Party B calls Party A ugly, otherwise in need of corrective surgery
  4. Party A solicits input from the audience about the hurtful comments made most recently by Party B
  5. Then if both parties are close in time and space, this step is when physical assault may occur.
This isn't the Bolshoi Ballet. This isn't some theoretical escalation of some internet bitchfest.

This is any pub. Any club. Any schoolground, any workplace.

But tomorrow we'll all wake up, Ophelia Benson will have another half dozen blog posts about how the internet hates her.

Bloggers miss the essential lesson of elementary school - you can't spend too much time talking about how nobody likes you.


  1. She's ugly in the inside. I don't know why more people don't see it.

  2. I think she could be an extremely nice person away from keyboard, but once she's on the computer she writes like it's some sort of winnable battle of good vs evil.

    Internet provides an easy way for everyone's emotions to be at the foreground at all times and she doesn't hide her anger at all.