I don't know why or when it happened, but at some point, Marilyn Monroe became the patron saint of social media. Let's just assume it can be traced back to some 14-year-old's glittery MySpace profile from 10 years ago. If I could, in fact, turn back time, I would find a way to cancel this person's Internet and have saved us from the countless times these damn quotes get overused.
An especially popular one is some iteration of this ...
Except, wait for it ... there is zero evidence she ever said that. And if she had, it probably wasn't to insinuate that acting like an asshole was completely OK and being nice was an honor you needed to earn from her.
Monroe was known for a lot of things: affairs with married men, multiple messy relationships, and a serious substance-abuse problem. She was basically her generation's Lindsay Lohan, but with more talent. Monroe also had a history of mental illness in her family and was even hospitalized at some point in the '60s due to severe depression. Some claim she suffered from borderline personality disorder.
None of those things makes her unquotable, of course. Clearly the woman had a lot of issues, and she dealt with them in a pretty destructive way.
Keystone/Hulton Archive/Getty Images
Dating the president, for example.
Mental health wasn't treated the same way it is now, so who knows how her life could have ended up had she received the type of help she may have needed? It's one thing to be someone who is actually battling mental illness and struggling with substance abuse; it's another thing entirely to think that you should be excused for your shitty behavior because you're an entitled asshole. And that's usually how and when people like to invoke a non-Monroe quote.
Post this on your Facebook page to let people know you're unique.
Too often people use quotes for the wrong reasons. It's rarely a celebration of the creativity behind or the wisdom in the actual text itself. More often than not, people seem to post quotes just because they're from someone considered cool or edgy, rendered in the ideal typography. And how else is everyone supposed to know to flood them with compliments and sympathy if they don't go fishing for it over social media?
Sometimes life is a ball of shit, and we all have to take a big whiff. The way people process and deal with life's trials and tribulations varies. And social media is often an outlet for people who maybe feel slightly more comfortable communicating with a bit of a buffer zone. Like I said, I'm no doctor, so what the fuck do I know? But before you slap some clever quote up on the Internet, ask yourself this: am I the first-world snob who's complaining about something that isn't really such an issue in the first place?
For more from Cher, follow her on Twitter @thecherness.
For more crimes fit for a movie screen, check out 5 Basic Rules Guys Can't Seem to Follow on Dating Websites. And then check out 23 Famous Quotes You Know By Heart (That Are Totally Wrong).
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