Heretofore, society has mainly concerned itself with one’s personality and decorum in public. Since Louis XIV noticed his nobles stepped on the grass at Versailles during his annual summer celebrations and posted small “etiquettes,” or little signs, warning them to stay on the path, no trash tossing, etc., the primary concern has been what you do and say in the flesh. Not anymore.

Sadly, there are no little signs on social media, and many need to be warned.

And before you trot out the excuse that “it’s my personal page, and I can say what I want,” let me remind you the grass may look greener on Facebook but you’re still stepping on it.

According to Psychology Today, what you post affects your social capital. People judge you by your online persona, and while you may be a grandma in person, if you’re a political meme monster online, one will negate the other socially and the result won’t be grandma.

You are likewise totally remiss to think only your likeminded “friends” see your posts. All it takes is a screenshot and just like the real world, not everyone you meet virtually is your friend.

Simply put, there is no home-free in society online or off, where you can say what you want however you want without paying the consequences.

People are truly liking or disliking you at a speed never before known to man, and you will pay a steep price for, as we used to say, letting it all hang out. Social media has seduced you into thinking you’re out of harm’s way — you’re not — and society will censor you just the same.

Only faster.


Patricia Gannon covers society for The Acadiana Advocate.  She can be reached at Fete@theadvocate.com.

Bottle of Wine, Fruit of the Vine

Everyone stayed politely on the path here. The Confrerie du Vin de Suresnes gathered at Mouton Plantation, the better for representatives from the Brotherhood of Wine of Suresnes to induct new honorary members from Lafayette. Cementing ties that go back decades were Laborde & Earles, Buz Reid, EJ Krampe, Shirley Cosper and Cydra Wingerter, while other native sons and daughters awaited Acadian Superette’s somewhat complique pork belly and loin with jacket of cracklins. Enjoying the alfresco celebration with some Cotes-du-Rhone were gentihommes Jean-Louis Testud and Andre Selle; Acadiana’s own Philippe Gustin; four-time Grammy nominated musician Cedric Watson, speaking French in the wild; Alaska man Thom Ely, a long way from home and here for the Cycle Zydeco and Cajun Bike Festival; and Fête favorite Luis Mora, whose online posts are never out of line. The event was a kickoff to Festival International.

Accolades

Elsewhere at Festival, the Lafayette International Center bestowed its 20th International Achievement Award on Warren Bares, president of J. Maxime Roy Inc. The ceremony was hosted by Opportunity Machine in downtown Lafayette during the annual Festival International opening reception. Also, Chip and Jennifer Jackson joined the ranks of the Rain Angels, those generous individuals who make sure Festival International is paid for, come rain or come shine.

Shining Light

Vermilionville hosted Shining Light for their sixth annual Cajun Zydeco Bash fundraiser, complete with Lil Buck Senegal, Roddy Romero, Corey Ledet and Leroy Thomas. Guests and contributors were treated to catfish as well as some primo zydeco, but the best came from proud mother Hayley Lejeune, who said her 25-year-old son was playing that evening thanks to music training provided by Shining Light when he was a boy. Shining Light provides financial assistance to underserved children for the purpose of academic enrichment.

Eminent Faculty Awards

The University of Louisiana at Lafayette honored its own for academic excellence with a formal celebration at the Petroleum Club. Taking that long walk to the podium were Ray P. Authement Excellence in Teaching Award recipients Deedra Harrington, Brian Kelly and Kari Smith; Distinguished Professor Award winners Daniel Gang and Jeffrey George; and Leadership in Service Award honoree Jeff Lush. Provost and VP for Academic Affairs Jaimie Hebert emceed, Vice President of University Advancement John Blohm gave the welcome, President E.J. Savoie made a speech and dinner was served. What we loved: Father-son duos Mark and Cole Miller and Daniel and Mark Gang. Mark was a gifted student we taught back in the day. Fête takes complete credit for him.

FOH Luncheon

Friends of the Humanities met at the Petroleum Club for its annual meeting and luncheon featuring Jason Barry. The author, investigative reporter and filmmaker gave his talk on New Orleans from Bienville to post-Katrina rebirth, while Jordan Kellman and Michael McClure bestowed Founder's Day Awards on Loic Bourdeau and Allison Leigh. "We've created an award that will go annually to the College of the Arts, and one to the College of Liberal Arts," said FOH President Judy Kennedy.  "Before, they had to alternate." By the way, the College of the Arts cleaned up this week award-wise, with four of its faculty also receiving Eminent Faculty Awards the previous evening, and Barry gets our award for his quote: "The press is the hope of the future."