$10,000 could be charged for a blue check mark on Twitter. $25,000. Name a price and you'd have people paying it. No one has anything of any value to say, but everyone wants to be looked at as though they do.
They're so spiritually bankrupt--which isn't a religious thing--that what they most care about is that people think their words matter, even if it's completely untrue.
They are also so capable of deceiving themselves--with their lives being run through assorted channels of self-deception--that they're able to look beyond the truth that there is nothing that can even serve as the basis for some slight merit in terms of their importance as they've defined this form of importance; i.e., "Special people have check marks" or "I have this many people following me, that means I possess significance in proportion to that number."
I don't want to hear people when I am at a remove from them. I don't want to hear their whistling which only and ever pleases the person doing it, nor their mindless domestic squabble, nor their horrid Boston accent from a block down the street, nor the godawful music that is shaking their car. I should only hear you when we are talking or in the same place and we're not far away.
You can accurately evaluate someone's mental acumen--and lack thereof--by how often they turn a single syllable word into two. "Ther-uh." Hear that once and all that needs to be known about them is then known.
Most people simply are waiting for their turn to talk. Everyone just wants to talk. No one wants to listen and certainly no one wants to learn or understand. No one wants to even truly respond, which involves listening first. No one cares if what they say has value, insight, wit. There are no conversations.
Go to a gathering and you find yourself cornered. The person who has cornered you--and perhaps others at the same time--simply wants to have their turn. It is their turn to say all the words. There is nothing you could say to them that would interest them because they would not even hear it. They're working on their next words in their head, for when it's their turn again.
One has the sense that they are never allowed to talk anywhere else or don't feel like they can. Like at home. With their spouse. With their kids. But now it is their moment, and they are going to get their money's worth.
Alcohol also "helps." Don't underestimate how much and how often alcohol "allows" people to do anything they wouldn't otherwise do or get to do. Often now it's all that enables people to do or say those things.
You are not present in these instances in order to be a part of anything or any part of an exchange. You are a prop. You are an object. You're available.
You are what is nominally talked to--rather, talked at--so that this person can feel like they have a voice in life. For them, roughly the same effect could be achieved if they got a marker and drew a face on a traffic cone and then began pontificating to it. That they can see a breathing human in front of them, though, is something that can be fed into one of those aforementioned channels of self-deception.
It doesn't take a hell of a lot for a simple creature that is almost willfully trying to become simpler to fool itself. Especially if that's what their existence is predicated upon; as with anything one practices, one gets better at it. That includes very bad things, too.
This may be the only time--moments like these--when they get to feel a certain way they'd like to feel or use that voice.
The example of the gathering has mushroomed into a general societal norm--it's how things are now--beyond the gathering, though it is exactly like what happens when one is cornered in that room.
The psychological make-up of that person at the gathering having their turn is the overarching psychological make-up of social media, politics, talking head culture, how people "interact," and almost all that is nominally word-based in the whole of society and culture, and it extends down to every last tweet, claim, take, headline, piece, stance, and whatever else is slapped out there.
It's also partly why people are so often totally alone in any real way, and with no legitimate sense of a legitimate self.