Discover more from screaming into the void, but in lowercase
the unfortunate reality of being twitter's discourse of the day
describing the anxiety-ridden feeling of going viral for the wrong reason
sometime on friday evening, i posted a video to my tiktok account commenting on chris evans’ latest relationship with portuguese actress alba baptista. since i was a chris evans/captain america stan for years and enjoyed the occasional christopher “jamal” evans meme (aka, captain acrylica in a bonnet and acrylics), i thought that my video would gage a few interactions and laughs from the other black female fans of america’s fictional comic book star. spoiler alert: that didn’t happen!
on saturday morning, i woke up to an entirely different response to my video — now deleted but garnered over 115k views on tiktok — with an incorrect narrative throughout the comment section. i assumed that the running joke of christopher “jamal” evans and his popularity among black women would be understood among other black fans, and frankly, it was a regular comment section until it landed on twitter.
my video was downloaded and tweeted (a nightmare for some tiktok users that end up on that bird app), and i quickly found the tweet along with the awful quoted retweets that seemed to increase by the hour. at first, i found myself laughing at the questionable statements that jumped to poor conclusions, such as “this girl clearly has no black friends” or “that i’m desperate for attention from white men.” however, like most things on twitter at the moment, it didn’t take long for these quoted tweets or comments to go from “funny, haha” to “funny, weird.”
there’s something fishy that smells like misogynoir about this entire situation, specifically related to the delusional men that insisted on my faux femcel identity. but i truly believe that if the video wasn’t reshared on my least favorite side of black twitter (the hoteps), i wouldn’t have received comments asking the questions: “why do you care so much about who chris evans is dating?” “why do black people care when white people date other white people?” “when did he claim to like black women?”
among other questions, i was called a bedwench, coon, femcel, embarrassing, and many other things i cannot bare to repeat online.
when i first alerted my group chat on saturday morning about the potential virality of the video, my friend encouraged me to not let the comments get to me. unfortunately, i began internalizing the responses when they repeatedly commented on my looks (locs, septum piercing, arched eyebrows (?), etc.) and of course — i received a violent threat for my (non-existent) hatred of black men.
eventually, i went private on tiktok and took the video down, because the amount of hate eventually got extremely hurtful and personal. i felt as if it was too late to post any attempt to explain how my tiktok was taken out of context, but to be honest, i was genuinely too anxious to even post another video.
since i impulsively deleted the video, i’ll let you in on the context for my video that didn’t exist on twitter:
as a former steve rogers stan, i recently commented on a video by @wafflesinc about the sixth sense that black women have for white male celebs (i.e. chris evans, jack harlow, etc.) that are praised for their proximity to black women. for context, there’s a playful narrative that chris evans has a flirtatious thing for black women when in reality his non-black exes paint a different picture. while ironically mentioning this narrative in my tiktok, i’m guessing that the point of my conversation was lost and distorted when i ended the video mentioning that i “accepted and moved on” from chris evans’ romantic interests. as a matter of fact, i just meant that i moved on from my celebrity crush from my teenage years.
disclaimer: i do not care who chris evans is dating, and i’m simply another nosey fan commenting on celebrity relationships. i’m an entertainment writer that used to religiously reblog celebrities and their OTPs on tumblr, give me a break! i’m still in shock that this video allegedly insinuated that i am “seeking white validation” and “policing who chris evans sleeps with,” which is so far from the original irony of the video that i’m genuinely concerned about the (lack of) reading comprehension.
prior to deleting my video and placing my account on private, someone commented, “you’re the discourse of the day on twitter.” if you’ve been there, it’s an awful feeling.
in an attempt to ignore it, i understood that i could let the conversation run its course this weekend while limiting my time on social media, but my feelings were still hurt by the very brutal comments throughout the now-viral tweet. i had a handful of friends reach out to check-in on my well-being, since they also stumbled upon the tweet, especially since most knew that i recently dealt with misogynistic harassment from talib kweli and his toxic fanbase in march.
as i’m writing this, i’ve accepted that the video will *unfortunately* garner more attention until twitter introduces its new discourse of the week. have i learned any type of lesson from this? i truly don’t know if i’m supposed to! creating discourse during twitter’s end days was definitely not on my bingo card for this weekend, but here i am, explaining myself in this substack. if there’s one thing that i learned today, it’s that twitter truly allows its users with the virtual fulfillment of embracing their inner mean girl, and i was the unlucky cady heron of this week’s twitter timeline.