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April Swany Says

Who in the world is Nate Hamblin?

By – Joshua A. Swanson


Who in the world is Nate Hamblin? You don’t know it yet, but he’s the only man standing between you and catastrophe. But before we get to that, let’s segue into a Kindergarten lesson, shall we? Sharing isn’t always a good thing. Remember when you were younger and your teacher taught you it was nice to share. Share your toys. If you want treats, bring enough for everybody. If you were the kid with the jumbo box of crayons, you were more popular during coloring time than a Frisco bartender swarmed by Bison fans.

Today, not much has changed. Instead of sharing our toys, we have a fancy phrase for it. Grown-ups call sharing “paying it forward.” I’ve heard people will pay for the coffee of the person behind them in line at Starbucks. If this happens to you, you’re supposed to return the favor to the person behind you the next time you’re getting coffee. What a wonderful concept. I love the very idea of it! It’s that public service commercial, kindness, pass it on! Brought to you by the folks for a better life or the American Smiley Face Association.

In fact, bright and early this morning, when driving through Starbucks for my jumbo coffee, I’m going to pay for the coffee of the car behind me. I’m the gift that keeps giving – coffee and columns with Swany! You can syndicate that all the way to the bank.

You know what’s not a wonderful concept? Unfiltered Twittering or Facebooking. It’s not a joke! Think I’m kidding? Log into Twitter or Facebook after your favorite team has a huge win or disappointing loss. Twitter and Facebook have created more armchair analysts and Monday Morning Quarterbacks than Bisonville could dream of. Nothing but love for my Bisonville friends, but you guys aren’t even in the same ballpark with the insta-arses popping off on Twitter and Facebook about why team “x” sucks eggs, or why “x” player should walk himself into oncoming traffic, even though “x” player is an all-conference performer.

That makes as much sense as strutting your moxy up to that girl who looks like Sofia Vergara and telling her you’d never date her because, with your Steve Buscemi-esque looks, she’s just not hot enough for you. Just last weekend, I put one of my own buddies on blast for making an absurd comment on Facebook about an opposing player’s subpar performance in the NCAA Tournament. This same player, by the way, eliminated North Dakota State from the Summit League Tournament and a shot at the Big Dance. My buddy showed him. Take that, jerkhead!

Maybe I’ve mellowed a bit in my lawyering days and realized I don’t need to have an opinion or comment for everything. It’s just too exhausting. I don’t have the energy to tear people down and throw hate around online like bad candy at a parade.

It’s absolutely classless to rip another team or player. Especially on Twitter or Facebook. What did you do today while that athlete was out there busting their hump competing for his team? Maybe watched some “Big Bang Theory?” Ordered a $5 foot-long from Subway? Or maybe complained about your boss or job to friends over beers? Here’s some tasty medicine. Next time I see a habitual Twitter or Facebook narcissist at one of my favorite watering holes, I’m blasting them with both barrels on Twitter for drinking beer like a cat in a bath. It doesn’t even matter if it’s not true because it doesn’t have to be. I can tweet until I’m twittered out, truth be damned.

One of my favorite sports personalities is ESPN’s Scott Van Pelt. During my drives to and back from Minot, Bismarck or Williston for work, I tune into XM 84 for SVP and Russillo. These are the dudes that rep a Bison football helmet on their set. Van Pelt has it right. Almost everything about sports on Twitter is hateful garbage. Now, back to our friend Nate Hamblin.

This was an actual tweet tonight from @Nate_Hamblin after the Chicago Bulls snapped the Miami Heat’s 27-game win streak. Yes, that Nate Hamblin, the suburban Chicagoan with 279 Twitter followers living in his parents attic. King James chokes in a city where Jordan made history for so many ironic..#RIPstreak. Well, thank heavens Nate Hamblin put LeBron in his place. Now we can rest easy in our beds tonight.

We need to stop the Nate Hamblins of the world. The North Dakota legislature seems to be sticking its noses in all kinds of places where it doesn’t belong. Maybe they can put together some harebrained legislation regulating Twitter and Facebook. We can start by requiring licenses to tweet or permits to post. This would stop the Nate Hamblins of the world from polluting our internet. Or, how about abstinence only tweeting. It really is as sexy as it sounds. Protect yourself kids, you don’t know what’s out there, so we won’t teach you anything about it. That way, we can be sure you won’t use the Internet and be exposed to all that garbage on Facebook about equality, free speech and the dreaded penumbras of liberty. It’s the filter we’ve all wanted but have been afraid to ask for.

Until the legislature gets their act together and clamps down on these First Amendment rights, I guess we’ll just have to deal with the Nate Hamblins of the world popping off and forcing their views upon us. I suppose we could just ignore them. But then who would protect us from stuff we don’t want to see? Maybe I can find somebody on Facebook for the job.

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