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Opinion: The Travel #Humblebrag

travel #humblebrag

Are you traversing the planet in high style? #Goodforyou, but T+L doesn’t want to hear it.

Anthony has checked in to the Armani Hotel Milano. The yacht that Jeremy is on has an awesome diving board, and he posted a photo to prove it. Laura and Jonathan are enjoying a romantic weekend at GoldenEye, Ian Fleming’s Jamaican villa. When one’s own passport has seen less action than a nun, catching up with friends on Facebook can lead to unkind thoughts.

But who wants to give up talking about their travels—a hobby older than Marco Polo? Instead, many people are tempering their gloating with self-deprecation. You’ll recognize a “humblebrag” (as coined on a popular Twitter feed) when you see it: “Can’t believe I asked Alain Ducasse for directions to the men’s room at Louis XV” or “Ugh. The fresh-baked cookies in business class are ruining my diet!” Yes, it’s nice that jet-setters are sensitive to those left behind, but c’mon...enough already.

Then (finally!) I went somewhere—and not just anywhere, but a big, splurge-y anniversary trip to Italy. I wanted to share, but deleted every post I drafted: “Walking around Venice is a constant reminder that I have zero sense of direction”; “I must be the worst-dressed guest ever at the Villa Feltrinelli”; “Our rented Fiat looks so lame next to the Lamborghinis in the parking lot”; and so on. I was like the understudy who, when his big moment arrives, freezes in the wings.

In the theater, there are stars and there’s an audience, and they are as mutually exclusive as they are mutually dependent. Social media is different: we are all the stars and the audience. Whether that’s good or bad is an interesting question, and I promise to give it great thought. But right now I have to go: I’m headed to the Post Ranch Inn in Big Sur and I haven’t got a thing to wear.

Photo by Kyungduk Kim

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