This article is part of a new weekly series, “Untruth Tuesdays,” in which I take something completely, absurdly untrue then write about it as if it weren’t.
By Melissa Marni, Contributing staff reporter, The Colorado Bugler
On Tuesday evening around nine, Marshall Fillchardo, owner of Kipp, CO-based bakery, Bread A Leg, took out his phone, looked up into the starry sky and snapped a photo of the full moon. Though the photo was partly out of focus, it was still decent enough by Fillchardo’s non-exacting standards and without hesitation, he posted it to his Facebook profile then awaited the usual—and ardent—response.
“My friends pretty much like whatever I post within minutes,” he said adding that between check-ins, Star Wars memes and Pokémon GO screenshots, he updates his Facebook page about twelve to thirteen times each week. “I expected at least three comments and four likes by midnight, especially when I got 26 likes on my check-in at Taco Bell last Thursday.”
But in the space separating Fillchardo’s sanguine social media expectations and what came to pass grew a dark abyss of like-less nothing.
“At 1 a.m. I woke up and saw the photo didn’t get any likes,” he described. Fillchardo quickly refreshed the image a few times, even Googling to see if Facebook was down. “I did everything I could to find a possible explanation because I was obviously deeply troubled with the situation.” By 3 a.m., a sleep-deprived Fillchardo knew the impossible had happened: No one had liked his Facebook photo.
I was obviously deeply troubled with the situation.
Bewildered and despondent, the Colorado baker was somehow able to fall asleep around 4:30 a.m. hoping that come morning, the likes would arrive.
But when the sun rose over the Rockies, the full moon photo still lay bare.
“Yeah, I saw the picture,” said Mindala Yakachuki, Facebook friend of Fillchardo. The two met six years before on a canoeing trip in Big Sur, CA but Yakachuki hadn’t seen Fillchardo since. “The photo had no caption so I thought it was one of those croissant-donut things with vanilla frosting and I’m glucose-intolerant,” she explained. Fillchardo’s former canoe companion also said his photo was on her newsfeed right below a video of a Corgi puppy riding an electronic scooter, so she “just watched that instead.”
Yoga Instructor Gribby Pupe, who substitute-taught Fillchardo’s Wednesday morning Vinyasa Flow class and friended him because he “seemed pretty sad,” echoed a similar sentiment of disinterest. “I just don’t really know him and felt a little funny liking his picture,” she said. “Plus, I wrote ‘cool’ on his update about wanting to form a Jack Johnson-Bob Marley cover band, which meant I couldn’t say anything about another one of his posts without seeming like I’m into him or something. And I’m really, really not.”
I couldn’t say anything about another one of his posts without seeming like I’m into him or something. And I’m really, really not.
Peabody University Junior Associate Psychology Professor Janet Wright, author of Like Less, Love More, said the lack of Facebook likes on Fillchardo’s moon photo may have nothing to do with his friends’ distaste for astronomy and everything to do with the Colorado native’s maladaptive social skills. “To validate your self-worth or the self-worth of your moon photos against others’ reactions is to negate the idea of substantial substantiation,” she said. “Also, the photo was blurry.”
Perhaps Fillchardo would do good to heed the wise words of the junior associate professor, except when questioned about whether the zero-likes moon photo spoke to deeper social issues or even a bad iPhone camera, denied anything was amiss. “I’ve got plenty of friends who like my stuff,” Fillchardo affirmed, a surprisingly spirited twinkle in his eye. “I just posted a photo of my new Obi-Wan Kenobi toilet seat cover,” he said. “And you know what? Cousin Gertrude already liked it and commented ‘this the same one that gave grandma an infection,’ so yeah, I’d say things are looking up.”