jomo (n.)(v.)

Buffalmacco, trionfo della morte, eremiti 12 eremita che legge [photo: Sailko; image via Wikimedia Commons]

JOMO is the unasked-for sequel to FOMO, the “fear of missing out.” FOMO has intensified and instantized during this paleo-early era of social media. Your Facebook feeds overflow with the gurning smiles of “friends” who have gone somewhere you have not gone, who are doing something you are not doing. Broadcast extravagantly and immodestly, these frenemy transmissions are soft signifiers of a fear of personal obsolescence. JOMO obliterates the sting of social deficiency and replaces it with a brain-tingling feeling of exuberant absence. The JOMO user is so happy not to be there. When the JOMO user does go out, he or she almost immediately regrets it–besieged by FOMO on missing JOMO. It’s like a drug with no traces. It is part vindication, part existential reflexology. It is the pleasure of giving one’s tacit aloneness a name, and for that name to look good in upper-case letters {Insert HUG emoticon here}.