Meryl Streep’s fake viral quote and what it really means

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Recently a quote (see below), erroneously attributed to actress Meryl Streep, went viral on the interwebs. As good an example as any, of the obtuse platitudes, reeking of moral entitlement and deliberate obfuscation, that have become so prevalent on social media. Of course, the irony and hubris of their actions totally elude the passive-aggressive nitwits who share or like these nebulous quotes, often completely out of context.

As for this particular quote, it was apparently penned by one José Micard Teixeira, a Portuguese life coach and motivational speaker who according to his LinkedIn profile has published a few self-help books with generic titles such as “Learn to Live Without Fear” and “Know How to Change Your Life”. Quelle surprise then that a cursory glance at Goodreads and Amazon does not provide any evidence of the legions of support for José’s tomes of wisdom. In fact, except for one anonymous mention in Goodreads, you would be hard pressed to find a place to buy a copy of one of his books.

A few examples of the confused miasma that is José’s manifesto for a better life:

Stating the frighteningly obvious: “I no longer spend a single minute on those who lie or want to manipulate.” and  “In friendship I dislike the lack of loyalty and betrayal”. Okay, so you actually know individuals who enjoy hanging around people who lie to them and manipulate them? And of course, we all go through a phase when we revel in having friends who betray us on a regular basis. Frankly I’m surprised the newly enlightened José did not include his refusal to no longer randomly put his hand in open fires. Actually, what’s really happening here is that José is having a passive-aggressive knee jerk reaction to what he obviously perceives as slights from other people, maybe his mom. Instead of confronting them like a well adjusted adult, he sends off a digital Cry in the Dark.

Then there is the amusing contradiction in terms, “I believe in a world of opposites and that’s why I avoid people with rigid and inflexible personalities.” First of all, the rigidity and inflexibility or not of any personality is subject to opinion. And unfortunately for you some opinions are better informed than others, just ask Hitler and Idi Amin. It is also of course a very handy obfuscation (straw man) when you find yourself out of your depth in a conversation or argument. The reality is that you want to surround yourself only with people who do not challenge your fragile reference framework. Low self-esteem is a bitch.

Another dead giveaway that the silly little quote could have been written by a 5-year old, is the incongruous dislike of people who don’t like animals, plonked down as an afterthought when all abstract personality trait dislikes have been exhausted. Well, I have difficulty accepting Portuguese bullshit artists farting through their mouths, so there we go. Big lolly for you.

So basically what we have here is the fuzzy double-speak of a snake oil salesman that had its 15 minutes of fame on social media because a bunch of lazy hypocrites zoomed in on a few key words that suited their preset agenda. If we follow their reasoning, José’s childish little rant could just as well have come out of Vladimir Putin’s mouth, in defence of Russia’s version of ‘democracy’. In fact old Vlad has produced tons of the same hubris filled doublespeak this very year. And therein lies the danger and why I for one will not tolerate this kind of rubbish any longer. The internet has given superficial claptrap like this way more power than it deserves, because the old quality-filter mechanisms and peer reviews of what gets printed, do not exist anymore. In one sense it has democratised the media, but in another it has lead to a dictatorship of the lowest common denominator. Just because one million people like or share something, does not mean that it is not false or distorted. At the core lies the modern condition of just swallowing whatever cheap prostituted media is thrown in front of you without contemplating its value first. Unfortunately our schools and universities are woefully inadequate in the preparation of critical thinking media consumers. A situation that is mostly due to the government-corporate hegemony that demands efficient technocrats and bureaucrats from the tertiary education production line, and not critical thinkers who challenge the status quo.

There is another scary psychological dimension to the viral drivel that swirls across social media, like noxious gases emanating from an iPhone factory in China. It would be a safe bet to assume that attaching the name of a multi-award winning actress such as Meryl Streep to the quote gave it a gravitas that the virtually unknown José could only dream of. A cynical observer (yes, I’m taking a big fat dump on one of the lines in the quote) may say that an unscrupulous or desperate individual may have attached her name to that end – to give it some gravitas. That of course would highlight the uncomfortable fact that our celebrity obsessed world gives more credence to who said or did something, than what they said or did. For example if Justin Bieber tipped a bucket of ice water over his head would you do so too? Oh right, my bad, that idiocy has already come and gone.

On a lighter note, my favourite brain-dead endorsement of the fake Meryl quote comes from a schmuck who writes for an online rag with the unfortunate moniker, Schmutzie. Said schmuck headlined his endorsement with the bizarre title: “This […] Quote Gets Added to the List of Things I Would Consider Tattooing On My Forehead.” I kid you the fuck not.

So there you have it. If ever you needed evidence that the biting satire of the movie Idiocracy was an ominously accurate prediction of what was to come, then the support for this turd soup of a quote is pretty much it. I for one will be exaggerating, comparing and criticising whatever or whoever I feel like, if only to differentiate myself from José and his zombie minions. And for that effort I have a world of patience.

Here are the dire words of the quote. Read at your own peril and leave a comment if you disagree with us; we love cheap entertainment at Reprobate.

“I no longer have patience for certain things, not because I’ve become arrogant, but simply because I reached a point in my life where I do not want to waste more time with what displeases me or hurts me. I have no patience for cynicism, excessive criticism and demands of any nature. I lost the will to please those who do not like me, to love those who do not love me and to smile at those who do not want to smile at me. I no longer spend a single minute on those who lie or want to manipulate. I decided not to coexist anymore with pretense, hypocrisy, dishonesty and cheap praise. I do not tolerate selective erudition nor academic arrogance. I do not adjust either to popular gossiping. I hate conflict and comparisons. I believe in a world of opposites and that’s why I avoid people with rigid and inflexible personalities. In friendship I dislike the lack of loyalty and betrayal. I do not get along with those who do not know how to give a compliment or a word of encouragement. Exaggerations bore me and I have difficulty accepting those who do not like animals. And on top of everything I have no patience for anyone who does not deserve my patience.”

15 thoughts on “Meryl Streep’s fake viral quote and what it really means

  1. You tell us nothing of what YOU have to offer others “Meryl” baby, or whoever you really are. Try wearing a sign around your neck with your wonderful self-righteous over-opinionated quote, and watch everyone avoid you like the plague.

  2. I actually loved the quote and having seen it somewhere believed it was Meril’s. I still love the words though, and find them insightful enough. And, Marc, sweetie, I think you are a bit too harsh on everyone, including yourself. I know life in SA is a bit harsh but chill out, relax, swear less and smile more. This mishap is rather cute than sinister.

    • Actually, honeybun, life in SA is lovely, despite a plethora of ignoramuses like yourself littering the landscape with dishonest platitudes. If you don’t understand the broader issues addressed in the article I suggest you rather stick with the Daily Mail or Buzzfeed. By the way the actress’s name is spelled, Meryl.

      • You were strong and firm in your opinion of Jose’s comments. That’s O.K. with me. My initial reaction to Jose’s statement or view of certain behaviors was: Really? This man is angry. The items he discussed are aspects of the world as it is. I think sometimes we need to respond to the world a little better than complete disregard to allot of it.
        I believe that you, Marc, were just as angry about Jose’s comments as Jose is angry towards others. There must be a better way. You both have valid points mixed in with hard un-wavering opinions. I’m not saying your wrong. Just the tone is ANGRY. Gets too emotional especially when you back and forth with another ANGRY person responding to your response. Can’t they just post a fresh view on it of thier own instead of jumping down your throat? Everyone is reduced to name calling.

      • Thanks for contributing your opinion Tim. I do think however that you are missing the main point of my admittedly dismissive missive – the blatant dishonesty of the quote and the people who spread it.

        Some food for thought:

        You and I may be critically attuned enough to filter out nonsense like the Texeira quote, but that does not mean that everyone has that skill. And it is a skill, one that you develop through reading a wide variety of material and being exposed to different views on a regular basis. If you take into account that 1 in 5 American adults were found to be functionally illiterate in a study by the US Department of Education, and that almost 45% of Americans read less than 3 books per year (Pew Research Center, 2011), then there is a lot of cause for concern.

        At the risk of sounding melodramatic, if the noise of this type of conceited dishonesty is not called out for what it is, then it is a hop-skip-and-a-jump to rampant urban legends such as, ‘raping a virgin will cure you from HIV/AIDS.’ Which is exactly what happened here in South Africa (a country with some of the highest rape statistics in the world), much of that particular myth fuelled via a local social network used by 6 million people.

        To use another example, when climate change deniers push their hokum on internet platforms, should we just sit back and shut up, allowing their noise to drown out scientific evidence?

        In my opinion, noise can influence the zeitgeist and the zeitgeist can be the breeding ground for all kinds of nastiness; reference the pre-WW2 propaganda of Joseph Goebbels, which found fertile ground in the rumours, misconceptions and prejudices of the day.

        The article strives to bring attention to the prevalence of mindless support for hypocritical, disingenuous or downright misleading quotes or statements.

        Social media has facilitated the uncritical support for low quality drivel in a massive way. That is one of the reasons why publications like Buzzfeed do so well. If you see no danger in that, there is really no sense in debating the issue.

  3. I suppose in this day and age of blogging fame you had to come up with a twist so contradicting everything and calling things “turd soup” might get you blogging hits and you can feel all warm and fuzzy when people read your blog… should include some selfies just to finish off the the stereotyped narcissism of the 21st century….anything for your 15 minutes of fame…

    • The only narcissist around here is a certain obtuse little turd drowning in a soup of self-entitled platitudes.

  4. do you really think that there aren’t people who have rigid thinking? Have you ever come across a person like that? I don;t think this quote means someone who doesn’t agree wholeheartedly with you I think this means a person that absolutely fails to see your point of view as valid. Or people who betray you? There are people like that gasp! people that you go out of your way for, to help and comfort and then wham for whatever reason they stab you in the back. I guess people do come to a point in time in their lives where they will not tolerate that kind of behavior from other humans. People who won’t smile at you when you smile at them? I had neighbors once that where like that, I would go outside and see them and look at them and smile and start to wave they would look straight through me. Why waste time on people like that? etc etc….sure you can pull this all apart but it just really makes you a cynic.

    • I’d much rather be a cynic than a passive-aggressive twit polluting digital space with trite nonsense.
      1. Where did I say there are no rigid people? What I did say, which you would have noticed if your reading comprehension was a bit better, was that the rigidity or not of a particular personality is subjective and that passive-aggressive personalities tend use such accusations as a cover up for their own insecurities. Much like you are doing right now.
      2. So in stead of confronting your neighbours about their lack of manners, you would rather just make a general announcement on social media that you don’t like rigid/rude/nasty people? And that does not strike you as being passive-aggressive? Not to say a whinging coward as well. No wonder your neighbours don’t want to greet you.

  5. Couldn’t agree more. Loved the sneaky reference to Meryl’s movie, Cry in the Dark.

    • Marc’s characterizations of this quote are spot on! When I initially read it, I thought to myself “Such contradictions in terms once you peel away the layers of obfuscation.” This guy nailed it!

    • And I have no patience for the willful ignorance displayed by facile comments like yours. Come back when you have something pertinent to say.

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