The faces of despair

faces of despair

I wasn’t particularly distressed this morning but while brainstorming about potential queries for my little SEO project, I started typing “I am desperate…” into Google Search. As Seth Stephens Davidowitz points it out in his book Everybody Lies, Google has become the new confessional.

What do we come across if we suddenly share our despair with Google? How do we cope with desperation through the lens of a search engine? 

I am desperate Google
I am desperate Google


The first suggestion is the plain affirmation of the absence of hope: I am desperate. Then the adjective becomes an adverb emphasising the lack of happiness. Losing weight seems hopeless for many people who share their concern with Google, probably looking for solace in the back alleys of the internet forums. Then comes the despair associated to loneliness and, for the believers among us, a desperate call to the Lord. Unhappy marriage is also a major cause for concern. There’s a search for a song titled “I am desperate for a touch of heaven” (God again…). Between two heavenly pleas slips in the confession of women desperately looking to get pregnant. Closing the list comes a very materialistic prayer, pleading for money and ideas.

These are probably some of the despair/desperation-related queries you were expecting.

But if we open ahrefs and have a look at the newly discovered search queries including the word “desperate”, here’s what we see down the internet rabbit hole. Quite unsettling, to say the least… 

Newly discovered
Newly discovered "desperate" queries - ahrefs




Yes, you’re right, people are actively searching for content depicting “boys desperate to pee”, “desperate school girls needing to pee”, “very desperate nude ladies peeing”, etc. 

desperate to pee
desperate to pee


What can I say? Never in my entire life have I imagined that people would be somehow attracted by the sight of fellow humans desperate… to pee. But if you type “desperate to pee” in Google, you get close to 13 million results (!). There’s even a “literary” genre dedicated to bathroom emergencies / pee stories.

Being a nice guy, I won’t frustrate the internet wanderers who will land on this page with a desperate peeing urge because of the SEO effectiveness of my publication.

Manneken Pis, desperate to pee (Brussels)
Manneken Pis, desperate to pee (Brussels) - Photo by Fredography https://www.fredericpaulussen.be/photographer-in-brussels/

  

So I will conclude this short piece by an illustration of a young boy who has become an icon in my homeland, Belgium: Manneken Pis. According to one of the legends explaining the origin of the little statue, the boy allegedly saved Brussels by urinating on the burning fuse of explosive charges at the city walls. 

Desperate to pee, he entered history. A nice conclusion, isn’t it?





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