the writing and photography of Neil Kramer

Are Bloggers Too “Snarky?”


Text from this month’s Psychology today (page 44).  Pictures are my own: 

“Don’t stop parroting Daily Show host Jon Stewart just yet, but a cynical outlook really can take years off of your life.  Thanks to their nihilistic bent, cynics tend to engage in more self-destructive behaviors than their sunnier peers.  Research has shown that they smoke and drink more, and are more likely to commit suicide.”


“Cynics also suffer and die from heart problems in disproportinate numbers.” 


“Cardiologist Donald Haas at New York’s Mount Sinai Medical School found that suspicious people who suffer from heart disease are more than twice as likely as their more optimistic couterparts to end up gravely ill or hospitalized for their condition.  Haas speculates that cynics may be less likely to follow doctors’ orders – either out of spite or despondency.”


A Year Ago on Citizen of the Month:  Dear Chinese People


  1. Bre

    I tried to come up with a really great, cynical response to my newly announced death warrant, but found today was just too lovely to gripe! 🙂

  2. deezee

    I think it comes down to balance – satire need not be rooted in anger but observation. Snarky is usually the sign of an angry person, though. I’ve stopped reading certain blogs that basked in snarkiness with no sense of humor attached. I felt like in reading I was participating in the spread of disease (hey, the posts brought me down.)

    I guess it depends on where you draw the line, eh?

  3. Rhea

    I have no doubt that cynicism and negativity can affect your health, so I want to thank you for publishing those cute pictures.
    Polly Anna

  4. Lou P.

    I try to reserve cynicism for things that I perceive as being woefully inept (i.e. the American political system.) It’s a shame when that outlook is one that people take about their own lives.

    Personally, I prefer to hope for the best, prepare for the worst, and anticipate something in-between.

  5. laurie

    I can’t wait for the study that comes out, on the heels of this study, claiming the red wine is good for Snarky Heart Condition. hee hee

  6. peefer

    Anyone who hates that happy Poo & Co. pic is certain to die young.

  7. mrsmogul

    Hell I LIVE ON SATIRE!! You gotta be or else everyone would get too depressed. I don’t watch the news..its that depressing. I believe smiing and positive thoughs increases your life…and gets you more SEX!

    Winnie the Pooh is a snarky bitch! I mean he once came to a party at a club and he demanded a VIP table!! (TRUE FACT: I didn’t know what SNARK was until I blogged.)

    PS – I lurk here sometimes but today I COMMENT!

  8. e.

    Today the Washington Post reported that red meat is going to give me breast cancer. Combined with your news, Neil, it looks like my plans for tonight to go out to the steakhouse with my old roommate and complain about life are a surefire way to skip work tomorrow! Can’t work if I’m dead…


    I don’t believe it.

  10. fringes

    I believe that NaBloPoMo has finally taken its toll on you.

  11. Chantel

    I am not a cynic. However, I drink and smoke more than most people. I also am very healthy in a strange messed up way. But I do beleive that negativity can get you down. That would explain why I left my last job with barely my soul intact. However, they are the most healthy, unhappy cynics I’ve ever met.

  12. 2nd Pearl Past the Post

    Cynicism if humor is kept can keep depressed people from spiralling down, like self-medicating cigs and drinks and diet. There are other strategies, such a staring at Winnie the Pooh or cute overload I suppose, or becoming a marathon runner, or becoming a clenched smile martyr of lovingness…hard to say how much one can change the feedback loop but The Luck Factor says you can shift your outlook and go from cynical to different.

  13. paperback writer

    The cynicism I usually express (or not) is just a counter balance to the sweet, loving Paperback Writer that isn’t on display.

    Oh, hell.

    That was a crock! 🙂

  14. V-Grrrl

    What do we expect from cynics, the people who gave us the motto, “Life’s a bitch and then you die”?

  15. Edgy Mama

    Damn, I was just thinking about posting about how boooorrrring so many blogs are. The snarky ones are the best ones!

  16. Mr. Fabulous

    Uh-oh. This is no good. No one is more sarcastic and cynical than I am…

  17. Daisy Mae

    and of course I am one of the biggest cynics I know. I don’t big big as in porky, I mean I’m just darned good at being a cynic because I have had much practice. Although I do have my porky days too.

    Anyway, does this mean I should hide the ropes from myself as well as the kitchn knives?

  18. Hilly

    Live fast and die young ;).

    I’d rather be snarky than add five years at a nursing home onto my life scentence.

  19. Megan

    Cynical and snarky are NOT the same thing. Snarky just means testy. Cynical is pessimistic. Two different things.

  20. better safe than sorry

    i have a friend who is very bitter and cynical, some days i try to be more like him, but it’s very hard, yet he makes it look so easy.

  21. CGHill

    Am I still allowed to comment, inasmuch as according to this research, I’ve been dead since 1982?

  22. SFGary

    Does anybody remember the name of the Suicide book from the 80’s that became a best seller? I should get one just in case…

  23. JanePoe (aka Deborah)

    You’re only the second person I’ve known who uses the term snarky – the first being my husband …and, he’s not even British!

  24. maitresse

    the research team behind this survey would probably agree that following this logic, just living in France can take years off your life.

    between the attitudes, the smoking, and the men, I’m inclined to agree.

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