for an agoraphobic, i sure do get around! today, i’m heading into des moines and from there i’m striking north for canada. i’ll be out of the country for close to a full month with a catch me if you can schedule–
in 2011, i made a new year’s resolution to spend facetime with every one of my then 325 facebook friend within the calendar year. it was an adventure and in one 17 day period, i circumnavigated the globe and visited friends in 11 countries. my passport is a mess.
so how do you pack for a month long trip? i do it in two bags, one that serves as my office and one for my clothes. i buy hanes three pack t-shirts and good news is that they are cheap enough that i consider them disposable. i am a huge fan of reversible clothing. i like baby wipes for everything, including the inevitable disasters. . . .
i always take with me my william clark doll. william clark was a fearless adventurer, famously traveling from st. louis to the northwest coast with his friend merriweather lewis and the lahmi shashone woman sacajawea charbonneau. i bet he was a big believer in baby wipes, especially since sacajawea had her son jean-baptiste with her!
some of my friends are very much like me and are afraid to leave the house. jeez, i spent most of my life with anxiety attacks that kept me trapped in my house. in the year 2011, i learned to get out of the house. when someone asks me how i did it, it’s very simple: you have to make your car your home. you have to make your seat on the plane your home. you have to be exactly where you are and make that part of the universe yours. you are entitled to peace and calm and a sense that you are welcomed by everyone.
it wasn’t graceful it wasn’t pretty, but i did it. when my friend asked me to feed his snake.
when i first met dude, i had no clue. because frankly, nobody buries a girl in the backyard on a first date.
unless, of course, you are mina el houari who traveled to morocco to meet a dude she had corresponded with on the internet. apparently, the date went well until she suddenly collapsed into a diabetic coma. dude panicked, thought she was dead, and buried her in the backyard where she died of suffocation. which pretty much ruined any chance of a second date.
what started as a tender, sleek hug became a sharp tooth trap. and i realized i no longer did anything because i wanted to, because it was the right thing to do, because it was good for me. and i didn’t do anything because i loved him, needed him, respected him, admired him. nope, at some point, pretty much everything i did because i was scared of him. and there was no aspect of my life that was under my control. i was living in the snake’s cage. and i knew it wasn’t going to end well for miss mouse.
but one morning in january, i called a locksmith. he had done this sort of thing before. it took twenty minutes. dude was locked out. i have never regretted doing it, but i have been scared of him.
changing the locks on a boyfriend is pretty crazy, but sometimes crazy is the only thing that works. this gal looks like she’s a little more fight while i’m generally more of a flight chick.
he’s not done with me. but i don’t have to make it easy for him to hurt me. i sold my house, i’ve put my stuff in storage, i cleared out of the community i have lived in for the past quarter century. i have no fixed address and i don’t intend on having one anytime soon.
i really have discovered that i don’t need a lot of stuff. this is everything going into storage.
not that i’m all minimalist. nosirree, i love my car. i also love my boxing coach reygie puangco. see if you can spot him in this video:
so we gotta ask. . . .
me, pongo, mister tibbs, and william clark are on the road.
a few years ago, me and the toys hit the road to visit with facebook friends. i videoed, posted blogs nearly every day. i’ll be doing some of that now. . .
so many people are worried about the disclosure that facebook, twitter, verizon, google–all the fun stuff we play with on the computer when we’re supposed to be productive–have all been giving the government our posts, tweets, messages so that the government can determined whether we’re losers at dating, whether we are team downton abbey or team kardashian and whether we really did call our mom and try to leave a message but something happened. . . .
and it’s pretty scary to think of obama reading my facebook posts and my cell texts. . . (p.s. note to youngerstud, i
facebook “bug” has been of more than six million users for the past year.
the social network began offering a “download your information” tool, which facebook now says has also been downloading other people’s information, including other user’s email addresses and phone numbers, since at least 2012. this information was shared to people who “had a connection” to the affected users.
my relationship to brad pitt is more spiritual than a mere acceptance of a friend request. still, is that enough that facebook would pretty please send him my cell phone number?
facebook says it has fixed the bug and is in the process of notifying the affected users via the same email addresses that the company has already freely given out. however, i have noticed that nobody named brad has been calling me. facebook, could you please use your loose lips talent for the forces of good instead of evil???
are you shallow and insecure? egocentric? imbued with a false sense of your importance and popularity? maybe even, well let’s be fair, a jerk? okay, the clinic term is narcissist and it’s a disease that is so tragic and profound that it doesn’t even have a celebrity spokesperson.
narcissus was a mythological greek dude who fell in love with his reflection in a lake and died because he just couldn’t tear himself away from the beautiful sight. narcissism is a catch all psychological term for anybody who thinks to highly of themselves. narcissism also refers to the personality disorder of any one of your exes.
the university of michigan has released a study that concludes that social media sites like twitter and facebook draw in narcissists who want to bolster their fragile egos, control everybody’s great opinion of them, and post about what they are having for dinner. study director elliot panek says that young narcissists opt for twitter while middle aged narcissists (a.k.a. jerks) use facebook.
“young people overvaluate the importance of their opinion,” he says. “through twitter, they’re trying to broaden their social circles and broadcast their views about a wide range of topics and issues.”
mr panek, there’s ovulate, there’s overvalue, there’s evaluate. unfortunately, there is no :”overvaluate” unless, of course, you have overvalued your . . . oh, never mind.
middle aged narcissists, according to this study, choose facebook. slow, stately facebook.
“it’s about curating your own image, how you are seen, and also checking on how others respond to this image,” said panek. “middle-aged adults usually have already formed their social selves and they use social media to gain approval from those who are already in their social circles.”
okay, well, glad we cleared all this up for everybody. young narcissists and middle aged narcissists . . . we gotta ask. . .
me? i’m on facebook, i’m middle aged, i’m willing to entertain all diagnoses.
just in case you’re curious–as near as i can figure out elliot panek is a linkedin social media user. wonder what that means?
facebook, instagram, twitter, we call it social media but really it’s selfie media. you post about what you had for dinner, you share the link to your favorite song, you opine.
the former nickelodeon actress and erstwhile fashion designer amanda bynes has been posting “selfies” — pictures of one’s self that often include one’s hand holding the camera or phone. amanda has been tracking her path of self-destruction with twitter posts including increasingly bizarre selfies. she was recently evicted from her apartment in new york and arrested on drug charges. there is some indication she suffers from schizophrenia.
this sharing sounds fierce, brave, and just an extension of being open and honest. we share ourselves and, you know what?, this week we’ve been shaken to the core by disclosures that the obama administration is using over fifty companies to harvest information about everything we communicate. if you have a verizon account, for instance, every message, every text, every phone call is potentially in play. it’s gotta be pretty boring for government agents to sort through “whaddup?” and “r u around?” and “c u l8r!”
edward snowden, a 29 year old cia consultant, fled to hong kong with documents that outline the extent of our government’s trampling of our privacy. as he says “I’m willing to sacrifice all of that because I can’t in good conscience allow the US government to destroy privacy, internet freedom and basic liberties for people around the world with this massive surveillance machine they’re secretly building.” he is quite aware that he has forfeited his freedom, the option to ever return home and quite possibly his life.
so while snowden does his best to highlight how the government is peeking at stuff that might be considered private, the amanda bynes of the world are tweeting and posting and updating us on all sorts of things. . . .
a lot of amanda’s tweets are about ugliness. as in courtney love is ugly, jenny mccarthy is ugly, and that rhianna was beat up by chris brown because she is ugly. weird, because amanda was really a very beautiful girl before she started posting and tweeting her transformation. i’m glad she doesn’t know me because i’m sure she would tweet that i’m ugly too.
you can’t permanent erase this stuff and it is just so easy to issue the usual “don’t post stuff that you wouldn’t want an employer to see” or “everything on the internet is forever”. . . i’m sorta wondering about all those selfies i’ve posted on facebook. i might be pissed off the government can spy on me but what do i expect? i’ve made it incredibly easy for them.
i was so enchanted and excited to receive the following email this morning! it’s from the facebook online international lottery and it just confirms what i’ve known all along–i’m a winner!
FACEBOOK ONLINE INTERNATIONAL LOTTERY
FROM: THE DESK OF THE PRESIDENT.
INTERNATIONAL PROMOTIONS/PRIZE AWARD.
BATCH NUMBER: FB-0281/544
SERIAL NUMBER: 99352748-2013
TICKET NUMBER: FB-172-60
The Entire Facebook Team are very happy to inform you that your name appear on the FACEBOOK ONLINE INTERNATIONAL LOTTERY and we are giving out the total sum of US$950,000.00 (Nine HUNDRED AND FIFTY THOUSAND UNITED STATE DOLLARS) which is what you have just won.
Your name was selected in a raffle that was made for the FACEBOOK ONLINE INTERNATIONAL LOTTERY for the new year 2013 with the lucky number (FB-225-7736) so we need your fast response so that we can proceed with the claim process of your winnings.
Your name was selected by Mr Mark Zuckerberg the CEO of Facebook (Founder & amp Chief Executive Officer ). The promotion was made to make all facebook users to benefit from the profit the company made while they use facebook.
Facebook is the first and ever largest means of meeting both old and new friend.
The promo was done to serve as a means of appreciation to visitors on our site and also to help people to fight off poverty and to maintain a good standard of living.
Kindly contact Mr. Thomas Charlse the General secretary of the FACEBOOK TEAM and appointed as your claims officer via this email (firstname.lastname@example.org) immediately with the following information about you below:
Private Mobile Number:
As soon as he gets your email with all the information stated above he will tell you on what next to do as regards the claiming and receiving of your winnings of US$950,000.00.
Thank you and More Congratulations.
Agent Name: Thomas Charlse for CDAA
Get some Zero paid Gear FBI SCAM PROTECTED
Note: For security reasons and due to the mix-up of some numbers and names, we ask that you keep this notification strictly from public notice until your claim has been processed and your money remitted. This is part of our security protocol to avoid double claiming or unscrupulous acts by non-participants of this program. BE WARNED"
so the question is, what do i do now???
this past week, my friend and publisher oj dorson released the newest read–mrs. vander leyden’s glasses–on amazon.com. you don’t have to have a kindle but it’s nice if you do. you can read it on your phone, you can read it on a plane, you can read it in the bath. but please, no reading while driving.
this read was published by oj dorson and the cover art created by tony tyner. it is just 99 cents which is pretty sweet and (nearly) free!
if you want an english teacher to demand that you do some derrida like deconstruction of the text, you have to order that separately.
deconstruction of text has been something i haven’t had to deal with in a while. nor english teachers, not that there is anything wrong with english teachers. generally, any love of reading didn’t come from an english class. another thing i haven’t had to deal with in a bit is an editor wielding a rejection letter.
really, this sort of correspondence can kill even the best ambitions. shouldn’t we do our best to avoid putting ourselves through this?
instead, i just posted on facebook that i needed some help figuring out how to publish a story. and oj appeared. then i said i needed a cover. and tony and oj put one together. i can’t say i’m great at self-promoting. . .
in 2011 i had a new years resolution to meet all 325 of my facebook friends no matter where they might be. then i wrote a book about it which has been published by tate publishing company. i thought they had a publicity department and maybe they do. or at least they have some gal who sends group email exhorting me (and presumably other tate writers) to get the word out. the reclusive writer j.d. salinger wouldn’t have survived this modern age. on the other hand, he was said to have continued to write long after he had decided to not publish. is it literature if you don’t have an interaction between a reader and a writer? uh-oh, that sounds like something an english teacher would inquire about.
do you use bang with friends–the anonymous, simple, fun way to find friends who are down for the night? well, if you do, maybe i know about it. or maybe i don’t.
bang with friends is an app that sorts through your facebook friends list, looking for friends who are interested in a casual hook up. if both of you are both interested, bang with friends will put you in touch. where and how you bang is up to you.
it’s not the sort of app you want your parents or your coworkers to know you’re using. ditto that ex-boyfriend whom you keep on your friends list because you want to check out his new squeezes–knowing you’re using the app would make you seem so . . . desperate. bang with friends has been slammed by the clueless media outlets like huffington for letting everybody know just how desperate you are. worst nightmare, right? especially if it turned out you AND your parents were using it.
but media reports are quite wrong, with a caveat. bang with friends automatically adjusts its privacy setting. right now it’s set at “only me” being allowed to see that you’ve installed the app. on the other hand, there are people who joined bang with friends before january when facebook graph search opened up everybody’s treasure box of apps. that just means that if you installed this app before january and you don’t want anybody except that casual encounter you’re about to have to know that you’re using, you have to manually adjust your privacy setting.
or you could just not use the app, book a flight to vegas and see what happens.
there are some heroes who do extraordinary things to save others.
a few weeks ago, the model heidi klum rescued her seven year old son henry from a riptide off the coast of the hawaii island where the family vacationed. i would jump right in the water too if my son’s life was in danger. . . of course, i wouldn’t look as great!
there are heroes who face “chronic” or longterm adversity and yet they endure.
the anglo-irish explorer ernest shackleton led three expeditions into antarctica. the middle expedition–named the imperial trans-arctic expedition–was sidetracked by its ship endurance being grounded. from 1914 until 1917, shackleton devoted himself to rescuing his crew. without any loss of life, he managed to bring back his crew and cement his heroic status.
and then there are heroes like my facebook friends geoff and dot fox who are heroes by example. they have endured shackletonian reversals of fortune (as have many people in this dire economic era). . . they have downsized from a winnetka home just down the street from where i live and they have suffered a business loss.
the fox family owned l & a stationery in winnetka. the shop sold wedding invitations, cards, school supplies, office equipment. it’s hard to remember in this era of evite and ipad minis that there was a tangible beauty in the smell of a freshly sharpened pencil or the delight in running a finger across an engraved invitation.
this saturday, i invited the foxes to go with me to a kids against hunger food packing event. the foxes arrived with son jon (who doesn’t have a facebook account as near as i can tell unless he’s blocking me just for fun!) and they worked for two hours to pack nutritious meals to be shipped to nicaragua. there was no reward, no interview on the today show, no wikipedia entry for them.
the weird part is that if we packed lunches as a job for pay i don’t think we would have had as much fun!
the foxes are very quiet, very private heroes. in fact, i’m pretty sure i’m violating their undercover status just by writing this. so i will ask them in advance for forgiveness and then i gotta ask:
in 1941, the watch company bulova paid $9 to air a commercial just before a brooklyn dodgers philadelphia phillies baseball game. the ad was nothing more than this picture with some voice over. some people who saw this first commercial weren’t interested in buying watches. wasted advertising dollars.
this morning, when i logged on to facebook i read some ads on the right margin of my home page. pottery barn. a new opi gel nail varnish. christian singles date. faithful men looking to date mature women. ameritrade. a new anti-aging regime. bone density tests. i have a sense that if i logged onto my son eastman’s account, there would strikingly different ads. and if he logged onto my account, there would be a lot of wasted advertising dollars. because he’s a twenty year old dude. he doesn’t want to date faithful christian men, open an ameritrade account, or get his bones tested. and frankly, what does he need anti-aging for when he still has to use a fake i.d. to buy liquor?
advertising is an inexact sport.
ever since facebook went public in may 2012, the shroud of pessimism has fallen over its menlo park headquarters.
the shroud of turin is a piece of linen kept at that italian town’s cathedral of saint john the baptist. it bears the image of a man who has injuries consistent with being crucified. some people think it was the burial shroud of jesus. the shroud of pessimism is when everybody thinks you’ve got nails in your hands and feet and you’re dying in between two thieves.
share prices on that first day were over $38 but the price has been bumping and tumbling ever since. part of the problem is how to monetize facebook.
say what? you’ve been hearing about how mark is a multi-trillionaire. but yes, facebook actually has had a bit of a “what are we doing here and how do we make money doing it?” problem.
it’s about advertisers and how much they’re going to be willing to pay for playing on facebook. when mark first started facebook, it seemed like the easiest thing in the world would be to allow banner ads–users clicked on the image, were redirected to the advertiser’s website, and for each click the advertiser would kick back money. mark didn’t want to do that. he wanted interactivity: customers expressing interest, encouraged to give word of mouth marketing on a massive scale, and advertisers able to respond to the market with customer driven innovations.
okay, how likely are you to visit skittles.com? how likely are you to “like” skittles on facebook? in march, 2012 skittles.com attracted 23,000 unique users in the united states. during that same period the skittles page on facebook was a new “like” for 320,000 people. i want a job responding to posts from fans of skittles. i also want free skittles.
today’s closing share price for facebook is $27.40. a bit of a tumble from $38 but i think the long term prospects are good. if i wasn’t paying my taxes this weekend, i’d definitely be down for some facebook stocks. . . and maybe a bulova. because that first television commercial is making me feel quite nostalgic.