Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Retrospective

I’m in full-on spring break mode.

Which is a shame, because I’m not quite done with schoolwork yet.

Yet I found myself reading my friends’ blogs instead of working on a project for my Social Work Research class.

Anyway, as I sit here in the airport (7 hours left!), catching up on all of your lives I gleaned several bits of information. Mainly that I have incredibly talented, humorous, thoughtful friends who are way more mature and grounded than I am. And also that several people I like will be graduating and I’ll never see them again and that’s very sad.

But the point of this particular blog post – the one that I’m writing/you’re reading right now – is, as usual, about me. My blog and I just had an anniversary. We’ve been together (minus our recent estrangement) for two years.

I bring this up because one of my friends – and I’m sorry, I honestly can’t remember who – recently had an anniversary with his/her blog and celebrated it with highlights of their time together.

I’m the type of person who will write something and immediately be filled with pride and shame. I will think something is clever, but poorly written. Or endearingly passionate, but a bit melodramatic. Or nicely worded, but boring. Here are five posts that I find much more pride than shame in, mainly from The Early Days:

1. Mouthwatering

April 2, 2009

One of my very first posts, in which I describe a meal I wanted to make. I still want to do this. Who’s in?



2. The Tale of Little Henry, the Unusual Elephant.

April 8, 2009

A charming children’s tale, written by myself.



3. Vodka, Pie, Facebook, and the Sporfe.

November 8, 2009.

Inane musings. Incidentally, the room that I mention in this post now has a huge sign on it that says “No Alcohol Past This Point!”



4. Christians of Facebook

April 11, 2010

First overtly Christian post!



5.Taking X-ACTO Knives to Books Like A Crazyperson

July 23, 2010

This is one of my craft type posts. I'm pleased with the end results



And there it is. Thanks for putting up with it.

Twitter Brings People Together

Many of my friends will have already heard this, but I'd like to write this down. For posterity.

This incident, by the way, is the reason that I am easily wounded by interactions with anonymous people. I call it:

Alison Interacts With People On Twitter
(I'm going for accuracy, rather than catchiness)

It all began one lovely spring day. April 2010. The Tea Party movement had recently begun, and while I had heard tell of protests across the nation I had not actually seen one. At this same time, the women's shelter in Flagstaff had just moved into an awesome new location and were celebrating with a grand opening barbecue. My friends (I think Nicole and Amy) and I were taking a bus to help out with said barbecue. While doing so, we passed the Flagstaff town hall and I saw my very first Tea Party Protest. I wasn't sure what it was at first, until I saw a sign that said TEA. Chuckling to myself, I tweeted: 

ALISON: I just saw my first tea party protest. I could tell because one sign just said TEA.

I then proceeded to forget about the entire thing. UNTIL a man who calls himself Big Willie (for reals) tweeted me back. 

BIG WILLIE: Taxed Enough Already (TEA). Need they say more?

Part of me was very pleased because I'd never been tweeted by a stranger before. Not a real stranger, who wasn't just trying to get me to buy prescription drugs and/or access to some porn site. Part of me didn't want to be cowed by someone who I disagreed with. I mean, this guy was crazy.

Granted, I don't agree with Tea Party Politics at the best of times, but I can usually see that the person is not crazy. They just have extremely different opinions than me. (I'm inclined to think I'm right and they're wrong, but that's kind of the point of having opinions.) However, this guy was crazy. Some of his other tweets include "the richest 2% pay for the lazy 98%. No pay, no say...that's the way!" (REALLY!) and "Oh Snap! Today is #CincoDeMayo or as they call it in Arizona, "Wednesday"" (which I don't get. Is this just a reference to the large Latino population in Arizona? Why the "Oh Snap!"?) and various references to "Stupid Libs."

I'm a bit of a stupid lib myself, but I didn't want to fight. However, he sent me a question ("Need they say more?") so answering was only polite. So I sent him the following:

ALISON: Perhaps they could actually say "Taxed Enough Already"? Because to some (or most) people it just refers to the delicious beverage.

Which I thought was fairly neutral. Not 100% neutral, granted, but still written in a fairly pleasant and facetious tone. But of course, being a fan of hot breakfast beverages makes me the wrong kind of person. 

BIG WILLIE: I don't think the sign is meant for you. It sounds like you're too full of Kool Aid for Tea.

Firstly, this doesn't make that much sense. Wouldn't TEA signs be best directed at people who aren't members of the Tea Party? What's the point of protesting to people who agree with you? Secondly, there's always room for tea. Kool Aid is not a filling beverage. 

Big Willie here is, of course, implying that I am brainwashed and about to kill myself, cult-style. I found this to be terribly offensive. I'm generally easy going about deprecating remarks, but some things that I get wildly defensive about include my smarts and ability to think critically. (I was also fairly certain that this guy considered himself a Christian, based on his vast amount of anti-Islam statements. Another thing that is certain to get me riled up is some so-called "Christian" misrepresenting my faith, especially when he or she is spreading all kinds of hate around.) 

When I'm offended by some sarcastic comment, I like to take it literally and answer it as such. For example:

ALISON: I actually prefer tea, as it gets rather cold here. Also I'm coming down with a cold and Good Earth tea helps a great deal.

Heart pounding, I pressed send and proceeded to desperately try and think of any potential comebacks that this Big Willie person may send me.
Unfortunately, he never answered me back.

However, one of my high school acquaintances told me "Gratz" for "Trolling a troll." And I did receive a tweet from Good Earth, hoping that I'd feel better soon. I appreciated that quite a lot.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The extra ss is because a snake is talking.



"Dude, that guy's intense. Let'sss get the heck outta Ireland!"

Also in the room are your customary leprechauns, hearts, stars, horseshoes, clovers, blue moons, pots of gold, rainbows, and a pink balloon. Because there already was a pink balloon and I didn't want to cut up a perfectly good red sheet of paper.

(Happy St. Patrick's Day season, friends.)

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

blueberry, rasberry && strawberry XD L0L

Every six to eight weeks or so I get a facebook message like this:

Someone proposed that we GIRLS do something special on Facebook to help with Breast Cancer Awareness. Its easy, and Id like you to join us to help it spread. Last year it was about writing the color of the bra that your were wearing in your Fb status and it left men wondering for days why the girls had random colors as their status. This year it has to do with your relationship status. You will state where you are, by posting one of the codes below. Remember -don't reply to this message just type your 1 word response in your status box on your profile. Then cut and paste this whole message into a new message and send it along to your female friends.... Blueberry: Im single Pineapple its complicated Raspberry: Im a touch and go woman Apple: Engaged Cherry: In a relationship Banana: Im married Avocado: Im the "other one" Strawberry: Cant find the right one Lemon: Wish i was single Grape: wants to get married. The bra game reached TV, lets get this one to do the same, and show everyone how powerful women are

This would be an example of my compulsive
need to pepper blog posts with pictures, even
if they're overused stock images from Google.
I’ve received this one twice now. Usually I will either ignore it, or sarcastically post something on facebook, only to realize whatever I said was neither funny nor grammatically correct, and then delete it. (I actually do that with a lot of things.)

Then I though hey, what’s the point of having a blog if I can’t get overly incensed by meaningless things? And here we are.

Firstly: This is for Breast Cancer Awareness. These are always for breast cancer awareness. To the point that it loses all meaning. To the point that whenever I see this I echo a sentiment that someone once shared with me: Geez, another one? For crying out loud, I’m aware.

I think breast cancer awareness is a noble cause. Breast cancer is a terrible disease that, according to the CDC kills over 40,000 women a year. I know people who have battled with breast cancer. And a few women who I totally look up to managed to raise several thousand dollars each so that they could put on some ridiculous (or "cute") bunny ears and walk 60 miles to end breast cancer.

Mommy's the second from the left. 
But this isn’t really about breast cancer awareness, is it?

No, you say it in the last sentence of the message: let’s “show everyone how powerful women are.” Part of you wants to raise breast cancer awareness with little to no effort, but mostly you want to feel exclusionary. You’re in on a secret. You’re part of a club.

Also, the messages are very rarely grammatically correct. I myself am not always grammatically correct. I often get a bit too enthusiastic about commas. But this message is not even bothering to put include apostrophes where necessary. It can’t be bothered to end the message with any sort of punctuation. It can’t even divide the paragraph into easy-to-read chunks, putting each fruit and corresponding meaning on separate lines? It’d flow much better that way!

Much like how stock photos of berries
break up sections of text quite nicely.

And finally: I feel this would be much more appropriate on MySpace. When you post things like this you’re acting like you’re in junior high. I was an idiot in junior high. (I’m still an idiot, but a different kind. And now it’s part of my charm, arguably.) I was all over every single MySpace bulletin trend. If you’re actually in junior high, continue doing these things by all means. I'm not sure why you'd describe yourself as a "touch and go woman" - I'm not entirely sure what that means - but you're welcome to it. However, if your frontal lobes have developed, please stop it.