Saturday, July 29, 2006
Once upon a time, young girls wrote down their personal thoughts in private books and hid them away under their mattresses so nobody could know what they were thinking. These surreptitious journals were known as diaries, and woah to the parent who happened upon the delicate reflections of the adolescent female.
Today, the diary has morphed from a juvenile source of confidential expression to an online world - 50 million strong - of HTML, images, and trackbacks - otherwise known as the blog. Young and old alike not only share their secrets with the world, but invite others in to comment about their daily shenanigans, private thoughts, and personal beliefs.
When I first started blogging, I was shocked that people would comment on my posts. They liked me! They really liked me! This is so cool! Now I should really head over to their blogs and see what they wrote and comment to them too! I hadn't realized that this sort of interaction was part of the blogging process. But hey, this was fun stuff!
I soon discovered that it wasn't always fun. Why? Because not everyone is nice. I know, this comes as quite a shock, but it's true. In fact, some people actually spend a good portion of their time attacking others. Others find themselves becoming too familiar too fast, making comments that are inappropriate and uncomfortable for the recipient. And thus began my love-hate relationship with the comment portion of our blogs.
The argument goes, that if you put something out there, you have to be expected to take the good with the bad. Is that true? Just because a person writes something on the internet, does that give people the right to vehemently attack that person for no real reason? Is it expressing yourself when your whole agenda is to hurt others when you comment? Just because you have the right to do it, does it make it right to do it?
I look at my blog as an extension of myself. Actually, no - I look at my blog as an extension of my home. Our websites are our internet real estate. In an increasingly crowded world, this is the one place where there is always room. We move in to our spaces. We decorate. We make it homey and comfortable. And we hope people will enjoy themselves when we choose to entertain. The thing is, in the real world, our front doors are locked and secure. People can walk by, but legally, they can't come in without an invitation. Not so on the internet, where our web doors are always open. Anyone can come in - anytime, and from anywhere. And because the rules are different, people seem to think that they can behave accordingly.
Would you walk into someone's home with a mask on, verbally abuse the occupants, and then trash the house? No? Then guess what - don't do it on the internet either. Going to someone's blog under an anonymous moniker and battering the blogger with insults and relentless tirades is no different. It's rude. It's inappropriate. And it's extremely bad karma. Don't believe in karma? Then good luck to you.
I find it sad that the rules of common courtesy don't apply on the internet. We are supposed to be a civilized society. I do my best to treat people with respect because that is how I want to be treated - both in person and on the internet. I thank my parents for having this sensitivity, for being able to distinguish between right and wrong. Unfortunately, not everyone was raised with a moral compass.
I can't control other people's opinions, but I can control what goes on in my blog. I know many people who don't delete ugly comments on their blogs because they feel that other people's opinions are valid and should be left for all to see. I disagree. This is my blog, it's my home, and I make the rules. If someone comes in and makes a mess, I have no problem cleaning it up. If that means eliminating obnoxious behavior to get that bad smell out of the air, then that's what I am going to do. I do not allow garbage to stink up my house. You don't like it? No problem. There are 50 million other houses out there. Go to one of them.
Friday, July 28, 2006
Thursday, July 27, 2006
- What is your salad dressing of choice?
I make the best Caesar dressing ever! But since it's too much trouble to make and is about a bazillion calories, I stick to extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
- What is your favorite fast food restaurant?
- What is your favorite sit down restaurant?
- On average, what size tip do you leave at a restaurant?
I used to be a waitress, so I zealously overtip - much to the annoyance of all who dine with me.
- What food could you eat every day for two weeks and not get sick of?
Pasta. Any kind, any shape, anytime.
- Name three foods you detest above all others.
Okra. Veal. Most of the cafeteria meals at school.
- What is your favorite dish to order in a Chinese restaurant?
Depends on who is buying.
- What are your pizza toppings of choice?
Anything but anchovies. Or pineapple. Or okra.
- What do you like to put on your toast?
- What is your favorite type of gum?
Sugarfree Orbit Bubblemint
- Number of contacts in your cell phone?
Don't know, don't care.
- Number of contacts in your e-mail address book?
See answer to cell phone question.
- What is your wallpaper on your computer?
- What is your screensaver on your computer?
I don't have one. They drive me nuts.
- Are there naked pictures saved on your computer?
Not of me.
- How many land line phones do you have in your house?
- How many televisions are in your house?
- What kitchen appliance do you use the least?
My KitchenAid mixer is very lonely these days. But I still love it so.
- What is the format of the radio station you listen to the most?
Whatever isn't playing a commercial.
- How many sex toys do you own that require batteries?
I'm not sure I understand the question.
- What do you consider to be your best physical attribute?
- Are you right handed or left handed?
- Do you like your smile?
I have already answered this question.
- Have you ever had anything removed from your body?
Just some teeth that refused to come out on their own.
- Would you like to?
I would like to have the majority of my ass removed.
- Do you prefer to read when you go to the bathroom?
Of course, that's where I keep all the good magazines.
- Which of your five senses do you think is keenest?
- When was the last time you had a cavity?
Not since I was about seven. Don't jinx me! Dammit! I better go floss...
- What is the heaviest item you lift regularly?
My fat ass off the couch on a daily basis.
- Have you ever been knocked unconscious?
Yes, once when riding my bike and some jerk-off going the wrong way actually shoved me out of the way. Head, meet the pavement. Pavement, meet Brooke's head.
- If it were possible, would you want to know the day you were going to die?
Who writes a question like this?? I'll tell you who!! Satan!
- If you could change your first name, what would you change it to?
- How do you express your artistic side?
Writing, decorating, playing the flute, creating activities for my students, staring off into space.
- What color do you think you look best in?
- How long do you think you could last in a medium security prison?
I could last quite a while. I'm easily amused and play well with others.
- Have you ever swallowed a non-food item by mistake?
Does strawberry body butter count?
- If we weren't bound by society's conventions, do you have a relative you would make a pass at?
Satan!! Satan wrote this!!
- How often do you go to church?
- Have you ever saved someone's life?
I have been told that my cooking has lifesaving qualities.
- Has someone ever saved yours?
Yes, he did.
*For this last section, if you would do it for less or more money, indicate how much.
**Added note: being that I desperately want to own my own home someday, you will notice the $100,000 figure being thrown around a bit here. That's a decent down payment. I'll do a lot of things for that down payment.
- Would you walk naked for a half mile down a public street for $100,000?
- Would you kiss a member of the same sex for $100?
- Would you have sex with a member of the same sex for $10,000?
Depends on who it is and what exactly I am required to do. For $100,000 I'll do it with no questions asked.
- Would you allow one of your little fingers to be cut off for $200,000?
- Would you never blog again for $50,000?
Hmmm. Make it $250,000. Why that number? See answer below.
- Would you pose naked in a magazine for $250,000?
Nobody is going to pay me that kind of money to pose nude. But if someone did, I would say no. That's not enough to live on forever, and most boards of education frown on their teachers posing nude.
- Would you drink an entire bottle of hot sauce for $1000?
Make it $100,000.
- Would you, without fear of punishment, take a human life for $1,000,000?
Only if I get to pick the person.
- Would you shave your head and get your entire body waxed for $5,000?
Make it $100,000.
- Would you give up watching television for a year for $25,000?
Make it $100,000.
Tuesday, July 25, 2006
Monday, July 24, 2006
I am still having bizarre dreams. The other night I fell asleep as soon as my head hit the pillow only to wake up 15 minutes later wondering why all my shoes were in the canal outside. Fortunately I usually don't remember my dreams, but last night's lot stuck with me. And so I am sharing some of my unconscious weirdness with the world.
Dream One: I am in my classroom putting it together for the new year when parents start showing up to drop off their kids. They don't seem to be in the least bit bothered that school doesn't start for another week. Not only don't I have anything ready, but I'm still in my sweats and rearranging the furniture. My new little monsters start jumping all over everything, the parents disappear, and the other teachers are filing in and out asking me a series of questions, completely oblivious to the chaos going on around me.
File under: stress and guilt
Dream Two: I am walking down an unfamiliar street with The One who Got Away (TOGA). He is showing me around his hometown, and I realize in the dream that we are living there together now. I can't figure out how I got talked into this as I never had any desire to settle down in this city. As we are walking down the street, people keep stopping him to talk, and eventually I lose him in the crowd. I decide to find my own way home but I have no idea where I am and it is getting dark. I search everywhere for our neighborhood; I keep telling myself that if I can find our street, then everything will be fine. Just as I'm starting to panic, I find a cute little corner coffee shop. I go in to calm down and chat with some of the people there. Feeling better, I walk out of the coffee shop and see that it is now a bright, sunny day. I am wearing a bikini, carrying a beachtowel, and I am a block from my favorite beach back in NJ. I feel the relief wash over me as I walk towards the sand.
File under: regret and fear
Dream Three: A big group of us are going to some sort of show at an outdoor ampitheatre. I wind up all the way in the last row and I'm having a bit of a pout about it. Suddenly, The Brad comes walking up and sits down next to me. We proceed to laugh and talk and eat junk food and have a fabulous time. I have no idea if a show ever came on down below. Eventually we get so tired from all of our fun that I fall asleep on his shoulder and he puts his head against mine and dozes off as well, while everyone takes pictures of us with their cell phones..
File under: dreaming and wishing
Friday, July 21, 2006
On the moving front: it took a lot of thought, but I'm not moving back to Jersey until next year. There were a lot of reasons for this decision. Family, work, personal - but in the end it came down to that it didn't feel right. I still want to go, but one more year down here will be the best for everyone involved.
On the family front: mom is back in NJ and doing well. She still has healing to do but she'll be ok. My brother, who had the heart attack back in April, had to have open heart surgery a few weeks ago. He's recovering nicely with mom. It's like an outpatient center at her place these days. Is at least one of the reasons I'm not moving up there right now becoming a little clearer? Yes, I'm a selfish bitch.
On the work front: I went to my classroom on Wednesday and I nearly had my very own heart attack. Apparently when the custodians wax the floors, they have to remove everything from the room. They did a beautiful job on the floors, but putting things back...not so good. My momentary freak-out was quickly abated when one of the custodians came in to tell me that he had set aside a brand new desk for me because he thinks mine is too wobbly. Now how can anyone stay upset with that kind of thoughtfulness? I get a new desk...I get a new desk...yayyyyyyyy! I'm actually ready to go back to work again. I can't wait to meet my new group of monsters.
On the personal front: yawn. Nothing exciting to report. I have had a few nice dinners and lunches with friends. I saw the Pirates movie. I played with my nephews. I have attempted to lose a few pounds with healthy eating and regular exercise. I have not contacted any ex-boyfriends. I have watched a lot of HGTV.
On the blogging front: it seems we are losing bloggers left and right. I wonder how much I will be writing once school starts again. I wonder how many readers I will have after they read this incredibly boring post.
Tuesday, July 18, 2006
Monday, July 17, 2006
Today we mourn the passing of a beloved old friend by the name of Common Sense, who has been with us for many years. No one knows for sure how old he was since his birth records were long ago lost in bureaucratic red tape. He will be remembered as having cultivated such valued lessons as knowing when to come in out of the rain, why the early bird gets the worm, and that life isn’t always fair.
Common Sense lived by simple, sound financial policies (don’t spend more than you earn) and reliable parenting strategies (adults, not kids, are in charge). His health began to rapidly deteriorate when well intentioned but overbearing regulations were set in place. Reports of a six-year-old boy charged with sexual harassment for kissing a classmate, teens suspended from school for using mouthwash after lunch, and a teacher fired for reprimanding an unruly student only worsened his condition. It declined even further when schools were required to get parental consent to administer aspirin to a student but could not inform the parents when a student became pregnant and wanted to have an abortion.
Finally, Common Sense lost the will to live as the Ten Commandments became contraband, churches became businesses and criminals received better treatment than their victims. Common Sense finally gave up the ghost after a woman failed to realize that a steaming cup of coffee was hot, spilled it in her lap, and was awarded a huge settlement.
Common Sense was preceded in death by his parents, Truth and Trust, his wife, Discretion; his daughter, Responsibility; and his son, Reason. He is survived by two stepbrothers; My Rights and Ima Whiner. Not many attended his funeral because so few realized he was gone.
originally published by Lori Borgman
Thursday, July 13, 2006
him: By the way, is that photo of you in your last post?
me: Which one?
him: The blurry one.
me: Are you kidding? That's him, the guy I was writing about.
him: That's a man?
me: Yes, how is that looking like a woman?
him: Geez, I was getting turned on by a man.
me: Interesting, have you considered that you might be a little gay?
him: I saw the longish hair…wow, so all that trying to unblur it in Photoshop was a waste of my time.
me: You could have just asked, I'd have sent you the original picture. Want it?
him: Sure. I mean no. I mean...ok...he does seem hot.
send unblurry picture of ex
him: Wow, that's some bod he has.
him: I see you in a bra...
me: It's a bikini.
him: OK....ummm...got any more?
me: Of him? Sure, anything to help clear up the issue of your increasingly confusing sexuality.
send picture of ex and me together
him: The two of you are like in a fashion shoot.
me: That’s sweet.
him: Good looking guys like that are usually terrible in bed, though...
me: Yeah that's true …sometimes. Not in this case though.
me: But he's straight, so don't get your hopes up.
him: Hey, he's feeling you up in that photo!!!
me: Of me or him? Because really...you were totally turned on by a blurry picture of him.
him: I could have sworn it was you! It was mistaken identity.
me: This is clearly sending you into a homosexual panic.
him: No way. I would be a good gay. I love musicals, and except for the whole having sex with men thing... I could totally be mistaken for gay.
me: Admit it...you wanted to touch his chest.
him: Only to see if he has pec implants!
me: I think you should blog about how you fell for a blurry picture of my ex boyfriend.
him: Can I also post that you are always asking me to come to Florida and sleep with you, but I always say no, to be loyal to my woman...
me: You want to do that instead of admitting you were turned on by my ex? Be my guest. We both know the real truth.
** Added note: Oh! Be sure to read his post about our chat here. And you all thought you were so smart!
Tuesday, July 11, 2006
Your birthday, it was the other day. And I forgot. You don't know this, but I still remember your birthday. For the first time in years I didn't think about you on that date. Is this a good thing? Have I made progress? Am I finally starting to put you in the past?
You came along too soon. I wasn't ready for you. You were like no man I had ever known, so sure of yourself, so completely the opposite of me. You were the first man I had ever been with who actually admitted that he wanted to settle down and have a family. I remember how you laughed at the look on my face when you said that. You thought it was because you scared me off, but it wasn't. I just couldn't believe you were real. I couldn't believe that someone like you would want to be with someone like me. You were perfect. And I ...wasn't.
I played games instead of admitting my feelings. I shudder when I think of some of the bullshit I pulled, the hoops I made you jump through. It took me a long time to recognize the mistakes I made, how I allowed my insecurities to rule my emotions. But maybe you were right, maybe it would have been too difficult for us. Different countries, different backgrounds...maybe one of us would have always felt lost...like you said...
Will I ever find someone else who can finish my sentences? Who can always guess my favorite song on a CD? Who I can have an entire conversation - or argument - with, while neither of us says a word? Who just...gets me so completely? Is this why I can't find someone? Do I still compare everyone to you?
I told myself if I ever got the chance I would tell you the truth. You won't ever read this, but at least the truth will be out there. So here it is. I did love you. I'd have stayed if you had asked me. I'd have done anything for you...anything you can dream of...
I hate that song now.
Monday, July 10, 2006
Thursday, July 06, 2006
You are in a tropical rainforest yet a stone's throw from the urban jungle. Where you sleep in a tree but enjoy everyday modern conveniences. Where excessive drinking is encouraged and sleep is optional. It must be heaven, because where else can you do your laundry with a pony?
**7/7/06 - WhiteBoyBob got it right, or close enough. He guessed Queensland, which is where the famous Treehouse Hostel is. From the looks of these pictures, it hasn't changed a bit since I was there in the 90's. For Bob's prize, I am going to head over to his site and flash his blog. I hope it's good for him.
Sunday, July 02, 2006
My sleep patterns are completely off, which is making me a tad cranky. I either fall asleep for an hour and wake up for the next four, or I can't fall asleep until the sun shows up to laugh at me. To make the situation extra special, when I do eventually get to sleep I have super-bizarro dreams - ex boyfriends who claim to be my husband(s), talking dogs, scary clowns; general weirdness. One dream got so strange I actually said in it, "I don't like this dream anymore," and I woke up. I can't complain too much though, there was one all-nighter that involved Josh Duhamel, Elvis music, and a shower for two. A little less conversation indeed...the boy was most impressive...
Unfortunately the same can't be said for all men. My across-the-hall neighbor has a new boyfriend. Caveman, as my nickname implies, is a knuckle-dragging troglodyte. Caveman spends most of his time in the hallway (outside my door) either yelling into his cell phone or yelling at her. Caveman slams doors as though it were an Olympic event. He knows one word - fuck. It's his noun, verb, adjective and adverb. If he uses other words I don't recognize them due to his pathetic enunciation skills. I have come to the conclusion that Caveman needs a good beating. I think I may go shopping for baseball bats today...
I also need general supplies at the store. Lady supplies, to be more precise. I only mention that so I can make the guys squirm...
You know what else makes guys squirm? Erectile dysfunction. I got this spam for "Cheap Viagra" the other day.
Men, I ask you, do you really think that girls will worship you for simply maintaining a stiffy? Will men really envy you because you can get it up? Because I have to tell you, I can't see buying penis medicine on the cheap as being a very good idea...
I have been getting some great deals on eBay! However even with my stupendous savings, I have still been spending money like a drunken sailor. So far I have gotten a crock pot, percolator (which makes damn good coffee!), an iPod, and a Bose Sounddock. I think it's time for me to find a new boy to occupy my time before I go broke. This is what happens when you have too much time on your hands...