Tag Archives: peeps

MP1: Book Club

Book Club

My handy dandy MoviePass came in the mail on Friday, so naturally I activated it that night and ran right out to see my first movie on Saturday afternoon. I decided to see Book Club. It was first on my list of current movies and playing right near me in Triangle Square, where (strangely) I never go, even though it’s actually the closest theater to my apartment. I guess that’s because I always see movies with friends and that’s just not a convenient central location. I could literally walk there, not that I would (what, are you nuts?).

Anyway, of course parking was a major hassle, as usual. No wonder we don’t go there. What a pain in the butt. I left in plenty of time but began to worry I’d be late. I will never understand why people simply don’t drive up to the top of a parking garage when the bottom levels are full. WHY DO THEY HOVER AND WAIT? All you have to do is go around and up and up and then, viola, like magic, there are a zillion spots. It happens every time! Finally, I got a nice top spot away from the maroons and then like an even bigger maroon I couldn’t figure out where the theater actually was. This is a geometrically confuzzling architectural construction with staircases that don’t connect to all the things and just ugh. Lots of restaurants are smushed in the levels and people sit outside being noisy and irritating.

Okay, so finally I found the theater, hurrah! There was a bit of a line which was fine cuz it gave me a chance to open the app and check in for my first time. Wait, what. This is an e-theater only. What’s that mean? I haz to select my movie and seat and I’m not allowed to change my mind. If I screw up, I’m done for the day, boom. No more movie for you! Well, geez. I stood there in the blasting sunshine trying to peer at the seating chart on my phone and stab at an aisle seat toward the back. Bam. No takebacks!

I get up to the window and the guy says I didn’t have to stand in the line cuz I already have the ticket code thingie on my phone. Well, aren’t I a dumbass. He doesn’t even want to see the MoviePass credit card. Fine, whatever. I go in, show my phone to the otter guy, and he tells me theater two. I stumble around, find my seat, and some fat man with a vat of popcorn is sitting in it. I ask if that’s G5 and he moves over one seat. Apparently the whole row is a group of friends, all jabbering excitedly, great. As I look around, I see the theater is stuffed with old people, all happily waiting for this old person’s movie. WTF am I doing here? Oh, right. I’m old too. Forgot.

The lights go down and an ancient biddy shines a flashlight in my face. “Those people are sitting in our seats, Mildred,” she huffs.

“We are not!” grumbles Popcorn Man. “These are our seats.”

“We’ll just sit over here in these empty ones on the side.” Biddy and Mildred plop down in the clearly inferior seats.

Popcorn Man chuckles. “This whole row is ours.”

Damn right, Popcorn Man. You defend our honor! Fight for Row G. This is our turf, bro.

It was quite an experience for my first time I must say.

Oh, the movie? Book Club. Enjoyed it! Funny, poignant, not as cliched as I had expected. Highly recommend. That’s my in-depth review.

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All She Wrote

It’s been a month since I created space to write in my free time again by deleting the bulk of my social media. This was tough to do and I lost a bunch of friends and fun chitchats in the process, which I knew would happen and so I procrastinated for a long time, but I’m a writer and I have to do Real Writing or else I get frustrated, angry, and depressed.

These very apt bitmojis magically appeared in my app today and made me smile:

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I’m also smiling because I finished that poetry book I’ve been nattering on about for a kazillion years and it’s up on Amazon for sale right meow! Some of my awesome friends who have hung in there with me already bought a copy and reviewed it ~ one of them had this to say:

“YOUR NEW BOOK IS OUT!!!! IT’S A FREAKING TREASURE!”

How lovely is that? And I didn’t even have to pay her. ❤

I feel so great to have finished this book and it means a lot to me to have the support of my peeps. Some of the poems were painful to write (and probably to read, haha), but each one is important to me in its own way and represents something authentic about where I’ve been emotionally the last several years and how I regained my strength. I’m ready to dive back into some of my unfinished fiction writing and get those stories done now too. I feel so productive and fantabulous! Should have done all this ages ago, but I think I needed everything to simply percolate. This was the right time for many reasons, both to cut back on social media and to publish All She Wrote.

~*~

The Daily Prompt: Authentic

Second Place Song

My team squeaked into second place at Pub Quiz last Friday because I remembered which one-hit-wonder did a song from 1979. This is the kind of stuff that sticks in my brain through the decades.

~*~

The Daily Prompt: Song

You Are The Product

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How many times have we read that lately? I actually read it a long time ago and it made a lot of sense. Who the hell gives away anything for free? We always knew our eyeballs were being sold to advertisers, or we should have known. And of course it isn’t only Facebook ~ insurance companies, credit bureaus, Google, etc. all have your data. Sometimes you’re the product even when you pay for the privilege, like on Match dot com. Isn’t that a kick?

Several years ago I was searching for a fun Google map I had created of all the places I’d lived and traveled to, maybe a couple years prior to that. I was just poking around, as you do, wondering if it was gone forever, when I blundered into my total location history since the beginning of time. Whoa, what? I thought I’d deleted all that! I had a big sad as I emotionally revisited the restaurants and hotels I’d gone to with the man who broke my heart… and then I deleted my location history permanently up to that point. Well, I think it was permanent. Who knows? No biggie, except I don’t want to see all that ever again. I know the gobblement and Google and Russia and some creatures on another planet have it. Whatevs.

Oh, I found the fun map. Whoopee.

Some peeps on the Book of Face used an ad blocker, which I’m sure was very clever. I never bothered with that. But it turns out FB was still able to gather gobs of data from your phone logs and your friends’ profiles too. You could be locked up tight, but they could still sell you to people based on stuff your friends had public. Plus anything you “liked” was up for grabs to create a shadow profile of you to package and sell. One of my friends said she liked incorrect things to throw THEM off the scent. Maybe that helps. I have to say that my ads were pretty inaccurate as is. I didn’t hide my true self, and yet I was shown very few tempting ads all those years ~ where were the adorable kitty tee shirts, the romance novel 4-packs, the c00kie cutters, the stitchery stuffs? I saw loads of ads for real estate and spa trips, things I could never afford. I’m assuming they, whoever THEY are, figured anyone in Orange County must be wealthy. Wrong!

I’m not going to bother linking to the scary articles that tell us how much FB and Google know about us because we’ve all read them in the past week. Plus you can easily find them yourself if you haven’t. For me, though, FB was the least necessary of the bunch and the easiest to jettison (along with Messenger and Instagram). And yes, I’m going to keep talking about it as much as I want to, pffft. I do miss some of the interaction with FB peeps, but I accept that’s the price I pay for reclaiming a huge chunk of my free time.

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I watched an interesting movie on Prime yesterday called Paperback, kind of a writers’ movie and also a movie for the romance-cynical. No spoilers just a rec!

The Ghostess with the Mostess

People get the feels when you announce that you’re about to flounce from the Book of Face. I don’t remember having emotional reactions when others exited ~ I told them to stay in touch via email or text, and we did, or not, and that was that. I’ve grouped the reactions to my declaration into broad categories.

1. Sarcastic. You’re surprised capitalist pig is pig? Bwahahaha.

2. Resigned. Everything is hopeless. Might as well do nothing about anything.

3. Paranoid. Your data will never be deleted. THEY will keep it for your inquisition.

4. Hostile. Well, I love Facebook! It’s the best! Photos! Events! Woo hoo! You suck!

5. Sympathetic. I understand. This is a huge shock. But why not just deactivate?

6. Empathetic. Oh, me too! I want to delete. Fabulous idea! Soon. Yeah…

7. Friendly. Sending you an email. Following your blog. Wanna keep in touch!

8. Unrequited. Haven’t I been good to you, what about that brand new ring, doesn’t that mean love to you, doesn’t that mean anything… don’t pull your love out on me baby…

Hehe. I have been getting a bunch of unexpected sevens, which pleases me, along with peeps promising to blog moar, hurrah. It’s nice to chat one on one with friends, rather than exchanging only drive-by witticisms in a group, which are like cotton candy at the fair, pretty and sweet, but insubstantial and ultimately unfulfilling. I’m a little bit surprised at a significant percentage of people, in overlapping categories, who have written my obit. Apparently if I’m not on FB, I’m dead, disappeared, a non-person, invisible, a ghost. O rly?

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~*~

The Daily Prompt: Invisible

Wherein I Nag Peeps to Blog

I’ve been on social media a looooong time. Found my niche, so to speak, early on with a pack of feral writers on Usenet, and we’ve been hanging around together on the various media as they wax and wane in popularity. We tried Twitter, but the 140 character limit was too stifling. Most of us have Twitter accounts, but it’s not our preferred way to communicate, since we like to talk… well, argue mostly, and we do go on and on and on. Many of us jumped into the blogging craze, but for whatever reason most dropped out of that, which I don’t understand. You would think that writers and blogs would go together like macaroni and cheeeese! Have I mentioned lately that not only do I love blogging, but I highly recommend it? I really do, from the bottom of my ice-cold heart. Then there were a bunch of rando express trains we hopped on as they arrived at the communication station over the years, but it turned out they all had the same destination: Boringville.

Except Facebook. We’ve all been on FB forever it seems. I closed my account in 2010, but ultimately returned with a new one within a year. I missed my peeps, and you know when friends say they’ll stay in touch via email and such they may have the best intentions, but… it simply does not happen. People are too busy for emailing, too busy for phone calls (plus many of us do not like phone calls ~ I am one), and you just lose touch. It’s not the same to see a few pics on Instagram or a tweet here and there. Facebook is how so many of us learn what’s going on with friends and family, unless you actually see people in meatspace or have a regular texting relationship. I have those, but not with hundreds of FB friends, just a few close ones, and my daughters of course.

But the Book of Face is all screwed up now with the latest data selling horror story. Will it survive? Who knows. It seems “too big to fail,” but that doesn’t mean it won’t. People are making noises about leaving, but we hear this every time something bad is in the news about breaches of privacy and whatnot. Yes, it feels different this time, worse, but even so. Hard to imagine a world without Facebook. But just because it’s hard to imagine doesn’t mean it can’t happen. We could all wake up one day to find a message saying the whole thing is down. OMG! And that could continue, day after day. What would people do? Watch TV, read books, ride bikes? The possibilities are literally endless.

Here’s one thing they could do, and in fact they could do it now, as insurance: BLOG! No, I am not getting paid to promote blogging, though I should be (pay me, WordPress); I just think it’s a Good Thing. Set up a blog, easy peasy, and start writing. If you don’t know what to write about, no worries, you can poast photos and memes and links to news stories in the headlines that everyone else sees same as you, like you do every day on Facebook (eyeroll), until you feel inspired to write an essay. But you might think about adding some original writing to your photo/meme/link. Hey what? Write a sentence or two about what YOU are thinking or feeling when you poast the link to that news story. Give your opinion. After a while, you won’t need a link and you can simply write an op-ed yourself. Like what I’m doing here. You won’t need links to validate your thoughts. Just jabber on and on and on like a Real Writer, wheeeeee!

After you blog, visit other blogs, like poasts, and comment. Follow. Then you’ll receive likes, comments, and follows. Soon there will be familiar avatars, topics, and interesting discussions. If you get a troll or someone otherwise unpleasant, block. Or engage, if that’s your preference.

If you already have a blog, then why aren’t you blogging? Hmmmm? Because you’re spending all day on FB, amirite? Best get to reviving that blog before FB goes poof. Don’t say I didn’t warn ya!

If not now, when? Get a free blog before they’re all gone. Hurry!

And FFS, don’t forget the most important thing: follow me so my count goes up. 🙂

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Number Jumbo

Some of my friends have been discussing aging, the number itself as opposed to general health. In the past, I was more concerned with the actual number ~ a couple birthdays provoked strong reactions. My 45th was particularly upsetting, although I kept those feelings mainly to myself as they had to do with my disintegrating marriage and there was no one I could talk to about it at the time. My parents always tried to be emotionally supportive and I chatted with them a little, but they were of the generation that believed in staying together no matter what (as they did themselves) and that was not the best path for me. My 50th was stressful as well: I thought I was simply physically ill, but I understand now that it was partly psychological too. My divorce was in progress, though tense, and I was in a highly toxic new relationship. Not a good combo.

Then from October 2011 through 2016 , I had to be concerned with age. Why? Because I was on dating sites. There’s no way not to be obsessed with age if you’re “dating while older.” Most DWO men are obsessed with age, a huge percentage of them desiring much younger women while simultaneously lying about their own age, along with whatever else. (If you’re not one of these guys, great!) It’s really difficult to keep a positive attitude when chatting with the next one who comes along. Even if you stroll onto a site perfectly okay with yourself, your age, looks, education, occupation, personality, et cetera, it takes a really strong, confident woman to maintain that mindset in the face of relentless rejection, criticism, gaslighting, trolling, and the general assholishness of men online. I can’t believe I put myself through that BS for five years.

(Remember, if you’re a non-asshole guy, wonderful! No need to tilt against windmills in my comments. I know there are some of you.)

I spent last year detoxing from dating sites. As an added bonus I no longer stress about age, or spend money trying to look younger. Feh! I just realized this today when some friends mentioned their inner 25 year olds. I told my inner 25 year old to hit the road a while ago. Good riddance, silly girl! I’m almost 57 and that’s a perfectly fine age to be. I’m enjoying it very much, thank you. (Well, not the achiness, but you can’t have everything.)

It’s nice to engage in convos with friends about aging sans the anxiety the topic used to provoke. There are enough stressful subjects otterwise. Like did you know housecats would totally murder you if they were just a bit larger? Oh yes!

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~*~

The Daily Prompt: Provoke

Glittertrails

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I’m glad I’m not famous, or every st00pid thing I’ve written would be immortalized forever. Remember when we used to shoot the shit with friends and those convos would drift off into the aether, lost with our hangovers? If there was any brilliant philosophical insight or poetic piece of pretty, they’d be gone too, poof. But now we tweet and fb our every stray strand of emotion, and hopefully no one screencaps it since we’re nobodies. I myself have deleted more things than I’ve poasted. Yes, while you’re all sleeping, I walk the cyberbeaches in the moonlight and erase my footprints. Well, I used to do a lot more of that; now I do it only sporadically.

While I was poking around the otter day, searching for lost writings, I found this piece of poast* which I really like, even out of context, and will share it with my loyal blogfans.

Laurel Canyon. The summer of nineteen seventy-nine. I am my own gaslighter. I drive too fast on these curvy roads, but I am made of silk and butter, and I slide around danger like an egg on a sizzling skillet, close to the edge, but always slipping back to the center before anything terrible happens. Something would happen soon. I run through the scenarios in my mind every time I leave the house. There are times I believe the bad thing has already occurred and I scour old newspapers for the story. I have to go to the library to find the papers because someone won’t let me see the mail. People creep around the house and hide things from me. Who are they?

I’ve poasted about gaslighting a few times now, and every time I do I end up deleting the poast because it’s too personal and I’m uncomfortable with it sitting out there for anyone to read. Even though this blog doesn’t get much traffic, it is public after all. Theoretically, anyone in the world could stop by. I don’t feel like changing permissions when I get all emotionally vomitatious; I’ve done it in the past and it’s too cumbersome. In any case, I’m not some wannabe counselor or a Linky Laura going for adrev ~ either my poasts are about me or there’s no point.

Well, actually my long game is to accumulate a giant number of blog readers that I can eventually show to a publisher and say SEE I HAZ POTENTIAL BOOK BUYERS! But er for that I would actually need to write a book. Gah, details. Always details!

I had a cold for a week, which wouldn’t be a big deal, except it triggered a cascade of violent migraines and I’ve been very dizzy and nauseated. Still not 100% “normal” yet. I missed a few days of work, and I haven’t been able to write much or do needlework at home. I just zone out in front of the TV every night. But finding that gaslighting snip has motivated me. This weekend I’ll be getting back to my pomes. These are cathartic, a purge of years of old moldy boxes from the attic, and I caution everyone not to buy the poetry book when I plop it onto Amazon because the pomes are simply dreadful. Post-ploppage, I shall return to my Real Writing.

*phrase stolen from the Great & Powerful Lizard

Peeve Tuesday

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Last week I ordered a couple essentials from Amazon: cat food and hairspray. I order a lot of stuff from Amazon, a lot. They know who I am and where to find me. As does the clown who signed me up for Us Magazine ~ thanks a lot, dingdong. I don’t want it, I’m not interested in celebs, and it’s going straight to the trash. No one better bill me for it either! (Okay fine, I have been glancing through it, under protest. It’s very shiny.)

Anyway, I forgot my essentials were scheduled to arrive on Sunday because I was so wrapped up in watching The Big Game, as one does. But yesterday I thought, hey, where’s my stuffs? So, I did the tracky thing and lo found an exception. Amazon outsourced my delivery to USPS, who couldn’t get in.

Let’s think about this for a moment. The actual U.S. Post Office, who delivers my actual mail (rain or shine), didn’t know how to get into my apartment complex. WTF? How do they deliver my real mail then? No problem, I figured, I have an account with them, so I will contact them, give them my gate code (idiots), so they can redeliver.

Nope, nope, nope. Can’t do that. Only the sender can intercept. I could be some weirdo trying to steal someone else’s cat food and hairspray in the middle of the delivery. With my own log-in credentials where they have my real name, address, etc, and I’d be at risk of a felony for committing mail fraud. To steal cat food and hairspray. Yes, that could happen and the Post Office isn’t taking any chances. Can’t contact Amazon to give them the gate code to give to USPS because the transaction is now out of their hands. All gone, wheee!

The only thing for me to do is wait and see what happens. Either the USPS buttheads will redeliver my package properly or they’ll return it to Amazon, at which time I can ask them to use another delivery service, or pick it up myself at one of their stations. Luckily however on Monday (yesterday) the next USPS mailperson figured out how to get into my apartment complex (miracle!) and delivered my package.

I received an email notice at noon that my package had been “left with an individual.” An individual? What? Why? Who? I don’t even know any of my neighbors. Would I have to knock on doors saying, “Excuse me sir do you haz my cat food and hairspray?” Was not looking forward to this scenario. NOT AT ALL. Though it could be a romance novel cute meet… But this is real life, and I don’t meet men cutely, or in any way whatsoever. I just want my G.D. cat food and hairspray!

Why is life so hard? I want my mommy! Waaah!

In any case, I had to go out to dinner with friends last night and was forced to play a long complicated game that was sort of like… scrabble plus poker and… well, I can’t explain it, too weird, but it went on forever and I got home after 10PM… and guess what?

MY PACKAGE WAS RIGHT OUTSIDE MY DOOR!!!

What a week I’m having. And it’s only Tuesday.

 

The Superb Owl

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So, I watched the big sportsball game yesterday. Yes, me. I did. It was fun! I watched with some friends, at their house, and they had a new puppy. Omgosh, I love puppies! And it turns out you can make poppers without jalapeños, and they are delicious, which is good to know, since I hate jalapeños. But roasted peppers and cream cheese? Noms.

I knew nothing about the game itself, but my friends explained it to me, and though it was very complicated, I think I understood it a little bit. I began by hoping the Patriots would win, because it seemed like everyone on Facebook was rooting for the Eagles, but it turned out there was a good reason for that, so I switched allegiances in the middle. Yay! The commercials were great, especially the one with Tyrion from Game of Thrones. Of course I liked his the best, not that I even remember what he was selling. Spicy chips, maybe.

All in all, a very fun time. I am still puzzled how people who are not connected to the financial aspects of sportsball games get so wrought up about them however. I get that the players, their families, and the people making/losing money from the events will get emotional about the outcomes, but I don’t get the audience mania. It’s still very strange to me. I’m trying to work it out. It was great to hang out with friends, but it would have been no matter what was on the TV. I guess it must be one of those things you grow up with that I didn’t have. My dad always read newspapers and books on weekends. My mom was always puttering around with plants or crafts.

But I do get that it’s a bonding experience with peeps and if you make a habit of getting together to watch the sportsball games, like anything else, it’s simply another way to connect and maintain your friendships. Nothing wrong with that, except please avoid setting cars on fire.

~*~

The Daily Prompt: Puzzled