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Reuse and Recycle, But Don't Reduce

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Twitter stymied me for a LONG time. I just didn't get it. I mean, I knew that I was limited to 140 characters, but I didn't understand how conversations happened. I'm still not great at it, but I know now, for instance, that I have to check my @connect page regularly. (Otherwise, I find a request to publish my work well over a year after it was made.) I like hashtags and have created a few. I even have a couple of followers who are supposedly famous, though I had never heard of them until I read their profiles, and they've favorited or retweeted me. I admit I find it sorta cool.

I don't tweet more than a few times a week, and the main way I tweet is to take a facebook status or comment I like and slap it on twitter. Like this:

I get SO TIRED of watching out for people who don't know the difference between "weary" and "wary."

I was thinking yesterday about the three entries I posted here during the first week of July, and thought to myself that it might be a good long while before I post much again, 'cause I'm BUSY.

And I was also thinking about how what I posted today on Facebook was too long to post on Twitter.

And then I thought, why not just post it on my blog?

So here it is.

A thought impinged on my consciousness yesterday at 3 p.m. I told myself, "That's not my fault or my problem. I'm not going to worry about it." And I didn't.

A thought impinged on my consciousness this morning at 3 a.m. I told myself, "That's not my fault or my problem. I'm not going to worry about it." And then I did.

Stuff By Me to Read, and Maybe Vote For

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I'm pleased to announce that I have an essay in the forthcoming issue of Bitch. The print version won't be out until March, but the online version is already up. I'm not going to link to it here, because as I've mentioned, my blog is semi-anonymous, meaning I try to keep my last name out of it, even though I know most of my readers know who I am. If you want to read the piece in Bitch (and I hope you do), just go to the magazine's website and look for the preview of the next issue.

Also: Two of my entries from 2009 have been nominated for Brodies* at Main Street Plaza! The Priesthood is Magic is nominated in the "best LDS gender roles discussion" category while Mormon Alumni Association is up for "best life beyond Mormonism post."

I am proud of both entries, though I admit to being especially pleased by the recognition of the post on the Mormon Alumni Association, since that is an idea that has gained some traction in post-Mormondom in general.

Anyway, if you feel so inclined, please read or reread the various nominations, and vote! Polls close February 22.

*The awards are named after Fawn Brodie, who wrote No Man Knows My History, the first non-hagiographic biography of Joseph Smith. The book has irritated believing Mormons no end ever since its publication in 1945, because although Brody admired Joseph Smith enormously, she concluded from her research that most of his claims were false.

Check Out the Facelift


I have so much to report--I spent most of last week at Sunstone, and it was FABULOUS! I will write more about it, when I've had a chance to recover.... In the meantime, please take a moment to appreciate the splendor that is my new blog design, courtesy, as always, of my friend Jim.

This update was long overdue. One reason I had gotten fairly lax about posting is that I had grown to HATE the old design--the color scheme, the artwork, EVERYTHING. Also there were weird problems with comment submission, and my category archives had somehow disappeared when we updated the software. This new and improved design takes care of some of those nasty problems, though I still don't have a blog roll.... I am going to work on that.

The photo in the banner is of my beloved Mount Graham, taken by me on Reay Lane just south of the Gila River in November 2007. It's not quite to scale--it had to be stretched a little to fit the space. But you get the idea of what it really looks like: this big cool lumpy mountain rising off the floor of the desert, overlooking cotton fields and a few small towns. it makes me happy to look at the photo--I hope you like it too.

We still can't figure out quite how it happened, but someone seemed to have exploited a weakness in the software of the platform I use for my blog, and inserted some nasty code that meant my blog was, well, sorta infected.

The problem has been corrected, but the cure has had some side effects--my blog roll has disappeared, for one thing. I'm working with a newer version of the platform, and it's pretty different, so it may take me a while to get everything working as I'd like.

If you accessed my blog in the last ten days, you should make sure your computer security is up to date, and scan it for viruses or other ickiness.

My apologies for any inconvenience.

So, I have blogging homework. I know it, and I’ve been avoiding it. I still have not finished working out whatever idea I started to write a week ago about friendly interactions with strangers. Hell, so much has happened in the meantime that I’m not even certain what my final point was going to be, though I know it involved the cute bartender who garnished my drinks with extra raspberries and gooseberries (I’d never eaten a gooseberry before that night) as well as this other attractive man who chatted me up in order to ask me what I was talking to myself about (which sort of embarrassed me because although I know I talk to myself a lot, I thought I refrained from making that obvious when I’m someplace like a crowded bar). I might even have planned to mock outright the guy I teased gently when he started complaining to me about how he was emeritus and therefore “obsolete”--at Yale. “Oh, wow, yeah, that’s tough,” I said. “Being ‘obsolete’ at Yale. Though being obsolete there means that you were, at least, once relevant. It’s not like being put out to pasture after four decades at, oh, say, Boise State or Wabash College.”

Anyway, I think whatever I planned to say was either amusing or interesting, and may even have been slightly insightful, so I’ll try to remember.

Then there’s the whole topic of sex and lust that I raised back in mid December.... I actually do remember where I was going with that, and I’ve had more thoughts on the topic. I want to get back to that thread, not that I plan to exhaust it, but I think I have something worthwhile to offer on the subject. Plus it’s a topic most people are willing to read about.

And then there’s always the book about shoes I wanted to write all about, though I never got further than discussing my favorite chapter on military footwear back in August. I still hope to get in another post or two about that....

Plus there was this whole thing I was going to write about how I hate wrapping paper and the efforts I make to avoid it. I took photos in preparation for the entry I was going to write but never got around to posting anything.... Maybe I'll manage to get it done before Christmas 2008.

So yeah. I know I have hanging threads. I’m not going to cut them off or tie all of them up any time soon. But at least I finally took care of one of the most pressing blog-tasks I’d been ignoring, and that was to respond to a slew of comments I’d let accumulate. I know it’s really obnoxious not to reply to comments when people are kind enough to leave them, and my only excuse is that I was either A) traveling or B) still traumatized by the minivan ride with the farting teenager and the bossy pre-pubescent. But comments so increase the rewards of blogging--as I was reminded earlier today when Saviour Onassis brought to my attention an entry he wrote a year ago, and the really great comment I then left (it's under my old blogger name--scroll down far enough and you'll find it)--that it’s really inexcusable for me to wait so long to reply. I didn’t make many New Year’s resolutions, but one is to reply to comments more quickly.

And now I’m going back to ignoring the other blog homework I’m not yet ready to do.

Wireless and Still Unwired

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I haven't posted recently because I've been traveling.... I arrived at Sky Harbor Airport (PHX, in case you care about airport codes) a few days ago so I can hang out in Arizona for the Thanksgiving holiday. What is there to say about air travel except that it sucks in just about every possible way, but is nonetheless quicker than driving or taking a train (which unfortunately is not really an option for certain kinds of travel in the US anyway)?

But I arrived. And the weather is beautiful, in that "it's way too warm for November, but that's what global warming gives us" kind of way. Seriously, when I was a little girl, beginning in November and lasting until February we had something I wasn't embarrassed to call winter: you had to wear a coat, and the temperature would drop below freezing regularly, and sometimes there would be snow. But now if you live in southern Arizona you don't every really have to own a coat.

Anyway, things are going OK on this trip, except that something about the way my wireless whatever is configured on my laptop means that I can't access the wireless service where I'm staying, so if I want to blog or do email, I have to do it on the shared computer, and as there are four children 13 and under who all want to check email and edit anime videos, I have to queue up. Right now everyone but me and one sick niece are at church, so I have the computer to myself.

If I get the wireless thing sussed out, there will be more from me, but if I don't, both entries on my blog on comments on yours might be sparse for the next week.

OK, This One is a Toy


About six weeks ago, I wrote about buying a Dell laptop loaded with Windows Vista, and the way that decision allowed the gaping maw of despair to open up beneath me.... Mercifully I know how to wield a roll of packing tape and a Sharpee marker, and before long the laptop and all the peripherals were in boxes and back on their way from whence they came, and ere a little longer, the nightmare ended.

That's right: I've been to Dell and back.

The good thing about that experience was that it gave me a better sense of what I really wanted and what I really didn't want. I waited until the charges were removed from my credit card, and then I bought a Lenovo, aka an IBM ThinkPad.

And I love it! I just love it!

I don't always check my blog stats--I'll go weeks without even looking at them, and one reason is because the searches that lead people to my blog often distress me, as in the current batch:

was i date raped?
filipina women put fish in their vaginas
sorry for date raping you
existential dread
what is existential dread
frigid mormon women

The filipina women one really freaks me out.... but whatever. I don't want details.

My Blog Roll and the Supreme Court


First off, something is wrong with my blog roll and I don't know how to fix it.... I used to have all these links to all these great blogs, and they're still there, somewhere in the html.... but they don't show up on my actual blog. This is what I get for neglecting the place for the better part of six months, isn't it.

The same can be said for the Supreme Court. I remember a conversation I had at a barbeque in Iowa City back in the summer of 2000, in which the members of the Green Party I was talking to argued that it really wouldn't make any difference for anyone in the long or short term if a Republican instead of a Democrat was elected president. And then, we read something like this in today's NY Times, all about the recent ruling limiting the time an employee has to file a lawsuit regarding pay discrimination:

As with an abortion ruling last month, this decision showed the impact of Justice Alito’s presence on the court. Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, whom he succeeded, would almost certainly have voted the other way, bringing the opposite outcome.

What can I say but "I told you so."

What Happened


Here's why I've hardly blogged at all this year: a few people, working both individually and together, set out to make my life as miserable as possible. While they didn't succeed as well as they would have liked, they succeeded far better than I would have liked. Eventually the harassment became so bad that something official had to be done, at which point there was all kinds of trouble and I was offered some sort of restitution. It's actually kind of a nice deal but I would have simply preferred not to have had to deal with so much shittiness.

I stopped blogging not only because I was often busy and distracted dealing with all that nastiness, but because one of the ways these people tried to hurt me was through my blog. I'm not sure exactly what their goals with regards to that were, but at one point I considered deleting the whole thing and doing my best to erase my presence in the blogosphere. But I didn't, and I'm glad, both because I like my blog and because I don't want to succumb to that kind of intimidation.

Blogging, as we all know, involves not only writing your own blog, but reading and commenting on blogs you admire and enjoy. I'm sorry that as part of my withdrawal from blogging I also stopped reading blogs, but frankly, it hurt to read everyone else's blogs when my own felt so vulnerable and unsafe.

Before all this happened I was doing pretty well, both in terms of maintaining my own blog and keeping up with the blogs I enjoy most, and I'm confident that I can manage it again. I can only hope now that having failed in some of their primary objectives and faced some unpleasant consequences themselves, the assholes who were after me will leave me--or at least my blog--alone. In any event, it's summertime, and the living is easy. In addition to pleasure reading on my back porch, sewing, quilting and gardening, I plan to blog, because like sewing, quilting and gardening, blogging is a kind of "work" that is rewarding in multiple ways: the activity itself is fun, and then you get this great product as a result.

And that's really sort of all I can or want to say about that, so on to other topics.


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