Who says the fancy lingerie gifting is for women only?
Get your guy a man-panties & tank set! The orange and green stripes say he’s sporty. The bulge-y bits say he’s sexy.
Altitude Design Summit popped my blogging conference cherry.
It was a lot like the sort of thing you go to for work: hotel conference rooms, name tags on a lanyard, and boozy night time entertainment. And if you work with 500 creative and artisticly motivated women, then this would be that conference.
Days were filled with sessions intended to smarten up your blogginess. Like design do’s and don’ts, building an ad network, and kickstarting your next project. Elaborately planned parties in the evenings.
So here’s what I thought…
The Room Mate
I roomed with a stranger. She posted on her blog that she was looking for a room mate. I said that it could be me if she wanted. Despite feeling a little nervous, it all worked out surprisingly well. We weren’t all bff and up in each other’s business, but we did spend a fair amount of time together. For me, it was the perfect balance of striking out independently versus hanging out in a safety net.
All told, I’m really glad about meeting Margot.
The rest of the bloggers weren’t exactly wearing potato sacks.
In honor of my little bloglet’s 4 year anniversary, I thought I’d shed a little insight on what the heck my blog is called.
At the time of my first post on January 18, 2008, I was working in email based customor support. Maybe one day I will talk more about what that was like and how it made me feel about human kind, but for now, let’s just say it didn’t leave me with a lot of warm fuzzies.
Here’s a particularly influential example.
Customer: Will I get my order on Wednesday?
Me: You should expect your order to ship no later than 6 business days after the date of order.
Customer: Are you just a very clever robot?
Even though I didn’t tell him that no, I’m not a very clever robot, I decided it was important to be clear with the rest of the universe. Ya’ll. I know what it must seem like, but I’m not a very clever robot.
Which I know must be especially confusing because sometimes I do just beep. R2D2 beeps and he’s a robot. So comparisons may be drawn. But some days, saying “hello” seems so banal. I can be so much more expressive with a beep or two. Which I know will make no sense if you’re just reading about it. But I assure you, conversations with Maggie can be had using only beeps.
Despite what you might think, I’m not a very clever robot. Sometimes I just beep.
4 years ago today I was gearing up to write my first blog post of ever.
I had recently discovered just how incredibly connected you could feel to someone through her blog.
She Just Walks Around With It was my first. I didn’t actually know her for real, but she was a friend of a friend sort of person and lived in SF. And I loved her. Still do. (Incredibly, Kristy went from being single in the city, to thoroughly boyfriended, to married, to mommy x 2 in the time that I have been reading.)
She included Dooce.com on her blog roll and woah nelly. I fell hard for Heather Armstrong. So funny. Such a good writer. Snarky and fiesty and tall and pretty. And man, the tales she could tell! I had no idea of the rabbit hole I was falling down when I started delving into the archives back to the beginning so I could read her blog in its entirety.
It was under the influence of those two that I started a blog under the impression that I could just tell whatever stories I wanted to tell. I didn’t know that you were supposed to have a niche to have a good blog. And at the time, I wasn’t really worried about having a “good” blog. All I wanted to write about was how mad and sad and broken apart I was as I suffered through the tumults of a terrible relationship.
I might as well have just been writing an angsty emo diary, but in a secret, dark and squirrelly way, I wanted him to know just how profoundly and poetically he was alternately making me woozy with love and lost in despair. Writing a public blog was a way that I could pretend that he might read what I’d written and that it would burn his mitochondria with shame and remorse. But I kept the blog pretty hidden and he never saw it. As far as I know, anyway.
After a time, I stopped lapsing into the self destructive behavior of seeing this man. Not so very much later, I met the David and I didn’t feel so very mad or sad any more. The things I wrote about changed. I wanted to write without the commitment of having to write a whole thing. I liked the idea of writing something just a little, instead of trying and failing to write something big. Although as easy as writing little things seemed it would have been, there were still long chunks of time in which I wrote nothing at all.
I have turned almost all of the posts that talked about the so very sad and heartbroken times to private. They never really were for public consumption. But sometimes I read them just to remind myself of that person that I was.
And I’m glad now that even if I don’t have weeping and melodrama, there still quite a few days that I still something to write about.
So, my lovely friend Corinne posted this image from a blog I’d never heard of called Old Love.
Corinne, being all aesthetically oriented, is appreciating how sweet and beautiful this photo circa 1966 of Michael Caine and Natalie Wood is. And it is cool. They’re both dressed in this really awesome retro way. Except it’s only retro to me at this point in the space-time continuum. For them, it was probably very modern.
What I’m seeing is Michael Caine and Natalie Wood? Holy cow! I had no idea.
And then this site unleashed one gobsmacking revelation on me after another.
DID YOU KNOW THAT LISA TURTLE AND ZACK MORRIS WERE A THING?!
(also, that bikini bottom is something. am glad i was only 8 years old during this fashionable era.)
Scott Baio and who? Pamela Anderson? Holy crap. She is unrecognizable!
Is there anything sadder than being reminded of Susan Sarandon and Tim Robbins?
This whole site is like an epic edition of the best US Weekly ever.
Yeah. You’re welcome.
Have you seen this TED talk from Brittany Gibbons? She’s one of the founders of Curvy Girl Guide, an online magazine that covers all your basic lady magazine fodder, but told from the perspective of regular sized women.
She started this campaign to get women to hate their bodies less by showing off her own body, standing in Times Square in her bathing suit. The video of this talk is breathtaking. Her conviction is contagious and her palpable fear at being on stage makes her seem real and relatable. She’s not some Amazonian plus sized super model lolling about in her knickers telling me that I should believe in my own beauty; she’s a regular lady, being nervous about taking off her clothes in front of strangers.
At the end, she shows photos of other women in their bathing suits. They all saw her on tv, baring it (mostly) all, being brave, and sending this message that she’s ok with how she looks. And I totally teared up. People being inspired by other people is always a tear jerker for me.
I loved everything about it. Almost.
About five and a half minutes in, she says “I’m a mother three times over… I’ve earned ever single curve on my body. And if that’s not sexy, I don’t know what is.”
And I felt annoyed at her. Like she didn’t totally own up to her body, which she did say was the same body she’s had since she was 8. She *earned* every curve by being a mother, which made those curves holy or something, instead of just the ordinary result of too much couch time. No free pass for being fat if you haven’t been a mother? Does she think she wouldn’t be sexy or be less sexy if she hadn’t had children?
I asked her about it, actually, and she graciously responded saying that it took motherhood for her to understand and appreciate her body. Which I get. I think. I’m not really sure how much I can grok that perspective without being a mother myself, but I think I get it.
I don’t think it matters why you got fat, or why you stay fat, or if you’re working to be less fat.
What other people say or think is irrelevant. Be ok with who you are. Change things that you don’t like if you don’t like them. But you can still be ok along the way. You’re ok if you’re a mom. Or a dad.
I’m ok. You’re ok.
Last week, I signed myself up for the Alt Design Summit, a conference for design and lifestyle bloggers.
I have a lot of feelings about this. Generally feelings that involve swear words. And while I’m ok having a little f-bomb here and there, the quality and quantity of verbiage burbling in my head is more than I feel comfortable posting.
So use your imagination.
What the shiznip was I thinking? I’m not a snarfing lifestyle blogger. And I’m sure as shiitake not a design blogger. The registration is not refundable! All of the strangers! And the mingling! Meeting people and trying to tell them that I have a blog! Bocce balls!
etc etc etc
It was a glittering hailstorm of self doubt that escalated in a week of not blogging at all. What’s the best way to fulfill one’s self fulfilling prophecy of having a shitty blog? Don’t blog at all!
So, it’s Monday again now and I am still terrified of what I’ve done. But I’m going to cache in on a current über cliche and just try to keep calm and carry on.
It’s not until January 18th. That’s ages away. No point getting all hepped up about it now.
And fear of what other people will think of me is unacceptable reason to stop doing something I want to do. It’s ok to be afraid. It’s not ok to let that feeling bully me.
My anxiety about this is forcing me to realize something: writing this little blog is important to me. I feel very insecure about it and am therefore loathe to admit it, but I really want to make it work. I don’t know what making it work means yet, but I know I haven’t done it. The desire to achieve that making-it-workness was actually the driving force behind signing up for Alt Summit. I’m hopeful that it will be inspiring and educational.
That hope got seriously overwhelmed by bad attitude. And just like after a miserable failure with my diet, after a week off from blogging, I feel the allure of just giving up.
The bossy annoying half of my head is all “You can’t give up! You JUST admitted that this is important to you!”
So the creative writer side says “Oh, yeah, bossypants? What’s tomorrow’s awesome post going to be about then, you snatch hatcher? Maybe you should write it!”
I can’t even tell you about how that fight turns out because it is still tumbling around, in and out, through plate glass windows. Just like Mark Darcy and Daniel Cleaver. Except with fewer British accents.
I was a little late getting on the Ryan Gosling train.
When The Notebook came out, I was all about the Rachel McAdams train. I lurved her. I mean really. Is there truly a question about who’s cuter? Look at her!
All that vintage-y dress and hair style business just makes my heart go pitter pat. Scruffy tall dude? Shrug.
I saw Lars and the Real Girl. And his relationship with a blow-up doll didn’t exactly make me swoon.
Then, I didn’t really love the character he played in Blue Valentine, even though I found the movie really heart wrenching.
But then I did see that video about Ryan Gosling stopping a fight in the street in NYC. And that was pretty endearing.
And I heard about how he was the impetus for getting that very cool, unknown song “You and Me” into Blue Valentine. That song is right up there with vintage-y dresses and hair-dos.
And then. I saw him in Drive and Crazy Stupid Love this year. Loved both of them, in different ways, and was schooled on his paradoxical juxtaposition of adorable cuteness and hubba hubba hotness. So, consider me well and truly on board the train.
Which brings me to today’s point:
I’m glad that’s settled then.