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Moving Along

I was hit with a low blow today.  Scratch that.  I was hit with a fucking mack truck.  My heart felt as if it was going to leap out of my chest and dance across my desk.  My hands were sweaty and my skin clammy.  My appetite was nowhere to be seen and I was ready to sell my soul for a soothing shot of whiskey or tequila.

I’ve been very absent from the world of blogging lately due to my inability to properly handle stressful situations without becoming a useless, shaking blob of jelly.  I’m angry and I don’t know where to direct my rage and how to keep it from burning down the world around me.  I want to scream and cry and throw things until they break.  I want to confront the reason for my distress and beat it into the ground.  Yet here I sit, doing nothing.

As badly as I wanted to fly off the handle earlier today, I held it in and removed myself from the situation as quickly as I knew how.  I’ve shed a few tears, but have kept myself from falling into a full out sob.  Nothing is broken (yet).  I’m trying to fix it, but I feel like I should know why it happened in the first place, and that is one question that will never get a good answer.

I’m glad I didn’t see the smirk and sarcastic wave earlier today from the wrecking ball that destroyed my world today.  My situation would have been irreparable if I had seen that, as I have no doubt that someone would have gotten their teeth punched into the back of their skull.  At some points, I’m so amazed by what happened that I can’t even be angry.  But of course I can.  I am angry.  Justifiably so.  But anger won’t solve any problems.  I have to go forward.  I have to move on.  And a month from now, maybe a year from now, you damn well better believe I’ll be laughing in your stupid, smirky face, you intolerable bastard.



I confess, I am addicted to MTV’s reality show, Catfish.  I recently read that before hosts Nev Schulman and Max Joseph are able to read a single word from the victim of a potential Catfish, the production staff does extensive homework on all involved parties, which includes verification of the story, obtaining signed releases, and often requesting that the person being Catfished write a letter to Nev and Max asking for their help.  This is done because the majority of the people who contact MTV are the Catfish themselves, likely looking to finally come clean, which explains why their first words are almost always an apology.  Almost always.


Catfish has gotten quite heavy in its third season.  While Nev has always been the calm voice of reason with Max occasionally losing patience and having to take a breather, we have seen Nev become seriously heated and angry at the people who have been hiding behind a false persona.  On the episode featuring Kidd Cole, who has scammed thousands of dollars out of who knows how many people, Nev became so angry at Cole’s lack of empathy with his latest victim that he threw Cole’s phone into a river.  Producers on-site have had to step in multiple times to calm Nev and Max down because, in their words, they are in danger of sabotaging their own show unless they get their emotions in check.  But honestly, who can blame them?

To my knowledge, I have never been Catfished, but I feel very confident that it has happened to me at least once during my life online.  Like most people nowadays, I’ve formed numerous friendships with people I’ve met online but never been able to see in person or video chat with.  I even met my husband online, although he was thankfully very real and never once hid behind any online falsehood.  I have friendships with people on Twitter that I still have yet to meet in person.  I’ve had brief interactions with people I assume are celebrities on a verified account that could in fact be just a random employee of that public figure.  Every single day, I find myself in some sort of contact with a person that could be someone very different from who I assume they are.


The idea of Catfishing someone is hardly a new concept though, just one that has only recently been thrown into a spotlight.  Back when I was eleven and my AOL access was limited to an hour of glorious dial-up per week, I can recall spending the majority of that hour in various chat rooms made for my age group.  I quickly noticed that unlike the real world, each chat room would have a huge number of tall blond cheerleaders and ruggedly handsome football players.  The older I got, the bigger the lies became.  A slight exaggeration on physical appearance became outright lies that took hundreds of pounds off of bodies, changed genders and orientations, shaved off decades from a person’s age, and allowed anyone to have whatever career and financial status they wanted.  The joke became that any and all lesbian chat rooms were actually nothing but 30 – 50 year old men talking dirty to one another.

You would think that the more we see liars and cheats exposed online, and the more we see how easily one person can become someone else entirely via the internet, the more cautious we would all become.  Nev and Max’s investigations on Catfish are reduced from hours into minutes, but their work gives us more than a few tricks that can easily be used to verify someone’s identity.  The last episode of Catfish featured a tech-savvy guy who didn’t do his homework out of respect for the girl he thought he was talking to, but surely our own safety is more important that an imagined slight against a stranger.  I just popped my photo into a Google image search and scared myself a bit at how accurate the results were.  Lying is easy, but exposing those lies is easier.


In addition to being cautious, we need to be smart.  Giving some random stranger online your full trust is beyond stupid.  People who wouldn’t trust some of their own family will put all of their faith into a person from Facebook that they’ve never met.  It’s mind-boggling.  Stopping for a moment and being rational rather than emotional could work to save a lot of people from a lot of heartache.  In the case of recent Catfish, Kidd Cole, it could have saved people a lot of money had they not taken the word of someone simply because he had a shiny cover story and amazing empty promises.  Every single person who puts themselves on the internet immediately makes themselves vulnerable to some extent.  How vulnerable you allow yourself to be, however, is something every one of us can closely control.

Who Are You Again?

It takes a lot for me to truly trust a person.  Other than my husband, I can’t think of anyone that I trust 100% with everything, which is something I’m perfectly okay with.  As far as my friends and family go, I’m satisfied if I can trust them with 75% of myself.  Even if I’m dealing with someone who only gets a small piece of me, I take that trust seriously and I’ll admit I’m probably too sensitive if that trust is broken somehow.  Mainly, I don’t appreciate being lied to about things that are so stupid and so insignificant that there is no point whatsoever in lying about them at all.


It was brought to my attention recently that an acquaintance (I’m going to call her Helga, as that is an ugly name and she’s become an ugly person) has been telling these wild stories about all these guys she’s been sleeping with.  Thinking about Helga’s sex life is not something I have done or plan to do, so don’t focus too much on the subject of her tales.  What irked me is that the stories are about people she’s confided in me about and who are supposedly people who are either just friends or people she finds attractive but wouldn’t dare mess with due to the fact that they are MARRIED.  Half of Helga’s “conquests” are married men.  The other half probably wouldn’t touch her with someone else’s body.  And her next targets…. I don’t even know what to say.

I don’t care what (or who) Helga does or doesn’t do, as that’s her business.  What I don’t appreciate is being told a fairy tale about her life because that’s what she thinks I want to hear or because that’s the image she wants to present to me specifically.  We’re both adults and I have a hard time comprehending this high school mentality of “people will think I’m desirable and popular if I say I slept with X, Y, and Z.”  It makes me think that nothing that comes out of Helga’s mouth is true, which is unfortunate because I’m not in a position where I can avoid her 100% and make the problem go away.


I’m not sure what people like Helga want out of life.  I don’t know how they keep their stories straight.  I don’t know who they are.  I cannot wrap my head around why a grown person who can obviously function in the real world would act like an insecure teenager when it comes to love, sex, relationships, or any other areas of life that are primarily ruled by emotions.  I’m one of the most emotionally crazy people I know and I’ve never thought to resort to telling real or imagined stories about my sexual conquests in order to impress others.  Hell, the last time I felt pressured to have sex was when I was 13, sitting around with my girl friends, trying to decide which one of us would lose our virginity first.  (Spoiler alert; it was not me)

Sex is an amazing thing.  Whether you’re happy with one partner or you’re playing around with many, sex is fantastic and I don’t judge a person based on their sexual activity.  Most of us have a phase where we bone irresponsibly, and some people never grow out of that phase.  I don’t care.  It doesn’t affect me.  Unless you’re trying to get into my husband’s pants or my own, my life is not altered by who you show your naughty bits to.  Except for the homophobic crowd and the prudes in the world, I imagine that most people think like me and simply aren’t bothered by your sexual behaviors.  There is no reason to create a fictional sex story to share with the world because, I promise you, the world doesn’t care all that much.


The thing that Helga likely isn’t taking into consideration is how her nonsense could potentially affect the people she’s flapping her jaw about.  One of the guys she’s bragging about (I’ll call him Frank, as I don’t know anyone by that name and also because I had hot dogs last night) is married with children.  If Frank’s wife gets wind of this sexual escapade with Helga, what happens?  True or not, that is pretty devastating news for a wife to hear.  Even if the story is ridiculous and unbelievable, it’s never fun for someone to hear that their partner cheated on them.  It triggers the imagination, even if only for a split second, and has the potential to deeply hurt.

Unfortunately for me, since I can’t get rid of Helga, I’m going to have to do my best to pretend she doesn’t exist and hope I can do so in a way that doesn’t make it obvious that I now find her revolting.  Unfortunately for her next targets, I don’t have a good way of warning them that doesn’t make me sound like a teenage idiot, so I just have to hope they wise up and create some distance before they become the next tall tale floating around here.  I feel somewhat naive for assuming that people like this don’t exist anymore in the late 20s, early 30s world I’m living in, but now that it’s been made painfully obvious that they’re indeed everywhere, I suppose I have to again become a little jaded and keep more people at arm’s length.  Live and learn though, right?

Your Pants Are On Fire

In the words of Dr. Gregory House, everybody lies.  Those may be the words of a fictional character, written by a team who was tasked with coming up with a phrase fitting of his outlook on the world, but it is a very true statement.  We all lie, even the most honest people among us.  I lie to my husband and say I’m fine when I’m actually bothered about something silly.  My son lies to me about his behavior in order to save himself from losing television time.  Employees at restaurants and retail outlets lie to their customers in order to make a sale.  Friends lie to other friends in order to spare their feelings.  Harmless lies are spoken all the time by the best of us.


I don’t particularly mind the tiny lies we tell in life.  If I’m sick and look like total garbage, I won’t mind if you tell me I look fine in order to spare my feelings.  I understand that in some instances, a lie can be appropriate.  In order to avoid your friends hating your significant other, for example, it’s fine to lie in order to conceal a silly fight and keep your friends from thinking you’re dating an insensitive jerk.  If you screwed up something that has nothing to do with your friends, it’s fine to lie to conceal it and save yourself the embarrassment.  Perhaps it’s hypocritical, but I understand the times when a little white lie is okay.  When it does no harm and isn’t done maliciously, I let it slide.

When it comes to white lies that are simply unnecessary, I have little to no tolerance for them.  If you mess up my bathroom after a night of drinking, let me know so I can sort it out rather than letting me discover it later and playing dumb about it.  Don’t bullshit me about not getting my text, just tell me you were busy or didn’t notice it until hours later; I’m perfectly understanding that not everyone is glued to their phone and able to respond immediately.  If I piss you off, be up front about it rather that silently resentful, complaining to others about me instead of addressing the issue.  Don’t be sneaky about things that you can come to me about.


Recently, I had someone do a very silly thing behind my back.  It was 100% forgivable given the situation, pretty darn stupid, but something that I could have very easily forgiven with a laugh.  It was 100% avoidable, as all this person would have had to do is ask me a simply question in order to have their problem resolved rather than been sneaky.  It wasn’t anything that had to be embarrassing, but they made it into something horrendously laughable by sneaking around.  It’s caused my opinion of this person to drop greatly, as it was lacking in class and tact.  It was simply disrespectful.  When asked about it, this person denied all knowledge, but a discovery later in the day showed me that this person not only did something stupid, but chose to lie about it instead of manning/womaning up and admitting that they screwed up and they were sorry.

What bothers me is that I have always been up front and honest with this person.  We’ve had more than a few moments together where we spill our guts and talk about personal things.  I’ve helped this person through some emotional situations and I didn’t sugar coat things, as honesty was the only thing that could help.  I’ve never broken their confidence and I’ve never lied.  The fact that this person chose to act like a child by going behind my back and doing something stupid, THEN chose to lie to cover up their behavior, makes me now question every single thing that has passed over their lips.  I don’t know what to believe and I don’t know if I’m even willing to listen anymore.

LiarLiarPantsonFire_YDRI want to confront this person about what they did, but it’s so ridiculous that I don’t know if I could do it with a straight face, especially if they continue to deny what happened.  I guarantee that they are so ashamed of their behavior that they will keep on playing dumb about it, even if I lay out the evidence right in front of them.  It makes me sad that a grown person could be so childish and so afraid of the truth coming out that they would blatantly lie to cover things up.  I feel disrespected; the behavior itself showed me that this person made the choice to be sneaky right under my nose, and the lying afterward showed me that this person doesn’t value our friendship enough to give me an ounce of honesty and remorse.

Contrary to what my angry rants may lead you to believe, I am a very forgiving person.  I won’t hold it against you if you get drunk at my place and throw up in my bathtub (though you should count on having to bleach that mess when you sober up).  I’m not going to hold a grudge if you flake on me because your crush texted you and wants to hang out.  Just don’t lie to me about it and we’ll be fine.  Don’t make up some story about trying to call me and the voicemail you left somehow getting lost.  Don’t blame things on others to save yourself the embarrassment.  I’ve screwed up plenty, I’ll keep on screwing up, and I want to give people the same leeway that I would like afforded to myself.


As far as my fibbing friend goes, I’m really not sure how things will go from here.  The chances they will read this are slim to none, so I’m sure they have no reason to think that I didn’t buy their BS story.  I suspect that they have mostly forgotten about the incident, since they feel that they have gotten away with it and that I suspect nothing.  But I do suspect.  I KNOW, and it bothers me.  I am no better than this person if I let it slide, but I don’t know if I’m prepared for the backlash if I don’t let it go.  I’m conflicted and it remains to be seen what I will do.  All I can say for sure is that my trust for this person is broken and the window to repair it is slowly closing.  Hopefully they make a move before it’s locked shut, but I’m sitting in silence until they choose to break it.  Only time will tell.

Your Cheating Heart

A friend of mine recently ended a relationship, then learned that their ex had been unfaithful during their relationship.  I didn’t know my friend’s ex that well, having only met her once for dinner and a concert, and even then we didn’t speak to each other much, but the ex didn’t strike me as someone who would cheat.  My friend is one of the nicest people I know and it kills me to know that they had to go through that.  Even though the relationship was over when the news was revealed, the sting of being cheated on isn’t any less than it would be if it was revealed during the relationship.  Bottom line:  It sucks.


The guy I had a serious relationship with prior to my husband ended up cheating on me twice.  It was during a time when we had to live apart due to financial hardships.  I found out he had slept with two waitresses I knew from a bar we frequented, and on one of those occasions where he was unfaithful, he ended up coming back to my bed almost immediately after doing the nasty with someone else.  To say I was devastated would be an understatement.  It was the only time I’ve truly been cheated on (to my knowledge) and it pained me for a long time afterward.  I tried to make it work but it eventually failed for more reasons than I can list.  The cheating was definitely high on the list of reasons I left though and is something no one should tolerate or have to experience.

One of the things that bothered me about my situation was that a mutual friend of ours had a front row seat to the cheating and didn’t say a word to me.  I was left blissfully ignorant until my ex got drunk one night and told me in an attempt to make me cry.  In retrospect, I can’t blame him for not telling me about the indiscretions.  Chances were that I wouldn’t have believed a word of it and would have just become angry at my friend.  It also was not the responsibility of my friend to break this news to me; he was an unwilling participant and just happened to be present during a date with my ex’s temporary new woman.  I was angry at my friend when I discovered that he knew, but I eventually came to my senses and quit blaming him (and the waitress) for something that wasn’t their doing.


The reasons people cheat are generally the same across the board.  One person feels ignored or unfulfilled in part of their relationship and looks to fill the gaps with another person.  One person feels inadequate and desires a person to tell them they’re beautiful and worthwhile.  The sex isn’t what it used to be or the conversations have run stale.  The cheater is insecure and needs to seek out people who will cure their insecurities temporarily with loving words and sexual attraction.  One person gets afraid of commitment and rushes into the arms of another in order to find solace.  The cheater simply gets a kick out of playing two or more people without being found out.  There are many reasons, but none of them are any good.

Not every relationship is meant to go the distance and it’s perfectly normal and fine for feelings to change and for people to want to move on to bigger and better things.  It’s unfair to yourself and to your partner to stay in a relationship that isn’t making you both happy.  The solution is easy though; be honest and move on properly.  Maybe the two of you need a bit of time apart in order to learn to be strong together, maybe you’re a few years away from being ready for love, or maybe you both need to stop holding on to something that doesn’t work.  It’s better to break a heart through a breakup than break a heart through infidelity.  It’s easier to come back and salvage a relationship that had a clean break than salvage one that ended because you decided to sleep around with other people.


I’m angry at my friend’s ex for their actions, not only because my friend didn’t deserve it, but because it was completely unnecessary.  The ex could have easily asked for some time apart, expressed frustration with some part of the relationship, or just said “screw you, I’m done.”  It’s difficult to do, but I’m glad I chose to end things with my college boyfriend instead of cheating on him when he moved four hours away from me for work.  Hurting someone with a breakup is rough but it’s worlds better than hurting someone by sharing yourself with another person behind their back.  It’s the difference between being the one that got away and the dirty whore that wasted two years of someone’s life.

I think my friend will be better off without their ex, but it’s still a shame that things weren’t handled properly so that at the very least they could have remained friends.  Thankfully, my friend is a strong and level-headed person who will get past this nonsense quickly and move on to someone who appreciates, loves and respects them.  The plus side to being cheated on is that it not only makes you a stronger person, it shows you the dirty side of love.  It’s a learning experience that allows you to avoid people of bad character in the future.  It discourages you from being a cheater yourself since you’ve been on the wrong end of it and know the damage it does.  It separates you from a person who didn’t deserve you and allows you to move on without guilt.  Cheaters may never learn, but that’s okay because the ones left in their wake end up shining like diamonds while the guilty parties stumble through the mud.

Who Am I Living With?!?

I read an article today about nightmare roommates.  The article highlighted stories such as a roomie who refused to clean and another who was a bit of an identity thief.  Though the stories will vary greatly, nearly everyone out there has a story to tell about a nightmare that they once called their roommate.  It inspired me to share a few of my own horror stories.  Please chime in with your own stories of woe in the comment section!

bad college roommate

CANCER IN COLLEGE:  I was pretty excited about having my first roommate during my freshman year of college.  Her name was Ashley and she seemed like a cool enough person when we were exchanging emails and deciding who would bring what when it came to appliances and entertainment.  Our first week went smoothly, but our second week had a bit of a hiccup during a movie night in our room with a few other girls from the dorm; instead of watching the movie, Ashley was face first in the crotch of a guy she had met just an hour before.  She began acting more and more promiscuous while dropping her showers from daily to once a week.  She began collecting her dirty laundry under her bed rather than in her drawers, doing sniff tests to find things to wear.  Finally she broke the news to myself and the other girls in the dorm that she had cancer.  A month passes and she informs us that a new laser surgery rid her of the cancer.  Two weeks later we learn via voicemail from her mother that her “cancer” was actually a single kidney stone that she had broken up by a doctor and was able to pass without incident.  She was so ashamed of her lie that she left the dorm and gave me a private room for the second half of the year.


JEALOUSY IS A KILLER:  My first apartment cost me $325 a month for my half of the rent, plus about $30 in utilities, for a decent sized two bedroom in a quiet area.  I moved in with my best friend from work, Travis; a 450+ pound guy who was as sweet as a teddy bear.  Once we were settled in, he proposed an odd rule that my boyfriend could only visit once a week and never to sleep over.  I soon discovered that he was an alcoholic; I came home one night to find he had finished off my big unopened bottle of whiskey and nearly demolished a 24 pack of beer.  I had to call in reinforcements to get him off of the living room floor where he lay weeping and into his bed.  Sometimes I would catch him watching me from the couch through the small crack in my doorway.  One day when we were both working, a tow truck came to collect his car due to some legal matter (possibly related to all the beer cans in the trunk) and the next day, I came home from school to find that he had moved out.  He called the electric company and water company to have them both shut off, leaving me with mere minutes to contact them both to get them reconnected.  He took every single item, big and small, in that place that he considered his.  He even took the $5 trash can, leaving a full open bag of trash in the middle of the kitchen floor.  I haven’t spoken to Travis since.


DRUGS ARE BAD:  At one low point in my life, I was renting a room in a boarding house with about ten other people.  This is more of a close neighbor story than actual roommates, but it counts.  I had my own bathroom, so I could easily isolate myself from the rest of the house.  Across the hall from me was a married couple who had just moved here from out of state; a chubby girl named Monica and her goggle-eyed husband, along with their newborn baby girl.  They seemed normal at first, until the husband began flirting with me anytime his wife was away at work (I had gotten her a job with me at IHOP but we didn’t always share shifts).  I was able to ignore him except for one day when he forced himself in my room, knocked me on the bed, and tried to assault me.  Unfortunately for him, I outweighed and out-muscled him and easily sent him running for his mommy.  Outside of him, there was a crackhead that lived down the hall.  I didn’t know she was a crackhead until returning from work one day with Monica.  She accused us both of “checking out” her skinny, filthy boyfriend and went crazy.  I have a small scar on my left arm from where she attacked me.  Monica and I locked ourselves in my room and called the police; she was soon hogtied and thrown in the back of their car after twice running away from the officers who showed up to assist.  Oh, and there was also a guy who died in his room and was there for a week before anyone noticed.


LOOKIE HERE:  While between places, I had to crash on the floor of my friend’s place for a bit.  He was a scrawny, nerdy, nice guy who I met with friends at a liquor store and later saw for games of pool, dinner and drinks on multiple occasions.  He was almost twice my age but very approachable and friendly.  My boyfriend had the idea of me staying with him for a bit to save money and I agreed because my other option was living in my car.  The first week went smoothly; I was able to put back cash from my paycheck and received a surprising amount of privacy for someone on an air mattress in the middle of the living room.  Little did I know the guy was somewhat of an exhibitionist, setting up various ways for me to literally catch him with his pants around his ankles.  The first time, I chalked up to an accident.  Time #2 made me suspicious and I began searching for a new place.  Time #3 he just came out of the shower butt naked and entered the living room where he knew I was sitting.  I ran to the end of the driveway to wait for my ride so I could get the hell out of that place.

Day 30

What about you?  Big or small, share your stories.  It can be personal or something that a friend or family member has experienced.  And… GO!

My High Horse

I have been called a drama queen more than once in my life.  The thing is, I’ve never been called a drama queen for engaging in behavior that is characteristic of one.  True, I do take to Twitter and this site to vent my various frustrations, both big and small, but by no means is that making a mountain out of a molehill.  I’m no social media whore, so any dramatic outbursts that may occur are confined to 140 characters and a small audience.  While I do have an opinion on everything and everyone, I’m not a gossip and it’s not in my nature to waste my time talking about others and analyzing their lives and choices in a way that is spiteful, mean-spirited, or dramatic.  The bulk of my “gossip” is what you see here; vague commentary about people without ever calling anyone out or inviting any attack of any kind on a person or group of people.


The actual drama in my life is pretty damn boring.  I stress about money, about my kid, about my job, and about other various bits of nonsense that everyone else deals with on a weekly basis.  I don’t sit around talking trash about the people in my life while thumbing through the latest issue of US Weekly and watching E! News.  I don’t share things that I’ve been told in confidence or even things that I assume the person would want kept private.  It boggles my mind why I would be called a drama queen or seen as a source of drama.  Until recently, that is.

I had an odd dream last night about someone who doesn’t feel that I’m worth talking to anymore, and as I emerged from my groggy state and hopped in the shower, it finally clicked.  Every single person who has ever called me a drama queen, both directly and indirectly, has been a person that has been offended when I’ve said something honest.  For example, I went on a mini-rant once about people who post spoilers for television shows on social media outlets, resulting in one of the worst people ever getting annoyed by my statement and reducing me to drama queen status.  I don’t feel that my actions fit the drama queen profile but because this person took my vague statement to EVERYONE who does it and made it into a personal attack, I was given the label.


The other thing I’ve noticed is that the people who think it appropriate to give me this label are also people who fit the queen profile, both males and females.  They troll Facebook looking for old friends just to talk trash about them with current friends, they get into everyone’s business so they have something to discuss later, and they automatically assume everything is all about them.  Sticking me with the label is simply a way of them making themselves feel better about their poor decisions.  If I post a blog entry about how aggressive flirtation on social media is wrong when you’re not single and it angers someone, it’s easier for them to write me off as a drama queen instead of owning up to the fact that they fit the profile I described and they are doing something wrong.

I suppose I’ve just reached a point where things are finally clear to me.  I don’t need to feel bad or guilty about anything I’ve done or said.  I have never personally attacked anyone without being directly provoked and when I do attack, it’s certainly not out in the open so I can display it to everyone.  If someone doesn’t want to associate with me because I’m vocal about my disgust for people who constantly discuss their sex lives out in the open, so be it.  I am losing nothing of value from that separation and I do not need to feel remorse about expressing my honest opinion, especially when I had the decency to keep names and specifics out of it.  I cannot be responsible for anyone being blind to their own bad behavior or the bad behavior of their loved one.  I’m done feeling like I’m in the wrong.


I’m not trying to climb on the highest horse around so I can look down on as many people as possible, I’m just at a new phase in my life.  I like to think I evolve more and more each day, and this is just one more tiny piece of my personal evolution.  I cannot be held responsibly for the opinions and behaviors of others, even when they are indirectly caused by something I said or wrote.  I refuse to bite my tongue out of fear of offending cheaters; I’m entitled to think it’s deplorable to cheat and I’m entitled to express it here, on Twitter, and in other appropriate settings.  I cannot censor myself just because a handful of people are going to think I’m being mean.

As long as things are said in the right ways and in the proper settings, there’s no reason for the speaker to feel bad about their statements and opinions.  Someone who simply disagrees should have enough maturity within them to say something to you if they feel strongly enough about it.  Those who feel guilty and become angry should direct that anger back at themselves, not at the speaker.  “Tracy is an attention seeking whore” and “There are way too many cleavage pics on my timeline; tone it down, ladies” are two very different statements.  Only one should cause you to feel that twinge of guilt and only one gives a specific person reason to call you out.  As long as I keep my statements in blanket form, I have nothing to feel bad about.  It’s a shame that certain people disappear, but can it really be called a loss if that makes me down one delusional, lying, selfish friend?

Hashtag Subtweet

One of my favorite things about social media, blogging, and other areas of the internet where one can say virtually anything is the freedom it gives me to be uncensored and to air out my frustrations without running the risk of offending or harming anyone.  In theory anyway.  One of the bigger ways this is done by myself and many other people is by using the sometimes loved and often hated subtweet.  Let’s be honest; we all have at least one friend who tends to rub us the wrong way on a regular basis.  They can be frustrating and push you to the point where you have to say something.  Rather than confront them directly, a vague tweet can get that frustration out without offending the person.  Is it immature?  Sure, but it’s almost a guarantee that the person you’re referring to is hardly the picture of maturity themselves.  I also find it healthier to be a bit immature and calm as opposed to being 100% mature and 100% frustrated.

The thing about a subtweet is that it only has the power to offend you if you are either feeling guilty or actually are guilty of whatever behavior or characteristic is being referenced.  If someone posts a tweet about people who complain about their job and how sad they are, I’m likely going to feel a pang of guilt because I vent quite a bit about my job and my crazy coworkers.  If someone posts a tweet about being stuck up or being trashy, I feel nothing because it doesn’t apply to me.  I exploded last night over a handful of people posting about a character death on The Walking Dead (which I have yet to watch because Dexter is on at the same time, so it’s currently sitting on the DVR).  The only people it had the power to anger were those who let loose with show details in a careless manner.

If you are offended when I talk about dishonest people or shallow attention seekers, chances are you fit the description and are annoyed that it’s not going unnoticed.  If that is the case, why waste time being angry at me?  Perhaps your time is better spent looking in the mirror and trying to figure out what it is about your actions and personality that caused you to take my comment about liars as a personal attack.  The fact that you’re taking it personally is a clear sign that you’re aware of your fault(s).  I’m sorry that you’re frustrated about your transparency, but I’m not sorry for pointing out your flaw(s).  I’m not responsible for you feeling guilty about something, I’m not responsible for you instantly assuming you were the worthless person I was referring to, and I’m not responsible for you getting all kinds of cranky about it.

One interesting thing about subtweeting is how difficult it is to escape.  Even those who find it appalling, immature, and juvenile will do it now and then.  Whether they are complaining about habitual subtweeters or about something more specific, it’s almost a guarantee that somewhere on their timeline, you’ll find a vague complaint about a person or group of people that was posted out of frustration and with a little bit of hope that the right person would read it and take a hint.  It’s always funny to see a subtweet about how annoying and immature subtweeting is, but it goes to show you how easy it is to let one slip out of frustration.

I completely agree that it’s immature and can be very annoying.  It’s an obnoxious thing to do and doesn’t properly address any problem existing between the person making the statement and the person or people it affects.  That being said, it’s not a behavior I plan on stopping and it’s not one I will apologize for.  It’s incredibly therapeutic for me to be able to use Twitter as an outlet to vent about certain wastes of human life or about good people who sometimes do dumb things.  It also does not have the power to harm anyone unless they allow it to do so; I’m unaffected by someone’s comment about obnoxious people so long as I choose to ignore it or choose to decide that it does not apply to me.

One thing I find particularly hilarious is when I’ll make a comment about a less desirable personality trait with a certain person in mind and it ends up ticking off a completely different person that wasn’t even on my radar.  It happens more than it should, making me wonder why these people think they are always on my mind and are always the subject matter of my comments.  Do they really think they’re that important, or are they just feeling bad about their behavior and getting annoyed that what I say applies to them?  It’s even better when they first react, then go into “I don’t care” mode to try to play it off.  If you don’t care, why react at all?

A subtweet only has the power to hurt you if you give it permission to do so.  If you’re not cheating on your girlfriend, a comment about cheaters can’t hurt you and isn’t aimed at you.  If you’re not a drama queen, you have no reason to pay attention to tweets insulting people who are.  It’s embarrassingly simple.  By overreacting to subtweets, even if they are aimed at you, you’re only succeeding in drawing attention to yourself and giving everyone watching the impression that you are indeed guilty of the bad behavior referenced.

I’m not going to stop commenting on whoever I want to comment about, people in general aren’t going to stop subtweeting or posting cryptic things elsewhere, and we’re never going to find a way to stop getting offended over comments, regardless of whether or not they are directed at us.  The only sensible things to do are to either cut people out of your life, or when that isn’t possible, ignore them and honestly laugh off their nonsense.  Don’t post back “Oh, you’re so clever. #WhoCares” as it clearly shows you do care.  You have to stop caring and let their jabs fly over your head.  By not allowing them to affect you and by letting it breeze by you, you take away their power and you become the bigger person.

I’m not writing this from atop my high horse; I have engaged in petty subtweet wars and allowed comments from people to get under my skin.  I’m the first to admit that I’m guilty of certain bad behaviors.  That said, I’m not currently steaming mad because some dumbass is complaining on Twitter about people with kids always being too busy to hang out.  Sure, it applies to me, but is it worth caring about?  Do I really want to associate with someone who thinks I’d be a better friend if I dump my kid off at any place possible so I can hit the town and get drunk?  The best decision is to make these types of people invisible.  And with this blog, I officially make the worst offender of the above behavior an invisible and voiceless being.  You won’t be missed.

Tubberpottimus Strikes Again

I love Jimmy Johns.  Their subs are amazingly tasty, they are super speedy in preparation and delivery, and their employees are always friendly and pleasant.  My husband and I have one about 15 minutes from our home and one right down the street from the building where we work.  I love their online ordering system, which allows me to check nutritional information and perfectly customize my sub to my specifications.  Always extra avocado spread.  You can set your delivery to come now or at a future time for either delivery or pick-up.  It also allows you to name your sub whatever you want, which is just fun.

On Tuesday afternoon, as I wrapped up my lunch, my tubby coworker hopped on the phone to call in an order to Jimmy Johns.  If you’re familiar with me, she’s the one that I routinely comment on, due to the fact that she is a socially inept gossip with a mean streak and a huge appetite.  Tubbs phoned in her order and ten minutes later, went out front to retrieve it.  As I walked over to the copier to scan a few documents in, I noticed she was chowing down on two subs.  Normal for her, but it still struck me as a bit odd.

As Tubbs wrapped up her super sized lunch, my husband dropped into my office so we could walk down to the ID card office together and then hit the store for some freshly popped popcorn.  When I returned, I settled back at my desk ready for a peaceful popcorn break.  Sadly, the peaceful part was out of the question because Tubbs was on the phone and she was livid.  It turned out, she was on the phone with Jimmy Johns, claiming her order never came and she had been waiting for over an hour for her and her husband’s lunches.

After Tubbs concluded her verbal assault, including accusations of the driver showing up but not bothering to call her, no one taking down her order, and laziness, she slammed the phone down in the cradle and triumphantly stated “Well, my food should be here in five!”  Like clockwork, her phone beeped five minutes later and she walked out to retrieve her food.  According to her, the delivery driver called her a liar, stating that he was in fact there prior and did call.  She claims she put him in his place and she received her food for free after he threw away the receipt, thus destroying all evidence.  Tubbs then gets back on the phone.  She dials Jimmy Johns and tells them that she was called a liar by their employee.  She then phones her husband who comes down to retrieve his meal.  All things taken care of, she digs into her second lunch.

I wish I was making this up, and I wish I could still be somewhat surprised by her behavior, but two years of this woman has numbed me a bit.  After some thought, I retreated to a quiet corner of the building and called Jimmy Johns to defend the driver since I saw the first delivery and could confirm the person’s name and number who placed the order.  It may have been a waste of time, but it may have also saved someone from getting in trouble over someone’s lies in their awful attempt to get a free meal.  I would hate to think that someone would be fired because their manager thinks they called a customer a liar and gave away food for free after botching the original delivery an hour prior.

I find it disgusting when people take advantage of companies with excellent customer service in order to get freebies, discounts, or other special offers.  People who eat their entire meal, then complain of the taste of temperature when there is only a bite remaining on their plate.  People who rub their own makeup or deodorant on clothing in stores to try to get a discount on “damaged goods.”  People who claim a polite employee talked down to them in order to be spiteful and get a deal from a manager.  It’s horrible, it hurts employees and businesses, and it’s an underhanded thing to do.

Jimmy Johns didn’t lose much money due to Tubby’s behavior and the delivery guy likely wasn’t reprimanded, but that doesn’t make it any less wrong.  If there is a legitimate problem with services received or with customer service, by all means complain!  You just don’t get to create your own problems where none exist.  Your behavior tarnishes great companies and gets innocent employees in trouble for imagined mistakes.  That aside, it’s just plain wrong.  Sure, she got a couple free subs for her second lunch break, but she also revealed herself as even more of a horrible human being with her actions, and that kind of behavior always comes back to bite you in the ass.

Exposing Cheaters

When I was somewhere between my early and mid twenties, I was engaged to my middle school sweetheart.  We had been engaged for nearly two years when financial hardship struck and our living conditions went to hell.  I got a small room for rent and he took up residence in his bosses out of commission camper that sat behind the shop where he worked.  During this time, it was understood that although we were still engaged and committed, just living apart due to our financial situation.  We still saw each other almost daily and I had no reason to believe that anything was wrong.  Living on my own allowed me to save up some cash and I was able to get back into an apartment.  When I approached him about moving back in together, he had been drinking and admitted to me that he had slept with two different waitresses while we were living apart, one of which he actually dated for about a month.  I was devastated but attempted to forgive and forget, which is a challenge and which I highly recommend not trying.

I didn’t leave him because he cheated, but I can honestly say that if I were to strip away all the other things about him that were awful and simply make him an unfaithful boyfriend, I still would have left him.  The knowledge of your loved one betraying your trust and laying down with someone else isn’t something that can simply be shrugged off or erased from memory.  It’s something that’s right in front of you any time you look at that person.  It enters your mind when they touch you; did they touch him or her this way or did they kiss them the way they kiss me?  You start to doubt yourself; did I do something wrong or am I not good enough?  The trust is shattered; you’ll wonder who they are with when they leave the house, or if they were checking out the cashier at the store while you two shopped.  If you forgive and forget, you devalue yourself to some extend because you’re basically saying that it was okay for them to treat you like they did and go outside of your relationship.  If you’re with a certain type of person, they’ll abuse your forgiveness and use it as a green light to cheat on you again since they know you’re not going anywhere.

If you discover that your friend’s boy/girlfriend is cheating on them, what do you do?  My first instinct is always to let them know what’s going on, but I rarely ever do.  With my ex I mentioned above, I was told by a mutual friend that he brought another girl to a comedy club and went home with her afterward, bragging about his conquest the next day.  I didn’t believe it because my head was in the clouds and I thought he loved me.  As much as I’ve desire to help friends when I know they’re being cheated on, I’ve almost always held back because they simply don’t listen to me and I sometimes lose a friend.  It’s natural to want to trust the person you’re with over outside parties and it’s difficult to hear something that will negatively affect your relationship.  Unless you have rock solid evidence that you can put in front of them and make it impossible to deny, it’s not a good idea to intervene.  Even with proof, you risk your friend resenting you or ending the friendship out of fear that you will now be silently judging them and their relationship choices.

A couple ex-friends of my husband and I created a story about my husband’s infidelity at the end of the blow out that ended our friendship; it was their last-ditch effort to hurt myself and my husband.  One acted like an ass and broadcasted the tale over various websites, but the other acted as though she was trying to help by telling me.  She said she needed to share this with me because she cared and didn’t want me hurt.  Let’s pretend for a minute that my husband is a dirt bag and actually did the deed.  I wouldn’t have believed it at first if at all.  I also would have been angry at my friends for waiting two years to tell me about his tryst with another woman.  It also would have put a strain on the friendship they had with my husband and possibly become a reason for everyone going their separate ways.  Two years had gone past from his “affair” so what would the point be in telling me now?

If you are the cheater, what do you do?  Let’s assume it happened one time and was a mistake that you are regretful for.  You slipped up one time and have no intentions of ever letting it happen again.  The person you cheated with is also willing to let it go and never speak of it or to you again.  Do you tell your spouse or boy/girlfriend?  Personally, I would be eaten alive by the guilt and would either have to confess it all to him or leave him for good.  But that’s me; some people would view their one time as a mistake that isn’t that big of a deal.  They could choose not to tell their loved one because it’s over and done with, or perhaps they do tell them and expect forgiveness since it was only a single slip up.  I’m torn on this one.  I would want to know and I’d want it to come from the lips of my husband.  I wouldn’t forgive him and wouldn’t be able to stay with him and it would break my heart, but I can’t be with a cheater and wouldn’t want to live in ignorance with a man who disrespected me enough to bump uglies with another woman behind my back.  That being said, I’ve heard people say they wouldn’t want to know if something happened or they would forgive as long as it was just once.  Although those are not choices I’d personally make, I can definitely see the logic in them.

It differs for me when dealing with a serial cheater. Maybe you have a mistress or maybe you have a couple of guys you’ve been stringing along, but long-term cheaters deserve to be exposed.  I will reluctantly write off one time as a mistake, but repeating it is just dirty.  The cheater is making a fool out of their partner every time they step outside the relationship.  I don’t believe this type of cheater would be the one to cough up a voluntary confessions of their deeds but I do believe that they should.  There are plenty of people in this world willing to have a casual roll in the hay; if you don’t want to stick with one person or can’t do so without cheating, stay single!  If you’re getting off from the risk of getting caught, go find public kid-free places to have sex.  I’d be more comfortable in a world where I occasionally glimpse a naked couple hiding in the bushes than a world where husbands are bringing home herpes and wives are banging the trainer at the gym while the kids are at school.

I have a zero tolerance policy for cheaters and I wish it was shared by more people in this world.  I’d miss Joey Greco for a bit, but overall it would restore a bit of my faith in humanity.  Cheating is a selfish activity that can easily be eliminated.  Stay single and let people you date know that you’re seeking a casual encounter and are also going elsewhere.  Enter a relationship and stay in an open status, with the two of you free to go see other people.  There is absolutely no excuse for making a commitment to another person and betraying them.  If you’re unhappy or if something is missing, end it and move forward.  Don’t drag someone down and emotionally beat them just because you can’t keep your pants anywhere but around your ankles.  Have some pride and respect.

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