Total Perspective Vortex
What really happened to Trillian? Theories abound, but you can see what she's really been up to on this blog. If you're looking for white mice, depressed robots, or the occasional Pan Galactic Gargleblaster you might be better served here:

Otherwise, hello, and welcome.
Mail Trillian here<

Trillian McMillian
Trillian McMillian
Create Your Badge


Women, The Internet and You: Tips for Men Who Use Online Dating Sites
Part I, Your Profile and Email

Part II, Selecting a Potential Date

Part III, Your First Date!

Part IV, After the First Date. Now What?

"50 First Dates"

Don't just sit there angry and ranting, do something constructive.
In the words of Patti Smith (all hail Sister Patti): People have the power.
Contact your elected officials.

Don't be passive = get involved = make a difference.
Find Federal Officials
Enter ZIP Code:

or Search by State

Find State Officials
Enter ZIP Code:

or Search by State

Contact The Media
Enter ZIP Code:

or Search by State

Words are cool.
The English language is complex, stupid, illogical, confounding, brilliant, beautiful, and fascinating.
Every now and then a word presents itself that typifies all the maddeningly gorgeousness of language. They're the words that give you pause for thought. "Who came up with that word? That's an interesting string of letters." Their beauty doesn't lie in their definition (although that can play a role). It's also not in their onomatopoeia, though that, too, can play a role. Their beauty is in the way their letters combine - the visual poetry of words - and/or the way they sound when spoken. We talk a lot about music we like to hear and art we like to see, so let's all hail the unsung heroes of communication, poetry and life: Words.
Here are some I like. (Not because of their definition.)



<< current
4/27/03 - 5/4/03 5/4/03 - 5/11/03 8/3/03 - 8/10/03 8/10/03 - 8/17/03 8/17/03 - 8/24/03 8/24/03 - 8/31/03 8/31/03 - 9/7/03 9/7/03 - 9/14/03 9/14/03 - 9/21/03 9/21/03 - 9/28/03 9/28/03 - 10/5/03 10/5/03 - 10/12/03 10/12/03 - 10/19/03 10/19/03 - 10/26/03 10/26/03 - 11/2/03 11/2/03 - 11/9/03 11/9/03 - 11/16/03 11/16/03 - 11/23/03 11/23/03 - 11/30/03 11/30/03 - 12/7/03 12/7/03 - 12/14/03 12/14/03 - 12/21/03 12/21/03 - 12/28/03 12/28/03 - 1/4/04 1/4/04 - 1/11/04 1/11/04 - 1/18/04 1/18/04 - 1/25/04 1/25/04 - 2/1/04 2/1/04 - 2/8/04 2/8/04 - 2/15/04 2/15/04 - 2/22/04 2/22/04 - 2/29/04 2/29/04 - 3/7/04 3/7/04 - 3/14/04 3/14/04 - 3/21/04 3/21/04 - 3/28/04 3/28/04 - 4/4/04 4/4/04 - 4/11/04 4/11/04 - 4/18/04 4/18/04 - 4/25/04 4/25/04 - 5/2/04 5/2/04 - 5/9/04 5/9/04 - 5/16/04 5/16/04 - 5/23/04 5/23/04 - 5/30/04 6/6/04 - 6/13/04 6/13/04 - 6/20/04 6/20/04 - 6/27/04 6/27/04 - 7/4/04 7/4/04 - 7/11/04 7/11/04 - 7/18/04 7/18/04 - 7/25/04 7/25/04 - 8/1/04 8/1/04 - 8/8/04 8/8/04 - 8/15/04 8/15/04 - 8/22/04 8/22/04 - 8/29/04 8/29/04 - 9/5/04 9/5/04 - 9/12/04 9/12/04 - 9/19/04 9/19/04 - 9/26/04 9/26/04 - 10/3/04 10/3/04 - 10/10/04 10/10/04 - 10/17/04 10/17/04 - 10/24/04 10/24/04 - 10/31/04 10/31/04 - 11/7/04 11/14/04 - 11/21/04 11/21/04 - 11/28/04 11/28/04 - 12/5/04 12/5/04 - 12/12/04 12/12/04 - 12/19/04 12/19/04 - 12/26/04 12/26/04 - 1/2/05 1/2/05 - 1/9/05 1/9/05 - 1/16/05 1/16/05 - 1/23/05 1/23/05 - 1/30/05 1/30/05 - 2/6/05 2/6/05 - 2/13/05 2/13/05 - 2/20/05 2/20/05 - 2/27/05 2/27/05 - 3/6/05 3/6/05 - 3/13/05 3/13/05 - 3/20/05 3/20/05 - 3/27/05 3/27/05 - 4/3/05 4/3/05 - 4/10/05 4/10/05 - 4/17/05 4/17/05 - 4/24/05 4/24/05 - 5/1/05 5/1/05 - 5/8/05 5/15/05 - 5/22/05 6/5/05 - 6/12/05 7/24/05 - 7/31/05 7/31/05 - 8/7/05 8/7/05 - 8/14/05 8/14/05 - 8/21/05 8/21/05 - 8/28/05 9/4/05 - 9/11/05 9/11/05 - 9/18/05 9/18/05 - 9/25/05 9/25/05 - 10/2/05 10/2/05 - 10/9/05 10/9/05 - 10/16/05 10/16/05 - 10/23/05 10/23/05 - 10/30/05 10/30/05 - 11/6/05 11/6/05 - 11/13/05 11/13/05 - 11/20/05 11/20/05 - 11/27/05 12/4/05 - 12/11/05 12/11/05 - 12/18/05 1/1/06 - 1/8/06 1/8/06 - 1/15/06 1/15/06 - 1/22/06 1/22/06 - 1/29/06 1/29/06 - 2/5/06 2/5/06 - 2/12/06 2/12/06 - 2/19/06 2/19/06 - 2/26/06 2/26/06 - 3/5/06 3/5/06 - 3/12/06 3/12/06 - 3/19/06 3/19/06 - 3/26/06 3/26/06 - 4/2/06 4/2/06 - 4/9/06 4/9/06 - 4/16/06 4/23/06 - 4/30/06 4/30/06 - 5/7/06 5/7/06 - 5/14/06 5/14/06 - 5/21/06 5/21/06 - 5/28/06 6/11/06 - 6/18/06 6/18/06 - 6/25/06 6/25/06 - 7/2/06 7/2/06 - 7/9/06 7/30/06 - 8/6/06 9/10/06 - 9/17/06 9/17/06 - 9/24/06 10/8/06 - 10/15/06 10/29/06 - 11/5/06 11/5/06 - 11/12/06 11/12/06 - 11/19/06 11/26/06 - 12/3/06 12/3/06 - 12/10/06 12/17/06 - 12/24/06 12/24/06 - 12/31/06 12/31/06 - 1/7/07 1/21/07 - 1/28/07 1/28/07 - 2/4/07 2/4/07 - 2/11/07 2/11/07 - 2/18/07 2/18/07 - 2/25/07 2/25/07 - 3/4/07 3/4/07 - 3/11/07 3/11/07 - 3/18/07 3/18/07 - 3/25/07 3/25/07 - 4/1/07 6/24/07 - 7/1/07 7/1/07 - 7/8/07 7/8/07 - 7/15/07 7/15/07 - 7/22/07 7/22/07 - 7/29/07 7/29/07 - 8/5/07 8/5/07 - 8/12/07 8/12/07 - 8/19/07 8/19/07 - 8/26/07 8/26/07 - 9/2/07 9/9/07 - 9/16/07 9/16/07 - 9/23/07 9/23/07 - 9/30/07 9/30/07 - 10/7/07 10/7/07 - 10/14/07 10/14/07 - 10/21/07 11/4/07 - 11/11/07 11/11/07 - 11/18/07 12/9/07 - 12/16/07 1/6/08 - 1/13/08 1/13/08 - 1/20/08 1/27/08 - 2/3/08 2/3/08 - 2/10/08 2/10/08 - 2/17/08 2/24/08 - 3/2/08 3/2/08 - 3/9/08 3/9/08 - 3/16/08 3/16/08 - 3/23/08 3/23/08 - 3/30/08 3/30/08 - 4/6/08 4/6/08 - 4/13/08 4/13/08 - 4/20/08 4/20/08 - 4/27/08 4/27/08 - 5/4/08 5/4/08 - 5/11/08 5/11/08 - 5/18/08 5/18/08 - 5/25/08 5/25/08 - 6/1/08 6/1/08 - 6/8/08 6/15/08 - 6/22/08 6/22/08 - 6/29/08 6/29/08 - 7/6/08 7/13/08 - 7/20/08 7/20/08 - 7/27/08 8/3/08 - 8/10/08 8/10/08 - 8/17/08 8/17/08 - 8/24/08 8/24/08 - 8/31/08 8/31/08 - 9/7/08 9/7/08 - 9/14/08 9/21/08 - 9/28/08 9/28/08 - 10/5/08 10/5/08 - 10/12/08 10/12/08 - 10/19/08 10/19/08 - 10/26/08 10/26/08 - 11/2/08 11/2/08 - 11/9/08 11/9/08 - 11/16/08 11/16/08 - 11/23/08 11/30/08 - 12/7/08 12/7/08 - 12/14/08 12/14/08 - 12/21/08 12/28/08 - 1/4/09 1/4/09 - 1/11/09 1/11/09 - 1/18/09 1/18/09 - 1/25/09 2/1/09 - 2/8/09 2/8/09 - 2/15/09 2/15/09 - 2/22/09 3/29/09 - 4/5/09 5/3/09 - 5/10/09 5/10/09 - 5/17/09 5/17/09 - 5/24/09 5/24/09 - 5/31/09 5/31/09 - 6/7/09 6/7/09 - 6/14/09 6/14/09 - 6/21/09 7/12/09 - 7/19/09 7/19/09 - 7/26/09 7/26/09 - 8/2/09 8/2/09 - 8/9/09 8/9/09 - 8/16/09 8/16/09 - 8/23/09 8/23/09 - 8/30/09 8/30/09 - 9/6/09 9/20/09 - 9/27/09 9/27/09 - 10/4/09 10/4/09 - 10/11/09 10/11/09 - 10/18/09 10/18/09 - 10/25/09 10/25/09 - 11/1/09 11/1/09 - 11/8/09 11/8/09 - 11/15/09 11/15/09 - 11/22/09 11/22/09 - 11/29/09 11/29/09 - 12/6/09 12/6/09 - 12/13/09 12/13/09 - 12/20/09 12/20/09 - 12/27/09 12/27/09 - 1/3/10 1/3/10 - 1/10/10 1/10/10 - 1/17/10 1/17/10 - 1/24/10 1/24/10 - 1/31/10 1/31/10 - 2/7/10 2/7/10 - 2/14/10 2/14/10 - 2/21/10 2/21/10 - 2/28/10 3/14/10 - 3/21/10 3/21/10 - 3/28/10 3/28/10 - 4/4/10 4/4/10 - 4/11/10 4/11/10 - 4/18/10 4/18/10 - 4/25/10 4/25/10 - 5/2/10 5/2/10 - 5/9/10 5/9/10 - 5/16/10 5/16/10 - 5/23/10 5/23/10 - 5/30/10 5/30/10 - 6/6/10 6/6/10 - 6/13/10 6/13/10 - 6/20/10 6/20/10 - 6/27/10 6/27/10 - 7/4/10 7/4/10 - 7/11/10 7/11/10 - 7/18/10 7/18/10 - 7/25/10 7/25/10 - 8/1/10 9/19/10 - 9/26/10 10/3/10 - 10/10/10 10/10/10 - 10/17/10 10/17/10 - 10/24/10 10/24/10 - 10/31/10 10/31/10 - 11/7/10 11/14/10 - 11/21/10 11/28/10 - 12/5/10 12/5/10 - 12/12/10 12/12/10 - 12/19/10 12/19/10 - 12/26/10 12/26/10 - 1/2/11 1/2/11 - 1/9/11 1/9/11 - 1/16/11 1/16/11 - 1/23/11 1/23/11 - 1/30/11 1/30/11 - 2/6/11 2/6/11 - 2/13/11 2/13/11 - 2/20/11 2/20/11 - 2/27/11 2/27/11 - 3/6/11 3/6/11 - 3/13/11 3/13/11 - 3/20/11 3/20/11 - 3/27/11 3/27/11 - 4/3/11 4/3/11 - 4/10/11 4/10/11 - 4/17/11 4/17/11 - 4/24/11 4/24/11 - 5/1/11 5/1/11 - 5/8/11 5/15/11 - 5/22/11 5/22/11 - 5/29/11 5/29/11 - 6/5/11 6/12/11 - 6/19/11 6/19/11 - 6/26/11 6/26/11 - 7/3/11 7/10/11 - 7/17/11 7/31/11 - 8/7/11 8/21/11 - 8/28/11 8/28/11 - 9/4/11 9/18/11 - 9/25/11 9/25/11 - 10/2/11 10/2/11 - 10/9/11 10/9/11 - 10/16/11 10/16/11 - 10/23/11 10/23/11 - 10/30/11 11/6/11 - 11/13/11 11/13/11 - 11/20/11 11/20/11 - 11/27/11 11/27/11 - 12/4/11 12/4/11 - 12/11/11 12/11/11 - 12/18/11 12/25/11 - 1/1/12 1/1/12 - 1/8/12 2/5/12 - 2/12/12 2/19/12 - 2/26/12 3/4/12 - 3/11/12 4/1/12 - 4/8/12 4/15/12 - 4/22/12 4/29/12 - 5/6/12 5/13/12 - 5/20/12 5/20/12 - 5/27/12 6/24/12 - 7/1/12 7/1/12 - 7/8/12 7/8/12 - 7/15/12 7/15/12 - 7/22/12 7/22/12 - 7/29/12 7/29/12 - 8/5/12 8/5/12 - 8/12/12 8/12/12 - 8/19/12 8/19/12 - 8/26/12 8/26/12 - 9/2/12 9/2/12 - 9/9/12 9/9/12 - 9/16/12 9/16/12 - 9/23/12 9/23/12 - 9/30/12 10/7/12 - 10/14/12 10/21/12 - 10/28/12 11/4/12 - 11/11/12 12/9/12 - 12/16/12 12/23/12 - 12/30/12 1/6/13 - 1/13/13 1/13/13 - 1/20/13 1/20/13 - 1/27/13 1/27/13 - 2/3/13 2/3/13 - 2/10/13 2/10/13 - 2/17/13 2/17/13 - 2/24/13 3/3/13 - 3/10/13 3/17/13 - 3/24/13 3/31/13 - 4/7/13 4/7/13 - 4/14/13 4/21/13 - 4/28/13 4/28/13 - 5/5/13 5/5/13 - 5/12/13 5/12/13 - 5/19/13 5/19/13 - 5/26/13 6/16/13 - 6/23/13 6/23/13 - 6/30/13 7/14/13 - 7/21/13 8/11/13 - 8/18/13 8/25/13 - 9/1/13 9/8/13 - 9/15/13 9/22/13 - 9/29/13 10/13/13 - 10/20/13 10/20/13 - 10/27/13 11/10/13 - 11/17/13 12/1/13 - 12/8/13 12/15/13 - 12/22/13 12/29/13 - 1/5/14 6/29/14 - 7/6/14 9/14/14 - 9/21/14 9/21/14 - 9/28/14 10/12/14 - 10/19/14 11/23/14 - 11/30/14 12/7/14 - 12/14/14 12/28/14 - 1/4/15 1/25/15 - 2/1/15 2/8/15 - 2/15/15 2/22/15 - 3/1/15 3/8/15 - 3/15/15 3/15/15 - 3/22/15 3/22/15 - 3/29/15 4/12/15 - 4/19/15 4/19/15 - 4/26/15 5/3/15 - 5/10/15 5/17/15 - 5/24/15 5/24/15 - 5/31/15 6/14/15 - 6/21/15 6/28/15 - 7/5/15 7/5/15 - 7/12/15 7/19/15 - 7/26/15 8/16/15 - 8/23/15 11/6/16 - 11/13/16 6/24/18 - 7/1/18

Highlights from the Archives. Some favorite Trillian moments.

Void, Of Course: Eliminating Expectations and Emotions for a Better Way of Life

200i: iPodyssey

Macs Are from Venus, Windows is from Mars Can a relationship survive across platform barriers?
Jerking Off

Get A Job

Office Church Ladies: A Fieldguide

'Cause I'm a Blonde

True? Honestly? I think not.

A Good Day AND Funyuns?

The Easter Boy

Relationship in the Dumpster

Wedding Dress 4 Sale, Never Worn

Got Friends? Are You Sure? Take This Test

What About Class? Take This Test

A Long Time Ago, in a Galaxy Far Far Away, There Was a Really Bad Movie

May Your Alchemical Process be Complete. Rob Roy Recipe

Good Thing She's Not in a Good Mood Very Often (We Knew it Wouldn't Last)

What Do I Have to Do to Put You in this Car Today?

Of Mice and Me (Killer Cat Strikes in Local Woman's Apartment)

Trillian: The Musical (The Holiday Special)

LA Woman (I Love (Hate) LA)

It is my Cultureth
...and it would suit-eth me kindly to speak-eth in such mannered tongue


It's a Little Bit Me, It's a Little Bit You
Blogging a Legacy for Future Generations

Parents Visiting? Use Trillian's Mantra!

Ghosts of Christmas Past: Mod Hair Ken

Caught Blogging by Mom, Boss or Other

2003 Holiday Sho-Lo/Mullet Awards

Crullers, The Beer Store and Other Saintly Places

Come on Out of that Doghouse! It's a Sunshine Day!

"...I had no idea our CEO is actually Paula Abdul in disguise."

Lap Dance of the Cripple

Of Muppets and American Idols
"I said happier place, not crappier place!"

Finally Off Crutches, Trillian is Emancipated

Payless? Trillian? Shoe Confessions

Reality Wednesday: Extremely Local Pub

Reality Wednesday: Backstage Staging Zone (The Sweater Blog)

The Night Secret Agent Man Shot My Dad

To Dream the Impossible Dream: The Office Karaoke Party

Trillian Flies Economy Class (Prisoner, Cell Block H)

Trillian Visits the Village of the Damned, Takes Drugs, Becomes Delusional and Blogs Her Brains Out

Trillian's Parents are Powerless

Striptease for Spiders: A PETA Charity Event (People for the Ethical Treatment of Arachnids)

What's Up with Trillian and the Richard Branson Worship?

"Screw the French and their politics, give me their cheese!"

Mail Trillian here

Trillian's Guide to the Galaxy gives 5 stars to these places in the Universe:
So much more than fun with fonts, this is a daily dose of visual poetry set against a backdrop of historical trivia. (C'mon, how can you not love a site that notes Wolfman Jack's birthday?!)


Alliance for the Great Lakes

Hot, so cool, so cool we're hot.

Ig Nobel Awards

And you think YOU have the worst bridesmaid dress?

Coolest Jewelry in the Universe here (trust Trillian, she knows)

Red Tango

If your boss is an idiot, click here.

Evil Cat Full of Loathing.

Wildlife Works

Detroit Cobras

The Beachwood Reporter is better than not all, but most sex.

Hey! Why not check out some great art and illustration while you're here? Please? It won't hurt and it's free.


Kii Arens

Tim Biskup

Jeff Soto


Get Fuzzy Now!
If you're not getting fuzzy, you should be. All hail Darby Conley. Yes, he's part of the Syndicate. But he's cool.

Who or what is HWNMNBS: (He Whose Name Must Not Be Spoken) Trillian's ex-fiancé. "Issues? What issues?"

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.

< chicago blogs >

Reading blogs at work? Click to escape to a suitable site!

Mamas, Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to be Smart Girls
(A Trillian de-composition, to the tune of Mamas, Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Cowboys)

Mama don’t let your babies grow up to be smart girls
Don’t let them do puzzles and read lots of books
Make ‘em be strippers and dancers and such
Mamas, don’t let your babies grow up to be smart girls
They’ll never find men and they’re always alone
Even though men claim they want brains

Smart girls ain’t easy to love and they’re above playing games
And they’d rather read a book than subvert themselves
Kafka, Beethoven and foreign movies
And each night alone with her cat
And they won’t understand her and she won’t die young
She’ll probably just wither away

Mama don’t let your babies grow up to be smart girls
Don’t let them do puzzles and read lots of books
Make ‘em be strippers and dancers and such
Mamas, don’t let your babies grow up to be smart girls
They’ll never find men and they’re always alone
Even though men claim they want brains

A smart girl loves creaky old libraries and lively debates
Exploring the world and art and witty reparteé
Men who don’t know her won’t like her and those who do
Sometimes won’t know how to take her
She’s rarely wrong but in desperation will play dumb
Because men hate that she’s always right

Mama don’t let your babies grow up to be smart girls
Don’t let them do puzzles and read lots of books
Make ‘em be strippers and dancers and such
Mamas, don’t let your babies grow up to be smart girls
They’ll never find men and they’re always alone
Even though men claim they want brains

Life(?) of Trillian

Friday, December 12, 2003  
I Kicked Elliptical Butt

I started my day the "Kimmie" way today. I try to end my days with her, I still hurt, badly, after therapy. Sitting in my office in pain all day is something I'm trying to avoid. Better to go home, put the ankle up on ice and writhe and wriggle from the comfort of my own couch.

But my schedule and hers mandated an early morning session today.

My newest feat of daring and recovery is the elliptical machine. This is a standard issue elliptical machine, nothing special or reconfigured about it. I first attempted it last week. It didn't go well. I fell off it. I looked like an idiot. Clinging to the hand rail of the machine, dangling off the side, the "pedals" (or whatever the feet place things on an elliptical are called) spinning along from built up momentum without me on them, bopping my shoulder while I dangled off the side of the machine, slowly whirring to a stop from lack of human effort to guide them. "Kimmie" dashed over and baby talked me. "Poor you! Is your neck okay? (giving an emergency neck massage) Let's get back up and show that mean ol' machine who's boss!"

"Let's"? Every now and then "Kimmie's" team speak still catches me off guard or annoys the crap out of me. "We" don't have the slowest healing broken ankle in recorded history, I do.

"We" aren't struggling just to get through once very basic exercises and routine life, I am.

"We" aren't spending every waking moment practicing flexing exercises, I am. ("We" aren't annoying our co-workers with the constant foot and ankle exercising, I am)

"We" haven't been wearing the same Payless shoes for two months, I am. ("We" don't wonder if "we'll" ever wear cute/sexy/fabulous heels again, I do)

"We" don't wake up in the night in pain from neck and ankle injuries and exercises, I do. "We're" not the ones without anyone to rub our shoulders and neck or fetch ice for us when we wake up in the middle of the night in pain, I am.

"We" didn't fall off the elliptical, I did.

"We" don't feel like a pathetic worthless loser without a therapy "buddy" (spouse, child, parent, girl/boyfriend) to bring to sessions, I do.

"We" didn't go home alone and cry for an hour over the absurdity and patheticness of the whole thing, I did.

This one really annoys me: "We" haven't lost 12 pounds, I have.

Yes, credit where it's due, "Kimmie" has coached me well, and yes, we are working together and yes, without her (or someone like her) I would not be nearly as far along as I am now. I'm stuck, plateaued on 10 degrees of mobility, but, without "Kimmie" and her telling me what to do, I probably wouldn't be that far. But that's as far as her effort goes. I'm the one doing all the work. (And yes, some will point out, just dealing with me three times a week is work enough.)

That was the emotional breakdown I had in my mind while dangling off the elliptical with the pedals bopping me in the shoulder and subsequently sitting on the floor while "Kimmie" gave me a quickie neck massage.

Up I got, back on the elliptical, and I put in 10 minutes. Not bad for a first, erm, second attempt. Since then I've started three sessions with it. AND, cue the trumpets, I did it without my aircast! Last session, "Kimmie" thought perhaps part of the challenge was the limited mobility in the aircast. So "let's" try it without the aircast and see if "we" feel more able to move with the machine. Was it difficult and painful? Yes! Did I work through the pain? Yes! Was it worth it? No! But I've done two 15 minute sessions without falling off the thing, only feeling wobbly a few times.

Today I put in a full 20 minutes. How did I manage that, you ask?

Semper Fi Man was there.

He was on a treadmill next to me. When I came in he had just begun his treading. I stripped off the aircast and got on the elliptical. "Kimmie" set my settings. Semper Fi gave me a snarly "look." I gave him a "good morning."

A harrummph from Semper Fi.

"How many miles you gonna do on that?" he asked.

"I don't know - it measures in time and stride counts. I'm going to try for 20 minutes today. How about you?" as chipperly as I could, knowing full well he'd get my underlying sarcasm.

"Five miles." he replied.

"How long does that take you?" I even more chipperly replied.

"Half hour if I'm really rolling. I've already gone almost a mile." he replied even gruffer.

I let a silence grow pregnant. Then I looked over, raised an eyebrow that said, "wanna race old man?"

He heard my silent inquiry loud and clear.

"You're on," he snottily said and began almost jogging.

He was to get his five miles in under my 20 minutes.

But I won.

I kicked his Marine butt all the way back to Iwo Jima.

He still had 1/2 mile to go when I finished my 20 minutes. Wiping his brow in exhaustion with that stupid Semper Fi towel. Wanted to say: "Not such a big man, now, are you old coot? A girl with a broken ankle kicked your ass." I know. He's, like, 75 years old. It's a small victory, but it's mine. I'm secretly hoping for another face off on the bikes. I'm really moving on the "special bike" these days. He wouldn't know what hit him. Since our first encounter on the bikes, I've upped my resistance, time/mile and endurance almost double. I left him there on his treadmill with nothing but a chipper, "Have a nice day, better luck next time."

The bad thing about this? I'm in agony. "Kimmie" took my enthusiasm on the elliptical as a sign that I was up and raring to go. She set up an extra difficult obstacle course for me, AND, we had to play catch. We've tried this in the past, but my eye/hand coordination was still too far gone to achieve any success. If I don't look at my feet or hold onto the parallel bars, I lose my balance and any semblance of coordination I have. So today, an extra difficult course AND "Kimmie" randomly throwing a ball at me to catch and throw back to her. Normally I'm a really good catcher. Really good. Almost never miss or drop. Famous for it when I was a kid. My brother and kids at school would throw stuff at me just to see if they could catch me of guard and make me miss or drop. Never did. (huh, I just remembered that. Funny to think of kids throwing stuff at me. I think it was well intended. I don't think they were stoning the village idiot...) But, I have (had) catlike catching reflexes. Eye/hand coordination in finely tuned, well oiled conjunctivity. (I can catch grapes in my mouth, too...Whatta gal. See? I'm a fun date. How could anyone not marry me?) But all that was before...before I broke my ankle and had a whiplash.

I know. I wouldn't think that would have anything to do with my eye hand coordination. Guess what? It does. Which I find shocking. It's actually more like eye/hand/balance coordination. When put that way, it's not as shocking. But still. Not something I would have considered if I weren't in physical therapy. Okay. Fine. Thanks "Kimmie." Annoying as you are. Thank you. Thank you for hurling balls of varying sizes and weights at me while I tried to manage traversing the obstacle course. Thank you for making me feel really stupid about myself by missing or dropping a thrown ball. Thank you for making me realize I have a LONG way to go before this is over.

But now I'm in agony. Way overdid it today. And oh joy, I get to toil away in my office AND work late on more charity stuff tonight.

Maybe it was worth it. I kicked ass on the elliptical machine. Semper Fi man didn't know what hit him.

We shall now observe a moment of silence for the Atrocity on Ice that occurred last night. I can barely speak of it. Red Wings. Blackhawks. Shudder shudder. I was really disappointed I couldn't get a ticket to the game, even tried to pull a few strings (which I don't normally do) now I'm glad I wasn't there. Oh the shame of it. (Head hanging in lost pride. Meekly mumbling "go wings.")

9:39 AM

Thursday, December 11, 2003  
Safe Blog PSA
Whoa! Geeze people! Slow day at work?! I only posted that public service graphic a few hours ago and blam! Everyone's all like, "Oooh, Trillian, can I have one?" I mean, thanks and everything, I'm really flattered, I had no idea anyone would even notice it. Thank you for all the praise, I appreciate it lots and needed it today more than you can ever know. (rough day)

I would be flattered, honored and humbled to have you post them on your blogs and sites. But here's the deal:

There're more where that came from. This was just a trial post with some new code I'm trying out. Hey, I've been busy with the charity stuff and work, but my old pal insomnia is back and I've got to do something with my time. (When other people can't sleep they drink, watch TV or do that thing couples do. What is that called again? Oh yeah, sex. Me? I design PSA's) Creativity never sleeps here at Life of Trillian. It gets tired sometimes, but it never sleeps.

Over the next few weeks I'll post different public service announcements (PSA's) here. I'll happily send you the code for any you would like to post on your own blog. (ummm, yeah, about that code...I'm working on it.) So for now my suggestion is to sit tight, take a look at the full body of my blog PSA work and then choose whichever PSA's suit your own blog needs.

Along the way, if you really like or hate one I post, let me know. I always love to hear feedback, good and bad. We're thick-skinned here at Life of Trillian.

FYI, I also intend them to be banners, the current format was really just a working format so I could try out some different graphics and codes.

Thanks again for all the praise, really nice to hear from all of you. It's been a while since I've heard from some of you, good to hear from you again!

I needed all the support I could get today. Been a rough couple of weeks. The charity drives, my nincompoop boss, work projects, a few setbacks with "Kimmie" and my ankle (Three words: Elliptical machine disaster) ...HWNMNBS...the St. Andrew thing...just not feeling very good about life and myself these days.

And speaking of...HWNMNBS...and thick skin, he called this afternoon. Let me have my moment of happiness before you roll your eyes and scream at your monitor what a pathetic fool I am. I ask for so little (and hence I receive so little.) That phone call, which ended badly, was the best thing to happen to me in a very long time. Allow me my moment. Amazing how just hearing his voice takes me right to my happy place. Love? Fate? Destiny? Hell if I know. But I know for certain there is something very special about that man and a reason why I allow him in my heart and soul. I point blank asked him if he missed me (something I have never done, never, not even when we were in that cute mushy couple phase) and, gasp, he said yes. Now, over at Miss Havisham, where I was hanging out, this is cause for much rejoicing. "Oooh, Trillian, he misses you! That's fantastic!" But here, in realityville, Life of Trillian, we all know that doesn't mean a thing AND, more to the point, as I was trying to point out to the Havisham crew, I don't want him to miss me to the point of hurting the way I do. I don't want him, or anyone else, to feel the loneliness, emptiness and lost without a compass feeling I get from missing him. So yes. I am euphoric over hearing his voice again (could he possibly be any sexier?!) but no, I am not happy that he misses me.

"And Trillian, just what is the point of posting this Havisham moment here?" you ask. This is a very difficult time of year for a lot of people. Worse for those who are broken hearted, missing someone. If you're one of those people, if it helps at all to know you're not alone, it's worth me posting a little note about my own broken heart, the someone I miss (HWNMNBS) and the weirdness hearing, from him, that he misses me provokes. If you know someone who is missing someone, take up your own charitable cause. There's nothing you can do or say to make the hurt go away, but, you can be understanding when they aren't exactly in the mood for carols and holiday cheer. You can send them a funny email. You can remind them of something special and unique about themselves. You can listen, one more time, to a story about the ex and how wonderful/happy/cute/funny he/she is. You can be patient with them when you have actually run out of patience over the whole break-up. You can hope and or pray that somehow this will all work out. You can believe in happy endings, new beginnings and picture your broken hearted, missing someone friend smack in the middle of a happy ending or new beginning. It's karma, it's prayer, it's good will...and if we all try it this year, for everyone we know who's hurting, maybe for once it will work.

And that is why this is posted here. To reach as many people as possible. A collaborative blog Universe effort to make some of the sadness and hurting stop. Yeah. I know. I've been spending too much time with the charity folks. Trust me, I'll be my old jaded, cynical, bitter, resentful self soon enough. For now I'm savoring the sound of his voice and summoning every ounce of gratitude I can for being given those few moments. And that makes me happy. Reminds me that there was a time when I wasn't jaded, cynical, bitter or resentful. That I am capable of optimism. Take that! stupid work charity drive. You didn't get the best of me after all.

9:04 PM

First, a bit of housekeeping. Sorry for the apparent lack of spell check in Tuesday's post. I was trying out a new program, typing like a maniac, thoughts flying a mile a minute...brain functioning faster than hands...making up words as I am wont to do...things got a bit dicey...yes, I know how to spell archaeologist, and detritus, however, in my haste, transpositions happen, and when I spell checked I clicked right on through the proper suggestions, chose a few improper, new words formed, posted and went on my way (I remember a flash of "vitreous" on spell check then everything went black). No, as so many of you have offered, I do not need a dictionary for Christmas or a new spell check upgrade. And please stop telling me I've become a brain dead moron who cannot spell. You can call me a brain dead moron, I stand before you at times justly accused. But I can spell correctly. Under a ton of pressure lately. What say you cut me an iota or two of slack. The only I apology I will make is for sloppy blogging. Glass houses people...

Next up: No Reality Wednesday yesterday. Huge hoorahs from some factions, big grumpy faces from others. Suffice it to say I have been trapped in Holiday Hell with not so much as one of those emergency car window breaking hammers. My reality has been far too real the past few days to mock it. I haven't had a spare moment to put it into words.

Even now, as I try to collect my thoughts and feelings about the past few days, compose an official (read: diplomatic) memo to the concerned parties, I am at a loss. Yes, me, Trillian, at a loss for words. Such is the depth of my current situation. I'm tired, disappointed, angry and did I mention tired? We all know this happens every year about this time. It's deja vu all over again. And again. And again. I think maybe that's why I'm so run down with it this year. I've worked on the Charity Committee one year too many. Seen it all, heard it all, lived through it all, and finally, this year, I've lost my sense of humor and perspective about it.

As of 3 AM this morning, all toys were sorted and delivered to tot agencies. All food (that wasn't stolen, eaten or soured) was delivered to food banks, sundries were delivered to shelters, and coats sorted and delivered.

If you've never volunteered for behind the donation drop box work on a charity drive at your office, you're probably thinking, "yeah, so, what's the big deal?" If you have worked behind the drop box at your office, I can see you rolling your eyes in knowing exasperation.

Insert memory flashback wavy screen here.

Charitable Cause

The first year I worked at my current company, I "volunteered" to "help" on my company's holiday charity committee. I had previously been involved on community charity projects, so when the call came out for volunteers in my company, and my then boss pleaded for to me to help, I near-readily signed up, thinking, "oh what the heck, this will be a snap after working on city-wide events. Plus it's for charity, I can't say no."

So young. So innocent. So naive.

As these things inevitably do, it has turned into an annual expectation and a second job. Fraught with all the entanglements jobs and expectations bring: Long hours of back breaking toil, after hours and lunch planning meetings, subcommittees, memos, political agendas, backstabbing, infighting, broken rules, theft...but it's for charity.

The past few years of volunteering I've grown increasingly skeptical about the true nature of charity. My parents are tireless, selfless volunteers who insisted/taught us that time, effort, money and thought for those less fortunate is as important as brushing one's teeth. So having been involved in various charities as long as I can remember I've seen a lot of not so charitable behavior. It's the nature of the beast, and shouldn't dissuade a well meaning volunteer from volunteering. For every evil personal agenda hogging volunteer, there are countless numbers quietly doing very good deeds. It's like anything, you only notice the bad. But I'm learning that volunteering in one's place of business is fraught with complications that seep into every day projects. As the committee changes and evolves, as different people replace those now gone, it's becoming more inevitable that I will personally work with a few or all of the charity committee volunteers in an official work capacity, as well as the charity committee.

Try as I might to not let the behaviors and attitudes of co-committee volunteers color my perception of them in day to day office relationships, it's becoming increasingly difficult. The guy who came to the planning meetings (and zealously ate the food provided for the sessions) but who did not show hide nor hair when it came time for actual work and effort is not high on my list. Consequently, I find myself fighting the urge to dismiss his official work for the company as quickly as he dismissed the charity drive committee. So what if he's up for an award on a project? He shirked his duties to the charity drive once the free food wore thin and he had to push up his sleeves and work. The opposite is true, as well. One hard working co-committee person is slacking a bit in her official work duties. I've been making excuses for her, in re the charity drive and her tireless, selfless efforts therein. But is that right or fair to the rest of her department, the people left picking up her slack? No, of course not.

Company charity drives create a fine line for company volunteers to walk in the workplace. It would be great if all would be forgotten in a few weeks after the drives have ended for the year. But that's just it: If you're on the committee, the work never really ends. There are calls and meetings with the various charities, planning sessions for next year's drives, and countless memos and reports to human resources and the charities.

What Volunteering on My Company's Holiday Charity Committee Has Taught Me

Once they get you, they don't let go. The only ways out are to: Quit, be fired or laid off from your real job in the company (retirement is not exclusionary - after all, now that you're retired you've got all that extra time on your hands); date one of the other committee members or charity liaisons then have a nasty break-up; be the center of a scandal involving either the committee or one of the charities involved (theft of donated goods does not constitute scandal); or die. But it's for charity.

There are two kinds of people who volunteer to work on charity campaigns: 1. Altruistic souls who genuinely want to give their time and effort to charitable cause. 2. People with ulterior, less charitable motives for volunteering on the committee (meeting/working with a long desired romantic interest, getting time off from the real job, fulfilling a boss' demand for department support, a veritable smorgasbord of donated items for personal use, potential free lunches/dinners/snacks at the committee meetings and work events, hearing gossip about departments out of normal grapevine realm, fulfilling court ordered community service...)

The above categories in which a volunteer falls is typically evident at the first meeting. After a year serving on the committee, the keen volunteer will be able to suss out the other volunteer's motivations within one committee meeting. It's not difficult: The altruistic souls will be the ones doing the work. The less charitably motivated will be the ones not doing any of the work.

Animosity, anger and altruism are the AAA's of charitable work.

No matter what you do in your real job at the company, the very day the charity committee work heats up, so will your real job workload. Deadlines, budgets, hot jobs and clients wait for no man. Nor charity.

No matter how even keeled your personal life is, the very day the charity committee work heats up, so will your personal life. New love interests, old love interests gone sour, sick children/pets, plumbing problems, funerals, mortgage foreclosures...all will rear their ugly heads. Depending on which category the volunteer is in (1 or 2, see above) these issues will either be: 1. Real and left to be dealt with after the charity drive or 2. Lies rendering the volunteer unable to volunteer the very moment they are required.

If you are in category 1, forget any sort of personal life between December 1 and December 15. You are giving of yourself, here, and company charity committees mean that in every sense of the phrase. You are giving of your physical self, emotional self, mental self and brain self. There will be no self left for anyone or anything else. But it's for charity.

People steal. For many people, working on the company charity drive is a way to get a good look at the bevy of donations, choose the best, and cross a few presents off their shopping list, feed themselves, get a new coat and stock up on sundries. For others not working on the committee, the drop boxes provide solutions for gifts for their three year old niece, a coat for mom and lunch and dinner. (Seriously. This year I personally caught three people "borrowing" lunch from the food drop box.)

People lie. Period. Work one charity drive and you'll see what I mean.

People are weird. People, the rest of the company, the people you work with every day, are just swutting weird. The true nature of this weirdness will be evidenced in the form of their donations. As you sort the food donations, you won't be able to help noticing: Several falafel mixes, balsamic vinegar, risotto, Snackwells Mint Creams. Yeah. I have to comment. I can't help it. I see these every year with such preponderancy that I simply cannot let another year go by without commenting. Donating food by definition means giving food to people who do not have enough money to feed themselves. Um. People who probably don't know and don't care what falafel is and have no clue how to prepare it. Balsamic vinegar and risotto?! Of course, why didn't I think of that? What a perfect donation idea. Raise the bar for food prep in shelters, soup kitchens and churches. Just because a person is broke, homeless or ill doesn't mean they don't want to keep up with yuppie food trends. How silly of me to not think of that. Snackwells? Perhaps homeless people are looking a bit soft in the middle these days and this is an effort to help them shed a few pounds. Which leads me to...

People are cheap. People, the rest of the company, the people you work with every day, are cheaper than you can imagine. Many see the annual charity drives as a way to unload all manner of crap from their homes and call it a charitable donation. These are typically the people who wear their "I donated" stance loud and obnoxiously to the entire office. This puts the volunteer in the tenuous position of keeping their sarcastic mouth closed. Remarks like, "You call two sausages from last year's Hickory Farms gift basket a donation?" and "What kid wants a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle board game from 10 years ago, with a missing Donatello no less?" and "You call this dry cleaned? This coat stinks like the stink of stink. Just what some poor abused woman at a shelter needs and wants: A smelly, dirty coat." will be stifled. It's not the volunteer's job to pass judgment on others on the basis of their donations. Because it's for charity.

People are stupid. Many apparently do not know the meaning of the words perishable and clean and gently worn and unwrapped. Year after year, perishable food, dirty and torn coats (threadbare, comes to my mind) and gift wrapped toys appear in donation boxes with such regularity and quantity that the only explanation can be that many people simply do not understand these words and terms. They are also apparently unable to use common sense and judgment about donating these items. For the sake of your company's or community's volunteers, I beg of you, please do not donate: Yogurt. Butter. Starbucks Frapuccino. Your dead uncle's coat that still smells like his favorite local pub and just needs a few elbow patches to be good as new. The snowsuit your toddler obviously wore to every trip to the doctor during last year's stomach flu outbreak. Anything gift wrapped.

Please do not let my tired, angry, jaded, and far too many long nights and weekends stop you from volunteering or donating to the various causes your company sponsors. It is important, it does matter and in the end, like me, the bigger picture comes back into focus and you're ready to take on next year's charity drive. This usually doesn't happen until February or March.

But it's for charity.

12:12 PM

Tuesday, December 09, 2003  
Deeper Thoughts

It's a Little Bit Me, It's a Little Bit You.
Blogging a Legacy for Future Generations.

Buzzkill day here at Life of Trillian.

I found a blog yesterday that brought up an issue which occasionally nags me. It's not the particular content, but the title which speaks volumes about: Life, death, the human condition and blogging. Pretty much in that order.

So utterly poignant, that url, that it nearly knocked me off my chair. That profound little url packs a powerful wallop.

Not (which is apparently not taken and for sale, should you wish to purchase it), but This address, this arrangement of words, is the epitome of zeitgeist. is the perfect suffix. With its poignant title and "" suffix, the economy of words, simplicity of arrangement, to the point title and juxtaposition of words it's as close to 21st century Haiku as we're apt to get.

Yes, I do have a fascination with urls. I love them. That I would be grabbed and carried into deep introspection by one won't come as a surprise to anyone who knows me.

This isn't a sales grab for pre-arranged funerals. (Though the holidays are here, why not give the gift that lasts an eternity! Nothing says Happy Christmas like a pre-arranged funeral!)

Even for the most goal oriented among us, making plans for death is not a subject which consumes much thought or planning. Particularly those under 55. Oh sure, most of us went through "that" time in our teens - those wonderful angst filled years consumed by the realization that we're actually going to die one day, and getting all somber and serious about it so that every little thing that happens seems Important and Crucial and Relevant because We're All Going to Die! Some of us spent far too much time listening to the Smiths. But then we get a boyfriend/girlfriend life is wonderful, and we think about things other than death. We become consumed with setting and achieving goals for life: Getting through college, getting a job, paying taxes, earning a livable income, taking a vacation, finding a spouse, buying a home, raising the kids, trying to save for retirement . . . pretty much exhausts the goal achieving energy most of us have. Planning for death, well, that's a goal for another day. It's easy to put it off with viable explanations: "When I'm married." "When we have children." "When I figure out what my life means." "When I'm lying in the nursing home with nothing better to do with my time and thoughts." In short, when you figure out your legacy and there's someone to leave it to. To paraphrase Mr. Lennon: Death is what happens when you're busy making other plans.

But a legacy isn't just money and real estate. And it isn't left just to your spouse or children.

Who are you? What do you like? What do you hate? What matters to you? What is life like for you? How do you feel about that?

Guess what? Most of us are doing this every day or week. We're typing our little blogs out, sending bits of ourselves into the Universe for, well, all the Universe to read. This is our legacy. This is us. This is what we're leaving behind. Bits and bytes of us scattered who knows where. In all its good, bad, ugly, banal, inane, trivial, informative, vapid, humorous, salacious, pathetic, insightful, wise, profane, profound, stupid, wonderful glory, blogging is not only a global community of personal ideas, but a collective global legacy comprised of personalities.

And no, I don't think I'm the first person to have thought of this. (though reading some blogs, I do wonder if this thought ever enters some authors' brains. But then who am I to judge a person's legacy?) But stumbling upon forwhenidie.blogspot threw the concept into sharp focus.

And here's the part that knocked me off my chair. The moment of epiphany. And the blog part. I've been getting on bloggers' cases about being "caught" by their boss, parents, spouse whomever because they didn't take a few basic precautions. ("There's no such thing as Safe Blog. Use a pseudonym." (My new Public Service Announcement)) And I still stand by this. If you can't handle the repercussions of your boss, parents, spouse, friends reading your blog, be careful and don't be stupid.

But, in doing so, this is creating a legion of legacies, a lot of very profound, witty and insightful legacies, I might add, with naught but a pseudonym attached. Through our cloak of anonymity, we're revealing (sometimes) our deepest thoughts, fears and concerns. In short, the sort of things we don't tell our best friends or relatives.

Let's pretend 150 years from now archaeologists unearth an old blogspot mainframe. They turn it over to the government. A research grant is developed - there are debates about whether or not the government should spend money on this project. George Bush IV uses it on his presidential candidacy platform. Sociologists take on the project of scouring Blogs circa 2001 - 2005. 22nd century techies are trained in defunct technology. They have a glorious moment when it springs to life and reveals thousands of blog archives. They read. They study. They cross reference. They do this to achieve a sense of what life was like at the turn of the century. They are amazed, impressed and a little scared at what they find. They write books. They go on talk shows. They publish and read excerpts of the good, bad and ugly blogs.

Let's say they happen to quote your blog. Something they hold up as a truly remarkable piece of 21st century insight. And then say, "written by takethatyoumutant.blogspot." Takethatyoumutant is being touted as one of the century's deepest thinkers, but they have no idea of takethatyoumutant's "real" identity. Theories of author identities emerge. (The Shakespeare-Bacon-Earl of Oxford debate finally long resolved, and the profession of literary scholar subsequently extinct, blog authorship causes a new industry to spring up, colleges churning out literary scholars to keep up with the demand. DeVry even offers a 2 year program.) Stephen King is attributed as the author of 120 blogs. But, poor Takethatyoumutant is one of thousands, millions, of blog authors lost in anonymity. Takethatyoumutant may have children and grandchildren who could a) be proud and honored to have such a notable ancestor and b) could claim copyright and publishing residuals. Intellectual property lawyers begin advertising on every daytime and latenight time slot. "The government could owe you thousands of dollars. Call now for my free Claiming Your Ancestor's Blog info tape."

I know I personally would give anything to have even a few blogs written by any of my grandparents, aunts and uncles when they were my age or when they were going through various points of their lives. I'm sure I'd be a bit surprised and more than a little embarrassed to read some of their deepest thoughts. And maybe not. But I'll never know. I have a few letters, some photos and a rather rudimentary diary to piece together my grandparents' stories. But from my own memories and through family lore, I know there was a lot more to all of them than what was written in those letters and that diary, and behind those for the camera smiles.

So here we are back in 2003. A challenge. a) We shamelessly strip off our cloaks of anonymity and say loud and proud, it's me! I'm writing this! And I don't care who knows it or reads it! b) We modestly strip off our cloaks of anonymity and quietly edit out the more sensitive or embarrassing bits of our blogs. c) Continue on as is, cloaked in anonymity, saying what we really mean, really meaning what we say and make peace with the fact that the legacy we're leaving is part of a bigger picture, a global legacy. Personal legacies will have to be tended other ways.

All three options seem viable to me.

Option c, however, is fraught with responsibility. Take a good look at some blogs. Even your own. There's a lot of riff raff out there. Cyber detritus. You will be part of a legacy with all these other blogs. This is us. Warts and all. A lot of warts. If you're a blogsnob, this might alarm you. I hope blogsnobs don't falter away, not wanting to be brought down by the lowest level of our incompetence. Or not wanting to be caught by their boss/parents/spouse. Blogging might actually be important to society in ways we can't even imagine right now. There's no room for snobbery. The greater good is at risk by losing even one blogger.

I do suggest carefully scanning archives and pulling out anything you would want people to know is yours and either discing it, or if you dare, write it, gasp, in your own handwriting. Technology changes everyday, that spiffy cd burner you just bought will be obsolete very soon. (Sorry) Case in point: We recently unearthed several boxes of 5.25 floppy discs in my office. Carefully labeled, containing what could be some useful or at least interesting data. Without a lot of time, effort and money, there is no way to read those discs. The discs were promptly thrown away, discarded as relics of another era, and all information on them is now forever lost. But at the time of their inception, they were cutting edge. The data painstakingly archived forever!

You might also want to consider forwhenidie.blogspot's idea of listing favorite things, things important, things that matter and those not so much, things no one but you really cares about. Until you're gone. Believe me, if you die tomorrow, your parents, girl/boyfriend, spouse, children and friends will suddenly care immensely what your favorite song was, whether or not you liked beets, and what you were thinking about the day before you died. And who knows? Perhaps a sociologist or literary scholar 150 years from now will find it interesting, too.

9:17 AM

Monday, December 08, 2003  
Nice Ass

I got "nice ass"ed.

So what? Some of you are thinking. Hear me out. This could be a huge deal. I thought my "nice ass"ing days were behind me. (sorry. bad pun. too much time with my mother.) I haven't been nice assed since a few weeks after the breakup, when I had lost enough weight to be a Prada model. And then I didn't think my ass was particularly nice, but then I didn't think anything about me was particularly nice. Actually, I'm still crawling out of that hole. A bad, major, life altering break-up will do that to you. So ironic that going through a major break-up people tend to either lose or gain a lot of weight. So there you are, all emotionally fragile, and looking either emaciated model thin or ballooned up chubby, and either way, what you see in the mirror only adds to the trauma of the whole break up. If you've lost weight, people come out of the woodwork to hit on you when all you want is your ex back in your life so you think, "I wish the ex could see me now, they'd want me back for sure!" If you've gained weight, people simply stop noticing you altogether so you think, "No wonder the ex left me. No one else wants me either." Both of those reactions are of course extremely harmful and extremely normal. (Insert a blog about body image and the media here.)

So this recent nice assing was a huge deal on a few levels. It brings up issues I haven't thought about in ages.

It's interesting that I used to hate the nice ass comment with a vengeance. I wanted to be known as something more than a nice ass (or legs, boobs, hair, hands...). And, I know what my ass looks like. I know the standards by which it is judged, and I know realistically, on a good ass day, mine falls somewhere between "okay in the right clothes" to "so-so, but wouldn't want to risk seeing it naked." So when I used to get nice assed, I didn't see it as a compliment but as a banal attempt to score or a very poorly advised conversation opener. And not the best way to begin any sort of relationship - a banal comment that is probably a lie.

There was a period of time, when I frequently went to clubs, and had a few complimentary fitting skirts and jeans, that I got nice assed a lot. It got to the point that it didn't bother my feministic streak. After all, I was the one putting it out there. If I didn't want to be nice assed, or seen as a sex object, I shouldn't have worn "those" skirts or jeans or gone to "those" sorts of clubs. Not that I, or any other woman is asking for it, or deserves it, or anything else, just by how she's dressed, but let's call it what it is and take a little responsibility for ourselves here, ladies.

It's not that deep down I enjoyed being nice assed, but more that I finally accepted that there are men and women in this world who think commenting on one's posterior is a good opening gambit. I accepted that in general, these are the men and women who are out looking to score. Quickly. That night. They are also prone to remarks like, "I don't even want to know his/her name..." I learned and accepted that some women, a lot of women, actually, a scary amount of women, women you'd never suspect, get all giddy, gooey, excited and/or flustered when they are nice assed. They like it. (Men, of course, love it. If they get nice assed once in their life they will take it as gospel truth that they have a nice ass and will flaunt this on every internet dating site they peruse and will go to their graves proud of their nice ass.) So I stopped getting incensed or huffy over the remarks, and instead just ignored them and the men who made the remarks. A "nice ass" wouldn't get you anywhere but gone with me.

And time passed. I met a guy who didn't "nice ass" me until knowing me several months. Long after he'd nice cerebellum-ed me. Long after he'd nice spirit-ed and nice personality-ed me. Long after emotional and physical trust had been established. One day, out of the clear blue, on a bike ride, he pulled me off the trail, took me in his arms, kissed me, took my face in his hands, looked deep into my eyes and said, "I love your bum." I nice assed him in return - something I'd been dying to do, but, well, I just wasn't sure of the right time. I mean, once a nice ass comment is out there, there's no going back. And I really liked this guy and didn't want to mess things up with a nice ass comment placed too soon in the relationship. It was a special, watershed moment in our relationship. (Man I miss HWNMNBS)

So no, I don't think it's complimentary to tell a complete stranger, "Nice ass." This comment should not be reduced to the level of, "How are you?" "I'm Bob, what's your name?" or "Can you believe this weather?" Can you imagine walking into your office, "Morning Jane, nice ass, did you see the Simpsons last night?" Yes, I'm sure this does happen in offices throughout the world, which is exactly my point. Stop it before it gets out of hand.

Think about it. We all think it when we see one, but how many of us are compelled to then waltz up and comment, "Nice ass?" What seven kinds of nerve does it take to say, "nice ass" to a total stranger? No matter how flattering you may initially find the compliment, deep down, do you wonder about the type of person who approaches a complete stranger, and says, "nice ass?" Think about the times you've heard this remark made, one complete stranger to another. Either someone saying it to you, or overhearing it said to someone else. Think about the person who said it. What do you think their motivations were? Maybe you've said it yourself. Maybe you're a nice asser. Are you also a "nice handser?" "Nice eyeser?" "Nice smiler?" "Nice brainer?" My theory has always been nice assers are a breed apart. A breed apart from the sort of guys I want to date.

And yes, as in my experience, after we've been dating a while, there's nothing a woman wants to hear more than, "your bum looks great in those jeans" from our beloved. Whether it's true or not. We know what our asses look like, good or bad, but we want the reassurance that our beloved will somehow find it attractive or at least care enough about us to reassure us about it for the sake of our emotional fragility over the issue. (insert blog about body image and the media here)

But as an opening line?

The closest I've ever come to uttering those words to a complete stranger was by accident. A colleague had a notoriously cheap client. Good to be fiscally responsible, but this guy was just plain cheap. One day, my colleague called me into her office to offer a second opinion on costs to produce a particular project. I provided blow by blow accounting of all the aspects and came up with a sum Mr. Cheapskate thought was too high. He left the office with, "crunch those numbers and we'll talk, otherwise I'm going elsewhere." My colleague had already worked to cut the expenses on the project because she knew we shouldn't lose the client. As it stood, we were barely making a profit. If anymore were cut we would be losing money. She was hurt and worried.

After he left I made an uncharacteristically street comment. "Tightass."

You guessed it, Mr. Cheapskate heard it. But he thought I said "nice ass" as he was leaving the office. This got back to me by way of him calling my colleague and asking for my phone number. He got all conspiratorial with her. "I heard your colleague the other day, it's okay, I quite fancy her, too. So if you could just give me her number...." My colleague was confused to say the least and pressed him for details. "Look, I heard her make a comment about my bum, okay? Don't worry, I
found it quite flattering." My colleague told him I was practically married and that it would be best if he just forgot he'd heard anything. And immediately summoned me to her office where we sat in awe and disbelief and cracking up over the whole thing.

And now I'm sitting here, having been nice assed for the first time in ages, thinking, "huh. Wow. It's been ages since I've heard that." I haven't given it any thought whatsoever. Frankly, I haven't given the state of my ass any thought whatsoever. I suppose those sessions on the "Special Bike" are getting more than my ankle in shape. Hadn't thought about it in the least. As if I were assless. But then, one comment from a complete stranger and it all comes crashing back. The feminist conflicts. The "oh come off it, my ass isn't that nice so go hit on some girl who has a nice ass or will be taken in by your line." The twisting and craning in front of the mirror to see what my ass looks like. Do I really have a nice ass? Still? Now?

All of that is back after a very long hiatus. Harmless enough. I'm in dire need of a little boost to my self esteem, but is my self esteem in any way tied into the state of my ass? A man's perception of my ass? A complete stranger's perception of my ass? No. Should it be?

9:28 AM

This page is powered by Blogger.