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:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/cult/hitchhikers/guide/.

Otherwise, hello, and welcome.
Mail Trillian here<





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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
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or Search by State

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Contact The Media
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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.)

Quasar
Hyperbole
Amenable
Taciturn
Ennui
Prophetic
Tawdry
Hubris
Ethereal
Syzygy
Umbrageous
Twerp
Sluice
Omnipotent
Sanctuary
Malevolent
Maelstrom
Luddite
Subterfuge
Akimbo
Hoosegow
Dodecahedron
Visceral
Soupçon
Truculent
Vitriol
Mercurial
Kerfuffle
Sangfroid




























 







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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

Slanglish

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?!)

CellStories

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.

Shag

Kii Arens

Tim Biskup

Jeff Soto

Jotto




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.


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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
Single/Zero

 
Monday, March 24, 2008  
Mulleted. Like me.

After the injury but prior to the surgery I started wearing my hair a little shorter. A little shaggier. A little more Chrissie Hynde, a little less Heidi Klum. It’s a lower maintenance style for me. My natural waves and curls can do what they want and at best it looks artfully casual, at worst it looks unkempt.

I gave up caring about style. And more importantly, due to a lot of pain in my foot and limited mobility, I gave up caring what anyone, especially men, thought about my hair. Pfft. It wasn’t as if men were flocking to me (or my hair) anyway. And those highlight touchups and haircuts were a pain to maintain and afford. Men be damned, I was happy with my shorter, darker shaggier hair. I felt like me.

I tried really hard to make my hair fit the mold, to conform to the standards men set in their criteria for a date. “Long soft hair.” “Long hair a must.” “No short haired chicks” Long hair, long hair, long hair. We get it, okay? Men like long hair.

Hair I can handle. It’s the one part of me that might qualify as “pretty.” It’s thick and it’s generally manageable and I can style it just about any way I want and it complies. When I grow it long it’s healthy and shiny. (albeit prone to bouts of frizz on very humid days, but even then I can easily control that) When I cut it shorter it falls into whatever place I put it. Yes. When it comes to hair I’m “lucky.”

Well. Lotta good that hair luck did me. I’ve got a fabulous head of hair and still: I’m single. Over and over and over again I hear and read that men love long hair. So I kept it long. I dealt with the extra maintenance and expense and kept my tresses long, touchable, swingy and highlighted. I followed men’s “hair rules” to the T.

And still: Nothing. Nadda. Zip. No boyfriend, no dates.

After I injured my foot I eliminated as much walking and as many trips as possible from my life. Work was necessary. Beyond that all activities were optional. Going for hair cuts and highlights fell way, way down on the list of priorities. So when I did limp in there, in the heat of an early Summer evening, I said, “I surrender. Give me the Chrissie.” My stylist was surprised but somehow managed to control her excitement.

“Are you sure? You’ve been so, um, so into this long sleek hair thing.”

“I’m sure. Just do it. This hair isn’t doing anything for me, it’s not a man magnet, I’ve got too many other issues so why spend the time and energy on my hair?”

Snip, chop, razor. Done. This is my haircut. It works. It can be as low or high maintenance as I want. And I think it suits me. And I can let it go more than six weeks without a haircut and it still looks like I don’t need a haircut. It’s always been my fall-back style. When things go weird or wrong in my life I can trot into a salon, ask for the Chrissie shag and voila, at least something in my life is right.

The problem is that even though it’s not a crop-job of a hair cut, it’s still considered short by many men’s standards. Few women other than Chrissie Hynde have such enigmatic allure and coolness that the shaggy shorter tresses turn on men. Let’s face it, Chrissie could do anything with her hair and she would still turn men to piles of adoring, weak-in-the-knees mush. Oh sure, there are men who like short haired chicks. Of course. But they’re few and far between. Like the men who like flat chested women. They exist, but they’re rare and elusive. (I know, I know, given that logic when my hair was long combined with the 36DD girls I should have been the hottest dating ticket in town. I wasn't, so obviously I don't believe that "logic" or popular opinions about what men want. Long hair and big boobs do not guarantee dates or even a date or even positive attention from men. You have to have long hair, big boobs and be pretty.)


Since I’m firmly up on the shelf why should I care about my hair? When it comes to men, my hair is the least of my issues.

And my foot hurt. And each doctor visit pointed me toward surgery. My hair was not only the least of my issues where men were concerned, it was now among the least of my concerns period.

I got a good, short shaggy cut two days before surgery. My stylist and I planned it so that I could get through at least a few months without a trip to the salon. That plan worked great. Ironically, I had what I consider to be some really good hair days during my “you’re lucky it’s been washed this week” phase post-surgery when I could barely take a shower. Say what you want about the dated style, for some of us it works, it’s a great cut when we can’t (or won’t) spend time styling our hair.

Well, last month the time came to go back to the salon. I was ready, my hair was ready. I’d stretched that pre-surgery haircut as long as I could. Even with my “I couldn’t care less about my hair” attitude, it was starting to bug me.

So I went to the salon, told my stylist, “A little longer than last time.” Meaning, same haircut, just not as short as the pre-surgery haircut.

She said, “Okay, just a trim?”

I said, “yep, gimme the Chrissie.”

She started snipping, we started talking, she got out the blow dryer, turned me toward the mirror and: I had a mullet.

Oh, she kept it longer, all right, but only in the back. Meanwhile, the top and sides are cropped up short – shaggy, fortunately, but short. So the overall effect is: Mullet.

It was nearing closing time and I didn’t want to make a fuss and make her stay to “fix” it. The longer part could be lopped off so there’s not so much mullet effect, but, well, that would leave me with a really, really, really short haircut. I could go back and have her try to “fix” it but I’ve decided to live with it for a month or so, let the super short top and sides grow a little and then get it back on track. I mean, what do I care? It’s hair. It grows. I already gave up trying to attract and/or please men with my hair, so who cares if I have a mullet?

At best it’s a kind of Suzi Quatro/Leather Tuscadero look. At worst it’s a kind of Ric Ocasek meets Cher spiky mullet. I’m being generous to myself. Those descriptions give it a rock and roll attitude. And I suppose, if I could still pull it off, yes, it could be a sort of defiant rock and roll statement. But generally it just looks like a mullet. Especially since my hair is naturally wavy-curly. If I leave the back (long area) alone after washing it takes on a quasi Robert Plant effect. One day, a "good" day, it resembled circa 1983 Bono. (Yes, Bono, I remember when you had a mullet.) If I straighten it and if I really worked the hair spray I could have a Joe Dirt mullet. Yep. Hockey Hair. A ShoLo. Business in the front, party in the back.

Whatever.

It’s hair. It’ll grow.

It’s Winter. I wear hats.

No big deal, right? Right.

Or. Well. Maybe it is a big deal. Maybe I underrated the power of my hair.

Because since I’ve been mulletized I’ve received more negative attention from men, and from people in general.



In the past couple years I’ve adopted the technique of keeping my head down and trying to blend in wherever I go. I haven’t started wearing beige, but that’s next. I’m striving to be just another anonymous, ubiquitous lump of DNA commuting to work, doing my job and commuting home. Invisible for all intents and purposes. I slouch my shoulders and curl my torso so I’m a couple inches shorter and hide my boobs, a more anonymous, unnoticeable height and chest. This Winter I’ve bundled up in layers and hide under them. My only distinguishing feature is the cane I use to help me walk and I’m trying to wean off that.

This comes easy for me. It’s kind of interesting from a psychological standpoint. I’ve spent a lifetime battling shyness. When I was young there were times it was psychologically crippling, “clinical” the school counselor called it before I had any concept of what “clinical” meant. I was one of those kids who clung to her mother's leg and would only steal a cautious peek around the leg to see what was going on in the room. When I started school I learned early how to hide myself within myself. I was the tallest kid in class so I learned how to "shrink" my body. Slouching, curled torso, bent knees...I perfected the technique by the second week of school. My mother would put my hair in pigtails or braids. I'd pull them out so I could hide under my hair. It wasn't just about being like the other kids. It was about blending in so no one would notice me. If no one noticed me I wouldn't have to talk to anyone. Yes. That logic was flawed but I was 5 at the time so cut me a little slack.

At the tender age of seven I was sent to assertiveness training. Or, well, that’s the pretty phraseology the school counselor and my parents put on it. I was made to understand that it wasn’t my fault I was shy, it was just part of who I was, like my height and green eyes, shyness was just part of my DNA. But unlike my height and green eyes, shyness was not an acceptable trait and if I wanted to make it in this world I had to work very, very hard to overcome shyness. My parents and counselors never used the term handicap, but one of my teachers did.

Good ol’ Miss Prickly as the other kids called her. I never liked her but I never called her names. I found out a few years ago my parents didn’t like her, either. She used to talk about students in front of other teachers and adults as if we weren’t standing right there. One time four of us kids had an extra assignment to write and produce a class play. We were standing in the hallway with Miss Prickly and the principal. She was talking about the play we’d written as if we weren’t standing right there. She reviewed it as if it were an important work of theatre that was falling short of it’s potential. I swear she compared to Waiting for Godot. And then she said, “If it weren’t for Trillian’s handicap of shyness we’d put her in the lead, but she can’t be counted on to pull it off in front of a crowd.”

Yeah. Careful what you say around kids. You never know what they’ll carry with them throughout their life. I was ashamed and upset that I was letting down the team. Never mind I was the one who’d developed the plot and written most of the dialog and came up with set design. All I heard was that I was a failure, and I was a failure because I was shy, and shyness was a handicap. Psychosis rooted in childhood for $500 please, Alex. From that day forward I worked extra hard at following everything I learned in "assertiveness training." I kept my hair tightly woven in braids, I stopped arguing about getting hair trims when it started falling in my eyes, I raised my hand in class and even initiated conversations with kids I didn't know. I know, I know! Go me. I started fighting my natural instinct of shyness and have waged the war ever since. It’s not easy fighting every natural inclination you have in every situation. If you’re shy you understand. If you’re not, you can’t possibly understand how difficult it can be for those of us who are shy. I vowed it would never, ever hold me down and for the most part it hasn’t. Due to my valiant efforts, thank you very much.

But the past few years I haven’t been fighting as much. I mean, why? Why go against my nature? Why spend so much effort and anxiety trying to be something I’m not? Well, yes, in the case of shyness it can lead to a very unfulfilling life, that’s why. But still, I haven’t been compensating as much as I have in the past. Lazy? Maybe. I dunno. More like tired, I think. So this whole shrinking and trying to go unnoticed is natural and easy for me. Like breathing.

And then I got a mullet.

There’s no way to blend in when you have a mullet. A mullet makes a statement. And not a particularly positive one. Here in Chicago people look at me with disdain and contempt. I think they think I’m from Indiana. Mullets are still popular in Indiana. I know this because I get a lot of responses to my online dating profiles from men in Indiana. And most of them have mullets.

The day after the mulletizing I was on the bus on the way to work. It was, as ever, cram packed with commuters. And hot. I pulled off my hat and loosened my scarf. The mullet was new and I forgot I had it. A guy, 30 ish, crammed and jostled his way onto the bus even though there wasn’t room for him. He stepped on my foot. It hurt. A lot. I pulled my boot out from under his foot. He turned his head to look at me, as if he were going to apologize (which he should have), looked at me again, waited a few seconds, snarled his lips and told me to get out of his way. Okay, just a rude guy, right? Yeah. But as he pushed by me he muttered “ugly old cow” at me. Okay. I hate commuting, we all do, and it does bring out the worst in all of us. But. He stepped on my foot. I was huddled up as far as I could, standing with a cane, not seated in a handicap seat, as crammed in as everyone else and very wobbley with one post-surgery foot and ankle. The situation sucked for everyone and it certainly was not my fault. So why the “ugly old cow” remark? Oh yeah. The mullet. I mean, just a theory. I’ve had a lot of bad experiences commuting on public transportation but no one’s ever called me an ugly old cow. A guy once accused me of knocking his backpack off the seat (I didn’t) and threw his Coughuppalottabucks out the bus window at me when I exited the bus, but even he didn’t call me an ugly old cow.

That weekend I was in the grocery selecting apples. The produce department was empty except for me and young guy. He rolled his cart around the apple display and said, “Just pick your damn apples and get out of the way.”

Ermmm. Um. Excuse me? Yes, I was looking over the apples because I don’t want bruised apples, but it’s not as if I was laboring over the selection, and it’s certainly not as if I was in anyone’s way. The produce department is set up with islands of fruit and vegetables. We were the only two people in the entire department. I dunno. I really don’t know what the issue was. Other than perhaps the mullet bringing out the worst in him.

I went to physical therapy a few days later, a week into the mullet. A cleaning woman was vacuuming the rugs in front of the building’s elevators. I’ve seen her there during previous visits to physical therapy. I pressed the up button and an elevator door opened. The cleaning woman ran, yes, ran with the vacuum to the elevator and proceeded to vacuum the elevator. Okay, cool, whatever, she’s got a job to do. So I waited for another elevator or for her to finish, whichever came first. She then came out of the elevator, held the door for me and I limped over to it. As I entered the elevator she said, “Ha! I hope I made you late!” and let the door crash on me. I dunno. Really. I have no idea. Maybe the mullet.

The next day I met MAF for a drink after work. He said, “Wow. You weren’t kidding. That’s a mullet.” Then he tried to put a positive spin on it. “I mean, you have great hair. It’s not that bad. Maybe with a diagonal part…”

“MAF, it’s a mullet. There’s no disguising it.”

"Yeah. You're right. Sorry. It'll grow. It'll be beautiful again. But hey, butch lesbians are going to find you very attractive. If you're ever going to try switching teams this would be the perfect time. Just stop wearing makeup and talk baseball and you'll be very popular."

"You're buying because of that remark and I'm drinking heavily tonight."

Two men were sitting several bar stools down from us. One of the men piped up and said, “Can I have the name of the person who cuts your hair? It’ll come in handy next Halloween.” Okay. Yes. The guys were very clearly very drunk. And I do not engage very drunk people. But c’mon. Just because MAF and I bemoaned and berated my haircut doesn’t mean there’s an open invitation to the rest of the bar. MAF tried to put a positive spin on this, too. “Straight guys flirt weird. He probably thinks you’re cute. Your eyes look stunning tonight. I've got some new lip tint in the car that will have the same effect on your lips. If I were straight I'd be sucked into the vortex of your eyes right now. That violet liner is amazing on you. He just thinks you're beguiling.” Yeah. That’s probably it. He's sucked into the vortex of my eyes and beguiled senseless. Straight guys do flirt weird. Especially when they’re drunk.


It’s growing. Maybe a couple more weeks, a month tops, it’ll be ready to cut and reshape into a non-mullet cut. Do I really care? No. It’s hair. It grows. Hair doesn’t define me. But apparently I’m alone in that opinion. Based on my experience mullets bring out the worst in people. It could be a fluke coincidence, but you have to admit it’s a little odd that all this negative behavior started right after the mullet appeared. Especially since I’m tying so hard to blend in and go unnoticed.

Which is what's bugging me. I don't care that I have a bad haircut, or that the bad haircut is a socially negative icon. But my hair has never been something I have to "worry" about. It's generally accepted. I've even had some compliments on it over the years. One guy, a long time ago, even liked it and was attracted to me because of it. And apart from that, it's very thick and provides me with a sort of hat, a shelter from the world, and lately, prior to the mullet anyway, a curtain to pull around my face and hide from the world. A mullet is a lot of things, but one thing you can't deny about a mullet: It puts the face front and center. There's no hiding under a mullet. The top and sides are too short. My shaggy cut can be shaken and pulled over my face. Pieces can flop over my eyes. Strands fall haphazardly around my face. It's a portable refuge. Not so, the mullet.

Which is why it takes a certain personality type to go for the mullet. You have to be confident and eager to put yourself out there and face the world. You have to be ready and willing to go out and look the world in the eye and say, "Yeah, I've got a mullet. So? You wanna make something of it?" (It helps if you have White Snake blaring from your 1980 Trans Am. I don't have a car and I listen to an iPod. And despite a lot of unexplainable songs on my iPod, White Snake is not among them.) I'm in no way made for that kind of attitude. Sure, the defiance is there. I've got defiance in me. But not mullet kind of defiance. Mullet defiance is a special kind of defiance. A breed of defiance apart from all other forms of defiance. I don't have it. And I don't want it. Mullet defiance is best left to professional mullet heads. I'm just a mullet poseur. Well. Not poseur so much as accidental tourist. I'm a stranger in a strange land and I don't speak the language or have any local currency.

Lesson shared with the world: If you're shy, if you're trying to blend in and go unnoticed, do not, I repeate, do not get a mullet.

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11:39 AM

 
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