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

 
Wednesday, January 14, 2009  
Speaking of O'Hare, I've been meaning to ask this for a few years and keep forgetting to pose it to the Universe.

Has anyone traveling through O'Hare in the past few years noticed "anything" about the the TSA announcement that's played over the loud speakers in all the concourses? It's a 60 second(ish) PSA about the security level status and reminding passengers not to leave their bags unattended.

All airports have them, I think, or at least all the airports I've been in since 9/11, anyway.

But there's something "different" about O'Hare's TSA PSA.

That something different makes me giggle. Which is a bad thing because a woman traveling on her own giggling to an announcement about the security code level is suspicious, to say the least.

Why do I giggle at the TSA PSA at O'Hare?

Because I'll bet a hard earned paycheck it's recorded by John Astin, AKA Gomez Addams.

If it's not Gomez, I mean John Astin, it's someone who sounds exactly like him.

Why would O'Hare and the TSA team up for a PSA? I have no idea why John Astin would agree to it other than he has done a lot of voice work on animated series so maybe it was just another gig for him. Or maybe he feels strongly about the Homeland Security Code levels. As for why the TSA would choose Gomez, I have a few theories.

He's a universally known character, but not so universally known that everyone would instantly recognize the voice and get all caught up in why they're doing a PSA and not pay attention to the actual message. (Like I'm doing right now.) Lucille Ball, or Fred Flintstone or Gilligan or Screech, for instance, would be instantly recognized and everyone would start talking about their favorite episodes and how Bob Denver was a pothead and Screech does porn...and...those characters don't instill a lot of confidence. Think about it: A lot of universally well known voices are attached to bumbling idiot characters. Lucy, Fred, Gilligan or Screech telling me about the security threat level doesn't instill me with a lot of confidence in just how seriously the TSA is really taking all this terrorist stuff.

But on the other hand, someone like the voiceover guy from Dragnet or John Walsh would be too scary. We'd hear the announcement, the concourse would go quiet as we all kept one eye on our bags and the other suspiciously eying each other. We need to be alert, not scared. We need to be aware, not freaked out about fellow passengers.

Someone like William Shatner would be good. But Captain Kirk is busy with all that Priceline stuff. It would probably be a conflict of interest. Could he sell discounted airplane tickets and issue the security warnings at the airports for those flights? Probably not. And it would seem a little suspicious, too. Kirk selling plane tickets is one thing, makes sense, he used to command a Star Fleet. When you think "pilot who can get a flying vessel out of any problem," you think of the brightly colored polyester jumpsuited jet setter sexing his way through space. But when you think of security and well being and keeping an eye on your bags, he's not the go-to guy. Maybe Bones, he seems responsible, he was a safety-first kind of guy. But not Kirk. Kirk took a lot of risks. Kirk telling you not to leave your bags unattended is like Hugh Hefner telling you not to listen to Barry White on a third date.

Rod Serling would be a good choice. Sort of. Credible. Authoritative but not threatening. He's "one of us." Rod Serling doesn't talk down to us, he points out weird stuff and let's us draw our own conclusions. Much like traveling post 9/11. "We were too trusting, a bit lax, and that led to some problems so now we've upped our security game. There are codes, 'levels' and right now you're traveling during an 'orange' level during your layover in, The Security Zone." I know. You're with me on this now, aren't you?

Unfortunately (for reasons way beyond musing about security PSAs) Rod Serling's dead. Kirk's got other obligations (and a possible conflict of interest).

Hmmm, who, then? Who? Who best to alert passengers about the threat level and watching their bags without freaking them out? Someone, a voice people will recognize and pay attention to but won't dismiss, either. Someone familiar to instill trust, but not too familiar so people don't pay attention. Who? Who could we get to voice the security PSA?

Someone kind but with a take charge confidence. Someone authoritative but approachable. Someone worldly but down to earth. Someone fun but trustworthy. Someone who is successful but generous. Someone versed in matters of the law without speaking legalese. Someone educated but graced with good luck. Someone strong but not threatening. Someone with a serious air but a joyous spirit. Someone multi-lingual but without a thick or weird accent. Someone with a vast and intimate knowledge of weaponry but with a pacifistic nature. Who? Where could we find such a person? Does such a person even exist?

Yes! Yes of course! Cara mia! Gomez Addams!!! The perfect character to voice the security information. (And, somewhat disconcertingly, I just realized the perfect guy for me. How did I just now realize that? Romantic, devoted, fun, a little goofy, generous, trustworthy, caring, compassionate, well-traveled, spontaneous, educated, interesting and interested, civic minded, family oriented, friendly...if it weren't for the cigar smoking Gomez Addams is my ideal man. I'm not saying that's a good thing, I'm just saying it's weird that I just realized that.)

If you have, or are going to, travel through O'Hare keep your ears alert for the terror alert level PSA. Tell me if you hear Gomez Addams or if I'm hearing voices.

5:36 PM

Tuesday, January 13, 2009  
Throw a question to the Universe and an answer will come back to you. Of this I am certain.

I questioned the need for online social networking. A few days later a practical application was presented to me.

How about a story problem?! Yeah! That'll be fun! Who doesn't love story problems?!

Trillian is flying on a commercial jetliner from Midville, where she lives and works, to Lalaland, where she has family and friends. 2,000 miles and two time zones separate Midville and Lalaland. Trillian's flight is delayed by one hour. The airline gives status updates in 20 minute intervals. Trillian can call or email the person scheduled to pick her up at the airport in Lalaland, tell them she's going to be late, then call another person in Lalaland and ask them to pick her up since she'll be arriving late and the person originally going to pick her up has a schedule conflict with her now later arrival, and then call her boss to let her know her flight is delayed and can use the delay time to check in with a few clients; or, Trillian can log onto an online social networking site and update all affected people with one post and/or joint email.

Okay, that's cool. Convenient. But. A group email would achieve the same solution. A social networking site isn't necessary.

Trillian's flight finally boards and takes off for Lalaland. Two minutes after takeoff the smoke alarms on Trillian's plane begin chiming. The emergency lighting on her plane begins flashing. Flight attendants are seen rushing with fire extinguishers to the front of the airplane cabin. Five minutes into Trillian's flight the pilot announces the plane will be making an emergency landing, returning to Midville.

A pungent smell fills the cabin of Trillian's plane. The flight attendants demonstrate crash landing positions to the passengers and assign emergency exits row-by-row. The passengers all assume the crash landing position, fighting the effect of the centrifugal force of the hard banked turning descent the pilot is executing with the plane. The fire alarms and emergency lighting are still sounding and flashing. The pungent smell growing stronger and causing sneezing and coughing throughout the cabin.

The Midville airport and runways are now in view from the passengers' windows. Trillian notices a passenger across the aisle surreptitiously turning on their cell phone. Trillian, head tucked between crossed arms braced against the seat in front of her, hears a few "on" chimes from other cell phones on the plane. Trillian briefly wonders if the warning of cell phones interfering with the plane's navigation and communication equipment has any basis in fact. Trillian has long thought this is a lot of nonsensical hooey but firmly believes everyone should follow the flight rules if for no other reason than she doesn't want to be trapped on an airplane with the incessant phone conversations of fellow passengers blabbing away for the duration of the flight. Trillian hears the passenger across the aisle whispering into their cell phone, "I love you, okay? I love you. Just stay on the line with me until we're on the ground." Trillian ponders the person on the other end of that phone call and what's going through their mind. Trillian decides there and then that she will never make a "last phone call" from a potentially life threatening situation.

Trillian then thinks about social networking sites. Through the intensity of the emergency landing Trillian smiles. Trillian realizes there is a practical application for online social networking. If you're on a plane making an emergency landing because of an onboard fire, one quick text on Facebook could post a message to give all friends and family (and the entire world!) a parting thought, a last good-bye, a message to not bother to pick them up at the destination airport, or an explanation of what happened so the investigation team wouldn't have to wait to find the Black Box. A quick photo or two could also be snapped and posted.

The question is: Would texting a last good-bye, information or a photo from an emergency landing to a social networking site be a sick, mean-spirited thing to do, or a thoughtful last good-bye friends and family (and the entire world!) could share?



On the pro side, it certainly eases the burden of being the person on the other end of a desperate phone call from a burning airplane. It spreads that responsibility among all friends, family and colleagues (and the entire world!). And hey, the plane is on fire and making an emergency landing, you're sitting there in crash position holding your breath waiting for the plane to touch down and either burst into flames on impact...or not...what else are you going to do to ease the tension?

Pray? Yeah, I suppose. There's an old adage that everyone's religious on an airplane.

On the con side, it's kind of sick. And no matter how well intended, no matter how sincere, how loving or informative, the fact will always remain that the message was sent from a crashing/burning/whatever airplane. Could anyone find any real comfort from words (or photos) sent just before impact? The image of the friend or family member spending their last moments hurtling toward the ground feverishly texting a message doesn't evoke the serenity we hope for our loved one's final moments. And there's an element of an overly dramatic "good-bye, cruel world" to it.

And that's the main issue at the heart of the debate. You're on a plane, there's a fire in the cabin, you're making an emergency landing, you decide the communication/navigation warning about cell phones is a lot of nonsensical hooey and you have switched on your phone. You call your mother but she's not home, you ring your best friend and their line is busy, you call your boss and get their voice mail...so...you think, "Wait a sec, I'll post a message on Facebook!" What the heck do you say? And do you post it in status updates, a wall-to-wall, a comment or a message? Status updates could make for some interesting play-by-play action for those watching at home or in the office.

"Tricia McMillian's plane is on fire and she's hurtling toward the ground."
"Tricia McMillian can see the flashing lights of the emergency vehicles on the runway."
"Tricia McMillian's eyes are burning and she's short of breath."
"Tricia McMillian is feeling dizzy."
"Tricia McMillian had a feeling it would end this way and is pondering if listening to her intuition would prevented or merely prolonged the inevitable."
"Tricia McMillian apologizes for the preceding existential pondering."
"Tricia McMillian has found God and is curious if anyone knows any good prayers."
"Tricia McMillian thinks she's going to throw up."
"Tricia McMillian is wondering if she should bother using the barf bag."
"Tricia McMillian is bracing for impact."
"Tricia McMillian is sorry for any hurt she may have ever caused anyone in her entire life, even that kid on the hockey team who tormented her for 8 months straight, Tricia shouldn't have sought revenge of any kind, but especially not the kind of revenge she exacted on him."
"Tricia McMillian is forgiving everyone who caused her pain, even those who arrogantly think they've done nothing wrong. And stupid Beth Jacobsen. And the hiring manager who wouldn't give her a chance at a job Tricia knows she would have excelled. And anyone else who judged, dismissed or selfishly, wrongly accused and blamed her for their own shortcomings. All is forgiven."
"Tricia McMillian is insisting she is not bitter or resentful."
"Tricia McMillian loves her family and friends very much."
"Tricia McMillian is annoyed that she is going to miss the final episode of LOST."
"Tricia McMillian is laughing at the irony of her simultaneously being in a plane crash and annoyed that she's going to miss the final episode of LOST."
"Tricia McMillian is aware this is no laughing matter but what else is she supposed to text? 'Help, my plane is on fire and we're making a crash landing?!'"
"Tricia McMillian is reminding her mother that the details of her life insurance policy are in the closet safe, and the combination to the safe is 42241979."
"Tricia McMillian is reminding her mother that the arrogant prat in HR will try to say this wasn't a work-related flight and the extra payout for work-related death doesn't apply in this case, but this is partially a business related trip and therefore Tricia's mother is entitled to the extra payout on the life insurance policy."
"Tricia McMillian is begging everyone to offer one of the 'good' photos of her to news media."
"Tricia McMillian vows to haunt anyone who gives a bad photo of her to news media, Jennifer this means you and that wretched photo from last year's Christmas party and Kyle with the sophomore school year photo."
"Tricia McMillian is having more difficulty breathing."
"Tricia McMillian is glad her family will save money on cremation."
"Tricia McMillian is cra "

Either I'm a really boring person, or the thoughts people have when they're in a life threatening situation aren't as deep and insightful as authors and actors make them out to be. I think, in reality, final thoughts are rather mundane. The usual "I love yous" "I forgive yous" and lists of errands, unfinished business, combinations to safes, stuff necessary to tidy up the loose ends after the end.

Or maybe, with my blind faith and trust in pilots, I knew, deep down we were going to be okay. So my "final thoughts" weren't truly final. They were rudimentarily final. "Just in case" final thoughts.

But then, maybe that's what most people think. Maybe most people don't think "this is really it, the end."

Although when my burning plane landed and came to an abrupt stop on the runway, the relief in the cabin was palpable. There were some "Thank you Jesuses" and a lot of "Whew!s."

We weren't out of the burning woods yet, though. We still had an emergency evacuation to get through, and that burning smell was still getting more pungent by the second. Until I was sitting in an airport bar waiting for another flight with a cocktail I would not be relieved.

"Tricia McMillian survived an emergency landing."
"Tricia McMillian is watching emergency fire, ambulance and haz mat trucks race up runways toward her plane."
Welcoming Committee
"Tricia McMillian is waiting for the fire marshal to assess if we're a ball of fire hurtling toward the airport or just an over heated coffee pot cord in the First Class galley."
"Tricia McMillian is happy to announce she will not be deplaning via emergency exit slide."
"Tricia McMillian is noticing the firemen boarding the plane are really hot and she doesn't mean literally."
"Tricia McMilian is wondering if she would get in trouble for exaggerating her breathing and stomach discomfort in order to get mouth-to-mouth from one of the hot firemen."
"Tricia McMillian knows that her new-found God frowns upon that sort of opportunistic behavior and will banish her straight to Hell."
"Tricia McMillian just gave her best wide-eyed look of awe and respect and lust to one of the most handsome men she's ever seen in real life. Tricia is very surprised by her cliché reaction to the men who've come to save her and all the other passengers because until now she didn't know she had a thing for men with hero complexes but it's really not the uniform or situation but the fact that this guy is H-O-T hot!"
"Tricia McMillian is pulling up to the airport gate and will be deplaning via regular method."
"Tricia McMillian is a wuss because she doesn't have the guts to insist on 'medical help' from the hot fireman."
"Tricia McMillian is going to help a senior citizen off the plane."

I was surprised how many people refused the airline's plan of getting a new plane, reboarding and heading on our way to our original destination. Sure, it was scary for a few minutes. Sure, there was obviously something very wrong. But we all survived. We're all okay. We didn't even have to use the emergency exits and slide down those inflat-a-slides. The faulty plane was wheeled away by the fire department. Yes, it was an ordeal, but get right back up on the horse, right? And we did survive and life has continued and continued life means getting on planes and doing what we were doing before we were so rudely interrupted by an on board fire emergency.

"Tricia McMillian is ready to get back on a plane and on with her life."

"Tricia McMillian is not brave, she is practical. And maybe a little too trusting."

The in-air ordeal happened on a Friday evening. Monday morning I received an email from the PR department of the airline. He apologized profusely and gave me bonus air miles and an increased frequent flyer level status. Apparently he assumes I am practical and trusting and will continue to fly his airline. He presumes that I'll have cause to use my new elite status to rub shoulders with the air travel noblesse oblige in the noblesse oblige air travel lounge. He's right. They do know why I fly. I don't have a choice. I work, work requires travel. I have family and friends all over the globe, seeing them requires travel. I can live paranoid and afraid to fly, or I can get on the next plane out to my destination.

I talked to a fellow passenger later who said he spent the whole time making deals with God. "If you get us out of this alive I promise I'll be a better person" sort of thing. He told me this was a life altering, life affirming experience for him. He was hopped up pretty high on post-traumatic stress relief.

Maybe he really did find God, or his way back to God and onto an altered course of life. Maybe that experience will be a catalyst for a new direction in his life. I'm not mocking that, I mock not. Epiphanies do happen. Before and after stories from my little emergency situation microcosm could be interesting. I wish we had the opportunity for a reunion special a year from now. Compare notes on the affect our shared brush with in-flight tragedy had on us - or not. But how could I get in touch with all those people on the flight? It was a jumbo jet and there were hundreds of us, most of us complete strangers. Apart from the airline, no one has access to the flight manifest. How could we all find each other?

Facebook!

7:20 PM

 
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