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

 
Friday, May 08, 2009  
So, we have this free commuter paper, The RedEye. It’s a daily rag filled mostly with advertising and a few news lite pieces. Not articles. Pieces – a few words about such heavy hitting topics as Kim Kardashian’s butt and the best bars in Wrigleyville. Occasionally they try to pretend they’re a real newspaper and run a big “in-depth investigative report” on something like parking meters or the spending on L station upgrades or lack of pothole repairs in the city. But even those pieces are written at about a 5th grade comprehension level. I understand the point of the commuter paper is to give commuters something to read while they’re trapped on a bus or train. I understand that the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and even our own Tribune fill the niche for real news, real reporting, real depth, real “we’re not going to insult your intelligence” writing. I get that. The lite commuter rags aren’t trying to compete, they’re just offering an easy on the brain alternative for morning commute caffeine challenged minds. (Hence (I believe) the name RedEye) And if The RedEye’s advertising revenue helps the Tribune stay afloat, then hey, rock on, I’m all for it.

But. Ugh. I picked one up today and I vowed the same thing I vowed the last time I picked one up: Never, ever again. My IQ dropped 10 points in the 8 minutes I wasted “reading” it. Drew Peterson’s arrest got a full page. Well. ¾ of a page (including a large photo of some guys milling around in what I assume is Drew Peterson’s garage). There’s a side-bar timeline and a sub-article with quotes from Kathleen Savio’s and Stacy Peterson’s families. Yes, I want Peterson arrested and for once I’m actually thrilled that Illinois has the death penalty. But. The article offers very little – less than what I heard in the 90 second report on the morning news, in fact.

And then I continued on through the RedEye and discovered something truly newsworthy. Something so shocking I am appalled that other news agencies aren't reporting this. Thank goodness I picked up a RedEye this morning! In case you haven’t heard the news I’ll tell you. Sometimes people judge other people, dates especially, by the songs on their iPod. I know! I know! OMG!!! And the in-depth report tells about how iTunes doesn’t keep secrets. Those recently played and most played tabs can reveal a lot about the owner of the iPod. I better delete that Scissor Sisters song ASAP!!!! Why isn’t this on the front page of the New York Times? Holy crap, this is BIG news!!!! Great investigative reporting there, RedEye. This is so new and important that it even has a name: Playlistism.

Sure, I mock. (by the way, I’ve been threatening it for a long time but I’m thinking of really changing the name of the blog to iMock) And this is an extreme example of the ridiculousness masquerading as news or a feature story. But still. C’mon. Unless you’re my friend’s great-aunt Dory who’s been in and out of a coma for the past 10 years, you know that iPods and iTunes reveal all. And if you’re trusting or dumb enough to let a date or your snarky friend’s husband have access to your iPod or iTunes then you know to be prepared for the consequences. My friends have been teasing me for two years about my love for Better Luck Next Time because I let one of my friends burn some cds from my iTunes. As he was holding the keys to the kingdom he abused the power. Not only did he tell my friends about some of my stupid songs, he blogged about it. Repeatedly. My iTunes has become a regular feature and subject of ridicule on his blog. Whatever. I have no shame. S’all good.

Sorry. I digress. The point is that this article isn’t even anecdotally interesting. It’s not even blog worthy. It’s old, it’s stale. That article might have been funny or interesting or at least snicker inducing 7 or 8 years ago when iTunes was newer and fewer people used it – or were aware of all the features. Kudos to the article, though, they did give passing mention to the well-known and oft lampooned fact that music collections have long been a source of concern and insight. (Best. Example. Ever: Backyard scene in Shaun of the Dead when the guys debate which LPs to hurl at the attacking zombies. 'Sign o' the Times'? Definitely not. The 'Batman' soundtrack? Throw it.) You used to have to gain access to a person’s home or car to see their cd (or album/8-track) collection. Typically you were past a first or second date before the entire collection, in all it’s glory, shame and weirdness was revealed. Now, with iPods, you can find out on the first date if their taste in music is a deal breaker. (For the record, I’m willing to delete the Scissor Sisters for the sake of a man. And maybe that’s the better, at least more current angle – “What bands or songs would you delete in order to impress a date?” Or "which LPs would you hurl at attacking zombies" for the vinyl people.)

I have a lot of respect and sympathy for the newspaper industry. It’s gotta be hard to compete with cutting edge news like that. And sadly, I mock not. I’m sure loads of people read that iTunes “warning” story this morning and thought it was relevant or interesting. They probably sat there smugly thinking, “I do that. I sneak a peak at a date’s iPod and judge them on their music. I’m not alone, they wrote an article about it so it’s okay, I’m hip and current and that’s what people do, see? There’s even an article about it.”

I don’t see credible newspapers as dinosaurs who didn’t keep up with technology, I see them as a candle making factory at the dawn of electricity. It’s not their fault Al Gore invented the interweb. And in many (most) cases, newspapers or the main reporting agencies, were among the first to jump on the web and post news releases and launch websites. Long before you could buy your Gap chinos online (1997) you could check in with API and Reuters. Back in ’01 most of us first heard about the 9/11 attacks via online news”papers.” We were just getting into work and checking out our morning news when the first reports and photos hit the news sites. In ’01 it was already normal for us to go to online news sites, part of our daily routine.

However, some of us, ahem, remain selective about the news and reporters we “really” read. Sure, I hop all over the place online, I read all kinds of “news” and articles. Some of it very interesting and well written, but much of: Utter, intelligence insulting crap. Big Foot investigative reporting not-withstanding, you have to dig through a lot of sensationalized lowest common denominator mainstream celebrity-heavy drivel with no real substance or significance.

I still subscribe to newspapers. Call me a neanderthalic boob. I like reading a physical newspaper. Especially on Sundays. And before you dismiss me as an untrendy, tree-raping fogey best left behind by evolution, let me just pose this question: Have you bought or picked up a People, In-Touch, Okay! or Us? How about a porn or sports magazine? Yes? Back at you, you untrendy, tree-raping fogey best left behind by evolution. Celebrity gossip, porn and sports sites are the highest hitting and most prolific subjects of websites. There’s absolutely no need for those physical magazines to exist. How are they staying in business while so many newspapers are folding? I think it’s a recipe with a lot of ingredients. But from a marketing perspective I can provide this: Many of the celebrity, porn and sports websites provide some “news” or features, just enough to tease and titillate would-be readers into buying the magazine for more photos or more “in-depth” interviews.

This would never fly with real news stories. In fact it would be not only be silly but unethical. Harken back to 9/11 again. If the news sites said, Enquirer style, “New York under attack!! Commercial jetliners hijacked!! Buy our afternoon edition for more details,” with a photo of a jet crashing into the WTC, we would have not only been scared and angry at the newspapers, but we would have potentially been in danger. Later, we could have protested or even had a good legal team sue the news sites by twisting the “Imminent lawless action” clause to suit our purposes. Telling us just enough to scare us witless but not enough to make safe decisions. Taking the legal threat out of it, journalists, credible news sources, “should” operate under a code of ethics. Their job is to inform the public. Just the facts. Investigate the issue, get the facts, report them, and let us, the readers take it from there. Obviously some newspapers have biases – political and otherwise – and that’s always source of contention among warring newspapers and readers. Me? I’m a Tribune kind of gal. I’m not always crazy about the slant of some of the political writers, but, generally I’m down with the reporting and choice of stories covered by the Tribune.. And the writing is, well, generally better, than other papers in Chicago. Sometimes the writers at the Tribune use big words and complex grammar structure. It requires more than a 5th grade reading level to follow along. Call me an elitist snob. Go ahead. I don’t care. If high school level vocabulary and reading comprehension skills make me an elitist snob, then I’m guilty and proud of it. I will pick up the Sun-Times…sometimes. I wrote a Haiku about it when I first moved here. Anyone remember that?

Newspaper arrives.
Thunk of Tribune at the door.
Sometimes the Sun-Times.

I know! I know! Why didn’t I win some sort of prize for that? Oh yeah. Right. I keep forgetting. I’m not actually brilliant in real life.

So, anyway. I’m saddened by so much of what’s happening to industries and companies and the talented, hard working people who are ensnared in company demises. I can’t even speak about Detroit. The pain is too difficult, too deep, too layered, too complex, too sad for me. I love Detroit. I love the people of Detroit. I love the auto industry. (Yes, even Chrysler.) And it just: Hurts. It hurts. Obviously I have deep personal attachments – family and friends – affected by what’s “happening” to the auto industry in Detroit. I’ve lived a lot of places, lived and learned in places around the globe, but Detroit is home. I always have one foot in Detroit. So. That whole thing is disturbing me. Deeply. I shed tears over it. If you’ve spent more than a few days in Detroit you might understand – Detroiters are a breed to themselves. There are slackers and loud mouthed nincompoops, yes. Yes. We have Madonna and Eminem and Michael Moore. But we also have Aretha and Iggy and Mitch Albom. And that’s the Tau of Detroit – don’t ever, ever try to generalize or compartmentalize it. Heck, don’t try to understand it. Just roll with it.

And then there’s the newspaper industry. Talented, intelligent people. Observing, investigating and reporting. I mean, news reporting, good news reporting matters. I have nothing but sympathy for the industry. I get irate and upset at the pervading dumbing down of society at large. People care more about People than people. I was at an ‘80s themed event a few weeks ago (don’t ask). You know how sometimes you hear a song you thought you knew, but suddenly it’s like hearing it for the first time? Yeah. Let’s talk Depeche Mode for a moment. I know, I know. Speaking of secrets best left kept in the privacy of iTunes. But here’s the thing: Maybe it was the couple glasses of cheap red wine, but when I heard New Dress at that event I was shocked at the relevance and poignancy to the world right now. That song was written 20 years ago. Nothing’s changed. (Except Princess Diana. She’s changed a lot since then.) But other than that, things have gone along on the same course and are now worse. I’m not calling Depeche Mode genius prophets of doom. But. I do have to give them more credit than I have in the past. Perhaps you’re unfamiliar with the song or lyrics.


“Jet airliner shot from sky
Famine horror, millions die
Earthquake terror figures rise

Princes Di is wearing a new dress”

In black townships fires blaze
“Prospects better” premier says
“Within sight are golden days”

Princess Di is wearing a New Dress”

Substitute “Lil Kim’s boob slips out of her dress” in the Princess Di line and voila! headlines ripped from the pages in 2009.

The duality of social commentary about celebrity obsessed society and the newspapers’ feeding the obsession delivered in a melodic pop song popular at dance clubs is inspired. Dance away your cares to a tune pointing out the tragedy of the demise of intelligence and awareness. But it is a sad comment on society in general. And the newspaper industry. Good, credible reporters are “out there” observing, reporting, risking their lives to tell the world the facts, to make us aware, to give us information to present to our elected officials…to make us concerned and care about what’s happening in our world. But do “we” really care? Not so much. Collectively, not so much. Collectively we’re a generation away from the future portrayed in Idiocracy. (Mike Judge: Real Man of Genius, Prophet of Doom)

Newspapers, real newspapers offering real news, news we should care about very much, are disappearing faster than you can say entertainment tonight. But go to any grocery and every checkout line will be strewn with celebrity “news” magazines.

“But Trillian,” you say, “I get my news online.” Okay, yeah, I know, me, too. But. Be honest with yourself. Do you go news websites and read the articles or do you skim through the headlines and only go to the links that catch your interest? Again, nothing “wrong” with that. I do it, too. And no, I don’t read every article in the newspaper. But. As I read the paper, and flip through the pages, I see and read all the headlines to all the stories. Especially in Section 1, the daily local, national and world stories. Do I really want to read an in-depth report on Russia’s issues with NATO? Well, probably not an in-depth report, but I certainly want to know if something’s brewing there and what in the world is going on in Georgia and how that relates to Russia’s intentions regarding NATO. If I hadn’t read the newspaper, Section 1, and seen that article I would have been oblivious. I went to Reuters.com and yes, yes, there’s an article about it but you’d have to know to look for it. You can’t Google or search box a subject or news story if you don’t know you need to seek information. And that’s the problem with online news. You, me, we, tend to look at the highlights or links that catch our interest and/or Google or search box topics that are of interest to us. Did the Wings win last night? What is Drew Peterson’s bail? Is it going to rain tomorrow? (Yes, $20 million, no.) And along the way we get diverted. One link leads to another, and another, and the next thing you know you’re looking at the Moist Towelett online museum. Russia? Georgia? NATO? Yeah…not so much. The opportunity for diversion is HUGE online. In a newspaper? Not really. Apart from advertising or the op-ed page, Section 1, at least, is current, relevant news. It forces you to stay focused on, well, the news at hand.

I’m sad about a US without newspapers. Sad from a nostalgic standpoint, but more from a “we’re getting really dumb” standpoint. Stuff that matters doesn’t as much anymore. I know we’re not all apathetic. I know I’m not alone in my sorrow, fear and dread. But there aren’t enough of us to keep the presses rolling. There aren’t enough of us to keep the stupid links off the real news sites. In the war between relevant news and celebrity gossip the news that has a real and lasting impact on our lives is losing battles all over the internet. The real news is there, but it’s repressed by celebrity fodder and pointless, shallow “features” about, well, nothing actually relevant. (Want to know what every single girl needs? If you’re expecting big insight and centuries hidden secrets revealed, don’t hold your breath. The big news is that single women should have at the ready a sexy outfit, a good haircut, friends, confidence, a financial plan, a willingness to travel and lust for adventure and her own stereo. Ummmmm, this is news? This is advice? This is why brain cells are dying. If you’re over the age of 11 and aren’t being raised Amish you probably already figured out that you “need” those things, single or otherwise.)

So, reporters, real reporters, I salute you. And on behalf of the human race I apologize for our collective stupidity. I hate that your industry is suffering. I hate what it will mean for our future. I hate that our human brethren are apathetic, lame, lazy and have such short attention spans. I wish I knew how to fix it. I wish I had some good ideas instead of contempt and loathing. For what it’s worth, I’m still buying your papers and I will continue to do so until the bitter end.

12:34 PM

Wednesday, May 06, 2009  
Step 1: Gain a lot of weight. The kind of weight that takes years to amass – 300 – 350 pounds. This requires diligence and determination, but those extra Big Macs and triple whip mochachocalottas will all be worth it in the end.

Step 2: Procure 1994 era Sony Discman.

Step 3: Procure cheapest earphones possible for the Sony Discman – dollar stores are the perfect place to find these.

Step 4: Procure soundtrack to “Classic Drum Solos and Drum Battles.”

Step 5: Eschew all cleaning products for 7 days. No soap, no shampoo, no after shave, no hand soap, no laundry detergent, no toothpaste, no mouthwash, not even a moist towelette.

Step 6: Take an early morning run. With your added girth you will work up a good sweat in no time at all, but soldier on and get really, really sweaty. In your unwashed state of being you’ll get really ripe.

Step 7: Procure overly sweet hazelnuttamochachocawhipochino in paper cup.

Step 8: Go to a crowded L train platform during the morning commute.

Step 9: Wait for an overcrowded train to arrive – one heading toward downtown to ensure more passengers and more crowds at each subsequent stop.

Step 10: Push through the crowds boarding the train. This will be easy because you’ll be sweaty and smelly and people will quickly move out of your way. You’ll be like Moses parting the Red Sea. Splash overly sweet hazelnuttamochachocawhipochino on other passengers.

Step 11: Scan the train car for an empty seat. But not just any empty seat. You want the seat available next to the woman dressed in corporate dress code business attire, the woman who is obviously on her way to an important meeting or job interview.

Step 12: Shoulder your way past the women boarding and eyeing that available seat. Splash overly sweet hazelnuttamochachocawhipochino on anyone who gets in your way.

Step 13: Plunk your sweaty girth into the seat. Be sure to smoosh your new seat-mate’s hip and thigh as you do this. You’re essentially going to be sitting on her lap anyway, so assert your size and weight. Think: Alpha Dog. You want to dominate. You want to pin down, subvert and ensnare your new seat-mate. Spill overly sweet hazelnuttamochachocawhipochino on your seatmate as you plunk down into the seat.

Step 14: Increase volume of drum solo CD. Headphones set at 11.

Step 15: Fold your arms across your stomach girth such that your elbows rest on your seatmate’s boob.

Step 16: Slurp overly sweet hazelnuttamochachocawhipochino then lick the splashes on the side of the cup. Summon your inner Gene Simmons. Chicks dig big, long, fat tongues. Slowly, tantalizingly, tease your seatmate with your tongue slurping/licking prowess. She might wince or even give you a dirty look but she's just playing the coy coquette. Inside she's burning with desire. Or rage. Either way you've invoked emotion. S'all good. There's a thin line between love and hate.

Step 17: Commence air drumming. Feel the rhythm. Be the rhythm. You are Keith Moon. Nevermind your overly sweet hazelnuttamochachocawhipochino. If it splashes and spills, so what? Did Keith Moon ever worry about spilling anything? No, he did not. And nor do you.

Step 18: When your victim/seatmate attempts to leave reach out and hit your air cymbal thus blocking her departure and further spraying your sweat and scent on her. Along with overly sweet hazelnuttamochachocawhipochino.

Step 19: Bask in the knowledge that the scent of your BO and overly sweet hazelnuttamochachocawhipochino will require a decontamination chamber to remove from your victim/seatmate. Rest assured that decontamination chambers are not readily available to most office workers. Your scent will stay with your seatmate all day. And you will live forever in infamy as one of the most annoying people to ever use public transportation.

12:41 PM

 
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