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, September 02, 2011  
There's a popular theme on blogs that I refuse to succumb. Okay, there are a lot of popular themes on blogs. Most are kind of trite devices, thoughtful, but just sort of, well, overdone. And that would be okay if it weren't for the fact that the authors seem to feel they are the originator of the theme/device. I don't think it's my job to tell them they're cliché. But. They're cliché. I know. There are a lot of so-overused-it's-cliché themes floating around, especially in the the Blogosphere. (That's an ironic joke, I know Blogosphere is overused and cliché. Spare me the email.) The trite, overused device to which I am referring started, I suspect, with Back to the Future or Mitch Albom or Bill Bryson or that "Last Lecture" guy. Yeah. That sounds about right.

You know the one. "If I could go back in time and talk to 7th grade/10th grade/14-year-old/college freshman me, I would tell me ____________."

I know. I can see your eyes rolling and hear the weary sigh. I know. Trust me, I know.

Maintain that attitude. Keep it clearly in focus.

It's back to school time. I used to love back to school. Because I was a dork and I loved school. Well. I loved the education process, the learning part of school. The social aspects...not so much. Nonetheless, I always get a little misty-eyed this time of year when the displays of Crayolas and folders and #2 pencils and protractors hit the store aisles. I hear a little voice in my head whining, "I wanna go back to school! I want a new protractor and a folder with an illustration of kittens on it and can I have the box of 64 crayons please pretty please?" New school years and new school supplies hold so much promise. Who wouldn't miss that annual opportunity to feel that back-to-school-with-new-supplies feeling?!


The sorting, purging and otherwise disseminating of stuff from my parents' house continues. It's sort of an ongoing saga. But. We're making progress. Still, stuff keeps appearing from nooks and crannies. I thought all the photos surely must have been unearthed, sorted and divvied up amongst the subjects of the photos. But, nope, my mother found an envelope recently, aptly timed. The contents of which struck fear in my heart. And probably will in yours, too.

Yep. I'm betting I can strike fear in your heart with two words.

School. Photos.

I think there's a rule that school photos have to bring out the worst in kids. And I'm not just talking about me. I know some pretty darned adorable kids who look absolutely horrific in their school photos.

Even parents hate these stupid photos. My mother gave them such little cred that she kept them filed away brown envelopes so as not to get them entwined with the "real" photos. Until I was about 6-and-a-half I was actually kind of cute. You know, in that generic little girl way that most little kids are cute. I'm not saying it wouldn't have been impossible to take a bad photo of me, but, you would have to work a little harder to take a bad photo of me. So the school photographer who snapped the shots of me those first couple years of school deserves some kind of credit for managing to make a mostly normal looking little girl look like a) she just got out of a long, difficult stint in a chemo ward and b) just had her first taste of Mountain Dew. Yes. I look sick and crazed. And that's just the 6-year-old school photo. They get progressively worse.

I knew better than to stroll down that particular memory lane. I try really hard to choose to dwell on the positive aspects of my school years. I had some outstanding teachers. I learned a lot. I read some great books.

But school photos...there's no escaping the reality in those horrible photos.

The one positive thing about those horrible school photos is that they unify us. They are a great equalizer. We all have horrific school photos. Even the cool kids, the cute girls, the jock boys...no one escapes the tainted view from the school photo camera lens.

When I was in high school I wrote a short story about school photos. (I know this because I found it a few months ago amongst a folder full of essays I wrote in high school. I think my parents were keeping them in case they ever needed evidence to give the authorities.) It's not great literature, but it's not bad, either. Not surprisingly, I was clearly watching a lot of Night Gallery reruns at the time I wrote the story. The gist of the story is that the cameras they use for school photos are specially built for the purpose of school photos. They have a "truth-telling, soul-baring" lens that, through a complicated system of thermography and retina polygraphology (little did I know what the future held for retina scans...) the lens snaps the photo at the precise ultramillisecond that the kid feels insecure or anxious, thus producing those horrible school photos. And the school photographers are actually secret agents working for a secret bureau of the government working to make sure students are humiliated at least once per school year. The only way to ensure this happens is to take really crappy photos of every student. Crappy photos that expose the inner demons of the children. The cameras expose the ugly truths about the kids and then even the most popular kids suffer a small setback in their self-esteem in the form of a school photo.

Of all the craptacular school photos the junior high school years are universally agreed to be the worst of the worst. I've heard that school photos are "better" these days, what with PhotoShop and digital cameras and decent lighting, but I dunno. It would take some serious PhotoShopping to hide the horror of the junior high school years. And even if they are better, I wonder if better is really a good thing. The one thing everyone has in common with everyone else is: Horrible, laughable, atrocious junior high school school photographs.

Usually taken in a make-shift studio set up at one end of the cafeteria, you can smell the peas and mashed potatoes from a box wafting in the atmosphere of the school photos. Even in the happiest, smiliest, cutest junior high school school photos you can cut the pubescent social tension with a plastic knife. Throw in bad haircuts (styling and styling products are still a mystery at that age), teeth in flux - either mid or pre-orthodontia, not-a-girl/boy-yet-not-a-woman/man bodies awkwardly clothed in garments that are either too young (from the kids' department) or too old (from the junior/young mens department) for junior high school and you have a recipe for photo disaster. But we all share that same disaster. I also came across a year book from my junior high school. Even the popular girls, the pretty ones, the cute ones, even those girls' junior high school photos were awful. I know some of those girls were truly pretty in real life, a few were even in the beautiful range and that's not just my skewed memory. I went to school with some kids who were the recipients of some good DNA. But looking at their junior high school photos...well...I could never prove their good DNA to you.

You're thinking about your junior high school photos now, aren't you? It's okay. They're all bad. Truly. And that's a good thing. It's a humbling thing we all share. In my high school short story I called it The Humiliator. Those photos keep egos in check. No matter how pretty or successful you end up in life, there is a junior high school photo to keep you humble. I alluded to a book I'd recently read, The Picture of Dorian Gray. (Teachers like it when you allude to books or lessons you previously studied. It makes them feel proud and worthwhile and almost always scores extra credit.) Unlike the picture of Dorian Gray, these photos don't age. But like the picture of Dorian Gray, they provoke a lot of anxiety when viewed by the subject as they travel through their life. (If there were any lingering doubts as to why I didn't have a boyfriend or go to prom in high school that last paragraph banished them.)

So, yeah. That envelope of school photos. Ugh. Mine are awful. Really and truly awful. My 14-year-old school photo is far and above the worst of my school photo repertoire.

And here comes the cliché theme: If I could go back in time and tell that gangly, dorky, orthodontiaed girl 14-year-old girl in the photo something, what would I say?

That girl still believes, fervently, that good grades and a nice personality matter. That girl honestly believes that none of the stupid stuff that happens at school matters. She thinks college will be great (okay, she was right about that) and getting a good education will pave the way to a successful career and once she's out of school men, not boys, will appreciate her intelligence and humor and sincerity and career success.

Do I sit her down and tell her the truth? That right there, at 14-years-old, braces on her teeth, a couple errant curls that she hasn't figured out how to tame (this was the mousse era, so, give her a pass on not knowing about proper styling products), a gangly 5'11" body and a smartass response to any question posed to her, that she's wrong? That even though college will be great, she's absolutely dead wrong about the rest of it?

Do I tell her that she'll never really learn how to clothe her 5'11" worth of arms and legs, and worse, somewhere around her 18th birthday she's going to wake up with suddenly enormous boobs that will further complicate her wardrobe issues? And do I try to warn her that those boobs will garner attention from boys...boys who will objectify her and care only about her tits?

Do I tell her to stop watching NOVA and endless reruns of The Undersea World of Jacques Cousteau and The Twilight Zone and The Muppet Show and Dr. Who because it's solidifying her dork status? (Or that the very fact that she has a "favorite doctor" is disturbing for reasons far beyond the salacious surface ones? (Shout out to the geeks who know that to which I am referring.)) Do I tell her the nickname her brother slapped on her will stick and thanks to a little BBC production of a Douglas Adams book she will be known outside the confines of her family and throughout the Universe as Trillian? (I'm pretty sure that would alternately humor and horrify that 14-year-old.)

Do I tell her there's some good music ahead, she has that to look forward to, but that there's a lot of crap music in the future, too? Do I tell her that somehow, some way, Mick Jagger, Paul McCartney and Steven Tyler are inexplicably still recording and touring all those years into the future? Do I tell her that very shortly a guy in Seattle is going to change her life and change the world and then break the world's heart when he kills himself? Do I tell her that in spite of how bizarre it sounds to her now, her parents really do have some fantastic albums and she should pay more attention to them because she's hearing some of the most phenomenal music ever recorded right there in her living room from her parents' embarrassingly out of style hi-fi?

Do I tell her to think less and put out more? Would she heed that advice? I kinda doubt it. Do I tell her that tequila is not her drink and to avoid it at all cost and steer her toward vodka, thus sparing her some painful hangovers and a really bad grade on her Business Finance 202 mid-term exam? Would she take that advice? I kinda doubt it. At 14 she's not aware of the wonders of alcohol or the desire to numb the mind and hence to imbibe. "Mindnumbing? Why would I want to numb my mind?" she'd say. Remember, she honestly believes The Future is going to be okay so she can't conceive of a reason why she'd want to escape it, what with that man who loves her for her personality and that great career and everything.

Do I tell her that, yes, she falls in love but gets left almost at the altar? And that yes, she has a career and then loses it and spends 2 years unable to secure employment of any kind? And that she will learn that tequila is not her drink but there are plenty of solid reasons why she wants to numb her mind into oblivion by any means possible? 

Most people ponder going back and telling their younger self that it'll all be okay. That they turn out okay. That the future isn't great, but it's not awful, either.

But what if the future is awful? Would you, should you, tell your younger self that their future sucks? I suspect most people are saying, "Yes!!! I need to warn younger me so that they can change things, make a different, better future!!!"

I thought so, too. Until I looked at that horrible school photo. The only thing that girl has going for her is idealism and hope.

She's very aware. She knows she's a dork. But she's okay with that. She's purposely using this time to do the things she enjoys because she doesn't care about impressing the kids at school or being popular. In a few short years this will all be over and she'll be in college and life will be a lot better. She knows being the only oboist in orchestra is not exactly making her Miss Popular and that flirtation with the cello isn't helping her cause. But she worked her fingers off getting to first chair clarinet so she could take up oboe, too, and she loves it and she sees the opportunity to learn cello as a gateway to a Stratocaster. She knows no teenager has any business reading Ulysses but mentioning James Joyce in reference to the Odyssey during college interviews could serve her well. Because she's heard metaphoring Homer in reference to the education journey impresses academic deans. And she's playing the game. And who knows? Maybe one day Ulysses will speak to her on more significant level and at least then she won't have to trudge through it again. She knows taking those AP classes isn't going to get her a date to prom, but she'd rather get into a good college with like-minded students for four years than go to a stupid prom for a few hours with a bunch of kids she doesn't identify with or even like. She knows being the president of Language Club Alliance and the closing argument debater on the Lit Wit team are nails in her peer acceptance coffin, but she's politicking her way into those positions of after school club power anyway, purposefully.

Do you really think a girl like that is going to listen to a woman like me? No. She will not. She has goals and is taking steps to achieve them. She's doing things the right way. So it'll all work out okay.

But even if she would listen to me and heed my advice, what's she going to change and how's she doing to change it? Quit band and stop studying and get a decent haircut? Marry the first guy she can trap and capture, regardless of...everything? Just grab a man, any man? Would that really change her life? Wouldn't she still be unfulfilled? Differently - for different reasons - but still unfulfilled nonetheless.

So no. I wouldn't go back in time and tell younger me anything. I want her to have hope and idealism and dreams and goals. Because I know that girl very well, and without those hopes, idealism, dreams and goals she'd be a teenage suicide statistic. And I don't want the parents of that 14-year-old girl to have to deal with that.

No. I wouldn't go back in time and tell younger me anything. I want her to enjoy her back-to-school feelings of giddy anticipation. 

No. I wouldn't go back in time and tell younger me anything about the future.

I wouldn't believe me anyway.

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12:25 AM

 
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