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

 
Tuesday, July 03, 2012  
And so, another one bites the dust.

Nothing is forever, things change, evolution happens, people change. 

There was no confrontation. No grand pronouncement. No soliloquy. No scene.

And no tears.
It was more of a silent solemn vow to myself to, at all times, especially in the heat of the most hurtful arguments to: Accept. Forgive. Heal. Peace. Love.

I don't hate my friend, I don't think of her as a "former friend," I don't with her any ill-will or think any less of her.

We've drifted so far apart that we are not just in different orbits, we're in different galaxies.

I know this is just life. I've been through this a lot in the past 10 years. I've "lost" a lot of friends due to drifting into different life orbits. There were situations that hurt - careless comments made that hurt my feelings - but I'm reasonably certain they were unintentional. When you're friends you get used to not filtering your comments, so naturally at some point someone is going to say or do something without thinking about their friend's feelings and someone gets hurt. Unintentionally, but the offended party typically thinks, "Well, that's very telling...perhaps this person isn't the friend I thought they were..."

Having been through this a lot, I've been on both sides, I know it boils down to two choices: Overlook, forgive and forget (truly forget it). Or: A friend breakup.

I'm going to say something that will probably cause some scoffing and a few spit takes.

In real life I am not a dramatic person. (I vent my drama on the blog) In real life, in group social situations, I am usually the quiet one who occasionally delivers a couple lines of insight or humor at a poignant moment. Even with my closest friends I tend to be more of a listener than a talker. (Again, I release my pent-up words on the blog and elsewhere.)

My real life friends would be shocked and surprised to know how words assault me and won't leave me alone until they force me to exorcise them in written format. A few friends might not be surprised by this, but they would be surprised at the volume and frequency of words. Sometimes I feel like I'm a closet addict. If my friends ever stumbled across my journals or blogs they'd be all, "I had no idea Trillian had a *word problem.* I mean, I knew she wrote, but no more than the rest of us...you think you know someone and then you find out they've been keeping this kind of secret. I just feel bad that I didn't recognize the signs...maybe I could have intervened, got her some help..."

You get the point. I'm not much of a talker. And when I do talk I try to focus my words on purposeful or positive topics - it's either focused for work, or, friendly conversation with family and friends. I have very little use for gossip or snarky comments about friends or people I don't even know. (The amount of conversation spent on what celebrities wear or who they date fills me with wonder. I think of it as verbal garbage. I haven't seen A Thousand Words, but I like the premise of choosing your words wisely.)

There's an old saying I don't hear much lately (no pun intended), "Lend me your ears." Olde tymme orators used to say it at the beginning of a speech. My mother still says it. It's an outmoded phrase, made even more outmoded by texting, Facebook and Twitter. Prior to "all that" we had to actually talk, use our voices, to communicate. We had to engage people in conversation. And in return, they had to lend their ears or tune us out or walk away from the conversation. But, at the start of a conversation, there was a sort of agreement: I'm speaking to you and you are listening. When I am finished speaking it will be your turn to speak and my turn to listen. Hence, polite speakers would preface their speeches with, "If you'll lend me your ears for a moment..." and polite friends/family would preface a conversation wherein advice or insight was being asked, "Can you lend me your ear..." prefaced the conversation and let the other person know that their council was requested.

The phrase probably died out in the '60s, free love, free speech, protests, all that kind of makes politely asking someone to listen a pointless request. Back then it was about demands, not requests, and asking someone to lend their ears probably sounded too much like the establishment. Sure, The Beatles used it for a famous intro, but they made Ringo sing it. Think about that for minute. Death knell to the phrase. Except for people like my mother who don't go around expecting everyone to drop what they're doing and listen to them. When my mother needs help sorting out something, she'll say, "Can you lend me an ear for a moment..." Or, more frequently, when someone is going through a rough time she'll advise, "Just be there for them. Lend an ear."

I suppose that's why I'm more of a listener than a talker. That lesson was taught at my mother's knee and those types of lessons are difficult to unlearn.

But.

It's a good lesson.

A lot of times people just need someone who will really listen to them. It helps people feel understood and the hope is acceptance will naturally follow.

And that takes me back to the recent situation with my friend and her anger at me for not accepting a job as a janitor at her husband's company. (And once again, with feeling, the job was never actually offered to me. And, with more feeling, no, I am not above janitorial work.)

It's easy to blame my friend and her (albeit perversely skewed) view of the world. But after giving this a lot of thought, I'm reasonably certain I bear a large amount of culpability in this situation. I have not talked much about my problems. I haven't asked her to lend her ears. She knows I'm unemployed and I assume the rest is implied.

But.

For people like her, people whose life struggles don't extend beyond choosing where to buy a second home or which private school is best for their children, it's unrealistic to assume the nitty gritty of unemployment and financial hardship (and the depression, anxiety, sorrow and fear that go with it) are implied.

Even when we were both single, she led a somewhat charmed life. Two months on her first job, her manager became terminally ill and she was tasked with handling much of the higher ranking manager's work. Kind of unfair, but, within a year she was promoted which led to her going to a conference which led to her meeting a senior partner at another company who offered her a job where she met her husband. Her husband from a wealthy family. She's never known what it's like to have to eat rice and beans or Ramen noodles or water down shampoo to make the it last longer or wash her underwear in the sink with handsoap or use the cheap toilet paper that after a couple days it chaffs so badly it hurts to use it. And I'm happy for her. I wouldn't wish that on anyone.

But.

My life and situation are so far removed from her life and situation that assuming that she understands even one facet of what I'm going through is preposterous of me. I haven't asked her to lend her ears to me, I haven't told her any details about my reality. Mainly because I don't want to dwell on it. It is what it is. Talking about it isn't going to change it. It will only worry or depress the listener. And what's the point of that? But. I can't blame her for not understanding the depth of my situation and the depth of feelings I have as a result.

I suppose if I'd always been more of a talker then I would be more talkative about this, too. But that's a moot point because I'm not more of a talker, especially about my problems. If I think someone can offer insight or advice (perhaps because they've gone through something similar, or because they are naturally insightful or wise) then I will ask them to lend their ears. But none of my friends have ever gone through what I've gone through. I don't think they even know anyone other than me who's gone through what I've gone through.

This isn't the first time this has occurred to me. When I was dumped by HWNMNBS a few of my friends timidly said, in a funereal tone, "I don't know what to say, I've never known anyone this has happened to..." and they went on to fumble through well-intended but somewhat offensive comments. When I was mugged and assaulted? Same thing. When my foot injury left me scarred and in constant pain? Same thing. When my dad contracted a rare staph infection? Same thing. When I was laid off? Same thing. It's all very polite, "Oh, that's horrible! I'm so sorry for you. I've never known anyone who was dumped by their fiance/mugged/disabled/left fatherless by hospital neglect/unemployed so I'm not sure what to do or say..."

I'm the "life's difficult situations conversations" guinea pig for most of my friends. And as I proceeded through that course, I gradually stopped asking them to lend their ears. It's not that I didn't think they cared, but they were in such happy, positive places in their lives I didn't want to be Debbie Downer.

And really, other then the catharsis that can come from venting, what did I stand to gain by talking about my life to women who were experiencing very different life moments? While I was being dumped, getting mugged, limping in pain, losing my dad, losing my job and now losing my home, they were in the midst of weddings, honeymoons, vacations with their husbands, quitting their jobs/careers, new houses, babies, minivans, vacation homes...we have nothing in common anymore. We've grown apart.

And that's the real issue. And I've known that for a long, long time. And I'm pretty sure they do, too. But I suppose they are polite to me because they don't want to be seen as kicking me when I'm down. The problem is, I've been down a long time. So long that I can't remember what it's like to be up. I don't like it, but I accept that it happened. No denial on my part.

One by one my friends have spun into other orbits. No big fight, no formal breakup, just a fading away. The suburban exodus was the catalyst for most of the friendships fading. I knew when a few friends moved to the suburbs we were saying good-bye forever. I knew those friendships weren't strong enough to survive different area codes. That's life. But a couple other friends...I mean, we were really friends. But. That was then, this is now, and if we were to meet for the first time now we would not be friends. Because other than our gender, we have nothing in common.

Ever been hundreds of miles away from your hometown and meet someone who is from your hometown? Maybe older or younger, someone whose path just didn't happen to cross yours in your hometown. You start rattling off neighbors and friends and discover you know some of the same people. Her brother dated your sister's best friend. His mother was your kindergarten teacher. It's a weird feeling. You have a sort of bond, you share a lot of the same history, but you're not friends and you will probably never see that person again because neither of you live anywhere near your mutual hometown.

That's how, (with notable few exceptions) my friends feel to me, now. Nothing more than shared experiences in a place a long time ago, far away from where we are now. I feel misunderstood and alienated because I am misunderstood and alienated. But that's not their fault.

Well. Maybe a little their fault. They "keep in touch" via an occasional text or Facebook poke. If I call them to find out what's new with them, it goes straight to voice mail, then they text me to tell me to check their Facebook page.

And.

Let's be honest, I don't understand their lives any better than they understand mine. They can't understand my attachment to my tiny condo in a questionable neighborhood in a crime-ridden city any more than I can understand their attachment to their McMansions in a gated community in a corn field.

However.

I've been clinging to some of these friendships, trying to maintain them on some level, even a marginal, minimal one, because, again, let's face reality: Without them I don't have a lot of friends within a close proximity. I know, I know, with friends like those who needs enemies. I know. But. I'm already a social pariah because I'm a straight, never married woman without children. And now my career is faltering so I don't even have that.

Before I was laid off I tried to cultivate new friendships with other single women. I took classes, went to activity groups, did hands-on volunteering with several charities, struck up conversations with women at work seminars and conferences, invited the cousin-of-a-friend's-husband-who-lives-in-the-city to have drinks after work. I tried to cultivate friendships. Cripes, I even listed an ad in the personals looking for friends. The friendships never really took off, they fizzled. Why? In a few cases the women turned out to be incompatible, but in most cases they were Hellbent on finding men and I was merely a wing-girl. The second they had any attention from a man they dropped me. I was expendable. I understand. They were on single-minded missions to not be single. They didn't really want a new friend, they wanted a boyfriend who would turn into a husband, but until he came along they wanted a companion for activities - activities that included men. I was a placeholder, not a friend.

Said it before, we really need an Island for Misfits.

And since I was laid off...well...I don't have money to do anything. And, what do I bring to the friendship table? I have no job, I'm going to be homeless...I try not to let these facts define me, but, I mean, you know, they kind of do because a lack of money (and home) tends to limit your social life. I have a faraway friend who, due to her job, can get me concert tickets now and then. That's the sum total of my friendship offering.

My very close friends, the true, real friends, all live far (very far) away. I would have moved closer to one of them the day after I was laid off were it not for my mother. Her health is not great and I can't be more than a six hour drive from her. That's a choice I make, of course, she's not demanding anything of me. I'm not comfortable living too far from her at this juncture. Once she's situated in a senior apartment maybe I'll feel differently, but right now I don't want her to feel alone and abandoned. So. That's a personal choice that I make and I have to deal with the resulting consequences.

Fortunately I have a couple guy friends who still live in the city. Sure, they're a couple and in a long-term committed relationship, but, they're my age, they live in the city and they don't have children. Done, done and done. But. A couple of friends who squeeze time in to see a movie or go to a concert with me isn't exactly a thriving social life.

So I tried to maintain some semblance of friendship with my suburban friends.

But now, after a lot of soul-searching, I'm letting go. I'm letting those friendships fade, too. Really, they faded a long time ago, I just didn't want to give up that easily. We were friends, good friends. That meant something to me and I worked at maintaining the friendships.

But the fact that I haven't told them anything about what I'm going through and their consequential lack of understanding speaks volumes about the status of our friendship: It doesn't really exist anymore. 

I'm not angry, I'm not bitter, resentful or vengeful. Sad, yes. Melancholy, yes. But. In the long run I think it's best for everyone.

Of course I'm envious of anyone who has a good marriage, healthy children, a stable income and comfortable home. I wanted that before any of my friends wanted that, but irony of ironies, they have it and I don't.

So. You know. It's not always easy for me to listen to endless conversations about their adoring husbands and their adorable children and all the things they do with the money they have at their disposal. I'm happy for them, but envious, too, mostly of the loving marriages and adorable children, but yes, I am envious of their vacations and their cars. I would go different places and drive a different type of car, but still, I haven't been on a vacation in eight years (and that was a four-day getaway tacked onto a business trip) and I haven't owned a car since the '90s, so yes, I am envious of the concepts of what they have. (But so help me, if I ever even think of spending $28 on a bottle of nail polish (for me or a 6-year-old), have me committed to a "care facility.") And their success in life makes me feel bad about myself and my lack of even the most fundamental life functions: Finding a mate, mating, and now, I can't even provide food and shelter for myself.

And my lack of, well, everything, even a job, is causing a warranted lack of respect from them. Why should they respect me? I can't find a job, I'm losing my home, I haven't had a date in years and when I did date every relationship ended up with me being dumped, I have no children, not even a pet, I don't travel, I have no money and I don't do anything. (other than jobhunt) Who would respect me? Why would anyone respect me? At best they might have some pity for me, but that's truly sad - for me and them. I don't want pity, I don't want mercy friends, and they don't need another charity to fund. (And yes, I know, a strong argument can be made that my friends don't do anything - unless spending days shopping and going to country clubs count as doing something. But. They can do things if they choose; and they have the luxury of choosing.)

And envy and disrespect are probably not healthy for a friendship. Eventually ugly heads will rear. So better to bow out now, before it gets ugly (or uglier), and chalk it up to life and my lack of evolution.

So. That's that. Problem sorted and solved.

Thanks for lending me your ears.

11:22 AM

 
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