Total Perspective Vortex
What really happened to Trillian? Theories abound, but you can see what she's really been up to on this blog. If you're looking for white mice, depressed robots, or the occasional Pan Galactic Gargleblaster you might be better served here:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/cult/hitchhikers/guide/.

Otherwise, hello, and welcome.
Mail Trillian here<





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Women, The Internet and You: Tips for Men Who Use Online Dating Sites
Part I, Your Profile and Email

Part II, Selecting a Potential Date

Part III, Your First Date!

Part IV, After the First Date. Now What?


"50 First Dates"






Don't just sit there angry and ranting, do something constructive.
In the words of Patti Smith (all hail Sister Patti): People have the power.
Contact your elected officials.

Don't be passive = get involved = make a difference.
Find Federal Officials
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or Search by State

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Contact The Media
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Words are cool.
The English language is complex, stupid, illogical, confounding, brilliant, beautiful, and fascinating.
Every now and then a word presents itself that typifies all the maddeningly gorgeousness of language. They're the words that give you pause for thought. "Who came up with that word? That's an interesting string of letters." Their beauty doesn't lie in their definition (although that can play a role). It's also not in their onomatopoeia, though that, too, can play a role. Their beauty is in the way their letters combine - the visual poetry of words - and/or the way they sound when spoken. We talk a lot about music we like to hear and art we like to see, so let's all hail the unsung heroes of communication, poetry and life: Words.
Here are some I like. (Not because of their definition.)

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




























 







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Highlights from the Archives. Some favorite Trillian moments.

Void, Of Course: Eliminating Expectations and Emotions for a Better Way of Life

200i: iPodyssey

Macs Are from Venus, Windows is from Mars Can a relationship survive across platform barriers?
Jerking Off

Get A Job

Office Church Ladies: A Fieldguide

'Cause I'm a Blonde

True? Honestly? I think not.

A Good Day AND Funyuns?

The Easter Boy

Relationship in the Dumpster

Wedding Dress 4 Sale, Never Worn

Got Friends? Are You Sure? Take This Test

What About Class? Take This Test

A Long Time Ago, in a Galaxy Far Far Away, There Was a Really Bad Movie

May Your Alchemical Process be Complete. Rob Roy Recipe

Good Thing She's Not in a Good Mood Very Often (We Knew it Wouldn't Last)

What Do I Have to Do to Put You in this Car Today?

Of Mice and Me (Killer Cat Strikes in Local Woman's Apartment)

Trillian: The Musical (The Holiday Special)

LA Woman (I Love (Hate) LA)

It is my Cultureth
...and it would suit-eth me kindly to speak-eth in such mannered tongue

Slanglish

It's a Little Bit Me, It's a Little Bit You
Blogging a Legacy for Future Generations


Parents Visiting? Use Trillian's Mantra!

Ghosts of Christmas Past: Mod Hair Ken

Caught Blogging by Mom, Boss or Other

2003 Holiday Sho-Lo/Mullet Awards

Crullers, The Beer Store and Other Saintly Places

Come on Out of that Doghouse! It's a Sunshine Day!

"...I had no idea our CEO is actually Paula Abdul in disguise."

Lap Dance of the Cripple

Of Muppets and American Idols
"I said happier place, not crappier place!"

Finally Off Crutches, Trillian is Emancipated

Payless? Trillian? Shoe Confessions

Reality Wednesday: Extremely Local Pub

Reality Wednesday: Backstage Staging Zone (The Sweater Blog)

The Night Secret Agent Man Shot My Dad

To Dream the Impossible Dream: The Office Karaoke Party

Trillian Flies Economy Class (Prisoner, Cell Block H)

Trillian Visits the Village of the Damned, Takes Drugs, Becomes Delusional and Blogs Her Brains Out

Trillian's Parents are Powerless

Striptease for Spiders: A PETA Charity Event (People for the Ethical Treatment of Arachnids)

What's Up with Trillian and the Richard Branson Worship?

"Screw the French and their politics, give me their cheese!"


















 
Mail Trillian here





Trillian's Guide to the Galaxy gives 5 stars to these places in the Universe:
So much more than fun with fonts, this is a daily dose of visual poetry set against a backdrop of historical trivia. (C'mon, how can you not love a site that notes Wolfman Jack's birthday?!)

CellStories

Alliance for the Great Lakes


Hot, so cool, so cool we're hot.

Ig Nobel Awards

And you think YOU have the worst bridesmaid dress?

Coolest Jewelry in the Universe here (trust Trillian, she knows)

Red Tango

If your boss is an idiot, click here.

Evil Cat Full of Loathing.

Wildlife Works

Detroit Cobras


The Beachwood Reporter is better than not all, but most sex.



Hey! Why not check out some great art and illustration while you're here? Please? It won't hurt and it's free.

Shag

Kii Arens

Tim Biskup

Jeff Soto

Jotto




Get Fuzzy Now!
If you're not getting fuzzy, you should be. All hail Darby Conley. Yes, he's part of the Syndicate. But he's cool.





Who or what is HWNMNBS: (He Whose Name Must Not Be Spoken) Trillian's ex-fiancé. "Issues? What issues?"







Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.


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Reading blogs at work? Click to escape to a suitable site!

Mamas, Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to be Smart Girls
(A Trillian de-composition, to the tune of Mamas, Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Cowboys)

Mama don’t let your babies grow up to be smart girls
Don’t let them do puzzles and read lots of books
Make ‘em be strippers and dancers and such
Mamas, don’t let your babies grow up to be smart girls
They’ll never find men and they’re always alone
Even though men claim they want brains

Smart girls ain’t easy to love and they’re above playing games
And they’d rather read a book than subvert themselves
Kafka, Beethoven and foreign movies
And each night alone with her cat
And they won’t understand her and she won’t die young
She’ll probably just wither away

Mama don’t let your babies grow up to be smart girls
Don’t let them do puzzles and read lots of books
Make ‘em be strippers and dancers and such
Mamas, don’t let your babies grow up to be smart girls
They’ll never find men and they’re always alone
Even though men claim they want brains

A smart girl loves creaky old libraries and lively debates
Exploring the world and art and witty reparteé
Men who don’t know her won’t like her and those who do
Sometimes won’t know how to take her
She’s rarely wrong but in desperation will play dumb
Because men hate that she’s always right

Mama don’t let your babies grow up to be smart girls
Don’t let them do puzzles and read lots of books
Make ‘em be strippers and dancers and such
Mamas, don’t let your babies grow up to be smart girls
They’ll never find men and they’re always alone
Even though men claim they want brains





























Life(?) of Trillian
Single/Zero

 
Monday, August 20, 2012  
Can we talk vilification for a moment?

I know, I don't think about it much, either. I don't tend to get angry, or at least angry enough to think about vilification. Typically I don't get angry. I get hurt or sad.

People tell me anger can be a good thing if it's a catalyst for action that leads to justice. Okay, I can see that. But. Typically I just try to accept and forgive. If that results in a little understanding, well, that's a bonus. If I can find the humor in it, so much the better.

I don't go around thinking about or plotting revenge or dreaming of vilification.

But.

I had a moment, well, a couple moments...all right an hour...of desire for vilification. I couldn't sleep and I slid down the slippery slope of recalling injustices. I never do this, but it was a bad night. Alcohol was a factor. It kinda scared me because I was surprised at how many perceived injustices I'm carrying around with me. The fear isn't that I'm repressing emotions, my concern is that, gulp, maybe my friend is right, maybe I have been perceived as a doormat in certain situations because I don't retaliate.

I know I'm not a doormat, I know I was accepting and forgiving and rising above the immediate, but, the other people in certain situations didn't know that. I don't really care what they think about me, their opinions don't matter to me, and the worst thing that could result is that I have a reputation for not engaging in hostile behaviors. That's not so bad, is it? Better that than a reputation for a quick and hot temper.

I think.

The internet and all it's social outposts has opened up huge cans of worms hungry for vilification. I'm not sure that a lot of people even realize what they're doing when they post comments about others on Facebook, Twitter, etc. Most of the posts seem to be rants posted in the moment of emotion. Someone A says or does something that angers or upsets Someone B, Someone B is hurt, angry or offended and instantly lashes back at Someone A in the form of a public comment deriding Someone A. Voila, vilification. I think the point is smug satisfaction, a tit for tat revenge. I'm rubber you're glue, it bounces off me and sticks to you. That kind of thing.

When these situations play out in private it's immature and regrettable, but somewhat understandable. Frustration, hurt feelings, and bruised egos are not patient. They crave immediate salving and because they're loud emotions they tend to fire fast and large synapses that trigger reactions that are not exactly well thought out or deep. Friends, family, significant others all (hopefully) understand that these skirmishes, while regrettable, do happen sometimes and cut us some slack on the presumption we'll cut the same slack for them.

I have a friend who has terrible road rage. It's really bad. Really, really bad. And. Worse. She's a backseat driver. So. When I'm driving with her she's yelling at other drivers and me. This situation has played out more times than I care to recall.

Us in a car stopped at a red light, me driving.
Her: "It's clear! You can turn! Go!!!"
Me: "I count three 'No Turn on Red' signs. I could go but I can't afford the traffic ticket. And I'd rather not knowingly break a posted law."
Her: "No one but you pays attention to those signs."
Me: "Yep, just me and the cops."

Sometimes this turns into a catfight about how I'm such a goody two shoes fraidy cat and how she's an impatient, selfish Type A poster child with anger management issues. Other times the light turns and she's ranting and flipping gestures at other drivers before she has time to have a go at me. We've known each other so long any words said in anger and frustration between us are forgotten less than a mile down the road.

But. Let's say one day I decide I'm sick of her road rage and the insults about my following the rules of the road, and I decide to use her name and post words on Facebook or Twitter to the effect that her impatience and anger management issues are bordering on dangerous and violent. #NeedsImmediateCounseling. I'm not sure why I would do this, as opposed to trying to have a calm conversation about my concerns over her health and welfare, but let's go with the presumption that it was one nag too many about my "inability" to turn on red in 'No Turn on Red' intersections. The presumption being that I am finally fed up with being yelled at about following the rules of the road and obeying traffic signs. Let's say in this rant I mention that my friend and her selfish "if they slow me down or get in my way, rules are made to be broken" attitude is responsible for the breakdown of society and decline of civilization. Again, naming her by name.

The only purpose for the public airing of my friend's dirty road rage laundry is a) to vilify myself and b) embarrass and slate my friend for yelling at me for obeying traffic signs, further vilifying myself.

Why? What's the point? It doesn't make me worry any less about my friend's dangerous driving habits and anger management issues. It's not going to stop her road rage, in fact, it will probably only exacerbate her issues, making her more angry and more Hellbent on not following "stupid" traffic signs. And it's certainly going to elevate her hostility toward me.

Vilification is pointless.

But it's everywhere on the internet. Some of it is "merely" pedantic ranting* and I understand the need to vent. Boy do I understand. But a lot of what I see posted online is disturbing not so much for the insults hurled, but for the immaturity, hostility, self righteousness, judgment and lack of awareness behind the post. Venting...that's understandable. Trying to sort out an issue and get some insight from other people? Commendable. But naming names, judging, assigning blame, publicly? That's taking it to a more sinister place. For reasons that baffle me, a lot of people have public Facebook accounts. Which means if Someone A posts a vilifying rant about Someone B, employers, coworkers, family members including Grandma and nitpicking gossipy Aunt Agnes will see any post about Someone B. Someone B shoots straight past the fair trial and the verdict that Someone A issued is being judged by a jury of peers.

Consider the source, you say? Yes, I say that, too. But. Casual observers, employers, potential love interests don't know the source. They're background checking the subject of the vilifying rant. They, especially would-be love interests, are likely to shy away from someone who has a hot-tempered, self-righteous ranty friend or relation in their circle. Who wants that drama in their life?

It's especially disturbing when the vilifying comments posted by someone I respect. There are things I don't want or need to know about family, friends and public figures I respect. But thanks to the internet it's all right there in my face. Pretty people doing ugly things.

Facebook and Twitter are increasingly cited as devaluing the human experience. When everything is special, nothing is special. When everything happens in the immediate, nothing is worthy of anticipation. When everyone's opinion is globally accessible, no one's opinion really matters to anyone else. I avoid Vlogs like the plague. Why? Because most of them are shouting matches between people who talk a lot but don't seem to listen, even to themselves.

But my increasing concern is the false sense of (instant!) gratification borne of vilifying posts. If a friend posts an insult on Twitter and no one reads it because it gets buried in 100s of other tweets, was it really an insult? Arguable point, but the more I naming names snark I see posted, the more I think, "Throw another insult onto the pile..." There's a lot of negativity being hurled into the Universe. Is that what we really need? Is that what we want?

There's a lot of animosity out there, and we're all being subjected to it. What used to be private skirmishes or insults between friends and family are now public (globally public) floggings. Is that really necessary? Take my friend's road rage as an example. Does anyone need to know my feelings about it, much less read about it online? What does it prove, and more to the point, what does it solve? What will it resolve? Anything? Probably not.

I blog. Publicly. For reasons that continue to (still) baffle me, people read what I post. There's responsibility that comes with that. The main responsibility for me is to protect anyone (other than public figures) I might mention on the blog. I receive a lot of h8 about anonymous blogging. My anonymity negates any credibility. (they say)

A) I have a life, some argue not much of one, but I have a life.
B) That life involves real people whom I care about and don't want to hurt or offend.
And mainly, C) I don't want people who care about me to worry about me. If they knew half of what I'm thinking they'd worry about me, and I don't want that.

And.

I'm not looking for vilification. For me, the personal aspects are not the subject. The bigger picture, the insight and humor and frustrations are the subject. The names are inconsequential minutia. I'm not looking to hurt anyone or lash out at anyone. Just observing and reporting and trying to gain some understanding and insight.**

But.

Maybe I should be a little more forthright. Maybe a little abuse of blog power would be cathartic. Name names. Divulge secrets. Betray trusts. Would it be more interesting to you, more titillating or "real" if you knew my name, the names of my friends and family? It would end up like the Monty Python Blackmail game show skit, but hey, it would be some good vilification.

Wanna know the names of the girls and a few other kids who teased me and played horrible "jokes" on me, and generally bullied me throughout most of my school years? Would it make their actions more real, more sinister, more disturbing if there were names you could Google attached to them? With all the attention on bullying these days I could make several PSAs about all the tormenting I received, naming names and citing specific incidents. I was pushed down on an icy road in front of the oncoming school bus. The bus driver saw who did it. She nearly overturned the bus trying to avoid hitting me while I struggled to slip and slide out of the way. The other kids not only didn't help me, they laughed at me. The bus driver walked me back to my parents' house, told them what happened and who did it. My parents and I had long conversations with the school counselor and our minister about it and ultimately "we" didn't "do" anything out of concern that it would only lead to further retaliation. As it was I'd already had my clarinet stolen, my art projects broken, my snow boots pooped in, I had applesauce flicked in my hair at least once a week in the school lunchroom, my parents' house was routinely egged and one year my father's painstakingly planned Christmas light display was vandalized and rearranged to spell out my name and several vile sexual slang words. I was 9 at the time, by the way. Wanna know the names of the kids who did that? I knew who did it. My parents knew. I could, now, publicly name the names of those kids and list their "jokes." But, now, as then, it serves no purpose. Back then, their defense was that it was "just practical jokes" and their parents backed them up on that, claiming my parents and I didn't know how to take a joke. When it came to theft and damage of property, the parents of the kids responsible said we had no proof and claimed their children would never do such a thing. When it came to me being pushed in front of the oncoming school bus, with irrefutable proof in the form of a signed witness account by the school bus driver, the other kids, afraid of retaliation from the neighborhood bullies, denied that it happened. There's a lot more to the whole incident, but ultimately nothing was done and those kids got away with attempted murder. Would naming them, now, change that? Would I feel any better about any of it? I could go for it, publicly hold those kids up for their actions, and a lot of people think I should. But, I contend that's just stooping to their level, bullying them with the excuse of retribution...over something that happened years ago when we were kids. And based on some of the hometown gossip I've heard over the years, most of them have suffered enough without me publicly slating them for their bullying behavior. Let's just say they're not leading enviable lives. (Yes, I could post that gossip, too...)

Do you want to know HWNMNBS's name? Why? I wouldn't feel any better or worse for publicly flogging him, although given my position of woman scorned I'm allowed a little Hellish fury. He's counting on me to be mature and respectful. He's trusting me. But what do I owe him? Nothing. Some would argue I should have betrayed that trust, airing all his dirty laundry for the entire world to see, attached to his name, globally slandering him so that henceforth any woman or employer who Googles him will read some ugly (to the point of disturbing) bits of information about him. Could I destroy him and his future? Probably not. But I could cause a few uncomfortable conversations between him and anyone who Googles him.

Ditto my former boss. The term limits on my termination agreement have ended, I am free to say whatever I want about my former employer and anyone I worked with there. In the interest of public service I could name names and phone numbers and even post some spreadsheets the IRS might find interesting. Would anyone take me seriously? Maybe. There'd be a few uncomfortable conversations and I'm pretty sure my former boss would hire a lawyer to bring some sort of liable and slander case against me, but ultimately the damage to her reputation would be done. It would take me about 20 minutes to write a full report, with attachments, naming names and citing condemning specifics. At least I could name a few names in a few vilifying posts on Twitter or Facebook, or, on the more sad and pathetic end I could whip up a website devoted to my former company and some of the people who work there. Slander, liable...the truth...no matter how it's taken, most would see it as nothing more than a lame attempt at retribution from a disgruntled employee.

Believe me, there are times, like my recent sleepless night drunken concern about whether or not I'm perceived as a doormat, that I think, "Screw it, screw them, I'm calling everyone who's ever wronged me to task. I'm naming names, dates and deplorable behaviors." I think about compiling a manifesto list of all the people who deserve a public "[expletive of your choice] you!" And it concerns me when the list grows beyond 5 people, because that's a lot of vilifying for one person and a lot of apparently unresolved issues.

But what would I get out of it? A few moments of vindictive pleasure? Ultimately it would just make me look bad publicly and I'd feel bad about myself.

I'm above that sort of thing. I'm better than that. And yes, of course, people who know me count on me being that way. So there would be a surprise element, a big surprise element, because it's grossly out of character for me to stoop to that level and/or to betray trust. Which, in the movies, makes the plot device all the more enticing to screenwriters. The good girl pushed beyond her limits who seeks furious revenge to the surprise of all who know her is a well-worn theme. I notice Lifetime uses this plot device in a lot of their movies. That's how you know it's a trite and cliché move.

So, why, then, are Facebook and Twitter any different? Why the rampant vilifying snark? I dunno. I have no clue why people are so impulsive, so quick to pull the vilification trigger via Facebook and Twitter. Bullying behavior? Maybe. Self esteem issues causing them to want to make other people look bad? Maybe. Stupidity? Selfishness? Emotional immaturity? Probably.

Which is why, if I was granted a do-over with those kids of my youth, or HWNMNBS, or my former boss, or my friend who yells at me for obeying traffic signs - knowing what I now know - I would react the same way. I would not seek vilification or revenge or retribution or vindication. None of it. The only difference would be, if I knew then what I know now, is that I wouldn't allow myself to get hurt or saddened by the situations. That which doesn't kill us makes us stronger. I'm living proof of that. My skin is so thick Ginsu knives couldn't penetrate it. I try very, very hard to bypass victim mode and go straight to "let's sort out what happened so I can prevent it from happening again and then find a way to laugh about it and put it behind me" mode. Not always easy, and it often takes time to gain that kind of insight. You have to ask a lot of questions and be brutally honest with yourself. It's not as easy as quickly lashing out a vilifying remark on Facebook or Twitter. But the results are deeper and longer lasting and ultimately better for everyone involved.



*Pedantic rants - great band or album name. "Professor Snark and the Pedantic Rants"

**And yes, I am guilty of some forms of vilification via 50 First Dates. No I didn't name names, they were changed to protect the innocent, but, they didn't know that I was writing about my adventures in dating. And if Creepy Perfume Guy and the Humping Dwarf were to stumble across the blog, I'm pretty sure they'd recognize themselves. And yes, I did rake them over some hot coals. Albeit in a humor befitting their behavior, but passive aggression is still aggression. And on some level I was exacting some form of revenge for my disappointment at dates that went nowhere. And yes, that has everything to do with me and very little to do with them. All those guys were just being themselves - their creepy, pervy, addicted, violent, selfish, rude, shallow, etc. selves. I was the one who had issues with their behaviors. I am aware that I owe them a debt of gratitude for letting me peek into their personality, um, traits, on the first and second dates. In doing so, they spared me the time, effort and disappointment of getting involved and investing emotion with them only to find out weeks or months into the relationship that they had some disturbing skeletons in their closets.

And I am fully aware that I am guilty of vilification: Each date that didn't work out was another chink in my armor of hope, and my public retelling of dates gone wrong was a way to lick my wound (they didn't wound me, the process did) and vilify men and dating in general.

So yes, I was aware, am aware, that I am guilty of vilification.

4:57 PM

 
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