I’m Following You! [Blogmas 13]

Featured

not stalkingI’ve been following you. I’ve been following you for a while, but you may not have noticed me. It’s not like I’ve been purposely tagging behind you like an undercover police officer or a creepy stalker. I’ve been following you on Twitter.

Twitter, where all of a sudden you can have interactions with your BFFs Mindy Khaling and Melissa McCarthy. Okay, they are my BFFs, maybe not yours. Of course, they have no idea that we have a relationship. My bestie, Mindy has 11 million followers and “Missy” (as only I can call Melissa McCarthy because of how tight we are, you know) has 939 000 followers, but Mindy follows a mere 811 people and “Missy” follows a measly 121 people. Fuck you, Mindy Khaling and Melissa McCarthy! I thought we were friends forever, but it turns out, I’m just a pathetic celebrity stalker.

Of course, these are famous actresses/writers who used their talents and, in one case, their untalented cousin to achieve success before the up-rise of blogging. Any of us [me] who have tried sending off manuscripts without a social media presence realize quickly that no publisher will touch you unless you have already established a following on social media. That would be why our other BFF, Jenny Lawson, better known as The Bloggess, has 477 000 Twitter followers but follows a whopping 42 000 people. It is still less than the number who follows her, I know, but the ratio is still much higher than with Mindy and Melissa. I’m no mathematician (trust me, I’m not) but I’m pretty certain about the math. I’m about 20% certain. (That’s a lot, right?)

followingOriginally when I started blogging, I said to my friend Sam, the Blog Broad, that I didn’t need social media because “if your writing is good enough, people will connect with it and follow it.” Um… I couldn’t have been more wrong unless I was Fox News. And now here I am, a Twitter Newbie. I joined, “tweeted” and still no real following formed. I said to Sam, “It’s not working.” And Sam said, “that’s because you have to follow people in order for them to follow you.” And so I did. I just started going on people’s followers lists and clicking follow on all of the names there- I thought to myself, I’ll just do that everyday. I’ll have soooo many followers in no time. Then someone will notice my brilliance and I’ll be able to spend my time being paid for creative pursuits. Now, I don’t know if anyone else has done what I did to try to build followers, but if you do try it, a pop-up from Twitter will appear. Now, I don’t remember the exact wording, but it was something like, “Because you’re a insane, creepy, stalker person, we are suspending your ability to follow people for 48 hours,” or something to that effect. SOOoooo… I stopped doing that.

J Lo_InPixio
“Ass Ass” was just a big bare J Lo ass. Maybe it was J Lo’s ass?

Instead, I just started following people at random but just not as many. And then I learned another important lesson. You should actually read up on the people you’re following and take a look at what they’ve been tweeting before you start following them. It was when my Twitter feed showed a picture of a big ass. Now I know my profile picture on WordPress is of an ass too, but my ass is a donkey. This pic was of an ass ass. It was just a big, huge, J-Lo-esque ass. And in the self-description box, it said, “I’m kind of an ass.” I thought, hmmmm, that’s kind of funny; they must be being ironic like me and my donkey ass, but doing it with an ass ass. So I didn’t unfollow the person with the ass pic right away. I didn’t unfollow until I realized what all the person’s tweets were about, and I don’t want to be crass, so I’m going to use the technical terms. “Ass Ass,” as I’ll call her, used dirty words, but the words in her tweets featured semen, anal intercourse, breasts, and meeting places. So basically, I think I may have started following a ho. She’s either a ho or a slut. And that’s okay, I don’t judge. (Well, I try not to.) But I just didn’t want to be propositioned like that. I’m somewhat happily married. (Hey, don’t judge, no one is “happily” married- no one is happy ALL THE FUCKING TIME!) Of course, my hubby, C, probably would have wanted us to find Ass Ass and say what’s up. But I’m not into that. And so I unfollowed Ass Ass and I started just following people who posted things I thought were funny or thoughtful or who tweeted pics and videos of cute animals, and of course, those sites that retweet posts by bloggers.

When I really think about it, randomly following people on Twitter is like randomly following the car in front of you to find out where they’re going. It’s not likely to be anywhere you’re interested in going, so why would you do that? (Although my friends and I did do that once in high school just for fun. But we were in high school. We did a lot more stupid stuff than just that.) I totally connected when I came across this tweet on my twitter feed: “It’s amazing the amount of people who follow just to get a follow back, then if I don’t follow back they unfollow me. I won’t follow people for the sake of it, but follow people I genuinely want to connect with.” dASHing through the snow  ❄️ @FTLOBOOKS (Click on link to see her blog.)20171211_174331.jpg

I found out the hard way that you should only follow people who seem to be people you could connect with. At the same time, sometimes you have to go on that “first date”: follow the person and see what kinds of things they post before you figure out that they weren’t the one for you. It’s okay to unfollow. Maybe they weren’t, “the One.” But if you don’t first follow, you’ll never know. lurking memeFor those fellow bloggers out there, who have me as a Twitter follower, don’t worry. I’m not going to be dumping anyone on purpose, unless you start tweeting weird, perverted, sexual tweets that make me feel uncomfortable. And if you do unfollow me because I’m not what you expected, please do so, by all means. We’re all on this same journey to become leaders, not followers, anyway. Well, aren’t we?

#following you

@Ocean.Hayward

All pictures are my own unless the source information is listed below. Yes, even the ones of Mindy and Missy. I told you we are BFFs on Twitter. [In my best Napoleon Dynamite voice] “GAWD!”

Fatal Attraction Meme. Pinterest. <https://www.pinterest.ca/pin/47428602298479681/?lp=true> December 11, 2017.

“I’m following you” mem. Image Flip. <https://imgflip.com/meme/Zombie-Overly-Attached-Girlfriend?sort=latest&page=3> December 11, 2017.

“I’m not stalking you” Meme. Quick Meme. <http://www.quickmeme.com/meme/3tpn3t> December 11, 2017.

Jennifer Lopez pic. IGN. <http://www.ign.com//threads/j-los-ass-is-overrated.454203957/> December 11, 2017.

Office Space Meme. Pinterest. <https://www.pinterest.ca/pin/47428602298479681/?lp=true> December 11, 2017.

 

 

Americans: Join the Beaver Nation

Featured

Since I’ve recently joined the Twitter-sphere, I’ve been reading a lot of tweets. A lot. The vast majority are tweets by Donald Trump or complaining about Donald Trump. You may be wondering why I’m following Donald Trump as a person who also complains and dislikes him. Well, I’m happy to solve that mystery for you. You see, when I started my Twitter account it automatically sets up a list of suggestions of people to follow. There was at least one hundred of them. I started scrolling through the list, and then I just said, F this, and clicked on the option to follow them all. Donald Trump just happened to be on that list. When his first tweet popped up, I thought about unfollowing him, but then I thought about all of the stupid shit he says. So I just kept following him as a form of sick, self-inflicted, torture/entertainment for myself. It’s kind of like how some people like to watch horror movies or read Stephen King novels. You know you’re going to be scared out of your wits but it’s also going to be a wild ride. The only sad part about Trump’s presidency is that unlike a movie or a book which lasts for a few hours or the duration of your reading pace, this ride is going to last 4-8 years. Hopefully, only 4. But the damage will reverberate for many years after his term(s).

As a Canadian, I’m sitting in my comfy, warm apartment in the North, watching the car wreck that is the Donald Trump presidency and reading the tweets by Americans who are now living in a massive Trump hotel being managed by incompetency, much like his Trump Tower in Toronto:

November 2012: “Glass falls from Trump Tower during construction

March 2012: “The swanky new Trump Tower is already falling apart

October 2015: “Cracked window on Trump tower closes nearby streets

November 2015: “Trending: Trump Hotel and Tower No. 1 ranking overlooks falling glass

March 2015: “Pane of glass fell from Trump Tower due to mechanical failure

September 2016: “Falling glass shut down Bay St. for second day in a row

May 2017: “Glass falls from Trump Tower after swing stage crashes into window

There are many more news articles about the crappy Trump Tower in Toronto and its shattering windows, but I don’t want to use up my entire post on copying and pasting links to articles. The Toronto Trump tower was built in 2009 and has been a shit show ever since. And now Trump is trying to sell it and have his name removed from the Tower. I’ve come to the conclusion based on this and his other ventures: Trump University, Trump Steak Knives, Trump Magazine, to name a few, that everything Trump puts his name on is poop.

US flag
Trump is making America poopy.

I know there are many open-minded, highly educated, skilled, and anti-Trump Americans who are unhappy in Trump’s America. So I want to invite all of you to the second-greatest country on Earth (arguably). We’re literally on top of you. Look up, way up and you’ll see us. Canada. 10 provinces, 3 territories. Much easier to remember than 50 states. Bring your education and skills to the true North, strong and free. Help make Canada the greatest country on Earth. Come to Canada and become American-Canadians.

Now, I know what you may be thinking. That’s going to be tough. I can’t just up and leave my home country and make a new start in Canada. Plus it’s cold up there. Well, not so much. We’re just across the border from New England, large cities such as Detroit and Buffalo. Our climates are pretty similar to the Northern United States. In fact, today (November 26) in my small Maritime town, the temperature is 33 degrees Fahrenheit. That’s above the freezing mark. In Boston, it’s 37 F today. It’s not much of a difference. You will have to get used to Celsius, but that’s what phone apps are for.

Also, your money is worth so much more here. You can sell your expensive home in the USA and buy a waterfront property. Where in America can you buy a home like the one pictured here? This house overlooks a river and costs only $479,900.00 Canadian which using today’s exchange rate equates to $374,521.02 US. I challenge you to find a house as nice as the one in the inset below with a view of the water in the United States. (If you’re interested in seeing more of this beautiful waterfront home, please check out Kijiji.

house
This house has 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms and a beautiful view of the Saint John River

There are tons of beautiful, cheap houses in Canada as long as you’re not moving to Greater Toronto or Vancouver. Other than that, prices are reasonable. You can live the high life here! So I say to all you Americans who hate Trump, sell your homes, liquidate your assets into cash, use your passport to get into Canada and make like the Draft Dodgers during the Vietnam War. Cross the border and just stay. Really, you’ll blend in. There’s not much difference between Americans and Canadians other than the fact that Canadians have the Queen of England as our head of State* and that we’re really, really polite. And if you sneak in, you don’t even have to pledge allegiance to the Queen. Take all your money, sneak on up, buy a home and stay awhile. In Canada, we welcome all walks of life! Even Americans!**

Queen_Elizabeth_II_March_2015
The Queen is too busy doing stuff in England to come over to Canada just to sign bills into law.

*The monarch of England is officially Canada’s Head of State, but it’s a ceremonial role only. All she does is sign bills into law. But the Queen of England is pretty busy doing Queen-type stuff in England, like signing their bills, waving, and chilling in her palace(s) so she has a representative called the “Governor-General” in Canada who signs the bills for her. The prime minister, Justin Trudeau, is only the prime minister because he is the leader of the party with the majority of seats in Parliament (like your House of Representatives.) He is not elected directly by the people and if his party, the Liberals, collectively decided he was a douche-bag, they’d just choose another person as their leader, and she would be the prime minister. But don’t worry, Americans, you don’t really need to know this. Most Canadians don’t know this either.

**Don’t be offended here. I’m just joking around. I’m sorry. Really, really sorry.***

***Yes, Canadians actually do apologize a lot. If you move here, you’ll have to get used to that. Sorry.

All images have been borrowed from Wikipedia.org. Thanks Wiki!

Learning to Write Great Twitterature

Featured

I recently opened a Twitter account because I’ve been told that being on Twitter could help increase readership of my blog. I know I am late to the game. I just never saw the point of posting short blurbs. I enjoy writing. I am a writer. I don’t like limitations on my creativity, I want as many words as possible to express my profound and sometimes not so profound thoughts. I guess, however, at a certain point, one has to embrace new technologies. Hey, if my 97 year old grandfather can learn how to watch porn on an Ipad, I should be able to figure out Twitter, right?

Wrong. Twitter is the most confusing, convoluted mess of “tweets” and “retweets” and “hashtags” that messes with my already clutter-filled mind. All I know about Twitter up to this point, I have learned through watching comedy shows like 22 Minutes and Last Week Tonight. In fact, it’s only through television media that I know anything at all about the Twittersphere. Twitter is like another planet to me. People seem to be communicating, but at the same time, they are not at all. Just sound bytes. McLuhanI wonder what Marshall McLuhan would have to say about Twitter? I mean, as a society, we have really regressed, communication-wise. Ever read an elementary school reader from the 19th century? The things kids read in grades primary-6 back then is much more complex than what our graduating high school students are reading today. I wonder what people in the 1800s would have thought about literature presented in 140 characters or less.

Are Tweets “literature”? I’m sure some of you perhaps raised an eyebrow, maybe even two, when I used the term in reference to Twitter. Merriam-Webster defines literature as “the production of literary work especially as an occupation” and as “the body of written works produced in a particular language, country, or age” and also “the body of writings on a particular subject.” If you think about these definitions, Tweets are literature. Some people seem to make a career out of twittering, the social media site is certainly creating a large body of work reflective of the current age we live in, and the particular writing subjects are organized by the “hashtags.” (I think… I’m still trying to figure the damn thing out.)

Is Twitterature good literature? Hells no, but you can bet it will be studied in the future as the English language evolves. Will it become as iconic as the works of Shakespeare? I certainly hope not. And what’s the deal with the “hashtags”? Who came up with that? Do people put tags on their hash? I thought hashish was illegal? Do drug dealers actually put the prices on their product? I don’t frequent with drug dealers so I am legitimately asking.

Here is a list of what I understand about Twitter so far.

  • Tweet- a thought of 140 characters or less
  • Re-tweet- when you like a thought, you share it on your own Twitter page
  • Reply- I don’t know. I thought it meant you commented on a thread, but none of mine seem to show up
  • Send a personal message- self-explanatory but it doesn’t seem to let me send messages
  • Hashtag- topics your thought applies to
  • Following- people who you think have cool tweets
  • Followers- people who think your tweets are cool

So in my admittedly limited understanding of Twitter, I would say it is high school only larger. People spout off opinions without using supporting evidence, they follow and copy (retweet) the people who they think are “cool” and the whole goal seems to be to acquire followers (become the most popular kid at the school.) So basically, we are all trying to be Ferris Bueller. ferris_1 And there’s always at least one bully who nobody likes but everyone keeps tabs on: Donald Trump. Hey Trump, the only reason anyone follows you is because we’re all waiting to see what crazy thing you’re going to say next, but no one really likes you. Except for maybe the people who voted for you and the people who helped you rig the election. Anyone else wonder about all the accusations he made at Hillary over election rigging? One thing I know is if you want to distract from your own misdeeds a really great way to do it is to point the finger at your opponent. Worked with my brother growing up ALL THE TIME!

#ThisPostSeemsToEndAbruptly

#IDon’tReallyGiveTwoShits

#TrumpDoesNotMakeAmericaGreatAgain

#NewToTwitter

#HowTheFuckDoesThisThingWork

#HowComeIOnlyHaveTwoFollowers

#ThisIsLikeHighSchoolAllOverAgain

#FollowMePleaseForTheLoveOfGod

#WhyAmISuchALoser

#HighSchoolSucks

#TwitterSucks

#BitterAtTwitter

#RealOceanHayward

 

Sources:

“Ferris Bueller.” The Washington Times. <https://www.washingtontimes.com/multimedia/image/ferris-1jpg/&gt; November 13, 2017.

“Literature.” Meriam Webster. <https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/literature> November 13, 2017

It’s none of my business what other people think of me

Featured

It’s none of my business what other people think of me.

My therapist told me this. When she initially said it, she prefaced it with, “I don’t want you to take this the wrong way, but it’s none of your business what other people think of you.” It was, as Oprah would say, an “aha” moment. Sometimes even reality TV stars who become president of the United States have those moments when their stupidity actually makes some sense such as a July 2013 tweet:

I’ve just started blocking out some of the repetitive and boring (& dumb) haters and losers. They are a waste of time and energy!

Hmmm, Trumpy. I hate to admit it, but that’s actually quite smart. Ignore the “haters and losers.”  Of course, in Trump’s world anyone who disagrees with him is a “hater” or “loser.” And I am one of his haters and I’m sure he would say I’m a loser too. But hey, it’s none of my business what Trump thinks of me.

But it’s a difficult thing, isn’t it? To not care about what others think of you. In sociology, George Herbert Mead came up with the idea of symbolic interactionism, the idea that our view of self comes from what we think others think of us. And that all of our behaviours are based on that. How do you not think about how others perceive you? And how do you ignore it? Especially when you’re not Trump and you can’t just fire anyone who doesn’t think you’re awesome.

For anyone with anxiety, the mirror is skewed with thoughts of what we think others think about us. It’s inescapable. Every person’s behaviour is scrutinized for a deeper meaning which often leads to the worst case scenario. The barista at Starbucks gave me milk instead of lactose-free beverage because he wants me to be constipated. The sales lady at Old Navy brought me the larger size because I look fat. I didn’t get the job because they found out I have mental illness. None of these things are true. Except maybe the last one. Could it be?

Apparently, God doesn’t give you more than you can handle. I’m not sure that’s true. I think it’s something someone made up to make us feel stronger when we are in the face of adversity. Because sometimes you are given responsibilities by others in your life and apparently, or so I’ve been told, God gave us free will. If other people with their own free will decide for you what it is you have to do, then you can be given more than you can handle. Did they do it because they thought I could handle it? Did they do it because they don’t like me? Did they do it because they wanted to see how far they could push me?

It’s none of my business what other people think of me. Ignore the haters and losers. I’ll just bury my head in a pile of bullshit and breathe it in until the smell festers within and I can’t take it anymore. Block it out, blot it out, blog it out. Nevermind the racing thoughts, the fleeting thoughts, the negative thoughts. Everyone’s a winner, baby, that’s no lie.

It matters. What other people think of me. I want to be liked. Doesn’t everybody

By the way, if you don’t like me, you’re fired. But it’s okay, because it’s none of your business what I think of you.

OH

Featured Image: Trump, Donald. Twitter. <https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump&gt; October 12, 2017.