Tag Archives: Twitter

Don’t be Internet Creepy

21 Nov

Here is a weird thing that happened this morning. (By the way it is only 9:30am and I am already having a little bit of a stress attack due to The Internet. It is TOO EARLY for such nonsense.) So I woke up this morning to a bunch of alerts on my phone. This is normal. The following fit squarely into the “normal” category:

1. Really late text messages from people wondering if I am working or out, or from people wanting to send me hilarious gifs and messages because, I have come to realize, I am the person for a lot of people where when something funny or weird happens and they think to themselves “who would appreciate this?” the answer is Rebekah. Rebekah would appreciate it. So I get a lot of funny texts which makes me exceedingly happy. Especially when I read them first thing in the morning. Great way to start the day. For real. I am not being sarcastic. Please keep sending them. Please.

2. A bunch of emails but mostly they are bullshit, like investment advice and crap from The Central Park Conservancy, a mailing list that I never signed up for and have unsubscribed from about a dozen times, not that anyone is counting.

3. A notification of all the apps on my phone that need updates which I mostly ignore because most the apps came with my phone and they are stupid.

4. A New York Times rundown that I peruse because it is good to know the happs, even the very limited happs from the perspective of one news source.

Those things are all normal. Sometimes, though, things that are abnormal happen. Or at least slightly out of the ordinary. Those sorts of things are exciting. Here is a list of some of the things that happen overnight that when I wake up I’m like “woah! What could this be about?!”:

1. Comments on this blog. The thing about that though is that when I receive comments on this blog during the night they are usually either spam (recently a lot of the spam that has been getting through is from a junk account called “testosterone pills” and I can’t for the life of me figure out why this account won’t stop hounding me via nonsensical crap) or from the psycho lawyer who sends me mean messages from throw away email accounts when he’s wasted at like 3am on a Wednesday.

2. New blog followers and blog likes. That makes me feel good! It has been a slow-growth process but one of these days shit will get real. I believe it.

3. Twitter activity! I am not good at Twitter. I have been trying to get better at it by posting things more often and that seems to be working out okay for example the other day I made a new Twitter friend and I felt pretty good about it. We Tweeted back and forth for a few minutes. About Anonymous. It was invigorating.

4. Facebook friend requests. Okay, this is a mixed bag. I am not excited about this so much as slightly nervous. It’s like, when I click on the thing to see who is trying to be my “friend,” I kind of cringe and halfway look away, as if whoever it is is going to somehow jump out of the phone and do, well, I don’t know what they would do. Depends on the person I guess. If it was this one kid I went to middle school with he would tell me I had boogers on my nose. He always used to tell me that whether I had boogers or not. I blame him for my rather unladylike habit of wiping my nose on my sleeve.

5. Instagram things. I have been really liking Instagram. I follow NatGeo and that is really awesome. The other day they posted this video of a parasitic wasp larva that eats a spider and then takes over the spider’s web and it was totally awesome. Gross, but awesome. Also my friends do cool shit. And The Fat Jewish is on there and that cracks me up. That account put on a really fucked up joke about Anne Frank that I shouldn’t have laughed at but I did. Really hard. It made me feel bad about myself as both a Jew and a human being.

6. LinkedIn notifications. Did I even spell the site right? I don’t know and honestly, I don’t really care. And that is because I am less excited about these than any of the other things because, meh, professional networking site. What a snooze.

Anyway, so whenever any of these abnormal things happen I think to myself, “self, today is going to be a bizarre and interesting day.” And today is one such day. So this is what happened:

  • I woke up this morning and realized that I had a request on LinkedIn.
  • I went onto LinkedIn and looked at the profile and realized that I had no clue who this person was but that we do have some ‘interests’ in common, at least as far as LinkedIn is concerned, and we had two shared contacts who, as far as I know, don’t know one another. Okay! Seems legit!
  • I approved the LinkedIn contact because, really, what do I care. I don’t really use LinkedIn. Too stuffy. My photo is of me drinking a cup of coffee in Guatemala. Decidedly unprofessional.
  • I got a new endorsement from my new LinkedIn contact who somehow magically knows what I am good at? LinkedIn is so silly.
  • A few moments later I had a notification from Twitter that I had gotten a new follower. How fun! Then I realized that my new follower was none other than my new LinkedIn connection. What a strange coincidence!
  • More notifications from Twitter! A new retweet! And a favorite! Wow! What a day! Wait? Is that who I think it is? It is! My new Twitter follower who also happens to be my new LinkedIn connection.
  • I felt weird so I went on the GChatz and immediately chatted my friend and told her about all the events and she was like “cool? but maybe mostly creepy?” and then….

Me: oh my god and now he found me on Facebook! WHAT THE FUCK?!
CJ Rene: who is he?
Me: I DON’T KNOW! (I was stuck in caps. It happens more often than I care to admit.)

So then I looked at his LinkedIn page and I realized that people on LinkedIn can see when you look them up on there which is part of the reason I never use it and then I had a freak out. Because I don’t want him to know I am looking! But my friend told me that he is being creepy so obviously I would look at his page but he probably doesn’t think he is being creepy. Maybe this is normal for him? Like, a normal day like one of my normal days during which I do not connect with strangers on every social media platform I can think of. So then I thought maybe I would message him on Twitter and be like,

“Um, hey, I’m sure you’re nice and all but what you’re doing right now with the rapid-fire connecting on The Internet is really bugging me out.”

But you can’t message someone on Twitter unless you are following one another and I wasn’t following him so that avenue was closed to me. So I did the only reasonable thing, I rejected the friend request. I did that because, well, I don’t know this person and also because I don’t want to encourage him to then try and find me on Instagram. And then I felt really happy that I upped my Instagram security settings because, as my friend Emily said, “no one needs their Instagram being public.” So true. And then I started writing this blog.

There are a few points to this story. One of the points is that even when you are well-intentioned, which this person might very well be, going on a connection spree with someone you don’t know, especially someone of the opposite gender, can be seen as a little, um, weird? And also scary? Especially when that person happens to be sort of afraid of The Internet even though all her shit is on here and easily searchable, as was reenforced this morning by the aforementioned story. I guess I already really explained the other point which is that I am scared of The Internet. Like, actually terrified of it. And it is maybe good to be reminded every now and again that the things that are out there don’t just go into the abyss, they are findable and readable by all sorts of people, well-meaning or otherwise.

So that’s today. I am going to go for a run now and contemplate The Internet and my presence on it. And also wonder whether my new LinkedIn connection, Twitter follower and rejected Facebook friend is reading this blog. And if after reading it he unconnects and unfollows. Only time will tell. Stay tuned.

The Internet Thinks I Like Justin Bieber

26 Mar

This is a rant about the internet.

So I, like most people, mostly enjoy the internet.  Obviously, I have an internet presence.  The internet, thanks to this blog, knows all about my period and that time I wiped my ass with my left hand in a small little bathroom in Lima.  One day, I swear, I am going to go to a job interview and they are going to tell me that I was never actually considered for the position but they wanted to see the face of the idiot who consistently shares stories about her own stupidity, as if anyone even fucking cares anyway.  Yup, they are going to laugh me out of the office and give me a roll of toilet paper as a sort of  going away present.  This has gotten entirely off track.

The internet.  So this is sort of how I feel about the internet.  Okay, so, I really like to go grocery shopping.  I find grocery stores to be highly organized, which I enjoy.  I also like to think about the hierarchy of product placement and about how the ways that companies get stores to place their food directly impacts the buying habits of American shoppers.  It’s cool to think about but also sort of depressing because it’s like, goddamnit we are so susceptible to bullshit.  Anyway, the grocery store has long been one of my favorite places to go.  Don’t believe me?  Ask my mom.  She’ll tell you.  And you would think that, since I love grocery stores and because I am an American, that the bigger the grocery store the better!  You would be wrong.  When I come upon an extra large grocery store I am initially really excited about it.  All the aisles, the products, the people watching, the unnecessary diversity of cereals and ice creams.  But I find those really big grocery stores to be incredibly overwhelming.  It’s like, I walk in, stroll through a few aisles, then experience sensory overload, forget what I needed to buy (even if I have thought in advance and made a list!) and flee through the automatic doors.  It’s just too much.  That is sort of how I feel about the internet.  I have my few pages that I frequent, and then I’m like,

God, the internet is so boring.  There is nothing to do here!

so I try and find some new places and all of a sudden I have like 25 tabs open concerning all these things that I didn’t know existed that all of a sudden I just have to know about.  And inevitably some percentage of those things are evil.  Like, I was reading about this woman who faked her own pregnancy and somehow ended up on the webpage of one of those people who thinks homosexuality can be cured through prayer.  I would have left the room screaming if I wasn’t in my own damn bedroom and the only place to go in my current outfit was the kitchen from where I would have to eventually return.  I closed the tab.  It’s like, the internet is a long hallway with all these doors and you literally never know what is going to be behind the door when you open it.  It might be a really pleasant looking door, with pictures of Dan Rydell on the front, but then you open it and BAM it’s like Rush Limbaugh’s fan group’s headquarters.  Or something.  But the thing about the internet is that for as much as you don’t know about it, it knows everything about you.  Or so it thinks.

This is actually what I set out to write about before I went all crazy with grocery store analogies and Rush Limbaugh fan groups.

Okay, so, the internet tracks the things that you do on so that it can plaster whatever page you are visiting with an ad about Made Well jeans because sometimes, when you are feeling a little sad and like your wardrobe sucks, you peruse the Made Well webpage and look at clothing you can’t afford.  Which, as you can imagine, only makes you feel sadder and more like your wardrobe sucks.  But then it’s like, you can’t even choose when you want to do that because it is everywhere.  Want to research the Genocide Convention for an article you are writing? Made Well jeans.  Want to look up the Quechuan word for avocado (it’s palta, FYI)?  Made Well jeans.  Want to watch the highest scoring beam routine at the Jesolo gymnastics meet?  You guessed it, Made Well jeans.  You get the picture.  So meanwhile, as you are being absolutely inundated with advertisements for luxury clothing items, Twitter can’t seem to come up with hashtags that actually relate to things you would be interested in reading about.  It has this trending thing, whereby it theoretically takes information about the people you are following combined with your location and then suggests a whole bunch of hashtags that might be of interest to you.  So, I follow a whole bunch of feminists and a few of my good friends (most of whom are feminists) and Twitter suggests #2YearsofBoyfriend which is a hashtag about Justin Bieber’s song that I have never even heard before (I had to look it up to see what the hell the hashtag even meant).  It also suggested #GetWellJimKelly and #CrappySnacks.  I just don’t know.

And then there is LinkedIn.  Now this is really weird.  So I used to work at Restaurant Gordon Ramsay in midtown.  The restaurant was located in the lobby of The London hotel.  The hotel had this doorman named Collin who was really nice who I used to always talk to. Collin and I never interacted on the internet.  I never put on my LinkedIn profile that I worked at Gordon Ramsay (I don’t think I even had a LinkedIn profile back then) and yet, the other day it suggested that I connect with Collin even though we had absolutely no shared connections!  How did it know?!  How can it connect me to some random doorman with whom I have had absolutely no electronic communication and yet elsewhere on the internet it thinks I give a damn about Justin Bieber?!  I literally do not understand.  I do not understand and I also find myself pretty damn terrified.

I just don’t know, you guys.  The internet.  It like knows everything and nothing at once.  Sometimes I think maybe I should just like exit the internet and go live in a cave somewhere (or just my bedroom only this time with no online access).  Then maybe I could go meet my friend out at a bar without this guy threatening to laugh in my face.


26 Sep

Recently I have been bad at the internet.  I have been really bad at email* but even more than that, I have been exceptionally bad at my blog.  I think maybe I have been having sort of a self-sabotage moment, something to which I am no stranger.  I had my best blog day ever last month which led to my best blog month ever, hits-wise anyway.  I was really excited! I was like, yea, things are maybe happening.  Maybe if I write a few more relevant blog posts some of those readers that read my one socially relevant post will visit back for another fix and be like, hey, this girl is funny.  Or smart.  Or annoying but I can’t seem to stop reading.  But then I pretty much didn’t write anything at all!  I totally missed the train.  Like, I saw the train coming, I heard it’s train whistle thing, it started to slow down and just at that moment I dropped a dollar on the ground and instead of being like, “whatever, fuck the dollar” I looked everywhere for it because I really needed that dollar and then the train sped off and who knows when the next one will arrive.  Or, wait!  This is a better comparison and maybe more realistic.  It’s sort of like when I train for a half marathon (or a marathon but, really, that hasn’t happened since like 2007).  So I train hard for the half marathon – but not as hard as I could because I am sort of runner-lazy and also unmotivated – and then the race comes and I do a good job!  And I am having so much fun!  And I am like, “yea, this is great, and if I train even harder I can really kill this distance.”  So for half of the race I am running I am day-dreaming about how much I want to run the next race even better.  And then the race ends and I go about my day.  And then the next day I decide to give myself the day off because my legs are sore.  And then the next day it’s the same thing.  And all of a sudden it’s 3 weeks later, I’ve run like 5 times and now I have to try and get back into shape again.  It’s like, there this is crescendo of excitement when you work towards something and then the music just dissipates and rather than building immediately to the next crescendo, because the musicians are all there in their chairs already so you might as well take advantage of them and besides, they’ve already been paid for the next two hours, you say “fuck it! Consider the extra money an early Christmas/Channuka/non-denominational holiday present!” It’s just stupid.  I mean, I’m sure the musicians appreciate it but that doesn’t even matter because I just made the musicians up.  In the real-life version of this story I am not actually helping anyone, only hurting myself so the story is a little more sad.

Anyway, moving on.  So despite the fact that I haven’t really been writing on my blog, I have been thinking about it.  I have come up with all sorts of fun things to write about.  Things that I think you might enjoy reading.  But I have also come up with this new thing that I am doing on Twitter which is what I was planning on writing about today when I sat down at the computer and before I got distracted talking about trains, running, and musicians.  This thing is called “#ObservationOfTheDay.”  Basically what I do is quite obvious.  Every day I make some sort of observation and then label it with my very own hashtag!  Pretty neat, right?  So on the first day of observing, I tweeted, “Twitter brings me more stress than joy and yet I know I will continue to use it.”  Why would I do this?  Well, I will tell you.

So when I had that one really big post where I got all the hits (most of them from Belgium) it was because of Twitter.  It was because I hashtagged something appropriately and somehow it found itself in the Twitter feed of a Flemmish-language web based newspaper and voila!  The entire population of northern Belgium (minor exaggeration here) was reading my blog!  I thought to myself “wow, this Twitter thing really does work!”  But then I realized that Twitter stresses me the hell out for some of the same reasons, in fact, that I am stressed out by email and regular mail.  It’s like, no matter what you do things are always being hurled at you.  Sort of like when we used to play dodgeball in gym class.  I hated dodegball.  Why would anyone want to go stand on a basketball court and have those big rubber balls thrown them?  It makes zero sense to me.  Anyway, I am constantly getting emails (major exaggeration here) and lots of credit card come-ons and clothing catalogues in the regular mail.  And people are always tweeting.  And when they tweet, they link to articles that look interesting so then after like 10 minutes on Twitter I have like, 25 tabs open with articles I want to read.  I always want to read all of the things.  It’s very stressful.  As a result, I don’t go on Twitter all that often which means that my presence on Twitter, as a tweeter, goes largely unnoticed.  That is a problem because, as I mentioned earlier, Twitter is useful for my blog but only if I have followers or I write about something culturally relevant.  I basically have no followers and I often write about nothing of consequence (this blog post being a perfect example of that) and so therefore my blog just sort of disappears into the world of interwebbery without making too much of a splash.  And so, in an effort to try and fix that, I have decided that I will tweet at least once every day.  (Hooray for structure!)  And thus was born #ObservationOfTheDay.

So yesterday my observation was,

“Dudes look silly in skinny jeans. Therefore, they (the jeans, not the dudes) should be thrown in a pit and burned.”

And then something great happened!  On only my second day of observing, I got a response!  (Granted, it was from one of my few followers who also happens to be a friend of mine from high school with whom I occasionally have amusing twitter-sations, but still!) He responded with the following hilarious bit of information:

“I know a guy who had a serious finger tendon injury from trying to remove his own skinny jeans.”

So I know that finger tendon injuries are no laughing matter (my brother had one from playing dodgeball – see what I did there? Full circle, bitches – and he had to wear a homemade finger-splint for months!), but seriously?  That is hilarious.  And I mean, I don’t want to say that he deserved the finger tendon injury but like, if you injure your finger taking off your skinny jeans then I am left to wonder how in the world you got them on in the first place.  And also, what technique this individual uses to remove said skinny jeans.  As a result of finding out this information, I became immediately happy that I had started my daily observations and had observed this one specific thing, but also sad that I have gotten this far in my life without knowing that someone experienced a serious finger tendon injury from removing his pants.  Better late than never, I suppose.

Anyway, observing is fun!  You should try it!  Also, you can read my daily observations @franklyrebekah.  Today my observation involves rice pudding.

*This is nothing new.  I am often bad at email.

The Internet is SUCH a Crazy Place

28 Aug

So, a couple of things have happened since I last posted.  So, last week I wrote a post about the whole incident that happened in Ireland at an Eminem concert at Slane Castle.  I didn’t really expect too much of a response since a lot of people were writing about the same thing but I was wrong.  Somehow my blog got linked on a Flemish-language newspaper and my blog EXPLODED in Belgium.  (Keep in mind the word exploded is entirely relative.)  So I had my two best days ever in the history of my blog one right after the other.  I even got some hits off of Twitter which basically never happens for the following two reasons.  One, I am confused by Twitter as a general rule and two, I have like 51 followers.  I had 52 but then someone unfollowed me.  When you have basically no followers you notice the ebb and flow.   Then this sad thing happened.  I noticed that, after the HIT EXPLOSION my daily hits were slightly higher than normal and came from search terms instead of my blog followers clicking on their emails or my Facebook friends finding the link there.  I then noticed that I was getting all sorts of hits from people looking for the image of the girl giving head at the concert.  (If you don’t know what I am talking about, just read the aforementioned blog, it will fill you in.)  So, okay, I have a few things to say about this.

First of all, seriously people, I don’t understand what is so damn exciting about a photograph of a girl sucking a guy’s dick.  If you really want to see what sucking a dick looks like, go suck a dick.  Set up a camera on the other side of the room and have it take a photo of you in the middle.  Put a stupid lime green hat on the person on the receiving end of the oral gratification, have that person throw his hands up into the air and basically you have the photo.  Not that exciting, really.

Secondly, if you really insist on seeing the photo, which makes me think less of your value as a human being because neither the girl nor the guy featured in the photo gave their consent, why don’t you try searching Google images?  You know what Google images is?  A way to find images.  You know what a photograph is?  An image.

Thirdly, porn.  It exists and it is everywhere.  The beauty of porn is that if you are turned on by people that look as though they are not consenting of the photograph being taken or the film being filmed, you can find that only the people actually have consented.  Acting, you know?  So you get the best of both worlds.  You get to view people engaged in sexual acts that maybe look like they are not participating willingly or as though they don’t know they are being photographed/filmed, but you are not being a horrible creatch and reinforcing all the fucked up gender stereotypes that run so rampant throughout our culture.

Fourth, think about what your desire to look at this photograph means and start asking yourself tough questions.  Do you think she deserved all the negative attention she is getting?  Why?  Would you feel the same way if the roles were reversed, if it was a man pleasuring a woman?  Would she still be the slut?

Fifth, I hope you read my blog when you accidentally got there.  I hope you read it and starting thinking about your role in the world.  And I hope you know that I think you are a complete asshole.

So another thing that happened is that I received an email from my friend Debbie complete with a screen shot that demonstrated the fact that my blog has been banned by the company for which she works.  We think it is because I wrote a post about going to a male strip club and that, throughout that post, I used the word “penis,” both in the singular and the plural, very liberally.  On the one hand, I sort of feel as though you haven’t really made it until you’ve blown up via  Flemish newspaper and been banned in a couple of offices.  On the other hand, I use the word “vagina” ALL THE TIME.  The word vagina is even in the title of one of my categories.  And yet it wasn’t until I used the word penis that my blog got banned.  So, that’s fucked up.

And finally, today I received a comment on my blog that said the following thing:

“Read on twitter you do a bit of bartending, would you be interested in us customizing your own bottle openers? We have a free promotion going on right now, send an email!”

My very own FranklyRebekah bottle openers.  I never thought I would live to see the day.