communication, complaints, family, musings, social media

Many of my “friends” aren’t actually my friends…

Today’s blog post may cause me to lose some Facebook “friends”. I’ve decided that I’m okay with that, mostly because not being okay with it isn’t useful. It would be hypocritical for me to be upset with people who unfriend or block me on Facebook for expressing myself in an honest way. If I want to be free to express myself and have authentic reactions, then I should be willing to grant other people the same courtesy. Moreover, most of the people on my Facebook friends list aren’t actually my friends, anyway.

People have the right to feel any way they want to feel, and react the way they want to react. I try to be authentic as much as possible, even though I realize that not everyone likes me as my authentic self. I’ve always kind of marched to a different beat that not everyone understands or enjoys. It’s caused me problems my whole life. When I was a lot younger and less wise, I even tried to be different. It didn’t work out very well for me, nor did it last. So… at almost 51 years of age, I’ve come to realize that I am who I am. Take me or leave me. 😉

Two days ago, I wrote a blog post that apparently greatly offended someone who was a Facebook friend. I woke up this morning to see that she’s blocked me. She’s no longer a Facebook friend, but she is still married to my dad’s cousin, and they do occasionally go to our family events. I guess if I ever come home to another family reunion while we’re both still living, things may be awkward. Luckily for her, there’s a good chance I won’t bother going “home” again, anyway.

The post that my former Facebook friend was apparently offended by is this one…

You will notice how many (or how few) people have viewed it so far…

I’m not going to rehash too much of the contents of that post, because as you can see, it has very few hits. I didn’t realize this person was a regular reader of my blog, although I did know that she might read what I wrote and get offended by it. I have a habit of sharing my links on my personal Facebook page– usually just once. And, as you can see, almost none of the now 382 people on my friends list clicked the link.

I guess I don’t blame her for apparently being offended by my post… but I suspect she doesn’t realize that the reason I wrote it, in the first place, was because I was a bit triggered by her comments to me. I simply needed to “unpack”.

I have written more than once that I often write blog posts about things that upset or trigger me. I blog here because the blog gets a lot fewer views than my Facebook page does, and that means the responses to my thoughts are generally much less contentious. I know it’s hard to believe, but I see posting in my blog as opposed to Facebook as a kindness. Most of the really popular posts on my blog are not about personal subjects, but on my thoughts about books, movies, or videos.

I am going to be very clear. I am not sorry for writing that post, although I do regret that my former Facebook friend was evidently offended by it. It’s never my intention to hurt people’s feelings or upset them. Writing is simply how I process things. It’s just a form of communication. It’s what I do.

I do realize that not everyone likes what I do. Some people would rather I stay quiet. That’s not my nature, though. I’m naturally an outspoken person, although I often tend to be even more outspoken in print. A real friend would know this about me and understand it on some level, even if they don’t always appreciate it. A real friend wouldn’t expect me to be someone different. That’s probably why I don’t actually have a lot of real friends… or maybe I’m just a worthless bitch. That could be true, too… :shrug:

I grew up in southern Virginia, which is a very southern place. I was taught from an early age that I should always be “nice” to people, even when they weren’t nice to me. I don’t think I learned this from my mom, though. My mom is a pretty blunt person. She knows how to be “nice”, but I’ve rarely ever seen her fake it with people. When she’s upset, she lets people know. That’s even more true today. She recently told me about how she ordered her dentist and his hygienist to “shut up”, because they were blathering about something annoying while working on her mouth. She got fed up with listening to them and literally told them to be quiet. I’ve never done that to my dentist, but maybe if I make it to my 80s, I might feel bold enough to tell him or her to shut up, too.

My dad was the one who encouraged me to keep quiet about how I felt. I think he expected me to look and behave like a proper southern lady. That’s not me, though. It’s not even his wife, who kind of looks the part of a demure southern lady, but really doesn’t act like it. I can remember him frequently chastising me for being too “honest” about my opinions. He was always allowed to say whatever he wanted, no matter how hurtful. But I was expected to shut up and keep sweet. It was quite toxic, so I don’t do that for anyone anymore.

A few days ago, I shared a post a Facebook friend had on her feed. I liked the message of the post, which was to remind people to keep their toxic body shaming comments to themselves. The post had a picture of an overweight woman in a bikini. My former Facebook friend thought it was a picture of me and said I looked “great”. It seemed to me that she’d completely missed the point of the post, which was that most people (especially strangers) just want to be left alone and don’t necessarily want any feedback on how they look. Adding insult to injury was that when I pointed out that the photo wasn’t of me, she laughed and said “oops” instead of simply apologizing for the mistake.

At the time I saw her responses to me, my authentic feelings could be described as annoyed and a bit hurt. However, I resisted the urge to react with anger on Facebook, even though that was how I honestly felt at the time. Unfortunately, I was still perturbed about it the next day.

On Sunday morning, I felt compelled to write about the incident on this blog. There was a lot of angst and personal stuff in the post, because I was being honest and trying to explain where that reaction comes from. Could it have been less “angry”? Yes, maybe… but then, it wouldn’t have been authentic. And, as you can see, very few people have read the damned thing, anyway. One of those five hits came from the person who inspired my post in the first place. That’s precisely why I wrote it in my blog instead of directly confronting the person on Facebook. But maybe, in retrospect, I should have called her out on social media for all of the rest of my 382 Facebook friends to see. Perhaps that would have seemed less “shady” to my “victim”.

Now… this isn’t the first time someone has told me, in so many or few words, that I shouldn’t write about something. In fact, I recently wrote about how former tenant tried to silence me on multiple occasions when she didn’t like something I wrote in my blog. She brazenly implied that I was “mean”, “crazy”, or a liar, and clearly never even considered my perspective. It was pretty poisonous stuff, especially since she was monitoring me and tattling to the landlady. If she didn’t like my content, she could have simply minded her own business and unfollowed, right?

Several years ago, I was inspired by a former Facebook friend who kept sharing quotes that were falsely attributed to George Carlin. My post wasn’t really even about my former “friend”; it was about the common practice of sharing falsely attributed quotes. His repeated fake George Carlin posts just gave me the idea for the topic.

But boy, you would have thought I’d insulted his mother or something. He very dramatically blocked me, after telling me off, then got all his redneck friends to stalk my blog for days. All it resulted in was extra AdSense pennies. If he’d been a real friend, he might have stopped and thought for a moment about what I wrote. Maybe he might have considered my perspective and determined whether or not what I wrote objectively made any sense, rather than simply reacting with a wounded ego.

In my opinion, that’s what an actual friend would do… because they’d want to understand and relate. He wasn’t a friend, though… not that I ever had expectations of a real friendship with that guy. I was just there to up his friend count. I do think it’s funny, though, that we “met” on a Web site called “Epinions.com”, and sharing opinions was what the site was all about. I guess it’s okay to share opinions as long as they’re always about someone or something else.

Now, I’ve evidently offended my cousin’s wife, who actually offended me first, by disingenuously saying that I looked “great” in a photo that wasn’t even of me. Then, when I pointed out the error, she “laughed” and said “oops”. When I further tried to explain my point about not being so focused on appearances, she still didn’t get it, and complimented me again. Since she didn’t even know the photo wasn’t of me, and wasn’t getting that I didn’t find her mistake funny, how can I take anything she says about my appearance seriously? And why is it even necessary to make those comments?

I certainly don’t mind hearing that I’m pretty or look young, but I would hope the compliments are sincere and aren’t just said to be “nice”. Because, as you can see, “niceness” can backfire spectacularly, and most of the time, there’s simply no need. I think it’s better to be kind than to be nice. There is a big difference between the two.

When I decided to process this situation through writing, which is something I commonly and regularly do on this blog, her response was to– apparently– get pissed and block me. That’s not much of a friendship, is it? She had claimed to be my friend, but chose to block me rather than have a simple conversation. I don’t think that is the action of someone who values a relationship. If she had ever actually cared about me as a friend, she would communicate with me. I did try to communicate with her before I wrote my little read blog post that evidently so upset her.

Although I always regret losing friends– or even “friends”– it seems to me that in many cases like this, when a “friendship” is suddenly lost over a Facebook or blog post that goes south, we were never really friends in the first place. And the more I age, the less time or patience I have for indulging people who aren’t interested in forming an authentic connection. The older I get, the more I realize that most people aren’t friends… at best, they’re acquaintances, with just the barest surface knowledge about the people who aren’t in their immediate orbit. Social conventions, especially in the South, have trained us all to act the part of a friend, even if it’s not genuine. It’s that whole “bless your heart” attitude…

If you’re not from the South, allow me to explain “bless your heart”. It sounds nice, and sometimes it really is meant that way. Say, for instance, if you’re a little kid and you fall and skin your knee, you might hear your Granny say “bless your heart” as she offers you a cookie and a kiss (although my Granny never did that to me).

However, a lot of the time, when you hear someone from the South saying “bless your heart”, what they really mean is that you should either be ashamed of yourself, or you’re just clueless or stupid. Instead of being straightforward when we communicate, we’re taught to “soften the blow” with fake platitudes like “bless your heart”. Women, especially, aren’t taught to be assertive and straightforward. Instead, we offer up heaping loads of bullshit to each other, and pretend it’s better than simply being “real”… and, by the way, being “real” isn’t akin to being rude or mean. Being real is about simply not being disingenuous.

I really tried to be more “nice” when I was younger, but it’s simply not in my nature. Trying to be superficially nice is, to me, like wearing shoes on the wrong feet. I do always try to be kind, but there’s a difference between being kind and being “nice”. And I’m afraid I’m not always “nice”. I’m definitely not “sweet”, either… and it kind of makes me cringe when someone says I am. Hey– if you know, you know! And if you’re calling me “sweet”, you definitely don’t know me very well. But then, maybe you’d rather not know me, if you want to be around someone who is sweet.

Living in Germany and Armenia, both places where people can be painfully blunt, has made me even less likely to indulge people who say “bless your heart” and lie to my face. I’ve come to realize that it’s a waste of time to adopt that style of communication, anyway. So many times, I’ve wasted time trying to be “friends” with someone who turns out to be full of shit. And then I’m left with the hurt and trauma of having wasted the effort… when they couldn’t even attempt to accept me for who I am, or try to see things from my perspective. And they’re always allowed to be offended, but I’m not.

I know that many people would tell me to process this crap by keeping it private, or by talking to Bill, or a friend. I don’t have local friends. Bill hears this stuff all the time, but he manages to love me anyway. And I think other people can relate, or might even be interested in the topic, so I write these posts for them. I know that a lot of people, for instance, are tired of being body shamed by strangers. They just want to be left in peace. That was really what the initial offending post was about, anyway.

Reading my blog is always a choice. I suspect that my cousin’s wife isn’t even a regular reader of this blog, but chose to read that post because of the featured photo, which offered a clue as to what the post would be about. She correctly realized it would be about that viral post of the woman in the bikini, and how she thought I was her.

As you can see by the tiny hit count on the above post that got me blocked by a family member, not that many people DO read my blog… just like few people read the posts they react and respond to on Facebook. More people read my Facebook page than this blog. I know most people would just let this stuff go without comment… but I’m not “most people”, just as you aren’t “most people”. We’re all individuals. I am me, and this is simply how I respond to things. If that’s upsetting to you, maybe it’s better that we’re not “friends”.

But don’t worry. I probably won’t be at the next family reunion, anyway. A lot of them don’t like me, either. 😉

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communication, complaints, condescending twatbags, rants, slut shamers

You really don’t need to comment either way…

On this date in 2012, I took the featured photo in Cologne, Germany. We were on our very first “hop”, which took us to Germany, Austria, and Luxembourg. I spotted this sticker on utility equipment and snapped a photo. It fits today’s topic perfectly.

Happy Sunday, folks. It’s another pretty, late spring morning here, and already 69 degrees Fahrenheit, which is pretty nice. I know it’s hard to fathom to those of you in the southern United States, but it’s still a bit chilly in Germany. I don’t look forward to the hot, un air-conditioned days that are coming, but right now, the weather is getting more pleasant.

Our Nordic holiday is rapidly approaching. I have experienced Scandinavian and Baltic countries in the summer, and I know that it will behoove us to bring layers. I remember the first time we went to Norway, back in June 2009, and we both had to buy warmer clothes. Bill got two sweaters, and I got a hoodie and a sweatshirt. I loved the hoodie and was pretty sad when I lost it after our 2014 “hop” to France and Germany from Texas. Perhaps I’ll find a new one when we’re up there.

I’m kind of glad we’re going up north next month. I probably won’t be wearing a bathing suit in public. Maybe I’ll wear one on the cruise ship, but I’ll bring a robe with me. Actually, one thing I’ve noticed and really enjoyed in Europe is the less judgmental and shitty attitude people tend to have about other people’s bodies. This is especially true in Germany, where there are a lot of health spas in which being nude is a requirement. I’ll admit, as an American, it was hard for me to embrace the idea of being nude in a “public” place. However, once I did it, I found the experience very liberating. Nudity isn’t a big deal here, so you see all kinds of people at the spa. All of them are there for themselves, and it’s not a big deal if you don’t have a bikini or Speedo worthy body.

Yesterday, a friend shared the below post on Facebook. I liked it, so I decided to share it, too.

I added the comment, “Yup. Zip it.”

Now… I’m going to clarify. Personally, I don’t objectively think that every body is necessarily beautiful. However, I do believe that (almost) every person has basic worth. I do think that we should show basic respect to people, and do our best to preserve their dignity. I completely agree with the original poster’s statements that people don’t need to make comments about other people’s bodies, positive or negative. You really don’t need to comment either way. I honestly don’t see why people feel emboldened to make such personal comments to people, especially when they are total strangers.

A lot of my friends saw the above post and liked it. However, I did get one comment that I’m afraid has given me something to write/rant about this morning. It was actually a little embarrassing on many levels. A family member, seeing the above post, wrote this:

You look GREAT💕

In fairness, this family member is related by marriage. She’s married to my dad’s first cousin (my first cousin once removed– Granny’s nephew– and the son of my fabulous late Aunt Estelle, who was hilarious). She has known my parents for years, though, because she’s from the Tidewater area, and used to patronize my parents’ business. One time, we went to our annual Thanksgiving shindig and she was there with cousin Jimmy. She didn’t even know Jimmy was my dad’s cousin, and asked us what the hell we were doing there!

I’m not sure if this relative knew me when I was growing up. She probably saw me a few times, since my parents’ business was run out of their house. However, she hasn’t seen me in person since 2014. Moreover, it’s pretty obvious if you actually READ the post before reacting or commenting, that I am not the original poster. Anyway, I wrote this response, with a laughing reaction (though I kind of wanted to post an orange, angry reaction):

Uh…. That isn’t me.

My relative posted this:

🤣😂🤣oooops!

If my relative knew me better, she’d know that I never wear bikinis. I probably should wear them, since it’s easier to go to the bathroom if you have a two piece bathing suit. But when I do wear bathing suits, I prefer to wear one pieces. Anyway, I responded thusly:

When I go swimming, I’m usually nude. Plus, I could never grow my hair that long.

And this is the truth. In Germany, when I go swimming, it’s often at a health spa, and a lot of them are nude. So when I swim in Germany, I do often go swimming in the buff. When I’m not in Germany, I don’t wear bikinis. And I have never had long hair like the woman in the picture has. My hair simply won’t grow that long. I’ve tried.

My relative wrote:

I did notice her hair is longer than yours usually is!

Right. And did you also notice that she’s got darker hair than mine has been in years? She probably has a “better” figure than I have, too (although tastes differ). 😉 I was a bit perturbed and it was later in the evening, so I made one more response.

She’s also a bit younger.

People should be able to go swimming or whatever and not have people comment about their bodies. I like how it is in Germany. Nudity isn’t a big deal here, so you see people of all shapes and sizes, especially at wellness spas. Nobody cares. It’s very liberating.

This was my main point. You don’t need to make a comment of any kind about other people’s bodies. You don’t need to reassure someone that they look “great”. You don’t need to compliment them, nor do you need to tell them they’re too fat, too thin, or need to wear a bra, shapewear, or a girdle. Just let them live in their own skin in peace.

If you must comment, try to pay attention to other things, like whether or not they look happy. Stop focusing so much on the external appearances of other people– especially those you don’t know personally. Most of them won’t care about your opinions either way, and by keeping your mouth shut, you avoid embarrassing and traumatic situations with strangers.

My relative still didn’t get it. She posted this…

You could pass for that age…whatever that may be!

Well gee… thank you. But a compliment on my looks was not what I was hoping for when I shared that post, as much as I appreciate being complimented. It’s not that I don’t like being told I look young, or beautiful, or whatever else. I do like hearing sincere compliments. Sincere is the operative word, and really, compliments should come from someone whose opinions matter to me.

I did visit the original post, just to see what other people’s reactions to it were. Naturally, there were many comments about how “obesity isn’t pretty”. Some were from mansplaining males who expect women they deem unattractive to cover up. Some were, sadly, from women who harped on what’s beautiful and “healthy”. Others posted backassed things like, “I wouldn’t do it, but good for her.” A comment like that tells me that you’re trying to be “nice”, but you still disapprove. The woman in that photo doesn’t require your approval or your opinion. Just zip it, and mind your own business.

Everybody has a story. You have no idea what’s going on in that woman’s life. For all you know, she might have just lost a lot of weight. Or maybe she just gained a lot of weight. Maybe it’s the first time she’s been to the beach in years. Or maybe she visits the beach every day, and it’s her happy place. Who are you to intrude on her business with uninvited comments about her body? Why do you think she, or anyone else, should care what you think about her body? You’ve got your own body. Pay attention to that, instead.

I’ll be honest. I don’t like it when people make comments about my body. They almost never make me feel good, even when they’re positive. When they come from men, they make me feel skeevy. When they come from women, they make me feel bullshitted. And no matter what a person does, there’s always going to be someone who is critical. Even if everyone was an “acceptable” size for aesthetic purposes, there would always be someone out there with a criticism or a backhanded compliment. Seems to me that people really ought to just STFU about other people’s bodies and mind their own business.

Last weekend, I took some photos with Bill at a street food festival we attended. They turned out really nicely. Below is the photo currently serving as my profile picture.

Maybe I look “pretty” in this photo, but I would much rather someone say that I look happy.

One friend left a comment that I really appreciated. She wrote, “Great picture!” That’s really all anyone needs to say, if they say anything at all.

I know not everyone shares my opinions about this subject. My thoughts on this probably come from being raised by people who were very image conscious and constantly criticized me for not looking “good” at all times.

I can remember my dad grabbing me by the head and forcibly combing my hair as he claimed it “looked like a rat’s nest.”

I can remember my mom looking at me with disdain and saying, “Why don’t you go put on some makeup?” Alternatively, when I got dolled up, she’d pull out the camera for a photo… as if it was such a rare and momentous occasion that it demanded to be preserved for posterity’s sake.

I can remember both of them giving me endless shit about my weight when I was a teen and a young woman, even as I flirted with eating disorders. My dad called me names. My mom tried to bribe me with new clothes, as she pleaded with me to lose weight. It made me feel unloved, ugly, and unworthy, and eventually led me to depression bad enough that I saw a psychiatrist, who also fat and appearance shamed me (but did at least find the right antidepressant).

It took years after that to stop going on starvation diets as I constantly made derogatory comments about my body to anyone who would listen. I’m sure that was as tiresome for other people, as it was not helpful for me. I don’t want to go back down that road.

Years after my last appointment with that psychiatrist, I asked for his notes to be sent to me, because I needed to give them to the Army for an EFMP screening. I made the mistake of looking at what he wrote about me. He made quite a few comments about how I wasn’t losing weight, and how I looked “garish”. I guess he felt my clothes were too “loud” for being my size (about a 14 at the time). He gave me medication that was supposed to be used for migraine headaches and seizures for an off label use– it caused appetite suppression. He was obviously very disappointed when it didn’t cause me to lose scads of weight. (This experience, by the way, is the main reason I don’t go looking for people’s opinions about me or this blog. I’d probably rather not know.)

I already had little trust or regard for doctors at that point in my life, mainly due to the very disrespectful and traumatic way I was treated by an Air Force OB-GYN at my very first gyno appointment. When I read those notes by a psychiatrist, who was supposed to be helping me with depression, I trusted them even less. That doctor’s notes should have indicated things like whether or not I was appropriately dressed, or adequately groomed for the occasion. Comments about my weight might have been fair enough, but only in terms of my health. My personal makeup and clothing style should not have factored into my records at all. Using the word “garish” to describe me was completely inappropriate. I think he had a bias against people he deemed to be “too fat”, and felt entitled to share them with patients who came to him for help.

When I was younger, maybe I would have appreciated fake compliments about how “good” I looked over rude comments about body image. But today, at almost 51 years of age, I’d much rather people just focus on what’s important… and what’s important is NOT what my body looks like. Because if you think about it, people who body shame are basically expecting everyone who doesn’t meet their standards to just hide away somewhere until they’re more suitable for public view. That’s not a fair thing to ask of anyone. Moreover, most of the people who make those kinds of comments aren’t exactly hot shit themselves. 99.9% of the time, you really don’t need to make a comment at all… just zip it, and leave the person alone to enjoy their lives. By keeping your mouth shut, you will keep them from experiencing unnecessary trauma, and you will keep yourself in good karma. Just my thoughts.

And… just to end this post on an amen, the wonderful singer, Jane Monheit, posted this on Twitter in 2019:

I would also add… please don’t give people unsolicited advice, either. Especially on something as personal as their body image. If someone wants your advice or input, they’ll ask for it.

Standard
condescending twatbags, karma, politicians, politics

It’s not such a good week for Matt Gaetz…

Years ago, the late comedian George Carlin made me roar with laughter when he mused, “Have you noticed that people who are against abortion are people you wouldn’t want to fuck in the first place? There’s such balance in nature!” A few more years passed, and he used the joke again in a later routine. See below.

This is from 1996, but he used this joke even earlier than that.

I couldn’t help but think of my old hero, George Carlin, when I read the news about vile Florida Republican Representative, Matt Gaetz, who twisted Carlin’s joke. Last weekend, Gaetz was at the Turning Point USA Student Action Summit in Tampa, where he reportedly quipped “Why is it that the women with the least likelihood of getting pregnant are the ones most worried about abortions? Nobody wants to impregnate you if you look like a thumb,” Gaetz said to his conservative audience. “These people are odious from the inside out. They’re like 5’2″, 350 pounds, and they’re like ‘Give me my abortions or I’ll get up and march and protest.’” I guess he figures the students at that rally weren’t around when Carlin did that joke much better than he did.

What a disgusting man Gaetz is. This clip has more of what Gaetz actually said, and it’s even worse than I realized.

Um… wow. This is the same guy who is being investigated by the Justice Department over allegations of sex trafficking and prostitution, including involving a minor. Mr. Gaetz also has a mugshot dating from 2008, when he was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. While he was evidently never convicted for DUI, his mugshot is still available online. Gaetz refused the breath test when he was stopped, and for some reason, his driver’s license was not suspended. The refusal to take the breath test was not used against him in court, and the charges were dropped. The officer who arrested him was forced to resign. It may be worth mentioning that Gaetz is the son of a prominent former Florida politician, Don Gaetz. In fact, then 26 year old Matt was driving his daddy’s car when he got pulled over after having spent the evening at a nightclub. The arresting officer smelled booze on Gaetz and noted his disheveled appearance. Gaetz said that the officer harassed and threatened him.

Gaetz now claims that he’s being targeted and harassed over the sex trafficking claim. He said:

“Over the past several weeks my family and I have been victims of an organized criminal extortion involving a former DOJ official seeking $25 million while threatening to smear my name. We have been cooperating with federal authorities in this matter and my father has even been wearing a wire at the FBI’s direction to catch these criminals,”

Yeah, I believe that Matt Gaetz is as pure as the driven snow… NOT. And he did make some really disgusting misogynistic comments at the summit in Tampa, prompting a 19 year old woman named Olivia Julianna to tweet criticisms of Representative Gaetz, a man currently being investigated for sex trafficking, as he calls out so-called “fat and ugly” abortion activists, whom he says need to march and eat more salad. I say “Clean up your own yard, Gaetz”.

In retaliation for Olivia Julianna’s tweets against his disgusting comments about pro-choice women, Gaetz body shamed Olivia Julianna, sharing a picture of her and his awful comments on Twitter. Then he encouraged his followers to harass her, and thousands of them did. Olivia Julianna responded by announcing a fundraiser for Gen Z for Change, a 500 member youth led non-profit group that addresses issues that disproportionately affected young people.

When it became clear that Gaetz’s bullying campaign against her was a big failure, Olivia Julianna tweeted this response.

And she didn’t stop there. Olivia Julianna also wittily tweeted, “Am I not a little too old for you Matt? I know you have a thing for targeting teenagers but 19 is on the cusp don’t you think?” 

In a subsequent tweet, she continued:

Olivia Julianna went on to raise over $1 million for Gen Z for Change. The donated money will be divided among 50 abortion rights funds. She did a pretty good job turning misogynistic hate into something useful.

I love how sassily Olivia Julianna handed Gaetz his ass, posting: “Dear Matt, Although your intentions were hateful, your public shaming of my appearance has done nothing but benefit me,” she wrote after his tweet about her spurred a load of harassment from Gaetz’s Twitter followers — as well as a flood of donations to her reproductive rights advocacy organization. She’s also gained thousands of new Twitter followers, including yours truly.

Why anyone is listening to Matt Gaetz, let alone voting for him, is beyond me. But I guess it’s proof that in the United States, if you’re lucky and hitch your star to the right people, being reprehensible won’t stop you from being successful at something. I think that’s especially true in places where there’s a lot of good old boy cronyism and nepotism going on. It’s especially telling that Gaetz can’t even come up with his own jokes. He has to twist and bastardize a classic joke from George Carlin, a much revered and beloved comedian, who, if he was still living, would have an absolute field day with what’s happening right now.

Gaetz really isn’t having a good week, anyway. At that same summit in Tampa, Gaetz went after Mike Pence, saying:

“Our America is proudly ultra MAGA, not some low energy roadside RINO safari,” said Gaetz, referring to a derogatory term for so-called moderate Republicans. “On that note, let me just say what everyone here knows: Mike Pence will never be president. Nice guy, not a leader.”

Bwahahaha… what Gaetz knows about “nice guys” would fill a thimble. I’m not a fan of Mike Pence’s in any sense, but I do love what, Marc Short, Pence’s former chief of staff said in response:

“Well, I don’t know if Mike Pence will run for president in 2024, but I don’t think Matt Gaetz will have an impact on that. In fact, I’d be surprised if he’s still voting. It’s more likely he’ll be in prison for child trafficking by 2024.

And I’m actually surprised the Florida law enforcement still allows him to speak to teenage conferences like that. So, I’m not too worried what Matt Gaetz thinks.”

Yes, that’s a pretty good burn… However, I am forever disturbed by the fact that reprobates like Matt Gaetz get into power and have political platforms that influence laws for all of us. He’s clearly not a good person. He has no honor. He’s not even nice on the surface. Naturally, he’s probably one of Trump’s favorite guys and biggest sycophants.

Gaetz has been vocal about his opposition to abortion and voted against two bills that would have ensured access to abortion. He’s been criticized for saying that those protesting the overturning of Roe v. Wade are “overeducated, under-loved millennials.” (ahem, I am a member of Gen X, thank you VERY much!) It surprises me that Matt Gaetz is so “pro-life”, yet he has no problem trying to tear down people who have already been born, and have thoughts and feelings that can be affected by what he says. Kudos to Olivia Julianna for having plenty of moxie and a sharp wit. I think she’s going to go far in her heels as she stomps all over Matt Gaetz’s pathetic, privileged, and perverted ass. I look forward to cheering her on!

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silliness, sports, videos, YouTube

Monica Phelps and her cringey gymnastics commentary…

Here’s another silly post from yours truly. It’s another lame attempt to stop myself from writing something serious today. It’s Friday, after all, and who needs a depressing blog post? All you really need to do is hang out on Facebook for that. Yep– I’m tempted to bitch about some things, but I’d rather draw your attention to the craziness that is Monica Phelps.

Who’s Monica Phelps, you ask? I didn’t know who she was myself, until I stumbled across some hilarious videos made by YouTuber Ampli Tood, who is apparently a big fan of women’s gymnastics. Monica Phelps is a British woman who was an artistic gymnast in the 1960s. She competed in the 1964 Summer Olympic Games when she was about twenty years old and then going by her birth name, Monica Rutherford. Although her status of being an Olympian is nothing to sneeze at, Phelps apparently wasn’t that decorated. According to Wikipedia, her best showing at the Olympics was a ranking of 59th on the vault.

Also according to Wikipedia, Monica Phelps was married to British Olympic diver Brian Phelps. Mr. Phelps is a convicted sex offender, having been sent to prison in England back in 2008. Anyway, these two founded a trampoline club called Olga, which they ran in England. Later, they moved to France. I’m not sure if Brian Phelps is still in the pokey for rape, attempted rape and 19 indecent assaults on two girls which took place from 1976 to 1986 – while the girls were between six and 15. I’m also not sure if he and Monica are still married. Evidently, Brian Phelps’ younger brother, John, was also arrested for molesting girls.

But enough about the crimes of Brian and John Phelps. This post is about Monica Phelps, who carved a career for herself as a women’s artistic gymnastics commentator on British television. As annoying as some American commentators are, I’ve never heard them say things like Monica Phelps does. She goes from gushing about a performance one moment to body shaming and making grotesque comparisons to “stick insects” another. Have a look at Ampli Tood’s first funny video.

“She’s a hefty girl, but no no, she’s a very, very shapely young lady…”

Good gawd! The above remark just tips the iceberg. It’s like she’ll literally just say anything that comes into her head, no matter how bizarre or inappropriate.

For this second video, Ampli Tood added some goofy synthesizer music and a photo of Monica in her heyday, wearing a sixties era leotard.

“We’re not looking for pre-pubescent stick insects anymore…”

Most of the videos are from the 80s and 90s, which was about the time I used to watch gymnastics regularly. I don’t watch very often anymore, in part because I don’t get live TV here and also because I’m so old and decrepit that it’s depressing to see these really young, fit girls. Especially when I know that so many of them have been abused.

“Quite a chunky gymnast, but…”

I wonder what this must be like for commentators, watching gymnasts and rambling on throughout their performances. I mean, I guess they get paid to do this, but it’s like verbal diarrhea. She just goes on and on, saying things that are equal parts funny and mortifying!

“She is very, very female…”
The elastic makes quite a crease around their waists.

There are a bunch of videos like this one. Ampli Tood has also done some pretty funny videos featuring Tim Daggett, who was a 80s era men’s gymnast. I remember he had a pretty bad history with injuries back in the day. Somehow, he still made it to the Olympics, despite having had many surgeries.

Bwahahahahahaa!

I do like to watch gymnastics, but I’m kind of glad I never felt the need to be a gymnast myself. The recent horror stories that have come out about this sport are just awful. That, along with the constant risk of serious injuries and my fear of breaking my ass were enough to keep me away!

The music on these videos is everything, even if some of the videos are kind of sad. Monica Phelps must have been a successful coach, though, even if her own gymnastics career was not all that stellar… as far as I can tell, anyway.

Dawes is hungry!

I could watch these all day!

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