Little House On The Big Cul De Sac

L

We lost internet access the other night. Like all the way lost it. No Netflix. No social media. No Sam and Dean.

You know what I did? I mean, besides write this out in longhand like I’m goddamn Caroline Ingalls? Normally, I would say Laura Ingalls, but I’ve reached an age where I identify more with Caroline than Laura. That means Randy is Michael Landon. Which is hilarious.

Okay, what I did was read a book.

It has been far too long since I’ve made time to read more than a page or two of a book. I used to identify as a reader over everything else. Before I had kids, I would spend entire weekends reading. I read every night for at least an hour or two. Even after kids I would read at least 3 or 4 books a month. Now? I haven’t completed an entire book in 2016. What the fuck happened to me?

So, Randy bought me a book the other day titled Lunatics by Alan Zweibel and Dave Barry. I got to meet Alan Zweibel when I went to the Erma Bombeck Writer’s Workshop last month. Alan Zweibel, one of the original writers on Saturday Night Live, created characters like Rosanne Rosanna Danna and Lord and Lady Douche bag. He was lovely and I talked to him a few times. I told him, on the second day of the conference, that my husband was probably sick of hearing me talk about about him. He suggested a picture of him giving me a kiss to send to Randy. So I have a picture of Alan Zweibel kissing my cheek. I would post it here, but I kind of closed my eyes in the picture and it looks like I’m having an awkward orgasm. So, I will just keep that one to myself.

I was pretty smug about my Alan Zweibel kiss. Then I started seeing the pictures from other people who attended the conference pop up on social media. There was a startling number of pictures of white bunnywomen getting kissed by Alan Zweibel. It turns out that Alan Zweibel is a whore. I wanted to name this post Alan Zweibel Is A Whore, but I was too chicken.

Anyway, the book is funny and it felt good to get lost for a while. I felt the stirrings of the old me.

I also used my Little House On The Prairie time to contemplate how I used the last 45 minutes before the internet went kablooey.

I was on Facebook, arguing on a high school friend’s thread with a moronic twat monster who said some vile things to me. We argued about my wild suggestion that it might be a good idea for the public to not have military assault weapons. Guns which shoot bullets as fast as you can pull a trigger and hold 30 rounds per clip.

Why? Why did I waste my time on this person? I could have spent that 45 minutes cleaning my house or learning how to do the dance from Napoleon Dynamite.

I have to consider shifting some priorities. Arguing with knuckle dragging assholes doesn’t belong on the priority list.

***ALERT*** ***ALERT*** ***ALERT*** ***ALERT*** ***ALERT***

In my five years of blogging, I haven’t turned off comments even once. I think that is true. I don’t remember for sure, but I don’t think I have.Β I mean, there are some older posts that didn’t get any comments, but that isn’t the same thing. I also haven’t made any requests when it comes to folks leaving comments. I don’t want to turn comments off or anything, but I do want to make it clear that I will not welcome any comments on gun control. I will not welcome any comments about any presidential candidate’s stance on gun control. Or really, any comments about presidential candidates at all. Unless, it’s Donald Trump because fuck that guy.

I’ve been reading so much ugliness for days now. I’ve wallowed it in. I’m done with it. This space is mine and I don’t want it here. That being said, if anyone leaves a comment that is about gun control or politics, then I will turn the comment into bad poetry. The person’s name will still be on the comment, so it will look like they wrote the bad poetry. I am not kidding about this.

Here is an example:

White Fluffy Bunnies

What is better than a white fluffy bunny?

Not a dog eating with a spoon.

Or a witch riding on her broom.

Other bunnies are okay.

But they pale before white fluffy bunnies.

Not that white bunnies are really better than other bunnies.

Oh god. I am a bunny racist.

Why do I think white bunnies are best?

I am a bad person.

————

So, do you want to risk being a bunny racist? I didn’t think so.

I guess the point to be made here is that it took having my access to the virtual world taken from me for an evening to realize that I must re-prioritize how I am spending my time. I also have to stop reading, day after day, posts and stories and comments that prove how hard so many of the other humans suck. My heart hurts and I’m on the verge of tears way too much of the time.

Now, please excuse me. I’ve got a motherfucking huge stack of books to read.

Also, if you are not familiar with the Liberal Redneck, do yourself a favor and watch a few of his videos. The one I posted here isn’t funny, but it’s a good one. I hope he never stops using his voice. I hope he makes a difference.

Photo courtesy of Petra

 

 

 

 

 

 

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56 comments

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  • 1) I was there – pretty sure you were having an awkward orgasm (sorry Randy).
    2) Tempted to Tweet this to Alan Zweibel so he has the opportunity to respond to your suggestion he’s a man whore.
    3) Pretty sure if he’d be afraid to comment anyway because he doesn’t want to be a bunny racist.
    Z) Love you.

  • Sometimes I get so passionate about politics and tragedies that upset me I end up screaming at people who agree with me. And even when I’m screaming “I know you feel the same way! Isn’t it terrible?” it’s frightening and mean because it’s a terrible thing to scream at people. So I would have avoided politics here even if you hadn’t asked that people do so.
    I’m just going to quietly say, I’m glad we got that out of the way. And in a whisper: Yes, fuck THAT GUY.
    It’s a weird coincidence that I happen to be reading Alan Zweibel’s “Clothing Optional” right now (along with a couple of other books and the latest issue of Billiards Digest, and how the hell do I find time for the blogs I love?)
    He’s a very funny guy and I loved the title piece about his visit to a nudist resort. Recent events have left me and a lot of others feeling emotionally naked, emotionally stripped, and vulnerable, so it was refreshing to read about someone who made a voluntary choice to literally get naked in front of strangers. And he found that being naked made it easier to connect emotionally with those strangers.
    Yeah, I’m sure you know it’s much funnier than I’m making it sound. I’m also kind of envious of you and all those other women. I wonder if Alan Zweibel kiss me on the cheek.

  • Just last night my husband was bragging that he had the opportunity but didn’t engage with a moronic twat-monster on facebook. I was very proud.

  • I cancelled the newspaper for exactly that reason – I was wallowing in hate and crime as I ate my breakfast. It was not a good way to start the day.

    I have social media to keep in touch with people I no longer see daily. Pictures of the flowers you grow? Yes. Pictures of your child, your dog or your cat? Hell, yes. A meme supporting whatever political viewpoint you support? No thank you.

    And books. Yes, I keep telling myself to turn off the TV and read a book.

  • I’ve also recently started to read again. I just realized that I only read when I’m sober. And that reading kicks ass. And so does being sober. At least right now. There’s something about finalizing a divorce that makes you want to shy away from long-term commitments. But anyway, bunnies are awesome no matter what color they are, except for maybe the purple rabbit’s foot I had when I was a kid. WTF was I thinking carrying around part of a dead rabbit?
    But I digress.

  • You are so right. I need to stop reading comments on fb. Just up vote the post, or not, and get back to my book. I’m reading “Quiet” a book about being an introvert. Because leaving this comment just counted as social interaction

  • I remember Michael Landon better as Little Joe Cartwright than I do Charles Ingalls, how’s that for being old? I watched the Liberal Redneck’s video about transgender bathrooms. All I can say is THANK YOU MICHELLE!
    I was without internet for a couple of months twice, once when we moved into the Foundry, and once before we moved out. The “moved out” time it wasn’t just internet, there was no electricity. From November 22 until the middle of February when we finally made our escape. Both times I read stacks of books. Stacks. Like 35 or 40. I haven’t read an actual paper book since. I do a LOT of reading every day on this computer, but that’s different from reading an actual book.
    As far as politics and news go, I read a few political blogs daily, ones I have been reading for more than a decade. Most of them moderate their comments and are written by people who pretty much share my political views, so commenting isn’t emotionally hazardous, but there are a couple who don’t, and it’s a free-for-all most times, and lately the crazy has been off the charts. Trolls are what they are, so I have to balance between saying what I think needs to be said, and taking their bait. Sometimes I get irascible and take the bait anyway, but I try to A) keep it on my terms, and B) have something worth reading before I click “submit”. Long story short, that’s why I feel no need to bring politics to your blog. You have a rare and unique thing going here, and I value it highly.
    There are a certain cohort of people out there who should not be engaged in discussion. They’re not listening. They like nothing better than pissing you off. They can go fuck themselves, as far as I’m concerned. There are plenty of real, functioning, human beings writing on the internet who delight in your attention, and they get the best of mine, most days.

    • I can’t believe I only just remembered Michael Landon’s star turn in “I Was A Teenage Werewolf”. His finest work, in my opinion, although I have a soft spot for werewolves.
      And rabbits. As any good werewolf will tell you they’re pretty tasty.
      And for every one you get four lucky charms.

      Quit looking at me like that.

  • “Arguing with knuckle dragging assholes doesn’t belong on the priority list.” Love this. You are so right – and what a waste of time, anyway. Because, well, you just can’t fix stupid.

  • We are gearing up for our elections which means ads on TV about who to vote for and how to vote but at least it’s nothing like the length of time you have to put up with it for. I think they can legally only starting advertising one month before the election which means we really only have 4 weeks of changing channels when the ads come on (actually we change channels when the ads come on even when it isn’t the month before elections OR we record and watch so we can FF through ads – I HATE THEM !!!)
    LOL – you know if you replace my comment with the bunny poem you’d have improved the quality of your comments !!!!
    Have the best day !!!

  • I think you owe it to us to post the awkward orgasm photo. I mean, I have always known you were an awkward hugger, but that’s taking it to a whole other level.

    I never read any more either. And it was always one of my favorite things to do. Apparently good writers read. And probably don’t use adjectives like “good” either. Sigh… there goes that pipe dream.

    I have to turn away from the train wreck that is the comments section on FaceBook too. It’s all so stupid and pointless but I just can’t stop myself sometimes. And my blog… sigh. I took almost two months off of blogging because my blog became an ugly place with hateful anti-gay comments. I just couldn’t engage any more. And I’m with you. I never turn off comments. If I write something I need to be ok with hearing the response. But I did turn off my notifications and stopped reading the comments when it got bad. So I’m probably a hypocrite too.

    Anyways, you rock. I freakin’ love you. And I love Roseanne Rosanna Danna and I’m still sad about Gilda Radner.

    • You are an amazing writer and I think using the word “good” is good. πŸ™‚

      I am sorry that happened to you. Not engaging is the best thing to do in that case.

      Also, hahahahahahaahahahhaahha. no. I’m not posting the picture.

  • Caroline Ingalls…..if there ever was a person I would have died for to become it was her. In real life I turned out to be more like one of the witches of Eastwick, it suits me better and that sums it up for bunny racism.

  • I have been re-watching (is that right? or is it just rewatching??) The Tudors on Netflix the past few nights. I was born and raised in Orlando and still live just outside the city so all of the events of the past week are overwhelming me. I feel like a complete asshole even writing that considering my upset is nowhere near the grief and heartbreak of others right now but I have watched a city I have loved for over 40 years implode and am trying very hard to make sense of the horror. So, my point, I have seen so many ridiculous statements made everywhere (and by people who can’t even plead stupidity!) that Netflix and books have been a means of shutting it all out. I don’t have the energy to debate with idiots.
    I don’t think I’ve ever turned comments off on my blog either. I love the interaction. I do like the bad bunny poetry option for the nastier comments, though. I think I may have to borrow that idea if you don’t mind.
    I think I have molested your blog enough today and am now all caught up. I have been a bad blogger friend to many and I am so glad I took this morning to catch up with you.
    Never change.

  • When an otherwise perfectly reasonable friend posted that she is voting for He Who Must Not Be Named because the opposing candidate is going to take her guns, I realized the futility of trying to have even a conversation about it all. So yes, severe limitations on FB, catching up with Instagram, and reading a lot again too. I don’t want to feel like I’m sticking my head in the sand, but my head and heart can’t take it. Do you suppose that’s the master plan?

  • I have to agree with all of it. I’ve been avoiding it for a few weeks now. I’ve got enough of my own shit to deal with and that just weighs me down and nothing gets accomplished.

By Michelle

Michelle

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