This Makes No Sense At All

How Not To

So AT&T sends me this pretty arnge email, take a look:

They just want to send this to me to make sure they have my correct email. I don't need to do anything. I only need to do something if I want them to contact me elsewhere. 

Great, right? I don't need to do anything. 

But apparently AT&T is worried about whether I have received this email or not, because this is THE FIFTH copy of this email that I have received over the last week. 

If you need me to acknowledge that I have received your email at this address, why don't you say so, and save me from having to wonder what you're up to, and yourself the trouble of sending and re-sending and re-sending. What a waste of everybody's time and resources. 

Must Be Funny In A Rich Man's World

I better check the fine print on my new credit card ... David Bach's blog, the "Automatic Millionaire", lists What Credit Card Companies Don't Want You to Know.

If you own a credit card, you know by now that if you're late with a payment the credit card company will charge you a late fee in addition to raising your interest rate. But did you know that they can raise your interest rate if you've made a late payment on any of your other cards, including those issued by other companies? Not only that, but your interest rates can skyrocket to 30 percent or more if you make a late payment on your car loan, mortgage, or even your phone bill!"How can that be legal?" you may ask. The answer is found in the fine print of your credit card agreement, and it's called a universal default clause. According to the Institute of Consumer Financial Education, currently almost 40 percent of credit card issuers apply this policy to their customers.

I've Been Trying To Get Down To The Heart Of The Matter

Jo Spanglemonkey suggests a memoir blogging exercise: write about a pivotal moment in your life. If you were writing a memoir, this would be the moment everything leads up to. The One Thing that happens.

My mind goes blank for a few seconds - how can I possibly come up with One Thing that is important in my life? And then one memory emerges, unbidden, old and crusty yet still as vivid as all those years ago, and I am appalled. Why this one? Is that really what my life is about? Am I defined by heartbreak? I do not like this at all. I resemble this remark ...

She's Gotta Be The Stupidest Girl I've Ever Seen

Monday or Tuesday in Austin, I had lunch with Buzz and his friends Nick "Valleywag" Douglas and Eddie Codel.

We sat outside at Iron Works Barbecue and talked about this and that, and for some reason, talk turned to the Slut-o-Meter. I'd heard the term before, but didn't really know what it was. Of course, I had to "meter" myself first chance I got. Imagine my surprise to find myself clocking in at an impressive 39.39%. Who'da thunk it?

If You Could Read My Mind, Love, What A Tale My Thoughts Could Tell

A friend alerts me to the fact that my RSS feed is not working. He's maybe the fifth or seventh person in the last two months to tell me this.

Yes, I acknowledge. I know it's not working. I turned it off, actually.

At which point - understandably, really - the question comes: You mean, you did that ON PURPOSE? Why on earth would you do that?

And I admit I find it hard to explain. But let me try. A few months ago, I stopped blogging. I was in a shitty mood for all kinds of reasons that I did not care to elaborate on in public (and I will say more about this topic because it relates to WoolfCamp and to the discussions we had about who our audience is and how much to tell and how much to hold back, and also to a discussion we didn't get to fit in, about multiple identities - I think it will be a theme in the near future), and since I felt I couldn't blog the things that were on my mind, there was really no point to blogging at all.

Ex abundantia cordis os loquitur. You speak of the things that fill your heart.

So my blog was quiet for a while. And of course I missed it within a week or so, but I still stayed away. I had other things to write in November, and in December I started writing in this blog again - but I didn't want to advertise the fact. And the best way to come back stealthily, I figured, was to turn off the RSS feed. If you insisted on visiting my site, you could still find me, but I assumed that most people would have given up on me by then. And if you were just feed-reading, well ... then you just didn't know. And that was just fine by me.

So ... you ask, still frowning: if you've been back for a couple of months now, why don't you turn it back on?

I just like being under the radar. I've had several people say that they won't read me as often, or not at all, if I don't have a feed. And you know what? That's just fine. I am not into blogging for an increase in my readership. (Actually, that was one of the things I noticed about the New York magazine feature mentioned in Good Morning Silicon Valley: it only speaks to news/tech/political blogs, not to personal blogs at all, and it blandly assumes that we're all blogging to make money and get more and more readers, and that we're frustrated if that doesn't happen.)

If you really miss me, you can always find me. If you don't, not to worry. We can still be friends. Hey, some of my best friends don't read blogs at all! And I love them anyway.

And I really like that my posts don't get announced right on posting. You have to come to me to read me, I don't appear on your doorstep magically. I've had a couple of readers who would comment as soon as a new entry appeared, and I began to find that disturbing - it almost smacked a little bit of stalking, and I found that quite uncomfortable.

Last but not least, it gives me the illusion of owning my blog more, of having it taken back for myself. And while I know that that is an illusion, I still enjoy the feeling.

I'm Not Angry

I am seething today. I am so mad that I couldn't even finish my coffee, because my stomach already felt like it was being perforated by alien acid. Bought another half gallon of milk, and I am certain I will have it finished by the end of the day. Oh, and the treadmill is in for a world of hurt this afternoon.

It's not you I am mad at (I think I know what it is, but I would rather be tortured than give it up), but you best stay out of my way today. I'm in a mood to pick a fight, and I might say something I'll regret later.

Every little thing is pissing me off. Traffic was a bitch. The school bus almost clipping me REALLY didn't help. If you were going to get together with me, and forgot all about it, well, fuck it then! I'm just fine by myself, thankyouveryfuckingmuch. If you promised to get back to me about something and you haven't, don't bother; you can't possibly do right by me today. But you never call and you never write anyway, so what fucking difference does it make?

What? Me bitter? Naaaaah.

If I Had A Hammer

How does that story about the hammer go? This guy wants to hang a few pictures, but he has no hammer. He knows the neighbor has one. On his way over to borrow it, he starts thinking. What if the neighbor is not home? ... What if he *is* home, but it's not a good time to disturb him? ... What if he'd rather not lend his tools to someone else? You know, come to think of it, I get the feeling he doesn't like me anyway. Wasn't he looking at me funny the other day? And the way he was washing and waxing his car last weekend - I bet he is really fussy about all his stuff. Yeah, he'd probably be all snooty about it and behave like a total prick if I asked to lend his hammer. Lecture me about it too, I bet. I'd never hear the end of it.

He bangs on the door, and when the neighbor opens, he yells at him, "I didn't want your stupid hammer anyway!"

I did something similar. Didn't get to banging on the neighbor's door, but by the time I had gotten to where I was going, I had convinced myself it was a really bad idea to stop by. Just stupid. Wouldn't work anyway. I stopped at a coffee shop two blocks from my destination, drank a cup of coffee, read another chapter of "The Heart Is A Lonely Hunter", turned it over in my mind some more - and then I turned right around and went back home.