Tag Archives: social media

Context is everything – This message sent from right behind you.

picture taken in the Pope's living room.

picture taken in the Pope’s living room.

So you get an email from someone and at the bottom it says “Sent from iPhone. Please pardon typos” or something to that effect. That’s interesting.

Once upon a time, we didn’t automatically understand the context of the communications we received. Now we do – to a small extent and under limited circumstances.

But – I was wondering just how deep we can go with this, so I took that kernel of an idea and completely blew it out of proportion and came up with the following list of scenarios that provide the context behind messages you may have received or given in your lifetime.

Are there any contexts that could completely change the meaning of a message? This is not a test, I’m just asking. Think about it a little bit. Okay I’m done talking. My head hurts. Just read the list.

Message sent from the toilet.

Message sent from your bathroom.

Message sent from right behind you.

Message sent from my heart to your head.

Message sent while thinking about a past lover.

Smiley face sent to you while experiencing feelings of despairing rage.

Message sent while in love with you.

Sent while in love with your lover.

Message sent while wondering if you like me.

Message sent. I don’t like cats.

Sent from the bathroom at an Indian food restaurant.

Sent while figuring out how much this is going to cost me in the long run.

Sent from a real computer with a full keyboard. If there are any typo’s, it’s because I’m an idiot.

Sent while eating chef Boyardee from the can. Just to be clear, I’m not eating on the toilet, just sending a message while eating food straight from the can.

Sent while watching the first season of Project Runway alone on a Friday.

Sent instead of emailing my mom back.

Sent in place of meaningful communication with my family.

Message sent. I’m lonely.

Message sent. I’m more successful than you.

Sent from my iPhone. My devices make me feel important. I have more of them than I do friends.

Sent from my Android. You should read more.

Sent from the future. Enjoy the present while you can.

Sent from backstage at that show you’ve been meaning to go to.

Sent from the 38 Geary bus in San Francisco.

Sentence spoken to you while anxiously looking for someone else and not paying attention at all to what you were saying.

Sentence spoken to you while wondering what you think about me.

Sentence spoken to you while wondering how that man could be so good-looking.

Sentence spoken while trying to impress you.

Sentence spoken while being jealous of you.

Sentence spoken. Do you think I’m funny?

Sent from my laptop.  Do you think I’m smart?

Sent from my laptop. Do you think I think about myself too much?

Sent from heaven.

Sent from hell.

Sent from the outer reaches of the universe. Your problems are much smaller than you think they are.

Blog written at the intersection of 2nd and Folsom.

Blog written using a MacBook Pro at 4:18 PM PDT on 9/25/2013.

Blog written while wearing tennis shoes.

Blog written while wondering if this is too meta.

Message sent from Android. Don’t overthink it.

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Hi everyone! I changed my profile picture.

This is my former profile picture.

Dear facebook community,

As many of you have probably noticed (and commented/liked), I changed my profile picture today. For the past year, three months, and…you guessed it! 22 days, my profile picture portrayed me making a funny face while my parents tried to kiss me on the cheek. It was taken on a cliff in Maine shortly after I graduated (with honors, three ribbons, and a wheel of cheese) from Boston University.

The picture was hilarious. It provided all of you with enjoyment for many months, but in truth, I’ve felt for a while now that I needed a change.  I was held back by the fear of not measuring up to past profile picture greatness, of failing to find the one image that bursts with humor, creativity, and wisdom and shines like my beacon into the darkness of facebok.

It just so happened that yesterday, as I was showing my boyfriend pictures I had taken of myself, that I stumbled upon a great prospect.

While being an attention-whore, ham, and all-around obnoxious and spotlight-sucking rockstar in July, I had grabbed antlers and posed with them pressed to my face, as if they were emerging from my cheeks and I was undergoing a painful transformation into a creature both cursed and beautiful. I forced my mother to choke back embarrassment and take pictures of me.

This is the new profile picture.

When I found this gem, glittering in the dust of the My Pictures folder, I realized I must make it my profile picture, that it encapsulated everything I feel about my current situation in San Francisco, that it was the embodiment of who I am and who I am becoming.

“This is it.” I said to myself, and I uploaded it, changing my life and yours forever.

I immediately commented on it, liked it, and did everything I could to promote it, including making it a life event and asking people politely to comment or like anything regarding the photo change. Just a few minutes into the barrage of news about my profile picture I was bestowing upon you, the facebook community, the giddiness of my endeavor wore off and I realized I had made a huge mistake.

The picture was too dark. The community could not appreciate how ridiculous it was. The expected outpouring of likes and comments was not appearing as I had expected. Not only that, I felt in my heart of hearts that this was not the best possible photo for my profile.

I am now trapped, with no way out. Should I change my facebook photo again so soon, I will make an ass of myself and the 5 people who liked it will mock me endlessly. Soon I shall become an echo of my former facebook profile picture greatness and live in the shadow I have created for myself.

I shall grow paler.

My freckles will fade.

And I will be forgotten.

Goodbye, facebook community. Goodbye to those who know me and love me.

Please like this post.

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Lord of the Blog

One blog to rule them all, one blog to find them. One blog to bring them all and in the darkness bind them, in the blogosphere where the shadows lie.

Beware of Mark.

Long ago, in an age that has been forgotten, evil covered the earth. Men struck each other down with their hands, teenagers used poor spelling in social media posts, and children dreamt nightly of living inside a television, in order to break the last barrier between them and the only thing they loved. Humans were slaves of chaos, fear, and greed. Art was rendered impossible, as was music. Only bare shrieks were heard in the never-ending nights.

Then hope came in the form of the Googles, a race sent from Outside to restore order to the earth, a daunting task. But the Googles were a wise race, emboldened with cutting-edge technology and neat glasses. They were strong, powerful, and benevolent. Through their kind words and endless tutorials, the people began to hear and see beyond themselves for the first time after years in the dark.

Decades of toil passed until music could be heard in the streets once again, spilling over from warm homes that were broken no longer. Art covered the walls of cities, and men and women greeted each other with a smile and a how-do-you-do as they went about their business.

But the peace was not to last, for living among the Googles and the earth peoples there lay a snake in the grass, a wolf in sheepskin, a polar bear in a baby seal suit, and its name was Mark. It gets a little complicated, but essentially Mark was a fallen archangel with some serious attitude problems and the overwhelming desire for everyone to worship him. Alas, through his aura of salivation-inducing coolness and his superior coding abilities, he fooled the Googles and earth peoples into giving him their trust, and they knew not that they spelled their own ruin.

Baiting them with honeyed words, Mark used the Googles to construct the ultimate weapon of all time: the blogosphere. He told them that it would be a massive art project, something of true beauty, where anyone who wanted to could write or post or share to their hearts content and thus enrich the lives of other earth dwellers. And thus it was a thing of true beauty, with one horrifying, deadly flaw.

He enlisted their help in building one Blog that was to guide the others and help them achieve their full potential. It was to be the most powerful Blog in the blogosphere, one that only Mark could use. And so it happened. He created a blog so compelling, so readable, that all others wanted to be like it and bent to its will. Each keystroke controlled an army and every post could incite millions to action or passivity. The world breathed only with the Blog’s permission.

With hearts and minds in sway, Mark soon used the one Blog to inspire the earth dwellers to war with the Googles, and the age of prosperity was no more, with darkness once again consuming the earth and cat pictures populating the blogosphere.

Ages later, the password to the Blog was lost and Mark was diminished and moved to Minneapolis. But still the Blog waits, for those who would find it and aspire to wield its power and become Lord of the Blog.

But there is only one. And he is in Minneapolis. Fellow bloggers, beware.

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The Internet Doesn’t Need Me


A couple of days ago I moved into a less horrifyingly-dirty apartment, which is great. Unfortunately, there is no internet due to a freak accident. The good news is that we’re having a dude or ma’am come pour us some more on Saturday, but the bad news is that they’re coming on Saturday, not now.

I’ve been hooked on the internet ever since Mom took the sisters and me to the library so we could play Neopets for hours on end, pissing off people who were trying to look for jobs and/or porn. Just like many others from the I-Can’t-Complain-But-I-Still-Do generation, attachment to the internet characterizes my hyper-socialized existence. Smart phones are whipped out at every chance, email and facebook checked as routinely as blinking, and barrages of tweets barrel down our throats every other second. Much of what I call “work,” I do from my computer, and using the internet is my only hobby.

Living without the internet, albeit for only a couple of days, has forced me to adapt to what I used to believe was an untenable situation, and I’ve come to a startling conclusion, one that has rocked me to the core and that I can’t wait to forget.

The internet doesn’t need me.

Through my forced detachment, I found that because of the massive amounts of time I spend communicating and throwing tweets out there and cultivating facebook for notifications, I came to believe that people needed me to be out there talking to them, that things would go horribly awry if I weren’t there, that #searchingforemily would start trending if I hadn’t tweeted in x amount of hours, that my emails would pile up and every employer I ever contacted would get back to me and demand a response within an hour and then give up when I was incommunicado.

What I did find was a different situation altogether. When I made it to a café yesterday at 8:15 AM, eager to see what kinds of crucial communication I had missed, I found that not much had happened.  I had one personal email to respond to. Suddenly, I realized that I didn’t need the internet attached at the bellybutton in order to maintain relationships with people I loved, and that for the most part, things go on without me pretty well out there on the web. Most importantly, I learned that more internet does not mean better internet. It means more aimless wandering, the endless searching for the next shock or haha.

Will I take these lessons and make them a part of my life when internet does come home roost forever, or will I greet it and kiss it on both cheeks and say welcome dear one  I have missed you let us never be parted again? I think we all know the answer to that question. Things will probably go back to normal and I will waste time and not get enough done. But at least I know that I’m the only one that really cares.

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All I Want From My Sister’s Wedding is a New Prof Pic

My current photo….it’s been up for a year already. Time for a change.

As my sister’s wedding day approaches, preparations have ramped into full gear. Emotions are bubbling under the surface, as evidenced by my family’s facial complexions, and stress levels are ready to burst all pipes and frustrate every coping method.

I’ve also become increasingly aware that my Facebook profile picture is a little outdated. I loved the photo when I chose it about a year ago to be the face I reveal to my e-friends, but my biological facebook profile picture clock has been nagging me of late. Though I hate to say it, I believe it’s time to relegate that image to the the noble gallery of old profile pictures and choose a new one for the entire world to see and admire.

That’s why I’m looking forward to my sister’s wedding. I have a feeling that it will provide many, many opportunities for me to harvest a new profile picture, and with a professional photographer no less. I’m already devising strategies of how I can photo-bomb and otherwise dominate most of the pictures at the ceremony and reception, not to mention the photo shoot itself.

Should I bring my rubber chicken? Should I black out one of my teeth? Should I dye my hair a quirky color? Should I refuse to smile and thus garner the attention of the entire wedding party as they say in unison, “Emily! STOP IT!”

The options are truly endless.

And I’m just grateful to have a sister that’s getting married and providing not just me, but her entire family with the opportunity to spruce up their facebook timelines with tons of new pictures, both profile and non.

Let the tagging begin!

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