True Confessions In A Snap: Some Photos You Dislike, Some Photos You Like

This is a photo of a blooming amaryllis that first bloomed in late December and has now re-bloomed in mid-February. Let’s give it up for this likable go-getter.

+

I FIND PEOPLE FASCINATING, although I’ll admit that what people do is much less interesting than why people do what they do.

Therein is the start of many a good conversation. N’est-ce pas? 

You can tell me every stinking detail about WHAT you do in your life, but if I have no idea WHY you do what you do, I’m much less inclined to be interested in you.

To be clear I’m not here to fix people. I figure my job is to observe [what’s up] and understand [as best I can] and help [when asked] and report [in this blog] on them.

This brings me to the point of this post.

+

FRIENDS HAVE TOLD ME the following three reasons WHY they dislike some photos their friends + family post on social media, but these friends will not tell their friends + family that they dislike the photos.

[And I sure as heck am not going to tell them.]

I’m not saying these are the most rational ideas, but they are enlightening and have made me smile as I listen politely, nod my head encouragingly, and murmur nondescript soothing sounds of understanding.

 Friend A dislikes photos of food.

This would be any food, either plated, for sale, or in the process of being made. Friend A feels these photos are something that could potentially make her fat because they trigger her to want to eat, which she is always trying not to do.

Friend A is thin.

She doesn’t like food photos so much that she won’t join IG where she feels too many people share photos of food, but does admit that she likes seeing people sitting around a table on which there is food.

 Friend B dislikes selfies.

She thinks they’re are an egotistical show of shallowness that distracts from any relationship. She wants to see what a person is looking at, not what the person looks like while they are looking at something.

Friend B is artistic.

Because of her firm conviction about the wrongness of selfies, she ignores them as best she can which means she’s ignoring a lot of people. This reality, she admits, gives her pause.

 Friend C dislikes photos of paths in the woods.

She says that all paths look the same, all woods surrounding a path look the same, and therefore if you’ve seen one path you’ve seen them all. Why anyone would bother to take these photos is beyond her.

Friend C is studious.

She extends this principle to photos taken of city sidewalks with buildings on either side, but seems less harsh with her criticism allowing that sometimes those photos are interesting.

+

THUS HAVING SHARED THESE three character studies based on the truthful mutterings of generally kindhearted people with a need to vent, I’m reminded of Eeyore’s wise words: “We can’t all and some of us don’t. That’s all there is to it.”

This, of course, leads to me to asking you, my gentle readers, a few questions as catalysts for discussion about photos you see on social media.

Or as I like to think of the comment section here, it’s true confessions time!

When it comes to the photos your friends + family share, do you have a strongly held opinion about any one type of photo you dislike seeing?

Do your friends + family know that you dislike seeing that type of photo and WHY?

Or to put a positive spin on this conversation, do your friends + family know which photos you prefer to see and WHY?

• • + • •

My Audacious Truth: In Which I Tweet Agreeably & The Consequence Thereof

I’m here today to share with you, my little moonbeams, something that happened to me, something that made me laugh more than it should have. I’m trying to work up some righteous indignation, but so far I’m stuck on the absurdity of it.

Someone on Twitter has blocked me. Yes, after 10 years of bouncing around in there I’ve offended someone to such a degree that this person felt the need to turn me into persona non grata.

[You might be thinking to yourself, hokey smokes what has happened? Did Ms. Bean have a strong opinion tightly held that she foisted upon someone? Was she argumentative?]

My understanding is that it’s a badge of honor to be blocked on Twitter, so I’m taking this development in stride, trying not to be too prideful about it because I’m a pleasant woman, a bit snarky at times, but always genuine.

And grateful.

You see, the blocker wrote a positive tweet about her hometown. I, the blockee, mentioned that I thought the same thing that the blocker did. I concurred by saying *blah blah blah* about how wonderful it was that said hometown had persevered to overcome its challenges, brilliantly.

The blocker came back and pontificated on the state politics involved in the history of her hometown’s past difficulties. The ones I’d praised the hometown for overcoming.

Then I said the words destined to get me blocked. Yes I said, I AGREE WITH YOU and was blocked for it.

[You might be thinking to yourself, what the fork? Have we come to a time when agreement is tossed aside as quickly as disagreement? What gives?]

Thus from this exchange, for which I’m grateful because it gave me blog fodder, I’ve reaffirmed that no act of kindness goes unpunished.

Plus I’ve also experienced something I’ve mused upon for a long time. Let’s call it my audacious truth.

To wit, there is irony in everyone’s life. Case in point, even when I agreed with someone, they used it against me.

I believe this happens because once some people decide they don’t like you [for who knows what reason], no matter what you say, be it sincere, supportive, or logical, your words will make no difference to them. You are wrong and must be ignored.

In other words, audacious truth be damned blocked.

Who’s Zooming Who: When Being Polite Doesn’t Work In Your Favor

What is it with people lately?

You’re with a group of people and one woman, Queen Bee, starts to talk about her moral dilemma “blah blah blah” problem.  She wants everyone in the group to tell her what to do, that’s how distraught she claims to be.

You remain politely reserved saying nothing, thinking to yourself this isn’t a problem you crowdsource for a solution, while everyone else [oh. my. to. the. goodness. gracious.] tells Queen Bee what is wrong with her. And what she should do. And how she should do it.

Eventually all eyes fall on you so you go all Glinda the Good Witch.  You say something like you don’t need any help because you’ve always had the power within you to solve this problem.  Just put on your magic slippers, click your heels together, Dorothy Queen Bee, and you’ll find your way home solution.

Well a short time later you run into Queen Bee who tells you that she has no intention of following any of the advice from the group.  In fact she says that she only talked about her moral dilemma “blah blah blah” problem because she was testing everyone to see who was on her side.

Oh dear.

In a nanosecond you realize that Queen Bee now considers you a supportive friend.  You find yourself wondering how it is that being polite got you into this situation?  And how in the future you’ll be politely distancing yourself from Queen Bee?

Your new deceitful [I. don’t. think. so.] friend.

The Downside To Being Tidy: An Honest Mistake

In the photo above you’ll see what remains of a formerly square clear plastic drawer divider after it has been run through the electric dishwasher on the top rack.

I got it in my head to wash said formerly square clear plastic drawer divider because I was in the process of being tidy.  I was cleaning out the junk drawer in the kitchen and the divider was dirty.

I tossed the drawer divider into the dishwasher without a second thought.  It never dawned on me to find out if it was dishwasher safe.

It is not. Case in point.

Still, when I pulled the formerly square clear plastic drawer divider out of the dishwasher, I didn’t swear or berate myself for my mistake. Nope, no negative self-talk here.

Instead, channeling my late mellow mother, a history teacher with a quiet sense of humor, I said with a hat tip to President Harry Truman, this just goes to prove that:

“If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the dishwasher.”

~ ~ 🔹 ~ ~

QUESTIONS OF THE DAY

Have you ever melted anything in the dishwasher?

What’s the last thing your good intentions accidentally destroyed?

Do you have a junk drawer?

~ ~ 🔹 ~ ~

Thoughts On The Differences Between A Friend & A Follower

Why I Asked + What You Answered

A FEW WEEKS AGO I asked you to answer two poll questions.  I did this because a friend in real life who is a social media virgin asked me these questions.  She was curious about the terminology bloggers use when talking about blogging and I had no definitive answers for her.

The clear winner to the question “Blogs Are Found In…” was The Blogosphere.  78% preferred that term, with another 10% opting for Blogland which I think is a charming word.

The answers to the question “People Who Read Your Blog Are…” showed an interesting bell curve of preferred terms.  40% preferred the term Readers, while 23% chose Friends and 21% chose Followers.

I often refer to y’all as my gentle readers, so the top answer based on literal thinking makes sense to me, but that’s not where I see the story here.

Is You Is Or Is You Ain’t My Friend?

WHAT SURPRISED ME WAS THE relatively even distribution between the second and third answers, Friends and Followers.  Both are great terms but to my way of thinking these terms presuppose two different types of relationships that create different expectations about how someone will behave.

And as we all know, when expectations are not met disappointment ensues.

Friends implies connections based on equal power that are made on an even playing field.  I take an interest in you, I support you– and you do the same things for me.  When it comes to blogging this means I read + comment on your blog while you read + comment on my blog.

In a word, reciprocity. [Kindness?]

Followers, on the other hand, is a term that implies there is a leader with more power, who proceeds ahead while the less dominate people come after him or her.  This is not an even playing field from the git-go.

In blogging terms this means that as the leader I may or may not take the time to read + comment on what my followers write in their blogs.  By virtue of the way in which I envision our relationship, I’ll think I have no obligation to comment on other people’s blogs because I’m in charge here.

In a word, purpose. [Control?]

And Here Is Where The Misunderstandings Begin

TO WIT, IF I THINK you’re my Friend who will take an equal interest in me as I have taken in you, but you view me as a Follower who doesn’t necessarily deserve your time and attention, then we have a situation wherein feelings get hurt, confusion begins.

I’m expecting you, my friend, to care about what I write.  You’re baffled about why you would take any interest in me, your follower.  There is ambivalence, there is tension, there is cognitive dissonance.  No one is happy.

I’ve no marvelous insights into why certain bloggers prefer the terms that they do for the people who pay attention to them;  I just see how bloggers do what they do.

In fact, I’m only writing about this today because I found it interesting that I discerned this subtle yet significant divide in attitudes about blogging as a result of your answers to two simple questions I never thought to ask before.

Remarks, regrets, reconsiderations, anyone?  The comment section is yours.