Trigger Warning: This post, and the article shared, feature a rape victim’s frank and explicit statement to the man who raped her. Please share with women and men, responsibly.
I have written about serving as an adviser to a college sorority for many years. The experience forever changed me as a woman.
One of the most difficult subjects I encountered was how to frame the conversations around sex and consent. This was before colleges and universities recognized rape, sexual assaults, sexual batteries and every point on that continuum as a violation of a student’s rights, according to the school’s own policies.
How I wish websites like Consent Is Everything had existed to give me tools on how to broach this delicate subject. How I wish I had known what constituted consent when I was a college student. I would have recognized that I too was a victim of acquaintance rape. And I would have known that it is far more common than we can imagine.
But, what happens when a brave young woman comes forward to share how she was unimaginably violated by a “star athlete?” Why does she have to justify her actions, when he was the one who committed rape upon her? Why is she the one whose morals and character are called into question? And, how does she react when faced with the reality that his “status” may have ensured preferential treatment by the justice system?
In April 2015, my self-exorcism post went live. It was, by far, the most difficult and soul-consuming blog post I had ever written. Yet, as cleansing as it was to post, I had unfinished business with it. A few days ago, I saw August McLaughlin, talking excitedly about her Beauty of a Woman Blogfest V, on Facebook. Knowing the type of exposure and scrutiny my blog would receive, it was the sign I needed to revisit this post. Here it is, in its entirety – still unedited – followed by an update, of sorts.
[April 15, 2016] This post has been a long time coming, as it has been dwelling and languishing in my house of avoidance. Typically, I composed blog posts, edited and posted them. This one was minimally edited, against my better judgment as a wordsmith. It needed to remain in its raw, almost draft state, in order to convey the events accurately.
I am Clinically Depressed.
No, I am not “sad” or “melancholy,” as those terms lack the depth to describe what I have felt. Or in my case, haven’t felt.
According to Web, MD., “clinical depression is marked by a depressed mood most of the day, particularly in the morning, and a loss of interest in normal activities and relationships — symptoms that are present every day for at least 2 weeks.” Signs and symptoms include, but are not limited to:
Significant weight loss or gain (a change of more than 5% of body weight in a month) [Yes, there should be a proper citation here, but I need to exorcise this post from my psyche before I chicken out and retreat into my fortress of solitude. So, fellow wordsmiths and scribes, bear with me.]
I started this blog when I returned to undergraduate studies to complete prerequisites to apply for nursing school. After attaining a 3.8 GPA, being wait-listed, then accepted, I began the RN Level I course in the Fall of 2011. The material was challenging, in ways I never expected. To say that I was ill-prepared would be a gross understatement of epic proportions.
I graduated with my BA in Criminology in 1991, so my expectations were completely inconsistent to the new way of work of higher education. For example, I went to class with a course syllabus, notebook and pen, took notes, read my textbooks and supplementary materials, studied both and took written exams. In 2011, there were syllabi, textbooks, e-textbooks, videos from the textbook manufacturer, YouTube videos, Power Point slides, sample tests from an outside company used as predictors for the NCLEX Board Examinations, digital records of lectures and my own personal notes. This was for the lecture portion of the course, only. The practical/hands-on Clinical portion had it’s own syllabus, notes, “check-off” preliminary skills practice and finally, the formal hospital rotations working directing with RNs and their patients. I received a “B” in this class. I was 43 years old.
Spring of 2012 brought Level II (Medical Surgical Nursing and Labor and Delivery) and Pharmacology. I received a “B” in Pharmacology and a “D” in Level II. My instructors revisited and regraded each of my tests and quizzes because they could not understand the disconnect between the student they saw explaining concepts to classmates and practicing safely on the hospital floor, with the final grade of 79% (D in my RN school). My Clinical Instructor, who has sense become a good and trusted friend, asked me if I had ever been tested for Learning Disabilities. Having gone to a major university in the 1980s/1990s, before Learning Specialists were on staff, and performing well in my classes, I never considered it. I visited our college’s Learning Specialist who referred me to a Licensed Mental Health Therapist, specializing in Adults with Learning Disabilities.
At my first visit with the LMHT, he tested me for Learning Disabilities and determined that I had Adult Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), with an emphasis on Distractions. He described my brain as being a shelf with cubbieholes. Each cubbiehole was a part of my brain and as long as each cubbie was filled, I was able to function well. My challenges were when I had to concentrate on only one item and leave all the rest of the cubbies “empty.” My brain would naturally want to fill them up. In layman’s terms, I was/am fantastic at multitasking, but terrible at concentrating on one project alone. This served me well when I was working professionally, but was my kiss of death in Nursing school, where any tiny distractions would pull my attention away from the material I was supposed to be learning.
The college allowed me to re-slot back into a Level II course in Fall 2012, while my classmates moved on to Level III. Along with swallowing my pride, ignoring the growing guilt about “wasting” money again, trying to ignore my feelings of inadequacy and embarrassment at having to repeat a course for the first time in my life, I retook Level II, this time with appropriate accommodations for tests, which included a quiet, private room and extra time to take the test to allow for mental “refocusing” breaks. I don’t think I ever fully processed my personal biases against needing ADA accommodations, because I expected I would “snap out of it,” as my father suggested. Of all the courses to repeat, the irony and agony of retaking Level II, with its emphasis on Labor and Delivery, was not lost on me – a childless middle-aged woman. I made it through with a “C.”
Spring of 2013, brought with it Level III (Medical Surgical Nursing, Pediatrics and Hospice Care) and Psychosocial Nursing. I received a “B” in Psychosocial Nursing was the only person in my class of 30 students who actually looked forward to our clinical rotation with Mental Health patients, or “my people, as I began to think of them, almost immediately. I passed Level III with a “C” and thought it was the most rewarding Medical Surgical Nursing rotation, because I had so many hands-on experiences, it re-energized me for the final semester and was working with a population very precious to me – Veterans.
Summer passed quickly and I looked forward to completing Level IV, Role Transition in Nursing and the Nursing Care Management Practicum (aka. Management rotation). I received an “A” in Role Transition in Nursing, because it was not academically challenging, but took precious time away from my Level IV study time. Level IV and Management ran consecutively, and in order to qualify to take Management you had to successfully complete Level IV with a “C” or better. Adding to the pressure was the knowledge that at the end of Level IV were two exams, the Level (or class final) exam and the ATI comprehensive test. Students who did not pass the ATI test – a predictor for success on the NCLEX – were ineligible to proceed to the Management rotation. Consequently, the amount of stress we were under was tripled. Needless to say, I cracked under the pressure and finished Level IV with a 78%, another “D.” Ironically, once my grade was posted I felt an immediate sense of relief. Unfortunately, I had to share the news with everyone I knew, including my parents who had changed their travel plans to ensure they could attend my RN Pinning Ceremony and Graduation. That was probably one of the hardest phone calls I’ve ever had to make.
Additionally, at a time they should have been celebrating, my classmates were stunned, sad, and angry….very, very angry. Out of 112 students in our Level, 27 of us failed to make the Management rotation. As competitive as we were with each other, the nature of Nursing school (and the Nursing profession) was infinitely more congenial, team-oriented and we became a “family.” They wanted to know why their teammates would not finish the program with them. And they vocalized this, loudly. It was just before Thanksgiving 2013 and I was 44 years old.
As this was occurring, I took to my bed.
For the next two and a half months.
I dragged myself out of bed, showered and participated in holiday activities, or what I labeled, resentfully as “mandatory family fun.” When December ended and January began, my husband, who had been my rock during this entire episode, suggested I speak to my Primary Care Physician about my “lack of moods and tired feelings” at my annual physical. I will forever be grateful to him for this, but at the time, I simply wanted to be left alone to be in my room, pretending to read, sleep or watch funny animal videos online.
My Primary Care Physician was a Puerto Rican woman, whom I adored, admired and respected. She was the right person to discuss my condition with me. All of it. The comforting numbness, the security blanket of obesity that I had started weaving around myself, the lack of interest in anything and the heart-stopping pain of knowing I had disappointed everyone…including myself. In our typical Spanglish, we went through issues I had never discussed with a doctor. Ironically, Nursing school deserved a great deal of the credit. One of the skills we practiced from our first day on the floor with patients, was teaching. I was a natural teacher and I enjoyed it. So, if I was able to ask men in their 60s, 70s and 80s about their current sex lives, and ensure they were using condoms correctly, answering similar questions about myself should not have been a barrier. It wasn’t. In fact, it was the first time in my life that I had been asked many of the questions.
My doctor became concerned when we discussed my mental health. and she asked me to describe how I felt.
I never felt sad.
I never felt happy.
I felt mildly to severely inconvenienced and numb.
Devoid of all emotions, feelings and sensations, as if I moved into
a fluffy, shock-absorbing, grey Cloud where all lights and sounds were muffled.
Waking up and engaging the world required more energy than I could, or cared to, muster. Showering, washing clothes and spending time with people entailed bracing myself for questions I had no answers to, conversations I had no desire to participate in, and were physically and mentally draining.
I had become comfortably numb, just as described by Pink Floyd.
The truth was…I liked it. It worked for me. On every level.
Numbness required little or no time away from wallowing in my own self-pitying disappointment. Unfortunately, as a “responsible adult,” numbness is frowned upon as a way of life. It prevented me from engaging in life. I was a failure in school, unemployed and rudderless. My security blanket of obesity had taken me past the point of being an unattractive “fat person,” and into the realm of “the invisible people” quite effectively.
To my doctor’s credit she listened. Carefully. She referred me to a therapist and prescribed an SSRI (Selective Serotonin Reutake Inhibitor), that I immediately researched in my Nursing Drug Guide. Simply explained, serotonin, a neurotransmitter, is responsible for sparking the body’s natural chemicals that control feelings of happiness and well-being. The body distributes it when needed, and then collects it, when not. People with depression, tend to lack enough naturally-occurring serotonin, or too much is recollected at the end of emotionally difficult or sad moments – resulting in the “numbness.” Additionally, the SSRI prescribed me would help my lack of focus, related to my ADHD.
I resentfully, took the loading dose (30-90 days), and noticed a gradual change in my moods and energy levels. Not a “magic pill,” by any means, as all it did for me was begin to dissipate my Cloud. But, I resisted. Dissipating the Cloud would allow the sunlight of self-exploration to take place. It would require me to notice and acknowledge my obesity blanket and begin to reconnect with others. I wasn’t sure I wanted to do any of that.
I really loved my Cloud, dammit. Cloud understood me without judgment. She was my mistress and best friend. She was also my greatest enemy, and a jealous one at that. That was February 2014 and I was 46.
For the next few months, I struggled to find myself. Every day Cloud waited patiently for my return, letting me I know she loved me more than anyone, just as I was. I am disgusted to admit that more often than not, I would let myself float into her beautiful numbness, as my medication would begin the arduous process of pulling me back out. As I was experiencing the allure of numbness and the frightening thought of leaving Cloud behind, I stopped being a wife. I simply was not interested in any of it. For months, my husband would come home from work, only to find me lying in the same position I had been in when he left for work at 5:30 every morning. Dishes went unwashed, dogs were not walked, dinner was not cooked. His patience, already worn thin from dealing with my stress during Nursing school, disappeared. For weeks, then months, we lived an existence of cohabiting strangers.
In October 2014, a dear friend whom I met working on political campaigns sent me a Facebook message. He recommended me for a job as a Regional Field Canvass Director for a political action committee. After all, I had done community organizing work for years and had the necessary networking and human resources experience to successfully do the work. Thinking this would be a great transition, from unemployed to temporary employment, I accepted the position. Then lasted two days. My husband saw me for my dinner “break” on the first day and grew concerned, as he said I was simply staring into space and speaking in tongues. On the second day, he visited my office, helped me out of my chair, waited until I had sent my resignation email, and escorted me home. The only word out of his mouth when he saw my work environment, was, “no.” In fact, he called my parents and in-laws to give them his impressions of the “cold, ugly, white box” I would have to work in. He told them, “I just got glimpses of my wife back. I am not willing to knowingly send her into an environment that will only make her worse.” Like I said, this man was my rock. He knew and supported me like no other.
But, Cloud was already there. Soothing me, reminding me how much better I was wrapped up in my blankets at home. She was right.
This proved to be but a minor setback and the climb out of Cloud was easier.
In December, my Father arrived for a Christmas visit, and repeated his “my daughter was confident and fearless, this is only a phase, just snap out of it,” mantra. I heard similar versions, in various levels of resentment from my mother, mother-in-law, and several friends – dissonance. I have always been able to tune people out so well and quickly, that it makes my own head spin, sometimes. Frankly, I have never cared if they knew it.
2015 arrived with a renewed, albeit cautious, sense of purpose. And Cloud. Always waiting patiently to embrace me in her soothing emotionless depths and play my new theme song, Bad Day by Fuel.
Before I flunked out of Nursing school a dear friend I met in Level I and I found very inexpensive tickets to New York City and planned a girls’ weekend to celebrate my graduation and Pinning. Needless to say, I neither graduated nor received my RN pin, and now had nonrefundable tickets to New York for the four days before St. Patrick’s Day. I asked my family to help me take the trip, and they agreed. By now, my parents were fully paying my mortgage, so I was asking two retirees for money to take a leisure trip. The ugliness and lack of fairness was not lost on me, but I was learning my new normal. I had a wonderful time in New York and was reminded of when I would travel there for business, years ago. Suddenly, I began to see, and miss, the old me. And Cloud knew. She always knew.
Cloud reminded me that my “new” life was online – a mixture of reality and fantasy. Interactions with strangers who now knew more about me than my own family. Sharing myself in depression-themed and other chat rooms, finding kindred spirits who never asked me to change or leave the house. Cloud approved of my new friends and generously created more space for me to experience these relationships within her numbing comfort.
Which brings me to the present, and the impetus for finally writing this post: a new friend. A new friend who sees more of me than I am comfortable showing, and yet, accepts me as a I am. A friend who asked me, rather audaciously, to share how I got here. The boldness of this request both surprised and frightened me, as it would require tracing my steps back to my bottom: the end of Nursing school. It would mean taking responsibility for my own selfish behavior, regardless of whether or not, it was related to my Depression. But most of all, it would necessitate a level of introspection that I had avoided. That I have always avoided. I would have to see my own beauty and worth and begin to tear down walls erected in my late teens and college years. SCARY STUFF, as I preferred to see the beauty in others. Never myself.
So, to my friend, I say, challenge accepted. And to Cloud…bitch, you need to find another mistress. I am 47 years old and Clinically Depressed, battered, bruised, incomplete, but not defeated. May soothing rain fall on me and help me chase Cloud away.
Thank you Ed Sheeran for sharing Foy Vance’s angst-filled lyrics, that moved me beyond words and allowing me to cry real tears of pain for the first time in over eight, or more, years. “Make it Rain,” indeed.
UPDATE – April 30, 2016:
I am still here.
No. Scratch that.
I am more than simply “still here.”
I am a a better version of myself. Still sassy, snarky, loud and opinionated, but also a little wiser and more gentle on myself. Still obese, but 30 pounds lighter than I was at Christmas time. Listening to my body and working out with that tiny English dynamo, Gemma Fountain, while embarking on a journey as a Plexus Ambassador with my Sister-in-Law. While still high, my “bad” cholesterol (LDL) and liver enzymes (indicators of possible inflammation and impaired function), are only one number out of “normal” range. I have more energy, my libido is back and I feel like participating in life, for the first time, in a very long time. I am still an extroverted introvert, who loves to socialize, then regroups by spending quiet time at home with her dogs, working, reading or chatting online. And, at 48, I KNOW I look good and can still rock a side ponytail, like it’s the 80s or 90s.
Thanks to Paxil, mental health therapy, a primary care doctor who is not afraid to say, “lose weight and clean up your eating habits,” my very own Drill Instructor/US Army Veteran #10 Can ‘o Whoopass Facilitator/Husband, family, friends, classmates and K9 kids. It has taken a village.
On Monday, May 2nd, August McLaughlin, the creative goddess behind Girl Boner, is hosting her fifth blogfest!
I just submitted my post on me journey with clinical depression for the event, and am suffering from “blogger’s remorse.” Is it good enough? Is it smart enough? Will people like me? Yes, friends I’m in a Stuart Smalley place.
So, I invite any of you who wish to celebrate women, to register TODAY – only a few hours left for the Beauty of a Woman Blogfest V with me!
Excuse me, while I find copious amounts of liquid courage to get me through the next couple of days.
In her article This is the New Loneliness Jamie Varon focuses on the Millennial Generation. She categorizes them as both the most and least connected generation, due to their inherent, almost organic, use of social media.
I believe millennials have a arrested interpersonal communication skills, simply as a result of being born into a technology-dependent culture. Communication requires “doing.” As children, millenials were not encouraged to physically be present. Most of their play needs were met by technology. So, it is unfair to paint them as disconnected. They connect differently. Social media, rather than face-to-face interactions, is their preferred vehicle.
Ms. Varon overlooked the original disconnected generation – Generation X.
We were latchkey kids. Loneliness was ingrained in our lives. Sure we participated in every activity we wanted to, but most of us held a piece of ourselves back – a self-preservation piece.
These early experiences served us well as we entered an unpredictable, and sometimes volatile work environment, vastly different from the generations that preceded us. The days of a life-long career with one company ended, just as we came of age. So we became latchkey adults.
Social media paired nicely with Generation X, because it allowed us that “separation” we learned in childhood. Technology offered the buffer against anonymity. We were still communicating, just indirectly.
I work primarily from home, so I have limited contact with others. And, even though I prefer to work alone, I genuinely miss the everyday interactions among coworkers in an office.
Sometimes, I force…no…motivate myself to physically interact with other people. As a natural “loner” and “homebody,” this is as unnatural and outside my comfort zone, as it gets.
Additionally, I am an extroverted introvert, suffering from clinical depression. Not only do I have to psych myself up to “participate,” I then need several days within my soul cave to regroup and recharge.
The paradox for me has been that even though social media is “artificial” (as in manmade, rather than preexisting) I am still myself when I am online. Some people create entirely new personas and lives. I did not and have not. Regardless of the clever nicknames I take on, given the site, my personality remains intact. Acting as someone else, is just not in my skill set.
Missing in technology-based interactions are the subtleties of speech, inflection and body language. For someone who joyfully wields sarcasm and dark humor, this is a slippery slope. Not only have I written/said things that were not understood as I had intended, I too have felt the string of a poorly worded online barb.
And, those words that are carelessly hurled around under the guise of anonymity? Those words injure, sometimes fatally. They bring the loneliness to a level that surpasses having a “dark/gloomy” or even “sad” day. Social media gives us the liberty to erect invisible walls to hide safely behind.
The key is to peek over the wall, open the gate and talk to our neighbors…but it’s easier and quicker to just text them, isn’t it?
Over the past month, I have been learning more about myself and focusing time on things that interest me. I have met several people who are similar situations, and equally committed to understanding and working within their circumstances.
What I was not expecting were the friendships that have evolved along this journey. I believed I was alone in my quest, but I was not, and will not be, at least in the near future. So, thank you for bearing with me, readers, as I promise to return. I do have several book reviews to share with you, once I have deciphered my almost unreadable notes.
In the meantime, I leave you with the words immortalized by the great Casey Kasem, whom I grew up listening to and set the bar incredibly high for radio DJs. He passed away last month, entirely too soon. “America’s Top 40” will never be the same.
When I started this blog, it had no real direction or theme. In fact, I did not expect anyone to read it because it was going to be a place to synthesize my thoughts. I never expected to “meet” other bloggers and be moved by their words, laugh with them or feel badly when they were experiencing the tough side of life.
I also did not expect to post my thoughts on books in a public forum for others to read. I was content with posting my thoughts on Amazon or Goodreads, but the blog gave me the opportunity to add more personal comments that I did not feel were appropriate on Amazon or Goodreads. Ultimately, this led to the reorganization of the blog.
My life has been in a state of transition for the past four years and some things are still unsettled. I feel that everyone that has flowed in and out of my life, has helped me move in the right direction. Some have moved into my life for a brief period to demonstrate what I want or do not want out of friendships and some have helped me along my blogging journey. So today, I am recognizing Michelle from Ms. Romantic Reads, Anna from Herding Cats & Burning Soup, Becca from Lady or Not…Here I Come, The Chicks from Chick Swagger and Suzie from Suzie81 Speaks. All of these bloggers have encouraged me, stopped by to chat and inspired me with their words. May you all continue to brighten other people’s days with your wit, snark and spirited discussions.
I began this blog when I returned to undergraduate studies and believed it would document my experiences through Nursing School. During the process, I found myself wanting to talk about any topic, except Nursing school and it became a place to recharge my soul batteries. I also enjoyed posting book reviews and discussing different literary genres with readers. The blog’s transformation was gradual, and I was happy to let it happen, organically.
Yesterday, “Chronicles of a 40-Something Nurse Wannabe” evolved into “Reading, Drinking and Dancing with a Chaser of Snark.” The name and layout makeover reflected my blogging persona and recurring themes of this blog. It bids fond farewell to a name that served me well, but no longer represents where I am in my life. Hubby helped synthesize the name. He does not know it yet, but I hope to interview him for future posts, to get “The Former Sergeant’s Perspective.”
Over the next weeks, you will see specific posts on designated days, especially featured book reviews. There may even be a “Grand Opening.” I will continue to discuss current events, reality television and topics that move me. All previous posts were saved and may be read by searching by topic.
Thank you for being on this journey with me. Stay tuned for more!
SPOILER ALERT: If you have not watched the final episode of Juan Pablo’s season on “The Bachelor”, please stop reading now.
In one of the most bizarre, yet strangely entertaining seasons of The Bachelor, we arrived at the Come-to-Jesus…I mean “The Final Rose” show. To this point, Juan Pablo was rejected by two contestants who left the show, rather than being eliminated by him, and summarily dismissed any woman who asked him anything deeper than “would you like fries with that?” The finale became the battle of the blondes – Nikki, the Pediatric Nurse and Clare, the hairstylist.
Last week we learned that there may have been a more intimate moment between Juan Pablo and Clare, that he disclosed (bragged about) when he spent time with Andi in the Fantasy Suite. Whatever was said, was bad enough to have Andi rip into Juan Pablo and and walk off the show.
It was no surprise to anyone, but Clare, when Juan Pablo told her he was not choosing her. After letting the woman declare her love for him, he made some awkward comments about friendship and leaned in, presumably, to hug her. Clare, held up her hand, told him off and walked away. In doing so, she earned my respect but she could have saved herself the heartache by listening to her oldest sister who expressed her “displeasure” at the Juan Pablo’s lack of commitment, during the Hometown Dates. I am sure the women meant to say, “run away from Schmuckasaurus as fast as you can.” His comments to host Chris Harrison, as he discussed Clare’s exit were truly cringe-worthy and there were audible groans from the studio audience. Clare chose not want to “reunite” with Juan Pablo during the live show and indicated that he made some deeply inappropriate sexual comments he made about their time together.. In his defense, being a class act was never part of his skill set.
At this point in the show, I was laughing and hoping (praying) that Nikki would follow Clare’s lead and dump Juan Pablo on his tightly sculpted ass. Alas, it was not to be, as she also professed her love for him. Typically, this is where the Bachelor would drop to one knee and propose to the last woman standing. Juan Pablo however, not only did not reciprocate in telling Nikki he loved her, he took it one step further. He actually told Nikki he had a ring in his pocket, but was not going to give it to anyone. Instead, he offered her a rose, to continue dating and “getting to know each other,” apparently. Nikki accepted the rose, but confusion and hurt were evident on her face – to everyone, except Clueless JP. It was uncomfortable to watch and I am sure rather unpleasant to participate in, or see your loved one go through.
Once this “Final Rose” debacle ended, the live “After the Rose” show started. My live tweet during this portion, as I stared, open-mouthed, at the continuing train wreck, was Chris Harrison should get hazard pay for Juan Pablo’s season. Welcome to Planet Hot Mess. I sincerely believed Juan Pablo was planning to defend himself and his actions, because he was embarrassed at how he was portrayed on the show. In fact, he seemed to have a statement prepared about his home country, Venezuela, and the political unrest there. What he, and many others on reality TV shows, failed to realize was that the show aired the footage it had. In other words, they showed the world what he said and how he behaved. Of course it was edited for television, but they did not create something out of nothing. He became flustered and angry as he referred to drastic changes in his and Nikki’s plans, and whatever the “big surprise” was that they teased at each commercial break, was never revealed. (He likely promised the producers a declaration of love or proposal for air time.)
“After the Rose,” also featured some of the previous contestants, including Sean and Catherine, whose wedding was televised a few weeks ago. Also in attendance were Desiree and Chris, from the most recent “The Bachelorette,” where Juan Pablo was “discovered,” incidentally. As Juan Pablo continued to dig himself a shallow, then exceedingly deeper grave, the other contestants and Chris Harrison tried, in vain, to throw him a lifeline. He was given prompt after prompt to declare his love for Nikki on television, and the idiot refused to do so, citing “privacy.” When Sean pointed out that reality TV stars had no privacy, Juan Pablo proceeded to insult them. He then, turned on Sean, who had, until that very show been his ally. The quote of the night goes to Catherine, who said “Don’t slap the hand that fed you.”Someone actually had to explain this to Juan Pablo, during the show. I was hyperventilating, I was laughing so hard.
We learned two things tonight. Just because a man is attractive does not mean he is intelligent, has substance or sensitivity. And, finally, ratings for the next Bachelorette, starring Andi Dorfmann, will be through the roof.
I invite you watch along with me.
Update (March 12th): Juan Pablo wrote a blog for People Magazine that is, according to his tweets, being held up by ABC’s production crew. Additionally, there seems to have been a “privacy pact” of sorts between the “character” of Juan Pablo and Nikki Ferrell. He refused to profess his love on television, but did not mind doing so via his “Adventures in Loving You” YouTube video. Bizarre. I hope he realizes that all that ABC footage of him and Nikki is property of ABC Network, not him.
Today one of my blogger friends brought a few of us together to support and share our experience and expertise. This venture – The Social Blogger, the new year, and the photo shoot I participated in last week, prompted a little blog makeover. I think it will make finding posts easier and encourage me to post more regularly. Hope you enjoy it.
The next step will be to designate theme days for posts. Suggestions are welcome.
I added my own advice as a reader who pays close attention to ALL reviews, and is a member of several Street Teams. Do not send your Street Team to harass ANY reviewer, “dislike” or “vote down,” and/or leave “helpful comments” for the reviewer. Do not post an angry rant on your Facebook page or blog, decrying negative reviews. Say nothing. Do nothing. It all reflects back on the author and her/his good/poor judgment.
Here is the 36th installment of Ten Top Lists of What Not to Do by Marie Ann Bailey of 1WriteWay at http://1writeway.com and John W. Howell of Fiction Favorites at http://johnwhowell.com. These lists are simu-published on our blogs each Monday. We hope you enjoy.
10. If your book gets a negative review, do not read the review, especially if the rating is one star. At best, the reviewer will admit the review is based on having read only a couple of pages of your book and you can chide yourself for even bothering to read one word of the review. At worst, you will read the review so many times you can quote it by heart, begin to believe it, and eventually get one star tattooed on your back to atone for imagined errors in your career choice.
9. If your book gets a negative review, do not respond…
I’ve only worked in one organization that believed this. It was an amazing work experience – collaborative and humble. The most successful, long-term employees were people who had to WORK for what they had. They were prouder of company’s success over their own personal success. Hire people who WANT to learn on the job. Be an organization that inspires pride in its employees. The combination is amazing.
I have mixed feelings about Zak Bagans’ Travel Channel show “Ghost Adventurers,” even though I am a fan. They seem to have a knack for disrespecting spirits and taunting demons. However, their show is a nice contrast to the more serious “The Dead Files,” which takes a methodical, more global approach to examining places with possible paranormal activity. “The Dead Files,” pairs Amy Allan a medium with Steve Di Shavi on each case. Amy and Steve disseminate evidence separately, then provide the families a comprehensive report, with historical data, about events that may have lead to hauntings. They also provide suggestions on how to deal with any paranormal activity. Zak and his crew have a more of a “bull in a china shop” approach.
As The Haunted Librarian notes, Zak recently purchased a property in Indiana, known as the “portal to hell.” He plans to live there, while his team investigates any activity. What could possibly happen? Oh boy. Dangerous, does not begin to describe the world of hurt they may be unleashing, if they go into that situation ill-prepared and full of piss and vinegar. In other words, the way they walk into all of their investigations.
API will be discussing this case and possible repercussions on their show, Thursday and I am curious to hear their take. Tune in, folks.
Granted I’m a tad tardy to the discussion, but I’ve decided to jump into to fray. Ghost Adventurer’s Lead Investigator Zak Bagans has purchased the “haunted” house on Carolina Street in Gary, Indiana. He paid $35,000 for the “modest” property. Bagans is quoted as saying: “I really [have] a passion for this stuff… .” This smacks as a publicity stunt!
Charles Reed, the former owner, sold the property days after a local newspaper published a story whereby calling the house the “Portal to Hell.” Former renter Latoya Ammons, along with her three children and mother, moved into the house in 2011. During the following year, Ms. Ammons claims that one child levitated over a bed, another child walked backwards up a wall, ominous footsteps were heard, and the animal elicited strange behavior. Catholic priest Rev. Michael Maginot exorcised…
Fight the power, Sarah. The menace of Shakespeare MUST be stopped. I shall join your cause, but only if there are cute t-shirts and shoes.
I read the, now infamous, Huffington Post article criticizing J.K. Rowling and a few thoughts came to mind, “girl, listen to your friend next time,” “oh, THAT’S going to leave a mark,” and “just say no to drunk blogging, people.”
I lived in Tampa for almost ten years, before moving to St. Petersburg and can vouch for the eclectic arts scene that exists here. While the article mentions our new and growing craft beer industry and some of the local breweries, it fails to acknowledge the long-time City, County and private partnerships that have contributed greatly to re-investments in the City of St. Petersburg. Our City has dedicated green space and dog parks, and a Mayor, Rick Krisemen, who worked tirelessly throughout his career to ensure our Human Rights Ordinance was developed and passed. In fact, he was the first elected official to sign last year’s St. Pete Pride Proclamation, which coincided with one of the most successful, family-oriented, Pride celebrations in the country. (He served on the City Council when he signed the Proclamation and was instrumental in keeping pressure on previous Mayors to sign the Proclamation).
Archer Paranormal Investigations starts weekly radio show tomorrow. Tune in to www.liveparanormal.com every Thursday at 7 pm. Join the Haunted Librarian and the API team as we discuss past cases and current paranormal events, and even have a special guest or two!