BitterSnaps


A couple of months ago, I Googled myself to survey the search results of my LinkedIn profile, as I wanted to check the prominence of my public internet presence.  Formerly, my profile was satisfyingly amongst the top results, and while my private Facebook page would pull up as well, it is locked down and unproblematic.  This is all important, as I am very likely to be Googled by clients due to my business, and networking is crucial my job.

Imagine my consternation when I discovered that a 20-year-old nude model who shares my “Professional Tailfeather” moniker has been exposing herself all over the internets, granting interviews to taste-questionable websites, and generally undermining the professionalism of Professional Tailfeathers everywhere.  Even worse, she is somehow from my hometown, which has led to a number of dodgy Facebook friend requests (DENIED).  I had sort of blocked this out until my alarmed father sent me a link today to this “bouncy co-ed,” which he had innocently stumbled across whilst researching a midwestern distillery that shares our surname.  Apparently, Undermining-Professional Tailfeather has conquered less literal aspects of the internet search, thanks to our uncommon last name.

Oh, Professional Tailfeathers.  Can we not agree to conduct ourselves with some degree of decorum on the world-wide-whatsit?  One of you already claimed the eponymous Twitter account, with giggly tweets about the X-Factor and underage British binge-drinking.  Should we not agree on some ground rules?  As a small consolation prize, Professional-Tailfeather-the-Naked may be gorgeous and practically illegal, but my LinkedIn profile still trumps her latest pizza-themed, soft-core porn shoot in terms of Google results.  So this is my headline:  Soulless corporate shill beats out bare-breasted-and-pepperonied beauty in the internet search sweepstakes!  At least for now…

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Once you get out of school, it becomes harder for the bullies among us to persecute people online, which is obviously a real shame.  Sure, for the junior high set there’s been MySpace and the high schoolers have the Facebook, and college and grad students have the benefits of JuicyCampus or other social boards to slander and libel their peers (click on any of those links for a good time!), but what of us grown-ups, out in the real world?

I mean, LinkedIn and Viadeo have been great professional networking tools, but I’ve often found them lacking – where’s the free-for-all forum where I can launch personal attacks and deride my colleagues for their laziness, brown-nosing, or just being giant whores, with the comfort of anonymity?

Well, the internet isn’t about to fail us, hence the advent of the professional and anonymous peer review board, Unvarnished.  Unvarnished allows users to dish about their co-workers’ job performances from the safety of their home computers and is fresh out of beta testing.  The concept is similar to Amazon user reviews and, if it isn’t already obvious to you, can be abused just as handily.  From Time Online:

It’s a concept that has caused some controversy, particularly since Unvarnished allows employees to be reviewed anonymously and with no way of removing a negative review. But the co-founders, veterans of sites like LinkedIn and eBay, think there’s a market for honest, unfiltered feedback about how individuals perform in their jobs and say their site will ultimately be more useful than the carefully selected job references or curated blurbs on someone’s LinkedIn profile. “We’re trying to take how professional reputation works in the offline world and port that online,” says co-founder Peter Kazanjy.

Yeah, you bet your ass there will be a market for it.  A sweaty, grimy, desperate black market.  Because why launch a whisper campaign within your organization when it might be traced back to you, when you can simply put it online and remove the risk of accountability, not to mention ensuring that your grievances will be available, forever, to potential employers and contacts worldwide?  It’s the future, y’all. (more…)

I can’t believe it’s been nearly a year since I did a post about a piece of advertising that irritates me!  Surely for someone as easily irritated as me, this should be ripe blog fodder and yet I haven’t touched that poisonous fruit in some time.  Wondering how that could be, I’ve come to the conclusion that a) my resistance to live television viewing is strong and b) like most folk in this day and age, I’m so generally bombarded by it as to become largely inured.  I don’t read magazines anymore, so most of my exposure comes from online ads (which barely register, with the exception of the ubiquitous ModCloth ads – cute dresses!) and product placement in films/shows (again, unless someone blatantly pops open and takes an Adam’s-apple-bobbing gulp of Pepsi or ostentatiously places their Apple Mac in the smack-dab center of the screen, I don’t so much notice).

The one place I do notice it is on the street.  Billboards on buses and cabs, posters on buildings, and above all else, the massive adverts along the walls of the tube.  The latter is the only situation in which I am forced to stare at an ad for a prolonged period of time, contemplate it, internalize it.  Nothing subliminal about staring at a Hennessy ad for two minutes while you wait for the train and avoid eye contact with your fellow commuters.  So while I’ve been waiting for the tube every morning for the last week and a half, I am annoyed afresh by this relentlessly stupid Google Chrome ad that’s directly in front of my preferred Stand for the Train Space (halfway down the platform to the right of the entrance, approximately six cars from the back – it’s an art form): (more…)

work_stressA few weeks ago, I did a post about my Boy Person’s impending move-in date, and how, while I was excited, I was also weighing in my mind the ways in which I view this new definition of commitment as a limitation of opportunity.  How very funny, in retrospect.  This week is my first week as a cohabitant, and the challenges thus far are a little different that the ones I was expecting.

I planned to do my second post on the division of housework and personal time – you know, the standard day-to-day things that keep us all ticking along, and seek input on how you divvy up your own allotments of chores and space as cohabitants.  While space is something the Boy and I are still working on, all of that has come secondary to The Most Important Thing in My Life:  My Job.

As seems to be the nature of my job, things lurch along without much of a problem until, all of a sudden!, we enter a solid week or two of panic mode, wherein I am at the office 11 hours a day, perpetually stressed and wiped out and completely incapable of carrying on functional relationships with the people in my Real-Life, to the point where I am too exhausted and irritable to even make a phone call when I drag my ass home.  I get so physically and emotionally tired that I am a fount of irritability.  I am crabby.  I am short-tempered.  I am brittle.  I am the worst version of myself and I have no time for anyone else.  I never meet friends during the week and I don’t even like to call my mom, because when I get home I just want to inhale the little bubble of solitude I have for three hours until I collapse into bed to have anxiety-dreams and wake up dehydrated and achey at 4:00 am.  It is melodramatic, completely self-centered, and I feel helpless to do anything about it.  (more…)

pageantTo be honest, I actually have a pretty high threshold for people babbling about their kids.  I like kids, I used to work with them, and I genuinely find them fascinating and their parents’ sense of delight charming.  Kids are great.  I am interested in their first words, the playground throwdowns, and how their respective parents are tackling puberty issues.  I’m a good audience for kid stories in general.

What I have a lower tolerance for, however, is both the total overshare aspects of childrearing and the stupified superiority complexes exhibited by some parents, which is why I had to stay at work an hour late today to make up for the fact that I read every single entry in the STFU, Parents tumblr.  I was alerted to this blog courtesy of a Salon Broadsheet post, and it happily exceeded my expectations.

STFUParents is a lovingly-crafted wee gem that encapsulates (and takes to task) the smug and pedestrian tendencies exhibited by some folks the second they discover they’re about to birth their own “little miracle.”  Specifically targeting the mind-numbing and nausea-inducing Facebook updates people impose on their friends (and by friends I may mean people-they-have-not-actually-spoken-to-in-twenty-years) about their shitting, puking bundles of overachieving joy, STFUParents hilariously skewers obsessive parenthood, lack of awareness, and the self-satisfied “Supermom!”

What breed of parent are we talking about here?  Not necessarily the nice people you work with, who might bust out with a wry and exhausted anecdote about their firstborn teething.  Not your cool friends who have, yeah, experienced a life-changing event and share some of the joys and punishments with you, without losing their perspective or their ability to relate.  Rather, the blog tackles those folks who have taken the self-congratulatory and exclusive road by proclaiming things like:  “You can only relate if your (sic) a parent!!!! lol :).”  Or:  “Baby Cleopatra unleashed an atomic bomb today!!!  I didn’t know poo could explode out the back of the diaper and into the hair!  LMAO!!!” (more…)

Ahoy, fellow Bargain Shoppers!  If you’re anything like me, you take great pleasure in picking up a cute, functional purse from Target or H&M or Forever 21.  What’s not to love?  It’s thrifty, fashionable, and you can wear the hell out of it for six months and then toss it, satisfied you’ve gotten your twenty bucks worth out of a bag you’ve enjoyed.  You’re not worried about leaky pens or loose tobacco or half-melted breath mints or snotty kleenex in your purse, because it was cheap to acquire and fun to carry.  Am I right?  I am so very right.

So here’s the bad news.  Apparently, those cheapo purses from which we derive great pleasure and utility are chock-full of THE CANCER.

Only four of the purses from my Target collection, actively trying to kill me

Only four of the purses from my Target collection, actively trying to kill me

 Here’s part of the total lady-bonerkiller from the San Francisco Chronicle:

The Center for Environmental Health filed the complaint in Alameda County Superior Court and sent separate notices to manufacturers of at least 26 brands notifying them that testing showed their products contain lead at levels high enough to pose a health threat. Most are vinyl and faux leather items. (more…)