Hypocrisy and Lala

One of my favorite BookTubers just did one of my least favorite things. Twitter has blown up with the video from behind the scenes of A Dog’s Purpose. It’s of a German Shepherd being forced into churning water. Doggo is putting up a helluva fight to stay out of the water. Toward the end, the finally get the dog in the water and it goes under. It was cruel, horrible, and unnecessary.

What was also unnecessary was BooksandLala hijacking this story for her own cause.

I tried to point out that not all slaughter animals will have a poor quality of life. Her response was to ask me if that tiny percentage made the industry worth supporting. 

If this woman ever eats meat or feeds her husband and son meat, she’s a hypocrite. Even if they only buy the good stuff, most businesses don’t solely support ethical or sustainable solutions. I doubt Subway does but I know her family eats there. Even if the only eat the veggies there, they’re talking with their dollars and supporting a company that buys the ‘bad meat.’

She also has no pets that I know of. I’ve watched her channel quite a bit in the last year and I haven’t seen anything to indicate an affinity for livestock or cute fluffy animals.  

Lala used a video of a dog needlessly suffering to hype her own cause. She didn’t care about the dog or other animals harmed on film sets. She didn’t even have solutions to combat the evil meat industry. All Lala wanted to do was shame and judge other people.

If she can waste 2 tweets commandeering animal cruelty, she can offer a fucking solution. For her holier-than-thou attitude, she’d better be a vegetarian. With the disaster in chief swearing in on Friday, I’ve got enough hypocrites to worry about.

Edit: Layla’s family is vegetarian. It’s not obvious from her internet posts but she claims they are. Her issue was the number if people upset about a dog but ambivalent to the mistreatment of meat animals. That is a reasonable thing to find irksome.
However, that still gave her no right to cast judgment on anyone. Her posts were condescending, rude, ignored the suffering of a dog, and stroked her ego. I guess when you’re that high on your own righteousness, you aren’t interested in offering solutions. 

She’s entitled to her opinion and I’m entitled to think she’s full of it.

Personal Rules

Not too long ago there was a thread on Ask Reddit about personal rules you live by. I thought about it and I figured some of my own.

Honesty is a great policy

90-98% of what I say behind people’s backs I’ll say to their face. You need a margin of error for harsh truths that need a nice delivery or things that don’t need to be said. I think Bella is routinely a sanctimonious jerk but informing her thusly will solve nothing. That falls into the margin of error.

Own your mistakes

Your human and you will screw up. Admit it, own it, and learn from it. I had a boss tell me that she admired my ability to own my mistakes. Millennials have a negative reputation of thinking they know more than they do, not learning, and trying to pass the buck. It’s an ugly trend permeating our society and it needs to stop.

Don’t forgive people who aren’t sorry, don’t know what they did wrong, and only offer nonpologies.

I’ve been disappointed, let down, and throw away by some very self-centered people. I try not to hold grudges or keep score because that just grants folks real estate in my head they don’t deserve. However, I don’t forget how they acted and let their behavior shape our relationship in the future.

People who are ‘sorry you feel that way’ are only sorry you’re upset. They don’t care why or the fact that they had something to do with it. If people have better things to care about than my feelings, I’m better off putting my energy elsewhere.

Don’t make yourself crazier than you have to

This ties into picking fights that don’t need to happen or getting upset when you have no control. If WMATA is a hot mess, I give myself a second to be cross and then deal with it. Another example of this in recent life was Bella and Edward starting a fight with Bond about a word. Most people would shrug and move on with their day but those two decided that was a hill worth dying on.

Find what brings you joy and experience it

I love books, dogs, and running water. These are things that bring me joy, peace, and other good feelings. I read a lot, engage with as many dogs in my neighborhood that I can, and enjoy the times when I’m around water. I like relaxing with Boyfriend on our couch and mocking ridiculous reality TV. Rather than get peer pressured into going to an event I don’t want to do, I hold that time sacred.

Also figure out what isn’t bringing you joy and avoid it if you can. I’m not saying quit your job or avoid the dentist but trim the fat. I realized I wasn’t enjoying bar trivia with my friends and my ‘friends’ so I stopped going. I had a better night running to the library, listening to podcasts, and putting away laundry.

Accomplish at least 3 things per day

I came up with the 3 things rule to make sure I was adulting or being productive with my days. If I do the laundry, empty the dish drainer, and drop off a library donation, I’ve done 3 things. Sometimes it’s putting away the clothes on the drying rack, washing my hair, and cleaning my makeup brushes. Some days are better than others but clearing off various papers off the TV stand made the place look better so I’ll take it.

Make Enemies, Not Friends

This morning someone was completely blocking my path of my morning train. I went about my usual system and walked through him. If you block the doors people need to exit from, you get what you get. He called me a bitch for my trouble. It was unpleasant. I told my friends and my ‘friends’ about it.

I’m not going to lie. I was looking for an excuse to start something with Edward and call him out on his shitty behavior lately. What I didn’t expect was for Bella to take up his cause.

She had the exact same arguments as Edward basically saying “You had it coming” in a very nice way. When I called her out on it, she was not saying or insinuating that at all. She was just disagreeing with me. A lot. That wasn’t disrespectful at all. Yeah, adding a Disney picture to your lecture doesn’t make it nice.

When I asked what the point was in even saying anything because was creating unnecessary tension. She said she didn’t feel any tension at all. I can’t tell if she was being willfully ignorant, a tiny bit stupid, or just too high on her own superiority but there was definitely tension. When you are actively hostile toward your ‘friends,’ there’s always tension.

This group chat has gone from a place where friends talk about life to a place where Bella and Edward will basically attack you for not agreeing with them. If you’re lucky, they’ll be briefly hostile. If not, it will be a long, drawn out conversation that never needed to happen about why they’re right and you’re stupid. They’ll do it in such an insidious way that they can deny what’s right in front of them as being disrespectful, rude, and/or hostile.

What’s even more maddening? They will pretend everything is fine in a matter of days. They will pretend they took what was supposed to be a safe space for friends to interact and turned it into a battleground. They can pretend everything is fine when in actuality, you’re only making nice because you have friends in common.

With any luck, the people who are fed up with them will start to fracture away. Edward and Bella are in such deep denial about their behavior that I don’t see a big blow up happening. They are not welcome in my home and I have no intention of ever setting foot in theirs again. If we have to be in the same place at the same time, I plan on avoiding them. Speak enough words to fake politeness and resume ignoring them. Give them nothing about my life they can judge and lecture me for.

I’ve been replaying an old cliche in my head: If you  want a friend, be a friend. Edward and Bella have not been anyone you could pay me to call friend. I never particularly liked Edward and the only reason we speak to each other is the people we have in common. Bella and I were never close so there wasn’t much to lose, especially when she became more like Edward. She used to rein him in, now she backs him up.

Magenta has not been what I would consider a friend either. We’re friendly but she hasn’t be a real friend for at least a year. She has become closer to Bella as of late and it makes me think even less of her. A hostile, sanctimonious jerk and someone who abandons friends when they stop being ‘fun.’ A match made in hell. Riff would happily follow Magenta into the fiery pits of hell because he thinks she can do no wrong.

I figured I’d stop seeing those four once I had kids but I have no problem expediting the process. I don’t need bad feelings and dead weight in my life. If they can’t be bothered to meet the barest definition of friend, I don’t need to know them.

It’s Not About the Pansies

Ever have one of those fights where you know it’s not actually about the subject at hand? I got see one of those yesterday.

I’m in a group chat with several of my friends and one person called an uninvolved 3rd party a pansy. Bond asked that we not use that word since it has a negative history with regard to effeminate homosexuals. Edward and Bella said that’s not what it means in the Midwest (where they’re from).

Bond then posted a link to a definition that gives that history. I’ll grant that it’s a bit of nit picky request and the derogatory nature has faded over time. However, since it’s the first time any of us have had this conversation, it didn’t need to be thing. Edward and Bella disagreed. A lot.

Edward’s response to the link was: “Tell you what, when an effeminate homosexual male actually tells me to not use it, I’ll not use it around him. Until then, piss off. Pansy equates to chicken or wuss in my neck of the woods.”

His friend made a reasonable request that was best ignored if he didn’t like it. We’re also not in Edward’s neck of the woods anymore. I cannot fathom a reason why this escalated to this level of rudeness as quickly as it did.

Bella decided to add fuel to the fire and say she doesn’t like being told what words to use. Edward added ‘or request what words we use around him.’ It then devolved into a ridiculous debate about the use of the words retard, stupid, and midget.

At one point Bella said her ‘do no harm’ instincts were clashing with her ‘freedom of expression’ instincts. Her ‘do no harm’ went out the window when her boyfriend told someone to piss off and she didn’t call him out or try rein him in.

I have given my friend the alias of Bond because of his fondness for the character as well as his dress and grooming habits. He likes to wear cuff links, suits, ties, and occasionally hats. At no point during this unnecessary discourse did it occur to Edward or Bella that Bond might have his own negative, personal associations with the term.

This is not the first time Edward has chosen a crappy hill to die on. A month or so ago, I was rude to a rude person (rando started it). He called me a bitch so I flipped him the bird and went about my day. I mentioned this in the same chat and, a couple of hours later, Edward decided this was a fight worth having.

While I don’t recall the exact arguments he made, he stopped just short of saying it was my fault and I deserved it. At multiple points I told him I wasn’t sorry I did it, he wasn’t changing my mind, and he needed to drop it. Somehow, ‘drop it’ translated into ‘have a long winded last word.’

What’s even more maddening? Edward thinks he and I are fine. We are absolutely not. I lost a ton of respect for him and have no desire to be in his presence. I just play nice because we have the same friends.

Edward was so caught up in being right, he forgot the people he was speaking to were supposed to be his friends. He has managed to severely alienate two of us (and our SOs by extension) in as many months. There are plenty of ways to disagree with someone without being a jerk and Edward doesn’t know any of them.

I think this will happen one more time before Bond, myself, and Malcador (pissed off bystander) call him out. I wonder what asinine thing will set him off next.

It Doesn’t Mean What You Think It Means

I’ve been poking around a lot of reddit groups of people with major drama.

I’ve come to loathe the phrase “I’ll always be there for you.” It’s almost always followed or preceded of some version of ‘but I’m not interested in dealing with you until you agree with me.’ Case in point.

I got the same crap from Magenta. Because I wasn’t super-enthusiastic about her throwing me away and shutting me out of her life once she got a boyfriend, she couldn’t ‘stomach my negativity’ and didn’t want me around. She readily admitted to pushing me out of her life. But I was still ‘one of the most important people in her life and she’d always be there for me and support me.’

Do you listen when you talk? Because there are some inherent fallacies in that logic.

Actions are louder than words. Magenta has made an effort to talk to me once since October. When I didn’t respond, I needed to explain myself. Anytime I try to talk to her, I get radio silence or monosyllables. But if I expect an explanation, I’m being clingy. Yeah, that’s some really supportive friendship right there.

If you have an issue with somebody, justified or not, don’t say you’ll ‘always be there.’ 9/10 it means ‘I’ll be there when you fall in line.’ Find a different variant that doesn’t include the word ‘always.’ It doesn’t mean what you think it means. I’ll be there if Magenta ever needs me or asks for help but as of right now, she’s not my problem and barely my friend.

I hate that I keep coming back to this but I’m not totally over it. I think I need to spend time with other friends to fill that hole in my life. I’d get over it faster if I didn’t have to deal with her and find ways to avoid explaining we’re barely friends and don’t talk. Since I don’t feel like dumping all of my other friends (who adore her), my progress is hindered.

I did make a new friend on Monday doing laundry oddly enough. I’m hoping we can become better friends. It will be good to have people outside my current circle.

Phrasing

After my recent disagreement with my friend over his poor taste in revenge humor, I’ve decided there are phrases we need to stop using. They never work as intended and my instinctive response is to all of them is “Fuck off.” Here’s why these phrases never work.

Lighten up

What it’s supposed to mean: It’s a joke. Find the funny.

What it really means: My (somewhat offensive) joke fell flat. Rather than accept this, I’m going to get defensive about my ability to be funny and completely dismiss you.

How it’s usually taken: The recipient gets more offended and thinks you’re allergic to listening. Finds the joke even less funny than before.

Calm Down

What it’s supposed to mean: You need to mellow out to improve the situation.

What it really means: I don’t like that you’re being this reactive/emotional. I don’t want to deal with this. Please stop.

How it’s usually taken: THAT WAS CALM! (emotions escalate by a factor of 9,000)

Cheer up

What it’s supposed to mean: Don’t be so unhappy. I want to see you be happy.

What it really means: I don’t like you when you’re depressed/sad. I don’t want to be around you when you’re like this so please stop being like this.

How it’s usually taken: You’re uninterested in the reason I’m unhappy. Rather than care and listen, you want me to pretend I don’t have problems so you don’t have to feel guilty for not caring.

No offense

What it’s supposed to mean: I’m going to say something you may not want to hear.

What it really means: I’m going to say something offensive and probably unnecessary. Because I used a disclaimer, you can’t be mad at me.

How it’s usually taken: Braces for offensive statement. Debates the value of calling you on your shit or just smiling, nodding, and thinking you’re an idiot.

Smile

What it’s supposed to mean: Be happy!

What it really means: I’d rather look at someone smiling. If you’re not happy, you’re of no value to me.

How it’s usually taken: I’m not here for your viewing pleasure OR Let me turn my emotions on and off since they make you uncomfortable.

The Spy with No Sense of Humor

Once again, I’m displeased with one of my friends who felt like creating drama. Bond takes our weekly bar trivia sessions pretty seriously. He focuses a lot on getting names right and even took it a little too personally when another trivia team decided to hate us. Some of his reactions were a bit immature so I guess I shouldn’t be surprised by what happened last night.

Last night, he blew off trivia to see Spectre for a third time. He didn’t bother to mention this to any of us until about 5 minutes before trivia started even though we did a roll call. We were all supposed to be fine with these even though he usually rules the answer sheet and checks our standings for the season at least once a week. I’m pretty sure the ending hasn’t changed and they’ll still be airing it on Thursday.

I get that James Bond is his thing (hence the nom de plume) but if any of us had done the same thing, he’d give us some grief. He doesn’t care of Boyfriend or I don’t show up but if Riff or Edward or Henry miss a night, they hear about it at least a little bit. I was more annoyed than normal by his hypocrisy so I was a bit snarkier than I should have been. I lit the match but he dumped lighter fluid on it.

After mass grumbling about an impressively stupid round involving NBA players and emojis, Bond finally picks up on the fact that he’s missing out. They give out prizes for round winners and the nearby CVS had Halloween decorations on sale for 90% off. Boyfriend goes up to get the prize and the host disappears around the back of the restaurant. He returns with a talking skeleton with red light up eyes that is about 6’6. Of course many pictures were had.

It is typical for Bond to take pictures of us with our prizes, use a cartoon photo editor, and post them to our team Twitter account (You see what I mean about him taking this seriously?). His edit was to take the photo of Boyfriend and the skeleton, add a bunch of hearts, and the word bubble “Finally, someone to laugh at my jokes.”

Of all the jokes he could have made, this was probably the cheapest and laziest he could have made. He has a picture of Boyfriend for the first time in months and he uses to take a pot shot at me. I told him I thought it was mildly offensive and he basically said, “It’s just a joke. Lighten up.”

I’ll lighten up when your jokes are actually funny. Boyfriend and I agreed that if it was a joke about a new roommate, some dead historical figure, or someone’s campaign manager, we’d have laughed. If the person the joke is about isn’t laughing, you’re joke isn’t fucking funny.

I finally have cause to use the middle finger emoji and everyone starts advising me against it. Riff even said “He’s grumpy so be the bigger person.” I’m sorry, since when is being in a bad mood make it OK to be a jerk? It’s perfectly acceptable to be rude and dismissive to me and Boyfriend because he’s acting like a petulant teenager.

For the record, Boyfriend didn’t find it funny either. His first reaction was “Wow. Is that how you really feel?” He just let it go because I’m capable of stirring up enough trouble for the both of us with my temper and disinterest of suffering fools. Boyfriend stayed out of it until Bond posted it on Twitter. I don’t get to post photos of BF on social media without permission so Bond was more than a little bit out of line.

I was the bigger person but I hated being that way. Bond has acted like an immature twat monkey more than a few times these past few months. I don’t know what’s gotten into him but at some point in the last few months, his ability to see things from someone else’s perspective have taken a serious hit. Either he’s got to grow up or someone has to call him on his shit. I’ve got a finite number of days left where I can hold my tongue.