Category Archives: Posts that will get me hate mail

This isn’t a real post

This isn’t a real post.  Just checking in to say a few things that I have on my list of things to write about but that I haven’t written about because I haven’t had time to make into a polished post because I’ve been working on my next book (FINALLY MY BRAIN IS ALMOST WORKING AGAIN) but if I wait any longer I won’t write it at all and I’ll forget it…so, here is my mind dump of a few things you should know.

  1.  Are you listening to the INVISIBILIA podcast on NPR?  You should be.  I just discovered it a few months ago and I’ve been pouring through them and the one I listened to yesterday (The Problem with the Solution) totally gut-punched me.  But in a good way.  Just…ow.
  2. Y’all, it’s not out yet but Samantha Irby’s new book is so good it made me vomit.  Like, I want to smother her and take credit for writing it but then everyone would be like, “Wait.  You’re a black orphan with Crohn’s disease?  WHEN DID THAT HAPPEN?”  But the book doesn’t come out until forever and I’m gonna forget to tell you about it when it does come out because I’m the worst so just remind me to tell you again when it’s available for preorder.  Or read her last book again while you’re waiting.  But then writing that reminded me of the book I read last year that was SO good and I wanted to tell everyone about it but it still had a billion months until publication so instead I just called my friends and read aloud from it while simultaneously aghast and giggling hysterically and I just went to check and it comes out this month so go order that shit right now because it was one of the best things I read this year.  It’s called UNMENTIONABLE: The Victorian Lady’s Guide to Sex, Marriage, and Manners.  It’s super gross and fascinating.  Like Mary Roach’s Stiff, but funnier.
  3. Speaking of books, I am a constant reader and I was thinking it would be cool if we had a bookclub, but I’m too lazy for that so what if I just put the name of the book I’m currently reading on a blog post each week and then in the comments you can discuss?  Except I pretty much only read nonfiction, sci-fi, fairy tales and graphic novels so it would be a very, very limiting bookclub.  Not sure about this one.  Just a thought I keep having.
  4. You know those metal kits I’ve been making for years when my anxiety gets high because working with the tiny pieces keeps me from picking away at myself?  (If not, read 1000 ferris wheels here.) I just finished a new one.  It took two hours to make it because it was 30+ tiny pieces but THE DOORS OPEN AND CLOSE.  WHAT.



  5. Hunter S. Tomcat is sitting in the chair next to me and he has this enormous grin of contentment and I thought, I should share this, but then I realized I haven’t cleaned the cat fur off the seat cushion in 3 days so it looks filthy, but whatever.  A little bit of filth should not stand in the way of happiness.  In fact, a little bit of filth is sometimes the only road to happiness.  But that’s another story.
  6. He looks like he's wearing a tiny little white g-string.

    He looks like he’s wearing a too-small, tiny white g-string.

  7. Dorothy Barker decided she wanted in on this.  This is my dog when I say “bacon”.


    It’s not even real bacon. It’s fake dog bacon and it taste like sadness and giving up.  It smells like bacon though, which is why I tried it.  I thought I found a cheap bacon alternative that would help me keep my coat shiny but no, the bacon is a lie.  A beautiful one though, according to this dog.

  8. I use a lot of affiliate links in my posts but the money I get if you order stuff just goes back to the community when we do Booksgiving or Christmas miracles and stuff.  Just FYI in case you’re new to the tribe.
  9. I’m in Cincinnati this weekend signing books and stuff.  Come see me.  It’s free.
  10. There is no number 10 but I like to end on a round number.  Hugs.  ~ me

There is a line. And I’m not sure if it’s been crossed but maybe we’re standing on it?

I’ve had a lot of people send me links to this auction where a woman is selling a purse made out of a dead cat (it was already dead if that makes it less awful for you) and half of the people are like, “THIS IS AWESOME AND I TOTALLY THOUGHT OF YOU” and the other half are like, “THIS IS SICK AND HORRIFIC AND I TOTALLY THOUGHT OF YOU” and either way I can’t decide if I should be insulted, or just happy that you all know me so well, so I’m sticking with the latter.

Via Trade Me

Via Trade Me

And although I do appreciate the thought, this is one of the few times when I looked at terrible taxidermy and thought, Um…maybe not.  First of all because of the shedding, secondly because it’s looking at me reproachfully, third because it looks a bit too much like Hunter S. Thomcat and I’m pretty sure it would give all of the cats nightmares.  Besides, I already own an easter basket made of a 100-year-old armadillo, an antique coin purse made of a frog, and hat made out of an ethically taxidermied raccoon face, and I suspect there’s a limit to how many animals you can wear at one time, even if they did all die of natural causes.  Also, the starting bid is $1400 which is just ridiculous, especially considering that I could probably make it myself.  Not that I would.  Unless someone I really hated was allergic to cats.  Then maybe I would make one just to keep them away from me.  But it seems like it would be easier to just put Hunter S. Thomcat in a Baby Bjorn and carry him around strapped to my chest.  Except he has anxiety too so he gets scared when we travel and gets AWFUL, explosive traveler’s diarrhea.  Which would probably keep even more people away from me, now that I think about it.  So technically I think I just found an inexpensive way to make sure people don’t get in my personal space in airports and I didn’t even have to use hot glue to seal a cat’s corpse to a pocketbook.

Life hacks, y’all.

How to make Facebook actually great again. For the first time. #IWOKEUPLIKETHIS

So I just heard Facebook is changing its algorithm again and I’m not sure what that means but if we’re judging from past changes it’ll just mean that it’ll suck more.  Which is sad because there’s a lot of great stuff on Facebook, but you often have to wade though a lot of bullshit before you see it and then you go from “Let’s see what’s going on on Facebook” to “THE INTERNET IS PISSING ME OFF AND THE WORLD IS TERRIBLE AND I’M GOING TO DELETE MY ACCOUN-wait.  Aw.  Look at that hamster eating a burrito!  Never mind.  I’ll be back tomorrow.  Maybe.”  And that’s why I think it would be nice if people could label their posts on Facebook so that you can decide what you do or don’t want to see for the day.  Maybe you want to just read happy stuff, or maybe you want something to yell about, or maybe you want to avoid crazy bullshit.  Labels and filters would solve this problem.

Some suggested categories for people to use to label their Facebook status updates so that other people know what they’re getting into:

  • This is what I had for lunch.
  • You know you want to see my cat right now.
  • I have a baby.  Look at it.
  • I wrote this when I was drunk.
  • This is the best thing I’ve written all week and I want you to look at it. (Can only be used once a week.)
  • Read my blog.  I wrote an okay post.
  • Read my blog.  I wrote an awesome post.
  • Read my blog.  I wrote a boring-ass ad that I hated writing and I’m not going to tell you it’s an ad until the end even though it’s going to piss you off.
  • Contains racist/homophobic/hateful meme but you can’t unfriend me because we’re related and if you do I’ll call you a stuck-up bitch at the family reunion.
  • Contains blatantly wrong information that I should have googled first.
  • Angry about a satirical news item that I think is real.
  • Obligatory prayers to whatever crisis is going on because I feel helpless and it’s the only thing I can do.
  • Actual action items that can help whatever crisis is going on but will probably not make your newsfeed because I’m not as popular as other people you’re following who are just offering obligatory prayers.
  • I’m in a bad place.  Tell me it’s going to get better.
  • Videos of weird stuff.  Good weird though.
  • Videos of weird stuff.  Not good weird though.  Maybe call the police.
  • Videos that are too loud, start with profanity and are on autoplay so you can’t turn down your computer volume fast enough to not get fired.
  • I already know I’m pretty but tell me I’m pretty.  Do it again.  Never stop. This is my 18th selfie of the morning.
  • Picture of me with no make-up, hash tagged #Iwokeuplikethis even though it’s obvious I’ve got makeup on and did not wake up like this.
  • Picture of me with no make-up, hash tagged #Iwokeuplikethis where I look sort of scared because seriously, where am I? Who drew this penis on my forehead?  Frank?  Did you do this?  WTF FRANK?  THIS IS WHY NO ONE LIKES YOU.
  • I’m lonely.  Let’s talk.
  • Funny video of people getting hurt.
  • Not funny video of people getting hurt.
  • Video of sloth/hamster/ hedgehog in bathtub/raccoon being adorable.
  • Video of above, but recut so it’s way too long and you’re going to end up closing it in disgust because NO ONE HAS TIME FOR THIS.
  • Actually hysterical/wonderful/joyous news.
  • I don’t have anything to share but I don’t want you to forget I exist.
  • Bragging about something anyone could achieve if they had a large credit limit.
  • Bragging about something that required talent or hard work.
  • I’m very happy right this second and I want to share because it’ll make you happy too.
  • I can’t believe you dumped this sweet ass, Frank.  (Usually contains partial nudity or questionable life choices.)
  • Vague-booking something so subtly that everyone is confused and no one knows how to respond.
  • Vague-booking something so obvious that everyone reading wonders why I didn’t just name the person I’m dragging but I’m not naming them because I’m trying to be the mature one, Frank.
  • Contains hyperbolic meme that is so over the top even people who agree with my cause will be embarrassed for me.
  • Contains happy Jesus quote because I want people of all religions to be inspired.
  • Contains angry Jesus quote because YOU KNOW WHAT YOU DID, FRANK.
  • Boobs.
  • Angry posts I’ll delete in an hour so you better read it now before I get threatened with a lawsuit.
  • Things I only post because my mom follows me.
  • Just trying to piss people off.
  • Facebook post about quitting Facebook even though I’m obviously not since I just posted about it on Facebook.
  • I don’t know how to turn off these auto-generated posts about my FarmVille account.

PS. I know it sounds like I’m judging, but I am not.  Mostly.  I do lots of the above on a very regular basis so please don’t write a think-piece about this yelling at me for censoring you.  Or if you do, label it appropriately on Facebook with “JENNY LAWSON IS BEING A REAL FUCKER AGAIN” so that I can keep track of all of them.  That’s all I ask.


Kids today, right?

Things I wrote on my phone at 2am and then later found and read and wondered if maybe I need to cut back on my sleeping pills:

It’s weird that kids will walk for miles just to see a dead body in a ravine when they could just walk into a funeral home and look at a bunch of them without all those flies and lack of air conditioning. Kids, right?

Although maybe it’s because kids always want to poke a body with a stick and funeral directors won’t let a bunch of kids come in with sticks. That’s why I always bring a cane. A cane is a fancy stick and people assume you’re too sickly to be a threat, so when you get in trouble for poking all the dead bodies in the funeral home you can run away and funeral home people would be like “Whoa. Look at her go. That’s gotta be some kind of miracle. Maybe she was on to something with all this poking.” If I was a kid I’d bring a cane to poke bodies, but I guess the problem is that you have to share it with your friends because whose gonna believe an entire roving pack of kids who all have canes? That’s just unsettling. Although people might avoid looking at you out of pity. So maybe canes-for-everyone is a good idea if you’re poking bodies, or doing some light shoplifting. I haven’t really thought it through but this is exactly the kind of stuff I should bring up if they ever invite me to speak at an elementary school because those speakers almost never give good real-world advice.

PS. I’m leaving tomorrow to be part of the faculty (JESUS THAT’S SUCH A GROWN UP WORD) for the University of Dayton Erma Bombeck Writer’s Workshop and I’m speaking at the same time as a bunch of award winning famous people who probably don’t giggle when they refer to themselves as “faculty” so if you come to see me and it’s less than three of you I say we just go to the bar and get stupid.  Drinks are on me.  Unless there are 4 of you.  Then we go halfsies.  I’m not made of money, people.  Maybe BYOB?  Come prepared.

PPS. Spellcheck says “halfsies” isn’t a real word.  Really, spellcheck?  Because I think a member of “the faculty” would know what words are.  Honestly, I’m not sure if I’m proving me or spellcheck wrong here.

The happiest four words. The saddest four words.

Conversation with Victor at lunch:

Victor: I read something about a contest where you have to come up with the saddest story in just four words, and I think I’ve nailed it.

me:  Okay.  Hit me.

Victor:  “She loved someone else.”

me:  Ooh, that is a good one.  How about… She’d forgotten his smell”.

Victor:  Hmm.  “He never became himself.”


Victor:  Um…subtlety?

me:  “The baby spontaneously combusted.”

Victor:  Jesus, Jenny.

me:  Well you said it should be sad.

Victor: Okay, let’s switch to happy.  The happiest story in four words.  “He loved her back.”

me:  Okay.  “The monsters never returned.”

Victor: How about…“She became his world”.

me:  Ew.  No. That sounds like a stalker.  Oh!  “More gravy for everyone!”

Victor:  “They made a family.”

me:  Aw, I like that.  How about…Knock knock mother fucker.”

Victor: No.  Also, “motherfucker” is one word.

me:  Fine.  How about… “He never questioned her.”

Victor: How about…“She stopped acting stupid.”

me: How about…“Her divorce came through.”

Victor:  Hmm.  We should probably stop this.

me:  Yeah.  Agreed.

And they lived happily (ever after).

Your turn.  Happy or sad story in four words.  Go.

I’m sharing this with you because I love you.

Remember in September when I had to put a book trailer out, but instead of talking about the book I decided to do a video where I asked my friends to share their stories with the world?  And my niece, Gabi, composed and played the lovely tune for it?  Here.  I’ll show it to you again in case you forgot because it is amazing and it makes me smile and I love all of the people in it.

But here’s a story you never heard…

My publicist and close friend (Marlena) traveled with me for most of the tour and helped me when I got stuck in panic attacks or dark pits.  She and her husband (John) helped me through a lot of rough times when I felt overwhelmed and John was the person who edited and polished the Furiously Happy video above.  He took several minutes of each person flipping their signs and edited it into what it became.  What you may not know is that John made me an alternate video inspired by something that showed up on Patrick Rothfuss‘ video.

I watched it and laughed like mad and I wanted to share it but I was worried that people would think I was being irreverent and flippant, but I was just looking at it again and I realized that irreverent and flippant are exactly the things that I excel at so I thought, “Fuck it.  You guys know me enough to love this as much as I do, because in spite of the fact that the subject is serious, laughing at it makes it so much more manageable.”  I sent it to a few people on the video and they agreed it was fabulous.  And now I feel stupid for ever doubting you.


The answer to the question “Is blogging dead?”

I’ve been doing interviews for the book release and I’m never prepared for the questions in spite of the fact that the questions are mainly about me, but in my defense I find myself a bit tedious (that bitch is everywhere – it’s like she’s stalking me) so I’m not usually paying attention to what I’m doing.  But this week I’ve had several reporters all start with the question, “Is blogging dead?” and I’ve finally started answering with “Well if it is that makes me one hell of a necrophiliac because I’m still doing it WITH ZEST”.  But then I started wondering if when these articles come out they’re just going to say: “Jenny Lawson, total weirdo, recently came out as an ardent necrophiliac.  ‘I DO IT WITH ZEST’ she confessed in a recent interview.”  So that’s why I’m coming out right now to say that I am NOT a fan of necrophilia for myself or for anyone else.  That is my official statement.  The end.

Except I guess it’s not really the end because now that I’ve brought up the question of whether blogging is dead I’m probably expected to flesh it out.  Except that readers here know I never flesh anything out properly so I suppose I’m off the hook.  Which is exactly what blogging is all about.  It’s about writing whatever crazy shit you want to write and having some people say “YES!  I THOUGHT I WAS THE ONLY ONE” and some say “What the shit is wrong with you?” and 99.99% of the world say nothing because they don’t know I exist.  And that is blogging.  And in that way it’s the same blogging that existed when I started blogging 9 years ago.  There are some changes, of course.  In the last 9 years some amazing bloggers have decided not to blog anymore.  And sometimes they come back and sometimes they don’t and sometimes they’re replaced by other amazing bloggers who write hysterical or moving or entertaining fluffy things.  And that’s a very good thing.

The only thing that’s dead is the possibility of making a million bucks on blogging, which honestly never existed as an attainable goal for any of us in the first place.  If you’re blogging to make a million dollars you should probably switch to something more lucrative, like…I dunno…making a sex tape.  But not with a dead person.  I’ve been very clear on this, y’all.

But here’s the great thing about realizing that making a mint in blogging isn’t really feasible or worthwhile…now you’re free to write whatever the shit you want to write without having to worry about brands and advertisers and alienating angry, easily-offended people who are actually really fun to alienate.  And that’s why we all got into writing in the first place, right?  Just me?  You know what?  It might be just be me.  And that’s fine because every single writer writes for their own specific reason.  Some of us write for a living.  Some of us write for fun.  Some of us write because we have no other choice because writers write always and if they aren’t blogging they’re writing a book or a journal or (if you’re anything like me) scrawling ideas of things you’re afraid you’ll forget on your arm until you can get home and jot it all down.  That is what writing is about, and blogging is just one iteration of writing.  Writing never dies.  And thank fucking God for that.

PS. I’m incredibly lucky in that this blog is sponsored almost entirely from the awesome people in my sidebar who support my writing.  They are fantastic and because of them I don’t have to inflate page views by creating annoying slideshows or unneeded page breaks or have to rent out my blog for other people’s voices or other bullshit I’m honestly far too irresponsible to do anyway.  If you appreciate this then go click on them and check them out.  They are fantastic and  interesting and lovely and proof that the question “Is blogging dead?” isn’t really a question worth asking.

PPS.  It would be nice if this question brought attention to great bloggers instead of making bloggers question what they’re doing so if you have a blogger that you love that you think needs attention, share them in the comments.  There’s always room for great voices.

PPPS.  I don’t have a good image for this post but this is my blog so I can post whatever picture I want.  So here’s a picture of my cat’s butthole:


PPPPS.  Spellcheck is trying to tell me I can’t use the word “butthole” and that I should change it to “buttonhole”.  Fuck you, spellcheck.  This is exactly the kind of shit I don’t have to put up with.

PPPPPS.  Except I just remembered that my grandparents read this blog and so I’m including another picture of Hunter S. Thomcat with less genitals.  This is for you, granny and papaw.  Love you.


An accidental competition for the worst mother ever.

The first week back to school always brings out the usual excitement, insecurities,  fear of failure and concerns about not fitting in.  I guess probably our children go through that as well but right now I’m talking about being the parent of a child heading back to school.  I have a group of friends who sporadically group text whenever things get weird and we need to vent, and the first week of school almost always sets us off so I thought I’d share.  Names have been redacted from this group text because CPS doesn’t always understand humor:

“Y’all.  I might be the worst mother ever. I bought a weeks worth of school clothes the night before school started.  I almost had a fistfight with another mom over the last pair of shorts at Target.”

“Oh, I can beat that.  All the stores were sold out of the “MANDATORY” red folders on the school supply list so I sent my kid with green folders and told him to tell his teacher that his mother is colorblind and very sensitive about it.”

“I forgot to pack a lunch for my kid so I brought her take-out tacos. There’s a mom at my kid’s school who makes home-made sushi in the shape of endangered animals for her kid’s lunch.   It’s like she’s making lunch at me.”

“I can top that.  I gave Hailey some burlap and told her to make her own damn shoes. She asked me for thread. I’m like, ‘THAT’S WHAT HAIR IS FOR, HAILEY.’ I mean, honestly.”

“I gave my kid a dead cat I found on the highway and punched him in the face.”

“I forgot school even started until I read these messages.”

“I just realized I forgot to pick my kids up from summer camp.”

“Jesus.  You guys make me glad I don’t have kids.”

“Sweetie, you do have kids.”

“Oh Shit.”

“Wow. You win.”

This is my house.

The greatest gift in the world is to grant a kindness to another. The amazing thing though is that the aforementioned gift is one you give yourself. It may be a small thing. Leaving a flower for the tired woman at the coffee shop. Telling a stranger that they have such kind eyes. Listening happily to a story told by an elderly friend or relative who has told you the same story a million times. Nodding in solidarity even when you don’t completely understand. Letting a friend or a stranger yell hurtful things at you because you hope it will help them let go of a small part of that anger…that it will open up room in them for the greater things that they deserve.

This is the way the world goes. Small, mean acts affect the next person who in turn amplify that anger or sadness and take it out on others who suffer as well. Then small, kind acts of grace work their magic and pull the world back into balance. Those acts echo into the world. They reverberate long after we are gone. And sometimes? Sometimes they bounce back to us in unexpected ways.

I’ve been writing for years and it’s only in the last year that I’ve let myself feel bad about what I write. Well, not about what I write exactly. I write about my life. I write funny stories that I hope make people smile. I write books that I hope make others laugh loudly and inappropriately in airplanes. I write honestly about difficult things I’m haunted with, like depression or self-harm. And occasionally I veer off into strange waters where I don’t quite know if I’m the best person to say something, but I know that I’m the best person to say the things that I think. You sometimes get small glimpses of those things but in such light amounts you could be forgiven for missing them. If you look closely you probably know that I’m a feminist. That I’m a big supporter of gay rights.  That I don’t believe in church but do believe in God. That I believe racism is institutional and exists far deeper than we see. That I don’t deal well with authority. That I have eternal hope in goodness. That I am quick to anger and quicker to forgive and that I don’t believe in picking sides because the world is flexible and moving and ever changing. The only side I pick is the one with less assholes, but even that is fluid because people change. Sometimes the assholes are later the people who have come so far, and who we revere for their ability to change. Sometimes we find that our heroes were undercover assholes, hiding amongst us until they let down their guard. Sometimes the assholes are us. In fact, if you aren’t prepared to recognize that occasionally you will look back at your life and think, “Wow. That was a real dick move. What the shit, me?” then you are the most dangerous of all the assholes.

This is a long post but in my defense I’ve been very quiet for the last week while I sorted this out.  I do have a point and I’m coming to it.

In the time I’ve been writing I’ve had thousands of people send me emails or links or tweets asking if I would weigh in on something, or support their cause, or ask everyone I know to donate to their personal fund or charity. I’ve read other blog posts by friends who tell me if I don’t write about their personal beliefs then it means I don’t care. Then I remind myself that if someone would potentially not know where I stand if I’m not screaming it on my blog then perhaps they aren’t as good a friend as I thought. I’m asked to stand up for people being bullied. I’m asked to stand up for the other people who are being censored and being called bullies. I hear:

“How can you not go to our Gay Pride parade when you yourself are bisexual?”

“Today is International Suicide Awareness day. Why aren’t you promoting it?  Don’t you care?”

“You’ve spent time in wheelchairs and hospital beds from your autoimmune disease so why aren’t you promoting our walkathon for chronic pain awareness?”

“If you don’t publicly take a stand against racism on every platform you have then you are a racist.”

“If you don’t write about 9/11 every year the terrorist win”.

“If you don’t write a post explaining that most Muslims are peaceful and lovely then their blood will be on your hands if they are killed.”

“If you don’t write about my personal version Jesus Christ then you’re sentencing your readers to everlasting hell.”

“If you don’t promote my kickstarter about my journey to adopt 56 Chinese orphans then all orange kittens will spontaneously lose all their legs.”

These are all real things said to me in the last year, except for the last one which I suspect is probably just stuck in my spam filter.

Here’s the deal.  I just can’t. I can’t use this blog to tell you that testing makeup on animals is bad or that if we don’t reduce our carbon footprint our children will suffer the consequences. I don’t have the stamina or willpower to denounce every shitty thing in the world that I assume everyone else here already agrees with. I don’t have the strength to write about ISIS and kidnappings and poverty and children starving and bombs and other terrible things because I know I will become fixated and depressed and unable to function.  I know my limits and I know that without self-care I will fall into those dark holes of depression where I’m no help to anyone.

And I’m okay with that because I don’t have to tell you that Nazis are bad and mass murderers are fuckheads and that racism is bullshit and suicide should be avoided and rape is shitty and water is wet and cats will scratch you if given enough time. This is all common sense. If I have to say this out loud for you to get those things then you are in the wrong place. Mostly because I’m typing and so I can’t say anything out loud, but also because if you know me, you already know these things. We may disagree on the finer points. I may have a looser definition of what it means to be a feminist. I’m in the middle ground when it comes to gun control so if I ever decide I’m educated enough to have a salient point of view worth sharing out loud we may disagree. I suspect I view racism as being more of a problem than the average American (or average white Southerner at least) and occasionally I’ll say something about it and lose followers…both those who are angry that I believe racism is systemic and deep-seated, and those who agree but who are mad that I don’t say even more. And that’s okay. Sometimes they come back, later, with open minds and less fear or anger. Sometimes they are replaced by others who are here to laugh and smile at the ridiculousness that comes out of my head. Sometimes (mostly) it’s read and then forgotten. Just one tiny voice in a world that won’t shut up. In a world so busy speaking that it can’t hear.

I had a point and I’ve strayed from it a bit but this is it: I appreciate the links and suggestions and tweets and probably half the time my posts come from something one of you has sent me because you know me and you know what fuels me. I read what you’ve sent me and laugh or cry or learn. Sometimes I write about it.  Sometimes I keep it for myself.  Sometimes there isn’t a better way to say it so I’ll just retweet it, or forward it to others who I think might need it or be inspired to write more about it. But I will never tell those people that it is their responsibility to write about what I want to read. And that is the difference.

Please keep sending me links. Tweet things you think I’ll want to see. Email me your thoughts, or posts. Or share them here. But there are two things you should know: One– I almost never share fundraisers because if I do one then a million people will ask why I don’t share their equally valid fundraiser and then I’d suddenly turn from a writer to a very annoying PR person who only tweets fundraisers.  No one wants that.  And two: I will never write about something because someone else is trying to shame me into it. I have plenty of my own shame and guilt over here myself, thankyouverymuch, so I don’t need you dropping yours on me. Not only is it shitty, but it also makes me question everyone else writing about whatever that current event of the week actually thinks, and that’s not fair to anyone. Are they just writing what they think people want to hear? Are they pandering because it’s fucking easy as hell to say “I’M NOT FOR MURDERING GAY PEOPLE” and “CANCER IS NOT WHAT I LIKE”. Not only that, but if you aren’t saying something thought-worthy then you are adding to the roar that is the world and while it’s a wonderful thing to have the nation rise up as a whole against bullshit, it sometimes has the unintended action of  making it that much harder for people who DO have brilliant and amazing things to say to be heard. People have a limited attention span and if they spend their lunch hour picking through posts that say nothing new or personal because they are written solely out of fear of missing out on the topic du jour are going to miss the chance to read the people out there who have something unique and intriguing and personal and brilliant to say. Those posts that make you say, “YES. FUCKING EXACTLY. THIS IS WHAT I WAS TRYING TO SAY BUT I COULDNT FIND THE WORDS FOR IT.” They are the posts that make you say, “Oh. Oh, shit. I get it. I get it now and I didn’t before and now everything has changed.” The posts that are so beautifully written that you immediately link to them on the Facebook disagreement you were having with your great aunt Agnes and she reads it and says, “Hmm. Well I never thought about it that way. I guess I’ll have to think about it.”

Those brilliant posts exist. I hope I’ve written a few. Probably not nearly as many as I’d like but I’m limited in my areas of expertise. I get humor because that’s how I survive. I get family because I’ve been blessed to have a dysfunctionally functional group of people who challenge me and make me laugh. I get mental illness because I survive it. I fight it as a regular demon and I haven’t a choice but to become a savvy warrior because that’s how you live. We don’t always get to choose our causes. Sometimes our causes choose us.

There is another thing I write about on the regular and that is kindness. Because we can’t live without it. Because it keeps us afloat. Because it keeps us worthy of survival as a species. Because it helps me forgive people who demand that I use my voice for their words because if I don’t it means I’m unworthy or low or their enemy. Because it helps me remember that that kind of anger comes from pain or fear or desperation that no one should have to feel. And because that same kindness is what I depend on and hope for from them when they read this.

This is my house. You are welcome here. You are wanted. You are allowed to leave links of posts or articles you think this community would say “Oh, I needed that” to. You are welcome to talk and visit and make friends and to realize that each of us is flawed and human and (in the grand scheme of things) knows nothing. Because I’ve come to know that the only thing I really know is we could all do with a little more kindness. Both in giving and getting.

Be kind to one another. And more importantly, be kind to yourself.  You deserve it.

PS. This post scares me a little to post because I know a thousand of you will think “Shit.  She’s talking about me” but I can assure you that 127 different people have asked me to share their stuff within just the last 24 hours (not an exaggeration) so I’m really not paying attention to names, and also there is a tremendous difference between suggesting that I write about something and demanding I write about something.  Still,  I feel a bit bitchy, because in a way I realize I’m sort of saying, “Stop demanding that I join you in your brave and valiant crusade, you well-meaning and good people with absolutely wonderful causes which I wholeheartedly agree with you on” and that’s not what I want to say at all, but it’s the closest thing I can say other than this:  I can’t always sing your song with you.  I listen.  I share.  I think.  But if I’m always singing everyone else’s song then there’s no room for mine.  I have a song to sing.  A terrible one about why Jesus is a zombie and the time I found a severed boobie on my lawn.  A song about horrible things and about wonderful things and mostly silly things that make the day a bit brighter for those twisted enough to appreciate it, or those offended enough to be able to use it as a terrible example to others.  A song that sometimes is out of tune and seldom rhymes and is sung loudly in the dark and in whispers when I’m not quite myself.  A song that sometimes overlaps with yours as we find ourselves unexpectedly sharing a chorus we never knew we had in common.  A song that sometimes captures minds and hearts and changes the world in good and bad ways…but most importantly, a song that is uniquely mine.  One that’s given silence to reflect and write, and information to grow, and that changes as I change.  It’s the same song you sing.  But different.  And all of those songs are beautiful…even the discordant ones of our enemies that inspire us to work harder to prove them wrong in hopes that one day they’ll find themselves accidentally humming a strange tune they’ve picked up along the way…a tune of joy and kindness and love and equality and acceptance.  Or at least something by Prince.  That man is a bad-ass.

PPS.  It occurs to me that I talked about those posts and stories and essays and books that make us yell “YES!  THIS EXACTLY” and that those lovely things are the things that it would be nicest to hear over the roar of kleenex advertisements and selfies, so I’m going to share a few of the ones that hit me personally because maybe you need to see them too.  And maybe in the comments you can share your own. A book, a song, a post, a quote that makes you strong or anything that makes the world a better place…anything that you keep coming back to as a reminder that you’re not alone or as an anthem to keep you going when it’s hardest.  Share your song.  Because I want to hear it.  And maybe, one day, we’ll find ourselves singing along together and you will know it’s because I am with you wholeheartedly, and not just because it’s the easiest thing to sing.

Okay, here are a few posts that stick with me:

This one is fairly recent but I used it so often recently when in discussions with people who didn’t understand why what Rachel Dolezal did is not okay and why it has nothing to do with Caitlyn Jenner ~ From Awesomely Luvvie:  About Rachel Dolezal the Undercover Sista and Performing Blackness

Someone sent me this years ago and it stays with me every day.  I even stop people in the middle of my next book to tell them to read this first:  From Christine Miserandino: The Spoon Theory

Which of you sent me this originally?  I don’t know but when I read it I screamed “YES!  YES, THIS!”  Boggle the Owl on surviving depression.  Boggle the Owl on Anxiety.

Okay.  Your turn.  Share.  Give me something you think needs to be heard.  Something that breeds kindness and makes the world a better place.  Sing your song.  We’re listening.

She’s much better at drawing cats now. About the same with Hitlers though.

I wrote this over a year ago but I never published it because it got lost in my draft folder, but I’ve been recovering from food poisoning and I’m at that woozy stage where I think everything is funny or horrible and I’m pretty sure this is both.  

Conversation with Victor (and Hailey):

Me: Did you see what your daughter made?

Victor: No, but I already resent what you’re implying.

Me: I haven’t said anything bad yet.

Victor: Well, you called her “your daughter”.  I see where this is headed and I don’t like it.  You only call her my daughter when she breaks something.

Me: Not true.  She’s my daughter when she sets something on fire, or when she runs into a wall that’s always been there.  She’s your daughter when she does things I’d never do. So guess what your daughter did?

Victor: She left the toilet seat up?

Me: Nope.  Genocide.

Victor: Um…what?

Me: Or “promoted” genocide, I guess?  I don’t want to jump to conclusions.  I’m just saying that it’s a slippery slope and I’m concerned.

Victor: No. Start over.  Make sense this time.

Me: Fine. Your daughter made this at school:

hitler and friend

Victor: A lunch-sack puppet?


Victor: What…?  It’s not…  Well.  It does look a little like Hitler.

me: No, it looks a lot like Hitler.

Victor: Hitler doesn’t strike me as a waver.

Me: Maybe he’s Heiling.

Victor: What?

Me: Or whatever the active verb for “heil” is.  I DON’T KNOW THE VERB TENSES FOR THE THIRD REICH, VICTOR.

Victor:  Right. So did you ask her if it was Hitler?

Me: She said it was a man they read about in school but she couldn’t remember his name.

Victor: Why is there a cat glued on him?

Me: She said that he was lonely and that’s why he was so grumpy, so she made him a cat.

Victor: Well, that does sound like it could be Hitler.

Me: Which is why I’m concerned.

Victor: Did Hitler even own cats?

Me: Already ahead of you. According to the Internet he did have a cat, but then he ate it..

Victor: Hitler ate his cat?

Me: Well, apparently. I googled “Did Hitler have a cat?” and the internet said this:

I wouldnt put it past him

Victor: You wrote that answer yourself, didn’t you?

Me: No, and now I don’t like what you’re implying. Anyway, Hitler was a mass-murdering asshole so I don’t think it’s entirely outside the realm of possibility that the man ate a few cats in his time.

Victor: Hailey, can you come to the kitchen?

Hailey: Yep?

Victor: Is this Hitler?

Hailey: What?

Me: Answer your father, sweetie. Is this puppet of Hitler, and did you make him this cat to eat?


Hailey: That’s Mr. Putter. He likes trains and cakes.

Me: Cakes made of cats?

Victor: Drop it.

Hailey: I don’t know who Hitler is. That’s Mr. Putter from the Mr. Putter books. He doesn’t eat cats.

Me: Good. And you know it’s never okay to eat cats, right?

Hailey: Uh…yeah?

Me: And genocide. That’s frowned upon too.

Hailey: Huh?

Victor: Okay, I think that’s enough for today.

Me: Well, I think this is a teachable moment.

Victor: Well, I think she can wait until she’s nine to learn not to commit genocide.

Me: Fine. But just remember this if it comes back to bite us later.

Victor: Because she might dabble in genocide before she turns nine?

Hailey: What’s a genderside?

Me: Nothing important, apparently. I’ll just add it to the list of things to tell you when you’re older. “Menstruation and Genocide.” That’s gonna be one hell of a talk.

Hailey: You guys are weird.

And that’s how we decided (as a parenting unit) that we would wait until Hailey was nine before we taught her about genocide and why it’s not okay to eat cats.

Because, apparently, that’s just good parenting.

PS.  I just looked up this Mr. Putter character and apparently there’s a whole series of books about him.  And – I shit you not – this is one:

Full circle, y’all.