View from the Chandelier

View from the Chandelier

The title of this particular blog is a nod to Sia and her incredible song. However, the particular version I am listening to while I type is from an out of this world vocalist, Carrie Manolokos. This past year has been crazy, so much has happened.

When I think about it, it makes my head spin. A year ago, I made a decision to quit my job and start writing full time. I can honestly say, this was the best thing I have ever done. But enough about my odyssey. I am definitely not an inspirational guru and this is not what I want to discuss. Let’s pour a virtual shot of tequila or whatever your particular poison may be and have some fun.

My background when I was a cubicle warrior was in technology. I data mined and coded reports for a Fortune 500 company. I am no stranger to technology. Back in the 90s, I was rocking the internet like nobody’s business. However, this go around I was skeptical of joining any type of social media.

As social as I got was my blog. I felt that was enough and then I started promoting on G+. This is a totally groovy platform. Some folks have issues with it but it works for me especially when it comes to becoming PT Barnum and self-promoting my work. Unfortunately, since I am not making bank as a writer for the SY-FY channel yet, you have to figure out avenues so that your blood, sweat and tears gets read. I have been fortunate in that arena.

Wanting to expand my readership, my husband was on Twitter and he suggested that I try it. Since I was no fan of the new Necronomicon,  Facebook, I jumped on and took a tour to see if I could deal with this new found world. What I liked was 140 characters, in and out, done!

This seemed perfect. Of course, if you make a mistake on a Tweet and send it out with a typo, you will learn a very valuable lesson. Embarrassing retweets are inevitable and you may have to go into hiding  for a bit but you will recover. I learned the art of ninja tweeting.

Ninja tweeting? What is that you might ask? Well, it is an art form akin to Keanu Reeves awesome karate skills in the Matrix or Liam Neeson in Taken. It can be used in two ways. The first way. You just crafted a sweet Tweet. You are sure it will hit the stratosphere in likes, retweets, etc. You send it out only to discover 2 seconds later, TYPO or something funky that makes it look as if a first grader had a life changing thought. You immediately jump on that missive and delete it before any kind of damage can occur.

This skill also comes in handy if you accidentally tweet some revelation at 3 a.m. that maybe your friends, tweeps, family and your latest celebrity crush might not need to know. I have NEVER done this but I know those who have and does the name Jimmy Kimmel mean anything? Yep, mean tweets time.

I have also done this when I have limited time during the day. I will check my timeline (TL) to see that nothing monumental has occurred and then I will do one tweet or a couple retweets and then like Keyser Soze, I disappear. Actually, I do this quite well in real life. If I am forced to go to a social gathering that I don’t really want to be at but have to for whatever reason, I can mingle, speak to the important personages and then slip out into the night.

However, several hours later, I will get texts asking, “Where are you?” and “What the hell? I was looking for you…” I usually have a good laugh about those messages. Trust me, you may never know when you have to exercise ninja abilities. They just come up.

One of the reasons why I am not on Facebook (I call it a four letter expletive book) is because all of my relatives are on it, old high school classmates, and work colleagues. I really don’t want to see pictures of my cousin’s cousin’s kid’s birthday bash with the scary clown. Sorry, I also don’t want to see ALL of your pictures from that fantabulous trip you took to Cancun where you were doing body shots with the handsome concierge at your five-star hotel. I can see that on YouTube. I mean that is why YouTube exists, right?  Or better yet, you are drunk, looking like a dumpster fire and you are rocking your best Jenna Jamison look so you take tons of duck face selfies from da club. Nope. Don’t want to see you looking like an idiot but I digress.

Of course, I have to have a truly terrifying story. An old acquaintance from back in the day found me on some social media platform. This person reached out to me. At first, because my parents raised me to be polite, I did the obligatory, “Hey, how ya doin’? You look great! The kids are terrific,” shtick. Then it got creepy. Every day I would have something waiting for me from this person reminiscing about the good old days.

What good old days? It was high school in the late 70s, early 80s. Bad hairstyles, horrendous decisions, ridiculous glasses, I mean seriously? Finally, it happened. “You want to get together?” No, no I don’t want to get together. I haven’t spoken to you or seen you in 30 plus years. I would like to keep it that way. So, I peaced out in the only way I knew how. “Gee, what a SPLENDID idea. I would love to but I have to be out of the country for several months, so let’s touch base in about a year and see where we are at.” Problem solved. I never heard from this individual again. Let’s hope they are not reading this blog.

Another thing that I have noticed while bouncing around in the virtual playground is that the entire world has become a “meet” market for potential hook ups. Dear sweet baby Jesus! Sometimes I feel like I have been transported back to the 80s or 90s bar scenes with the Roxy guys or some cat in an unbuttoned shirt sending me 2 of whatever I am having.

My absolute favorite is when I will be on a certain platform and out of the blue I will get a prompt stating that someone wants to chat with me in the smarmy coffee lounge or whatever handle they are giving it. I might actually know this person, or maybe it is a business opportunity. Nope. It is a guy from Germany sending me a pic of his junk saying, “Hey, baby! Ya like this? You’re like a warm pad of butter and I’m your biscuit. Come melt all over me.”

YIKES! I try and close out of this terror zone only to have a frozen screen. A plethora of colorful language is shouted in my office and panic ensues. First of all, who says lines like that? Sorry, guys or gals, if you use this type of dialogue, you need to be corrected like Wendy Torrance in The Shining. One of my favorite characters has snappy patter like this but if I met that dude in real life, I would punch him upside his glorious head.  And no, “I won’t give you some sugar, baby!”

Now, we come to YouTube. I hope you can see how I am virtually shaking my head. Must everything be a photo op today? I am SO glad this didn’t exist when I was experiencing my impetuous youth. No one needs to see that event from The Sheraton in Clarion, PA, trust me.

My favorite are the Comic Con vids. These things are usually the panel discussions with the cast from a certain show or movie. I will check them out when I am doing research for movie reviews or television retrospectives. The camera work is being done by the crazy cosplay lady who is too busy screaming, “Marry me, Chris Evans or Put the hammer down on me, Thor!” What this means is the POV is shaky and the lighting looks like a community theater production that is going for a moody, David Lynch feel without the talent.

I also love the videos of cover songs that you know and love. Now, there are some extremely talented individuals out there who deserve recording contracts. However, little Ashley from Dubuque, Iowa who fancies herself the next Adele wailing a wildly off key version of “Hello” at the top of her lungs into her bedroom mirror is not going to cut it.  Then you will get the person who does the acoustic version of some hard rock song like, “Back in Black.” They will slow it down and try to warble with emotion. Give me a break! This song is made to be at an 11 not a -2 like a depressed Muppet.

The last videos that I want to discuss are the ones where people get adventurous and think they are doing a shoot for Penthouse or just another day at the Kardashian household. You know what I am talking about, don’t you? I am guilty of looking at them too out of morbid curiosity. If you are into that scene, terrific. Keep it on the DL. Don’t post it in a public forum because you will get comments. If you do, don’t bitch about them either.

Well, that is enough of a rant for today. I hope you enjoyed my tour through the hallowed halls of social media. It has been real. Maybe TOO real.

Do you partake in social media? Which platforms do you use? Give me your thoughts. I can take it. 

Published by Susan Leighton Woman on the Ledge

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