9 Ways You Fucked Up

So someone posted this on Facebook:


Meg Jay, on being a condescending douche

I mean….

9 Ways to “Fuck Up” Your Twenties

1) Spending all your time with your urban tribe – you’re not at Burning Man!

Okay so this says sticking to just the same, like-minded people all the time is bad. That’s true. Variety is the spice of life.

2) Hoping that Powerball ticket will make your dreams come true

I don’t think anybody thinks Powerball tickets are going to make their dreams come true. So…Fail. Stupid advice.

3) Stalking on Facebook (and then sulking at home)

Essentially they say to stop comparing your life to other people’s. Or like my ex said, “Stop reporting life and go *live* it. LOL” Yeah, I do this. Yeah, it’s detrimental in every way possible.

4) Dating losers

Low or no criteria for a mate can lead to a series of bad relationships, leaving us “damaged and depressed,” OR we end up with that same, one person for fear of being alone. Yeah, totally not worth it in your twenties. Problem is, I’m one of the losers people end up dating. I also date losers. We all sort of gravitate. I wish I had been a winner or been with more winners during my twenties.

5) Being “too cool” for a desk job

Notes that part time work isn’t a good “long-term economic plan.” How true that is! You are supposed to be building up a career. But is a “desk job” really necessary? For me, maybe, but I know lots of people who have unconventional careers – quite a lot of people, and they don’t end up in some soul-sucking corporate office. OR there are some who love being the soul-sucker in a corporate office. Lucky. But if you’re an artist, why give up and sell out in your twenties unless you have kids or something? BAD advice.

6) Spending too much time with your Playstation.

Okay, yeah.

7) Shacking up too early.

Don’t live with your SO before you get married! Or better yet, don’t get married in your twenties! This one looks ironic with the later question…

8) Acting like you’re on a reality tv show

“Cool it on the dramatics.” Yeah, I broke this rule. Yes I lost my relationships and lost my jobs. Is it too late? “You’re getting old to freak out all the time. Tantrums are for teenagers.” Well, being bipolar was a part of that, so shut the fuck up.

9) Ignoring your ovaries


 Bad advice. 


Sucked In

The Internet has a bad habit of sucking me in, and my Internet addiction is something I never really tried to fix. I don’t think I ever once tried to do anything about it.

Anyway, this results in me opening a bunch of accounts, even though I honestly can’t find anybody older than 25 (that I went to high school with) who is as obsessed with the Web. Probably they’re working, and their “play” is done in real life, in the physical world, so they just use the phone and face-to-face interaction.

I’m not sure if this experiment is worth continuing. It’s like same-old Livejournal mindset. If I want to actually do anything useful with the written word…I don’t know. I opened up a WordPress account with my real name because we have to write a blog this summer as part of our capstone project in my graduate program. It needs to be better written than this. I just love how in the syllabus my professor wrote, “You will be expected to…[etc etc etc, and] when someone reads a post written by you they will: Enjoy reading it because of its seamless structure which reads more like a well written article written for an inquiring mind, Learn something they didn’t already know, Sense that it is written by an intelligent, mature and well-schooled individual – obviously deserving of the Masters degree they MIGHT soon hold.”

I love how he says the blog is basically determining whether or not we deserve a Masters degree.

There are a few things as well: my classes, of course, need to be passed. The final exam for the program needs to be passed. And then I need to actually find an internship and register the company up with my school. And then I need to do well at the internship, and write this blog, using my real identity over on the other WordPress account. Hence the WordPress account with a real name.

Eris, on the other hand…I think I’m a little too free-wheeling with the quality here. If I am pseudonymous, then the exes I blab about can’t see what I say about them, aaaaand the quality doesn’t have to be good because I’m not attached to it. Except I am. But there’s no proof I am. IDK.

I’m so tired. I need to sleep.


So The Englishman still has the same old Facebook account under the same old pseudonym, as it turns out. And apparently it’s still active (he has it set so the public can still see Friend adds). You wouldn’t think so from the fact he still has a photo of himself making an unattractive facial expression when he was 21 years old as his profile picture.

I’m probably a creeper to point out the information and posts are all friend-locked and the only public photo albums are from 2007 and 2008 respectively.

The Englishman was never too keen on social media, and in fact, YouTube hadn’t existed yet when we knew each other, and “social media” and the “blogosphere” weren’t stupid words coined yet. There were no iPads and no Smartphones. Facebook was only something American college students had access to, and even so, it wasn’t something he’d ever be interested in. I can’t see him in my mind’s eye what he’d look like at 26 years old, but I could probably imagine him saying stupid buzzwords like “social media” with sarcasm.

I can’t add him again. That would be insane. Especially after those horribly psychotic Tweets I sent! He doesn’t know I sent some milder ones to his friend, or that I’m bipolar, or that I have issues that have nothing to do with chemical imbalances and all to do with learned behavior.

I remember talking about Pavlov’s dog with one of the Nathans once, and how I can only fall asleep if I have white noise or something. He said the same thing, and that it was probably a learned behavior. That’s something physical, however, but could it be…? My therapist was saying something like that. That the way I deal with rejection and heartbreak et cetera, my coping mechanisms, are learned, and for me, are unhealthy. I taught them to myself and they haven’t been working. It’s time for new ones.

I think I’d be sadder seeing him still up there on Facebook if his picture were newer, if I hadn’t seen it a million times before over the past five years. There’s other pictures but his hair is frankly terrible in them (I guess they’re from five years ago, too). The perfect length was a bit above shoulder-length (shut up; women can objectify men too). Bright red, can you believe it? I was infatuated…AM infatuated, with a ginger. Hmm…


I’ve been packing up to leave this town (I will not miss you, upstate New York) and move back in with my parents. Again. (*grumblegrumble*) And I was remembering the times I’ve been in this position before. (I can’t ever stay put in one place for too long. Though I do keep going back to the same one.)

And I was considering how The Englishman is unrecognizable, how he wouldn’t know me if he saw me, and I probably wouldn’t really know him if I walked by him on the street (kinda hard not to notice the bright red hair, though), and how I’m not even sure if he was as sad when he left me as I was.

But then I was looking at my wall and thinking about how I need to take down all my posters without messing up the paint (kinda gotta fix that hole before I go), and I remembered when I took down everything from my dorm that month. I was thinking just now of how eager I am to leave this city, but how reluctant I was to leave England. I wanted to drag out moving as long as possible. I had gotten plane tickets for the very last day everyone could stay in the dorms, but even if I just had to drive across the country like he did, I would’ve waited. He stayed until the day before I did, even though everyone else except we international students had left. I helped him pack up his Dad’s car.

It’s not too strange that I can see that day, because I have my poster from that dorm room. It’s a very old painting of two young cherubs, and they have been photoshopped to be smoking weed and drinking beer. I put the poster in a tube and shipped it back to America. It’s my favorite irreverent poster. Actually, no, it’s my favorite poster in general.

Considering I’m going back to my parents’ home, I wish I hadn’t tried to take down all the posters I had there. The wall was left ruined. But that’s a tangent…

The last thing I had to take down was my name, on the corkboard just outside my dorm room door. I had pinned up a little sheet of white notepaper and written “[Eris]’s Room” on it in pen soon after I arrived. It was likely there when The Englishman moved in (he lived three feet from me, directly across the hall), and he told me, and I remember this…

We were killing time until his Dad got there, and I turned to take out the little pins that held my name to the cork…

And he stopped me, and said to wait. To wait until he left.

Optional Title

I know some people who have been friends since they were kids. I have one friend I knew as a kid (and a mess of aquaintances.) I was part of that group for a while in high school before essentially evicting myself from it. Didn’t really help that I moved out of town.

Found our old website, because it’s still up on Angelfire. And it might just be that one of these days I’ll finally be over it. The fact I lost them.

You kind of have an idea of people, of what they were like. What they’re like now makes a certain kind of sense. People you’ve known for five or six or seven years make sense in your head too, as much as they can, anyway, depending on how well you knew them. (I’m not making any sense, but I’m thinking about the people I knew in undergrad, now.)

I got a message from The Musician, which I think was just a mis-send. It was also a pretty lame message saying he misses me. Which surprised me, because the last time we talked, we fought over instant message. Just like old times. We’re not really people that miss each other. Why would we? In fact, I get so emotional over him, still, to this day, that I friended him on Facebook but unsubscribed from his updates. (You can do that now.) I wavered back and forth on whether or not to allow him to read my wall, but finally I did. I dunno.

In my pathetic flailings, I had tried to stalk/track down The Englishman online and found no response. It was like a repetitive addictive nonsense process I had repeated over the past six years over and over. Finding his new screenname and trying to get him to reply to things I asked. I think the last time he ever did was when we were Facebook friends in 2007 (or even as late as 2008?) before I unfriended him, I think. Why did I unfriend him? Well why did I unfriend The Musician?

Unlike The Musician, whom I actually hooked up with a couple years ago (has it really been two years already?), sort of, in a car, in a parking lot, kind of not really, (okay yeah), I haven’t seen The Englishman in six years. It’s about time to get the fuck over it.

The thing that’s most proof of that is that when I read something he’s posted online wherever, I can’t even hear his voice. He doesn’t have a distinctive speech pattern (in his typing/writing) that I can recognize. It’s practically meaningless to me now. There’s nothing he could say online to his readers that makes me go, “Oh yeah, that’s totally something The Englishman would say. Rock on. I loved that dude.”

No, it’s completely meaningless to me. I can’t hear him in my head, I can’t picture his 25 year old face. I can’t discern it.

He is forever 19 years old in my memory. And even back then, when I really think about it, he didn’t have a particularly memorable personality.

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“We are left thinking about who we are all the time, without ever really thinking about who we are.”

“A considerable part of Facebook’s appeal stems from its miraculous fusion of distance with intimacy, or the illusion of distance with the illusion of intimacy. Our online communities become engines of self-image, and self-image becomes the engine of community. The real danger with Facebook is not that it allows us to isolate ourselves, but that by mixing our appetite for isolation with our vanity, it threatens to alter the very nature of solitude. The new isolation is not of the kind that Americans once idealized, the lonesomeness of the proudly nonconformist, independent-minded, solitary stoic, or that of the astronaut who blasts into new worlds. Facebook’s isolation is a grind. What’s truly staggering about Facebook usage is not its volume—750 million photographs uploaded over a single weekend—but the constancy of the performance it demands. More than half its users—and one of every 13 people on Earth is a Facebook user—log on every day. Among 18-to-34-year-olds, nearly half check Facebook minutes after waking up, and 28 percent do so before getting out of bed. The relentlessness is what is so new, so potentially transformative. Facebook never takes a break. We never take a break. Human beings have always created elaborate acts of self-presentation. But not all the time, not every morning, before we even pour a cup of coffee. Yvette Vickers’s computer was on when she died.

Nostalgia for the good old days of disconnection would not just be pointless, it would be hypocritical and ungrateful. But the very magic of the new machines, the efficiency and elegance with which they serve us, obscures what isn’t being served: everything that matters. What Facebook has revealed about human nature—and this is not a minor revelation—is that a connection is not the same thing as a bond, and that instant and total connection is no salvation, no ticket to a happier, better world or a more liberated version of humanity. Solitude used to be good for self-reflection and self-reinvention. But now we are left thinking about who we are all the time, without ever really thinking about who we are. Facebook denies us a pleasure whose profundity we had underestimated: the chance to forget about ourselves for a while, the chance to disconnect.”


“Which of the me’s is me?”

“There is a particular kind of pain, elation, loneliness, and terror involved in this kind of madness. When you’re high it’s tremendous. The ideas and feelings are fast and frequent like shooting stars, and you follow them until you find better and brighter ones. Shyness goes, the right words and gestures are suddenly there, the power to captivate others a felt certainty. There are interests found in uninteresting people. Sensuality is pervasive and the desire to seduce and be seduced irresistible. Feelings of ease, intensity, power, well-being, financial omnipotence, and euphoria pervade one’s marrow. But, somewhere, this changes. The fast ideas are far too fast, and there are far too many; overwhelming confusion replaces clarity. Memory goes. Humor and absorption on friends’ faces are replaced by fear and concern. Everything previously moving with the grain is now against – you are irritable, angry, frightened, uncontrollable, and enmeshed totally in the blackest caves of the mind. You never knew those caves were there. It will never end, for madness carves its own reality.

It goes on and on, and finally there are only others’ recollections of your behavior – your bizarre, frenetic, aimless behaviors – for mania has at least some grace in partially obliterating memories. What then, after the medications, psychiatrist, despair, depression, and overdose? All those incredible feelings to sort through. Who is being too polite to say what? Who knows what? What did I do? Why? And most hauntingly, when will it happen again? Then, too, are the bitter reminders – medicine to take, resent, forget, take, resent, and forget, but always to take. Credit cards revoked, bounced checks to cover, explanations due at work, apologies to make, intermittent memories (what did I do?), friendships gone or drained, a ruined marriage. And always, when will it happen again? Which of my feelings are real? Which of the me’s is me? The wild, impulsive, chaotic, energetic, and crazy one? Or the shy, withdrawn, desperate, suicidal, doomed, and tired one? Probably a bit of both, hopefully much that is neither. Virginia Woolf, in her dives and climbs said it all: ‘How far do our feelings take their colour from the dive underground? I mean, what is the reality of any feeling?'”

-From “An Unquiet Mind” by Kay Redfield Jamison.