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Entries in bloggy love (7)


Oh, Hey. I Found My Password. That I Never Lost.

Oh my god, y'all. It took me like twenty minutes to get back into this blog.

This is like when you avoid calling someone you were close to for a long time, and you're afraid it's going to go badly:

Me: Oh, hey, Friend Who I Haven't Talked in a Long Time and Totally Don't Have an Excuse for Not Calling, this is Faiqa!

Friend Who I Haven't Talked in a Long Time and Totally Don't Have an Excuse for Not Being Better About Calling: I'm sorry... Faiqa? I don't know who that is.

And, you know, with a name like "Faiqa", they clearly DO know who I am, but they act like they don't because... THEY HATE ME NOW.

That's never happened to me, but I am terrified that it will. Anyway, this is how it was when I was trying to log in to my blog tonight. 

I type in my login.

I type in my password.

It tells me it doesn't recognize me.


Anyway, then, I go to the Customer Support thing for Squarespace and it's all "DOMAIN NOT FOUND."

I am looking at the website. It's right here. It exists. 


I go through what feels like an infinite loop of asking questions and trying to email customer support until... I find the answer! LEGACY PLATFORM.

Apparently, I have to go to the back entrance of Squarespace because I'm that irrelevant on the Internet now. Like, hey, the front door is only for people who have still have a Twitter account and would never bother to follow Taye Diggs back. 

Anyway, here I am at the back entrance, and I've only kept up with my blog the way one keeps up with vacuuming the coils under one's refrigerator. FTR, one vacuums coils under the refrigerator when one's refrigerator keeps freezing all the vegetables and the refrigerator repair dude comes over and charges one $85.00 to tell one that vacuuming coils is even a thing.

Yes. I am that level of grown up now. It has been a while, Internet.

I read an article yesterday that sort of tipped me over the edge on getting back into blogging regularly. It was an article called "Can Blogs Rebuild America" on Parent Hacks which is curated by author/blogger Asha Dornfest.

(Are they still called articles? Do you still curate content? Is everyone just an "author" now? They did not give me a guidebook to terminology on the way in through that back door. All I got was shame and confusion. Like my childhood).

Asha writes about creating community once again through blogging in order to transcend social media strictures and identity lines in a way that inspires change and connection: 

I don’t think it’s unrealistic to say that if we did this [started blogging again], with the influence we have now, it could light a spark that could eventually make a difference in the state of our country. Idealistic? Yes. Naive? I don’t think so. Actually, I don’t care. America is fractured, and I’m willing to throw ideas at the wall for fixing it. Let’s bring an experimental mindset to this. Ask ourselves, what if? 

I will not kid myself into thinking that I have enough influence to make any significant impact. I am, after all, someone who just arrived through the door embarassingly marked "LEGACY PLATFORM," but I think I can make a little bit of a difference.

Like, enough of a difference.

I can maybe connect with people again without the Facebook algorithm deciding whether I make it into someone's consciousness or they make it into mine. Maybe I can be heard if the people who are listening actually WANT to listen to me. Maybe I can connect with someone who would never show up in my social media feed.



I'm going to blog every day until November 30th.

In case you're wondering, no, I do not have time for this, and the ruminations of why I don't care about not having time in and of itself will take up about three blog posts so that's good. The writing and content over the next thirty days are going to be so baaaaad most of the time.

Pictures of the dog.

Leaves changing colors.

Family vacation.

Stupid food pictures.

Boring stuff that probably matters to, like, three other people besides my family members who are too scared to say they don't care. 

But, sometimes, it is going to be good.

And that might matter. 




Not a Recap: #BlogHer2012

My first BlogHer conference was in New York City in 2010. 

I almost didn't go. The tickets were purchased and the rooms booked. My baby wasn't even a year old, though. I was still nursing him, and I thought he would be very uncomfortable without me. Truth, of course, being that I was going to be uncomfortable without him. I received an e-mail the very day I planned on canceling my travel arrangements that informed me that I would be a Voice of the Year and had also been selected to read at the Community Keynote. 

The invitation to read my post at the Keynote made me assume naively that being a Voice of the Year was going to ensure that I would be welcomed with big, warm hugs as soon as I arrived at the Hilton. This was not the case. Everyone who has gone to a blogging conference will agree with me: your first one is a mass of people looking for people and it always seems that they're looking for everyone other than you. Being lonely is terrifying and depressing. It is only exceeded in misery by being lonely in a room full of people. Of course, many people insist in response to these sentiments that every conference is "what you make of it". 

I agree… mostly.

When a new person enters a space, it's very difficult to break into existing groups. Ideally, we would walk towards a group, make eye contact with a member of the group, smile, say hi and introductions would be made fluidly and easily. Even though ideals are the measuring stick for evaluation, they are almost always a description of exceptionality. The majority of the time, our hearts lurch into our throats and we can't imagine walking up to a group of strangers and inserting ourselves into a conversation that is already in full swing. Also, nobody is making eye contact with us. Nobody is talking to us and we are standing RIGHT HERE, I mean, COME ON. 

This state of separation is not only the responsibility of the new person in the space. And the separateness doesn't have to be overcome only by them. Newbies don't always have to step outside of their conference comfort zones, and, frankly, I'm tired of people judging them for not doing it. The people who are part of the group are also basking in their comfort zone. They are also not taking the time to introduce themselves to new people… so, you know, lay off already, people.

Three years ago this month, I met Peter and Anissa Mayhew. Interestingly, Anissa and I also went to high school. She worked at an after hours coffee shop next to a night club that I practically lived at between 1995-97, too. Seriously, I think I may have paid them rent at some point. We met, however, on the Internet in 2009. She e-mailed me because we were on a group e-mail together and Adam mentioned something about high school. After a few exchanges, we figured out that we'd both attended the same high school at the same time. Unfortunately, she was a slacker and I was nerd queen, so never the paths shall cross.

I was pregnant when Anissa and I met on the Internet. She sent me a baby shower gift even though we'd never met in person. I'll never forget that. It was such a kind thing to do. It was sort of like that thing I was talking about earlier. I'd only been blogging about a year, I was standing on the outside of a group and one of the people in the group gave me a smile. Except it wasn't a group, it was the internet and it wasn't a smile, but an ill thought out nursing cover up that I never really used because after all the weight I'd gained it made me look like a five foot four giant baby in a paisley bib. But, it was a nice gift. It meant a lot. It still does.

A few months after that, Anissa had a stroke and was in a coma for several days. Her road to recovery was long and it is still not, in apparent ways, a full recovery. She was different than before, most notably she was in a wheelchair. But she started blogging again. She continued to amaze people, be popular, to own her imperfections with grace and, wow, be followed by, like, everyone.

She showed up at BlogHer three years ago this month to do a panel. It was then that  I met Anissa's husband, Peter, and he mentioned how he was nervous about speaking at a panel they had the next day about grief and loss. I told him I'd show up if he thought it would help and plus I wanted to finally meet Anissa in person. After their panel ended, I quickly introduced myself and gave her a hug. There were a lot of people wanting to meet her, so I let her move on to being gushed over by them. 

Later that night, the CheeseburgHer party was in full swing. CheeseburgHer is my favorite party -- the vibe of it is laid back and fun and everyone knows each other a little better by then. It's more relaxed. Anissa's stroke had left her sensitive to noise and light, so she was in a wheelchair at right outside the front door of the party with Pete when I arrived. At that moment, I didn't care about going into the party. At that moment, I remembered the woman who had sent me that large baby bib-slash-nursing cover and all I wanted to do was stand outside of the party with her. I wanted to be near this person even though she was on the outside because when I was on the outside of the party, she noticed me.

Three years later, my new friend is one of my dearest friends. We work together, we worry together, and, goodness, we laugh together. Anissa is the reason that I try to smile and say hi to every person I walk by at a conference. She's the reason I introduce new people to the people I know. Because you never know when you're about to start something beautiful and you never will if you don't try.

I know the traditional BlogHer post is supposed to be a recap, but this is what BlogHer and blogging is about to me. It's about people taking a genuine interest in one another. It's getting out of your own way - your expectations, your hopes, your fears, your arrogance -- and taking a chance on a new friendship.

And completely succeeding.


Faiqa, Anissa and Una (She's my Ethel).



Significance @missbritt

The tendency to analyze friendship simply through the parameters of time is great.

We acknowledge a person's value in our life often by the amount of time that they have simply been present.  They have been there through all of the ups and the downs, we tell ourselves, and so they will forever retain a place of honor in our hearts.  And this is valid, this is true... this is a fine parameter for evaluating another person's significance in our lives.

But there are other parameters that can imbue a friendship with such significance that we push down our insecurities and lavishly append the word "best" to describe the kind of friend they are to us.  And those parameters are wholly independent of time.

These are parameters that we cannot quantify.  Parameters that denote shared perspectives and beliefs.  They indicate that our eyes are the same as we imbibe the significance of seemingly benign moments, relationships, words, love, of life itself and then transform them into an often similar context of value and meaning.

These are the friendships that remind us that we are not alone in our searching, in our being, in our longing for more.  These are the friendships that complete us and that we would be less without.

These friendships operate independently of time.

They stand timeless because they are the finding of our own soul in another.

Though we have only been friends for three short years, dear Britt, you are my forever friend... and you will be eternally significant to me.

Happy Birthday.

obama rally October 2008

Photo by Miss Britt

*Speaking of saving the world and true love (what?!), you can read about how much I love my Prius on Buy-Her today.

Zombie Chickens and Princess Substitutions

I got an award this weekend, too.

From LeSombre.  Who speaks French.  Well.

Of the many, (and by many, I mean, three) blog awards I've gotten, this one is very special.  I met this blogger last October and, for some strange reason, he had my immediate respect.  He's just nice.  And smart.  And generally cool.

It's called the Zombie Chicken Award:

The rules of the Zombie Chicken say…
The blogger who receives this award believes in the Tao of the Zombie Chicken - excellence, grace and persistence in all situations, even in the midst of a zombie apocalypse. These amazing bloggers regularly produce content so remarkable that their readers would brave a raving pack of zombie chickens just to be able to read their inspiring words. As a recipient of this world-renowned award, you now have the task of passing it on to at least 5 other worthy bloggers. Do not risk the wrath of the zombie chickens by choosing unwisely or not choosing at all…

I would never risk the wrath of a zombie chicken, so... the awards go to ...

Britt: I know Britt is a so-called "popular" blogger (LOL!), but I don't think she gets enough awards.  She's amazing and awesome.  And I love her.  And I would definitely crawl through zombie chickens or whatever to ... get a pedicure with her.

Ren: I like Ren.  He's smart and clever.  Truth be told, whenever he comments on my blog, I always think, Wow, he just said that so much better than I could have.  Or Why didn't I think of that? And that?  Does not happen often.

B.E. Earl: You cannot mention zombies and not include this man in the award.  It's an injustice and against the laws of the blogging universe.  He's already gotten this award.  I care not.  He deserves it.  Again.

hello ha ha narf: The most sincere and friendly person on this here planet Earth.  Zombie chicken attack?  You want this woman on your side.  I cannot say enough about how much I adore her.

Sybil Law: Internet, meet *my* blogging wife.  Yes, I'm in an Internet same sex marriage.  Get used to it.

So, that's five people, right?

Don't forget that I dole out the love every Saturday, too, ok?  So, if you weren't on this list, it's because you are most likely in line for a little Native-Love.

Or, you're Avitable, who has received this award way too many times for it to mean anything to him anymore.  Even from me.

Also, I'm guest posting over at the Princess' place today.

Go leave a comment so I don't look like a loser.  Cough.  Please.

Saturdays Are For Loving Clearly Crystal

Clearly Crystal

Ode to Crystal: Oh, Crys, how do I love thee?

Watching you live life with such poetry and grace,

Love that you're never too scared to say it to the face,

You're smart, sassy, fun, gorgeous and so very quirky,

Sorry that on your blog, I have been of late quite lurky.

Your truth and introspection make life seem a funny little dream,

The way I like you best, though ... is venting on my screen.

(I know.  I'm a riveting poet.  I get that a lot.)

** If you're reading this on a Facebook feed, please visit my blog at so you can see the YouTube video of this amazing woman whose face makes me smile before she even utters a sound.