I ran into an online friend IRL

In this world of Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat, I have a solid network of friends: My online friends, and my real life friends. My real life friends are the people I met in school. We go out for drinks and go dancing and moan about our lives together. My online friends discuss the Leafs and CFL football with me and like all my photos on Instagram.

Twenty years ago, I was heavily into Livejournal (oh my god, was that really 20 years ago??? I feel so old!). I made six really close friends who, after the death of LJ, followed me to my various online social networks and we’ve stayed friends ever since. They almost know me better than my current IRL friends, because they were there with me through school, bad boyfriends, and work dramas.

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This was totally us

Last weekend I was shopping with my mom and we decided to stop into Taco Bell for some grub. I walk right in and stopped dead in my tracks. Sitting inside was one of my old LJ friends! I now have her on Facebook and Instagram, where she likes all my photos and shares all my memes. I had never met her IRL before, and she doesn’t live in my area, so it was quite a surprise. I was hit with this confusion: do I go and say hi to her? Will she even recognize me from my selfies? She was with her family, and I was like, do they know how active she is online, or does she hide her online identity from them the way I hide mine?

Thankfully, as I was having a crisis, she called out my name and waved me over. We had tacos together and caught up. Yes, it was totally awkward. But it was still a pretty cool experience. I felt like I was meeting a celebrity. This was a person who I only knew through Instagram selfies and Facebook rants, and now I was meeting her in person and she was the exact same person online. Even weirder, she was with her husband and two children, and I felt like I knew them as well, because she posts so many pictures of them.

It’s definitely a small world. This isn’t the first time this has happened to me, either. Still, it was pretty cool and I’m glad I got to meet her. And it’s proof that Taco Bell brings everyone together.

 

 

 

 

Describe Yourself as a Writer

<I>Q: Describe yourself as a writer using one word.</I>

A: zhogv3bi

I like weird things. And I like to write about weird things.

When I first started working as an advertising copywriter, my Creative Director gave me a little notebook on the first day (I’d love to picture it as a sexy leather-bound moleskin but nope, it was just a shitty dollar store book) and told me to write down anything weird I observe or experience during the day (of course I wrote that down as my first entry). This became my “There-Must-Be-An-Ad-In-That” idea book. If we were ever stuck for ad ideas, we were all urged to refer back to this book, just flip the pages and see if we could plug any of these strange things into an advertising concept.

I’ve never stopped doing this even though I’ve fled as far as possible from advertising. Only now instead of carrying around a notebook I just type it all into the Notes section of my phone.

Story on the news that made me laugh? I shove it in. I’m not a traditional person and my entire life I’ve been attracted towards the strange and things that are different. That includes reading novels based on strange situations (for example: Death and the Penguin, a story about a man who lives in post-USSR Ukraine with his pet penguin that he recovered from the bankrupt zoo). I love that kind of shit! Give me more of it! My thirst for the bizarre is rarely satisfied, though, that’s why I feel this need to write about it.

People who read my stuff always go “Wow you’ve got such a creative mind to come up with these things!” but let’s face it, that’s not the exact truth. Ideas don’t magically strike me down at any given moment. Maybe that’s how some writers work, but not me. It’s hard work – always observing, listening, and recording things down. That’s the key to it all – don’t hope you remember it later. Even if you’re lying in bed half asleep or on a crowded subway or in the shower – if it comes into your head, even if it doesn’t make sense at the moment, write it down! For those moments when you’re stuck with either where to begin a story or how to get one going, the idea swipe file will always come in handy. No matter how quirky the thought is.

By the way, QUIRKY has a close relation to CRAZY, so sometimes I straddle both lines…

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But I’m okay with that.

How would you describe yourself as a writer? Also, if you have any fab quirky book recommendations for me, please don’t hesitate to share! I’m always on the lookout!

 

Prompt: The Accidental (?) Boob Grab

Prompt: Tell us about a time someone accidentally grabbed your boobs.

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Okay. So there I was, walking down Bay Street, heading back to work after lunch. I was late, of course, because I had to pause to visit the LCBO on my way back. I was rushing like Usain Bolt to get back to my desk before my boss decides she prefers my desk to be empty, which caused me to dart in between the slowpokes. In front of me, a man was talking with a lady. They were so engrossed with their conversation that they were not in any hurry to get anywhere and clearly were in my way.

I rudely darted in front of the man so I could pass them at the light. The light was red. As I took a step forward, he took a step forward. Our bodies collided. Instinctively, his hand went up to pat my shoulder as he apologized. Accidentally, his hand landed riiiiight on my boob.

It was not a soft graze. It was a full on, palm flat against my breast. But it was totally accidental. Which is what made it so hilarious. Especially the look of horror on his face as he realized what he did.

The light turned green and I bolted forward. Both humiliated and amused.

 

Job Interview Nightmare #76

This job interview was the worst. And I’ve had a lot of bad ones.

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The job posting I applied to was for a start-up looking for a content editor. Writing deals for the website and publishing content? Awesome, that sounded like something I could do! My confidence was at an all-time high as I left the door.

I hadn’t had a job interview in awhile, so the professional black blazer I wore was a bit snug as I buttoned it up. But, oh well, it would do.

I sat down with the CEO and the Content Manager. Right away, they ask how my CSS, Java and PHP skills are, along with another list of random acronyms I’ve never dealt with in my entire life.

“I thought this was for a content writing job?” My voice squeaked. None of that was in the job posting. If it had been, I wouldn’t have applied. And if I had those skills, they would have been in my resume. Did nobody look at my resume?

“Sorry, we are looking for these particular qualifications,” the CEO said. “You are probably not the right fit.”

I stood, stunned, and gathered my untouched writing portfolio from the table. Just as I leaned forward, my stomach expanded slightly, and the button on my blazer popped off.

Like, it literally popped off. Flew up in the air, landed on the table, bounced, hit the floor, and rolled into the corner.

Everyone stared at the button, watching it. Horrified, my face flushed, I shook hands, thanked them for their time, and ran out of the room without collecting my button. Maybe if I didn’t acknowledge that it happened, it hadn’t happened.

Two days later I got a call from the Content Manager. “We found someone for the content editor position you interviewed for, but another writing job has opened up at another app we are working on. We would like to offer you the job.”

I think they felt sorry for me. I took the job.

I wanted to get my button back.

 

 

 

These Things Only Happen to Me: Rolling Fruit Edition

It’s the Tuesday after a long weekend. On my way back to my desk from the kitchen, I’m carrying two mandarin oranges and a cup of tea. I casually stroll past my crush’s office, planning a sexy smile and wave if he looks up from my desk.

But no, Crush1 (yes, he is one of many) has his back turned. Half asleep and unprepared, an orange slides from my hand. I watch in horror as it rolls and rolls and rolls across the hall. Please bypass his office, I beg the errant orange. Please don’t roll into his office!

The orange hates me. It rolls into his office.

From the hallway, I watch as my fruit rolls to a complete stop under his desk. Crush1 is completely oblivious.

I’m frozen. I have two choices.

a) Run away back to my desk and hide in shame. Pretend it never happened. After it starts to rot and smell funny, he’ll look down and find a random orange and have no idea where it came from.

b) Rescue my orange!

I’m not known for making the smartest decisions. I decide to go after the orange. Besides, I wouldn’t want him to get sick from the pungent stink of a rotten random fruit. I’m also worried for his sanity. What’ll he think, random people are hiding oranges under his desk?

I creep into his office. So far, so good. His back is still turned to me. Maybe he won’t notice if I bent down, snatch the orange, flee to my desk, and-

“What are you doing!?”

Dammit. Crush1 has spun around and sees me creeping into his office.

“My orange.” I bend over, snatch it, and wave it in the air. “It rolled.”

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If you need me, I’ll be under my desk. Laughing and crying.

These things only happen to me, I swear.

 

 

 

 

Awkward Subway Moment #4382

I swear the most awkwardest things in the world always happen to me.

I am literally this all the time:

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The other day, I was on the subway rushing home after work, crammed into a subway car. We stop at a station, and the guy standing in front of me tries to get off the train.

But he couldn’t. My scarf had gotten stuck in the zipper of his backpack.

(I was wearing a scarf I bought in Ukraine, that looks like this:)

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Somehow, one of the tassels got right into the part of the zipper, and he couldn’t get off! He was literally trying to drag me off the train with him. I tried desperately to pull it out, but it was really jammed in there. The more I panicked, the harder it was to pull it out.

The doors closed, and he missed his stop.

By the next stop, we both managed to get it out and he got off at the next stop. But I was absolutely MORTIFIED.

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At least the guy was really really really nice about it. I’m surprised he didn’t punch me in the face.

Too bad he wasn’t cute. That would’ve been quite a story, right?

“How did you two meet?”

“On the subway. My scarf was so attracted to him, it didn’t want to let him go.”