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“Oh no, that’s not Syphilis! That’s just my Twitter acting up again!”

I acknowledge my Twitter account about as often as I intentionally throw myself down a flight of stairs. It’s like having a hicky above your eyebrow or a non-athletic son.  I’m just embarrassed to have it and I question its purpose on a daily basis.

You may be asking yourself, why am I reading this b***shit? That, I couldn’t tell you. So hopefully you are asking, if you curse the very existence of Twitter, why do you have an account, a-hole?  Take a breath and I’ll fill you in.

A fellow writer/friend/literary confidant we’ll call “M” had been encouraging me to sign up for this “twitter” business for quite awhile. I was apathetic. Uninterested. Dare I say, blasé? I had no interest in being part of some sort of community that involved “following” one another. What is that? That’s like the creepiest Dateline ever. That’s like a Gin Blossoms song. That’s like hearing footsteps creeping up behind you and realizing you forgot your rape whistle. I wasn’t digging it.

She gave up for a short time, only mentioning Twitter here and there in casual conversation:

M: “So, Lena. Are you going to see Bob Dylan this summer?”

L: “I like, don’t know, you know? Like, damn.”

M: “Isn’t he touring?”

L: “Like, I mean. He’s a musician, so like, whatever.”

M: “I’m sure if you followed him on Twitter, you would know.”

L: “Yeah, for real. It’s like, whoa. Right?”

But when she took it upon herself to so brazenly inform me that she had “agent interest” in her novel, based on a contact she had developed through this “twitter” situation, I knew I could no longer be so impassive. I signed up.

Now, nearly two weeks later, I wrestle with my decision. I feel dirty. Like a “sell out,” overpricing screen tees by $30 at a merch table at a Nickelback/Hinder concert. I log into my Facebook account, hoping Zuckerberg won’t sense the seedy nature of my adulterous status updates. Facebook fulfills all of my social networking needs. I know this! And yet…yet…

I need to shape up or ship out. According to twitter, I only have 3 people in the world who care that I have dreams about dismembering school buses. But I know better! After all, I have enough sorry individuals reading this blog to make me feel like at least one non-relative has some interest in my existence. So I need to either:

A. Foster my inner Joaquin Phoenix, and commit myself 100% to something entirely pointless

OR

B. Drain the Twitter abscess, flipping its logo at the world.

I’d prefer to go with option A. So please, readers who share my links on Facebook but don’t ever reveal yourselves driving me insane with curiosities about your identities, follow me!

Stalk me!

Cyber bully me!

I’ll be watching…

Love,

The girl currently known as lena_ziegler

Culture wars: Those who update their technology and those who do not

Tonight I was going to make history. Break barriers. Conceive urban legends. I was planning to compose a literary masterpiece of such insane blogliness that it would knock the metaphoric socks off of yo’ asses (not physically possible) through a saga of witty ramblings about inane bullshit that would turn up in response to some very desperate Google search. (Apparently a lot of people ask Google if it’s strange to crumple their toilet paper. See below, son!)

But no. As I sit in my sister’s overheated non air conditioned second floor apartment, with her 17 pound cat by my side, I am in wonder, absolute God-fearing WONDER at what I have just discovered.

Apparently there is something known as: Microsoft Word 2010.

I was just sitting here, innocent as a virgin lamb, braiding my curly locks and singing When You Wish Upon a Star when I saw it. Right there on the desktop screen of my sister’s archaic piece of machinery she calls a laptop, the icon screamed to me with a banchee’s echoing cries fading in the distance.

Micrsoft (soft, soft, soft, soft)

Word (word, word, word, word)

2010?

What????

How is this happening? How did my dear sister get caught in this never ending, high-priced trap of constant updating and upgrading? Did she pay for this hogwash? Illegally pirate this gobbledygook? Did she want it, or was she forced into it by a third party? My dear sweet sister. The thought makes me want to run into a knife.

So in honor of her, victim forever to the Microsoft machine, I dismiss my previous topic (I’m lying, I had no topic planned) and focus solely on what I think is a crisis. A silent killer. An epidemic of astronomical proportions.

The raging jihad between those who upgrade and those who do not.

Ok, I admit. Raging jihad is a small exaggeration. But still! There is most definitely a cultural divide here. While some people teeter on the line between casual iTunes updater and committed Droid user, I find that most lean more loyally in one direction or another. So it is those loyal leaners I will focus on in tonight’s blog.

Because truth be told, I don’t believe my sister intentionally did this. I’m sure when her guard was down, in a moment of weakness, someone forced it upon her. She certainly wasn’t asking for it!

You know how tech junkies can be. All you need is someone to help clear your search history so no one finds out how frequently you search Google Image for pictures of flamingos in tutus, and suddenly they are changing your wallpaper, mouse speed, and upgrading programs you didn’t know existed. You are confused and overwhelmed and they say things like “cookies” and “virus protection” and “who watches amputee porn?” and you can’t help but tell them to just do what they need to do. Get in, get off, get out. Wam Bam, no thank you ma’am. I digress…

Point is, like a Catholic high school valedictorian caught up in a sexting scandal, this was not her idea. My sister fits comfortably, if not entirely in the non-upgrading category. She has two pairs of shoes: sandals and clogs. She uses my mother’s discarded laptop with a crack down the left side of the screen. She mends ripped jeans with patches derived from Salvation Army purchases. She’s a cool, laid back, chick who would not be caught dead with an iPhone and probably thinks a Kindle is a new brand of dog food.

She has nothing in common with the upgrading type.

The upgrading type comes in various forms.  The aforementioned tech junkie, busting a nut over every new form of technology introduced to the world. The “I’m lower middle class but want to pretend I’m upper middle class, so let me take this second mortgage to pay for my iPad 2 and my children’s unnecessary private school education” type. And of course the everyday hardworking American who chooses to simply purchase the items he/she has earned the right to own.  All very different, the only thing these versions of the upgrading type have in common is the agreement that the program/product in question actually needs upgrading. This is where I run into problems.

I have a hard time understanding, let alone justifying why Apple introduces a new iPhone every 36 hours, or what the difference is between 3G and 4G, or why Word 2010 is necessary when I have yet to even update to 2007. I write a lot. 2003 has yet to let me down.

So why reader? Why do some people find value in upgrading their technology while others do not? Same reason I buy new vinyl and scoff at digital downloading. Some people are just cooler and smarter than others. I am one of those people.I know you don’t need to update your technology to be just as superficial and materialistic as the “woo girl” wearing Uggs and cut off shorts in December. I know that by simply placing too much value on any product of your choosing, you can accomplish the same level of sheep-like product loyalty at a fraction of the cost of new Apple products. Buying things with money you do not have is comforting and fun! But being sucked into the idea that you need to buy something because Steve Jobs makes it available to you is not. Instead of focusing your debt building energies on products you are told you should have, why not pick something more tailored to your individuality? Like ceramic armadillo figurines or dashboard hula girls. Or in my case vinyl records and concert tickets.

Why is it so important to not get sucked into this belief that we need to spend our borrowed money on products we are told to love? I’ll tell you why.

Or maybe I won’t.

It’s 3:59 a.m.

Why am I still awake, updating this blog?

I give up. I’m throwing in the towel. Popping my own cherry. No boy will ever want me with these braces and blackheads. I hate my body! Cry, cry, cry.

Have fun deciphering the hidden meaning of this poorly versed conclusion sentence.

Feedback is encouraged, as well as monetary donations and Auto Zone Coupons. I need wiper blades.

Love,

The girl whose commitment to this blog should be ridiculed on an hourly basis