Tag Archives: Oprah

Don’t Like Me? Disagree with Me? No Debate Needed. Just. Keep. Scrolling.

Argue-5

We live in a time when a lot of people have a lot to say. Nowadays, the entire world’s an audience at our fingertips.   It’s so easy, isn’t it, to just spout whatever comes to mind:  I like this!  I hate that!  That’s stupid!  This is the best!  Do it my way (you’re an idiot if you don’t!).  Social media has placed anonymous bullhorns at everyone’s disposal and people happily—and routinely — use them.  We just love it because, dagnabbit, everyone’s opinion matters.  Right?

 

I believe in the freedom of speech (mmmmaybe my family is not always thrilled with my practice of it) and I do believe that every person is entitled to his opinion.   What I’m not a fan of is all the anger and negativity that now typically comes with combining those constitutional rights.  What I like less is the intolerance that surfaces when opinions are met with disagreement or opposition.

 

Why is everyone so angry?

 

Here’s an idea:  how about if you see something you don’t agree with …  just ignore it and keep scrolling.  Imagine that.  Just.  Keep.  Scrolling.

 

I am utterly confounded by the amount of people that carry on virtual arguments from behind their computer screens.  The ranting, the nastiness, the back-and-forth, the insulting.  Does anyone truly believe a contrary mind can be swayed simply by expounding in capital letters and angry emojis??  How asinine.  For every one person that agrees with you about any issue, there will be just as many who oppose you, despite your seemingly harmless thought or statement.  Many, many people are ignorant.  Why is it so hard to ignore them?   Many, many people are (punctuation aside) clearly not very bright.  Where is the importance of shining a spotlight on their stupidity?  FortheloveofGOD, why is everybody so offended all the time?

 

My recent experience with a total stranger on Twitter touches on this.

 

After I’d tweeted head-scratching disbelief about the sudden allure of Tonya Harding, a gentleman responded to (and disputed) my opinion of her. I have to admit, I was a little taken aback. Living here in the Nancy Kerrigan quadrant of the country it never even dawned on me there might actually be Tonya Harding supporters still out there but apparently, he was from her home state of Oregon.  Geeze, well I’ll be.  I attempted to mollify his anger with an LOL (and a laughing emoji of course) and gave a sort of Oh Well, To Each His Own retort but it was unsettling.  I’d never heard from him before (and likely won’t ever again) so it was curious to me why a total stranger would bother to take the time to drop the gloves with me.  Really, over Tonya Harding?  Could we even come up with a more insignificant topic?  Let it go, man.

 

I try to stick with Oprah on this.  She was recently being pressured to give a response when our fearless leader publicly insulted her (because, heck, with not so much going on in this country, why not spend some leisure time degrading celebrities?) and her simple reply was: “I don’t like giving negativity power.”

 

Fist pump, girlfriend, me neither.  I think of all the times I type something, then think a minute about the implications, then often keep my finger on the backspace button until it disappears.  With a public page/blog/feed I’ve learned the hard way: sometimes even tongue-in-cheek comments bring out the crazies.  You just never know.  The truth is, not every thought-provoking comment needs to be controversial and not every difference of opinion needs to be documented and debated.  It’s not that I’m above a well-versed discussion of opposing views; it’s just that I’m certain none of the world’s ills are ever going to be solved via Instagram argument.   And it has nothing to do with accepting criticism.  Ha!  I’m a mother of four — my thick-skin suit is impenetrable.

 

Don’t like me?  I am perfectly okay with that.  Just.  Keep.  Scrolling.  Find someone or something you do like and spread THAT around instead.  Wouldn’t it be great if people paid attention to just how many positive-vs-negative  posts they were putting out there?  We talk ad nauseum about the bullying epidemic of our kids and yet we-the- adults are kinda sorta doing a lousy job as role models for them.  Isn’t that a shame?

 

After the frightful events of late I’ve seen posts from some friends touting the 2nd Amendment, the NRA and certain red baseball hats.  I also have friends who spew venom at our Commander in Chief – legit – every single day on his social threads.   I get it.  This is a hot topic right now.  This is THE topic right now.  But this serious, dire, deadly problem is never going to be solved in a Twitter rant.  After plenty (and – most important — private) throat clucks and eyerolls, I watch all these posts go by and Just.  Keep.  Scrolling.  I don’t chime in, I don’t respond, and I even refrain from throwing in incredulous hashtags (#useriousgirl?).  Why?  Because my friends are entitled to their thoughts and I am entitled to my eyerolls and – like Miranda Lambert says – it takes all kinds a’ kinds.  I am an educated woman.  I know if anything is going to effectively change my mind about gun control right now it might be words spoken by a parent who just lost his child in a school shooting but it is never, ever going to be because of a Facebook post by someone without skin in the game … sitting behind a computer … or staring at a smartphone.  No way.

 

So to all the people that happen to be gun lovers  …

and keto champions ….

and crossfitters …

and animal rescuers …

and vegan worshippers …

and (endless) fundraisers …

 

and any other enthusiasts of ANYthing I wouldn’t be apt to give a swipe right to …you should know:  if I’m not interested in joining the cause – and especially if I don’t have anything nice to say, I’m simply going to Just.  Keep.  Scrolling.

If everybody else did the same, that’d be just great.  No offense taken.

 

    *     *     *      *      *      *

Read any good books lately?  Start one here:  A Collection Of Eyerolls:  A Momoir

Chapter 1, Click here:   https://tinadrakakis.com/2017/07/29/a-collection-of-eyerolls-chapter-1-yes-billy-joel-we-will-all-go-down-together/

Chapter 2, Click here:  https://tinadrakakis.com/2017/08/13/chapter-2-sometimes-kids-suck-a-lot/

Chapter 3, Click here:  https://tinadrakakis.com/2017/09/22/chapter-3-sorry-were-tied-all-kids-are-filthy/

Chapter 4, Click here:  https://tinadrakakis.com/2017/12/02/a-momoir-chapter-4-a-moms-plea-to-seth-rogen-enough-with-the-masturbation-already/

 

Tina Drakakis blogs at Eyerollingmom and was featured in the 2014 Boston production of “Listen to Your Mother: Giving Motherhood a Microphone.” Her work has been featured in NPR’s “This I Believe” radio series yet she places “Most Popular 1984” on top of her list of achievements.  (Next would be the home improvement reality TV show of 2003 but her kids won’t let her talk about that anymore).   A witty mother of four, she takes on cyberspace as @Eyerollingmom on Twitter and Eyerollingmom on Facebook. and@Eyerollingmom on Instagram. 

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On Being a (Pretty Good) Mom (Sometimes)

In the hopes my children will never read this (or at the very least, lose interest midway through and click off like they usually do), I’ll make the mother of all confessions (no pun intended): at times I am not a great mom.

 

Now … It’s not a tragic scenario by any means.  I’ve never lost a kid at the mall (which, I might add, instantly places me in a winner’s circle without my sister), but I have been known to lose track of my ten-year-old’s last shower.  And I suspect that if Children’s Services ever caught wind of the actual number of times my kids’ sheets are changed, well, there might be some action taken.

 

But so far, to date (she said, knocking wood) none of my kids have a probation officer.  To quote Michael Buble, I’m feeling good.

 

Still, I’ve got some dirty diaper secrets my kids would have a field day with — especially the next time I’m ragging about a low B in Spanish.

 

I have signed homework sheets that I never really checked.

 

I’ve feigned sleep when I heard a screaming/puking/sneaking-in-past-curfew kid in the middle of the night just to allow my husband the opportunity to fly out of bed like a rocket and deal with it.

 

I’ve had the television entertain my little ones for hours at a time, just to talk on the phone a little longer or get my house clean.  And the violent video games that are rumored to melt brain cells? Let’s just say we take our chances.

 

I will say without shame that – until they’ve been old enough to realize it – I have skipped pages of bedtime stories.

 

I have sometimes not enforced regular teeth brushing with my toddlers because, I reason, they’re just going to fall out anyway….

 

And yes, I have driven past the library only to hear a tiny voice in the backseat say in wonder, “Hey, I remember that place – I think I was there once.”

 

My err, missteps have continued as my kids have gotten older.

 

I scoop wet towels off various floors and toss them in the dryer with a fabric sheet for days at a time before washing them (and I would scrunch up my eyebrows in profound judgment if I found out you didn’t).

 

I cut off my kids’ cell service the minute I cannot withstand one more minute of backtalk … and then forget to pick them up because I haven’t heard from them.

 

I’ve texted my kid’s coach –….um .. not … entirely … sober – and squawked about my kid’s playing time (a side note: if you’re going to try this, which I wholeheartedly do NOT recommend, make sure the coach is one helluva good guy).  Nevertheless, not an entirely proud moment.  Um, AT ALL.

 

 

And I’d have to admit, some of my best Mom Moments are a little unorthodox.  For instance, I keep my cell phone charger in my underwear drawer and make sure my kids know it.  Why?  Because should it go missing – like all chargers do – I want my kids – especially my boys – to know they’d be fishing around through my panties in order to get to it.

 

I still haven’t ordered my daughter’s prom dress because she still hasn’t cleaned her room.  And that was our deal – that it had to be Mom Clean.

 

And I’ve changed the locks on one particular occasion to make a rebellious teen know for damn sure that I was completely, unquestionably, irrevocably done with his nonsense.

 

But I have to admit, it’s not hopeless..

 

I’m pretty sure that for every really (really) lousy thing I do (or, in the case of the sheets, don’t do), I make up for it in other ways.  For instance, I kiss my kids.  A lot.  And I tell them I love them — all the time.  The words are spoken so often that I now possess three sons in various stages of development who actually say it back to me:  in front of their friends, over their shoulders as they’re scooting out the door, and (yes, sir) when they’re mad at me.

 

(One time, when it dawned on me that my ornery ‘tween was attempting to become an ornery ‘tween Bedroom Mole, I demanded impromptu hug practices and made him stand locked in an embrace with me until he smiled.)  Whatever it takes.

 

My home is extremely dusty at times (here comes a pat on the back from nobody-cares-about-your-undone-chores-Oprah;  you know, spoken as if she’s one of us) and my inability to remember details makes it impossible for me to recall the name of the last antibiotic any of my kids were prescribed.

 

But I know I’m a pretty good mom regardless.  I watch my kids all the time.  Not in the “Get back here, a stranger’s going to steal you!” kind of way, but in a fascinated, still-can’t-believe-they’re-mine way.   A profound failure in keeping baby books, I do, however, try to write down both wonderful and ordinary things about our daily lives.  When I noticed my little guy’s SpongeBob underwear clear through his little white baseball pants during his very first tee-ball game, I jotted it down.  It was without question the cutest thing I’d ever seen.

 

And when my toddler loudly pointed out during an extremely crowded Easter mass that “Mommy, look, they all drink wine like you do at home!” much as I wanted to die, I wrote that down, too.

 

Nowadays I don’t have to write much down since I can immediately promote their perfections and pitfalls on (ta da!) blogs and Facebook.

 

Life’s too short to dwell on dirty sheets.  Tru dat, Oprah.

 

Kids make you crazy.  But when they’re in the back seat of a Suburban giggling over the stupidest of stupid bad-gas jokes, they make you giggle, too.  And every now and then when you’re ready to lock yourself in the bathroom for just five more minutes before your head explodes off your neck, they’ll do something unexpected and delightful to make you unlock that door.

 

When they were little, when they’d hear Barry White come out of the speakers they’d seek me out (“Mom, it’s your soooooooong!”) and spontaneously dance with me in our kitchen. How’s that for an upper?

 

Now that they’re older and (gulp) out in public without me, I’ll get the mother of all compliments (again, no pun intended) when I least expect it, sometimes from complete strangers:

 

You’ve got great kids.

 

I’m thinking a terrible mom would never be able to pull that off.

 

So I’ll be keeping my phone charge in my underwear drawer, thankyouverymuch.

 

 

 

 

 

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