Monday, September 28, 2009

Fear and Loathing in Upstate Washington

Mommybloggers love us. Is it wrong that I can't reciprocate their affection?

Let me just say it up front: I don't get it.

Today was my daughter's 16th birthday. I surrepticiously snuck off last night and planted a half dozen signs touting her birthday all along the road leading to her high school. She was embarrassed/thrilled.

Today, my son took a nosedive in the school cafeteria, beating the crap out of his face and permalocked his bike to a bike rack at school. I have to run to my boyfriend's house after work to borrow a bolt-cutter so I can rescue the bike tonight when I get home from my job, in between cooking dinner for four teens and celebrating a birthday.

This is basically a standard-issue day for Love Bites, Single Mom Extraordinaire.

But I don't blog about my kids very much. My blog is MY space. Most of my life is filled with kid activities (I do not exaggerate here, not even a little bit), but my blog is for me. That's not true of The Gonzo Mama, whose blog is primarily about her identity as a mother, interspersed with a few politically conservative posts.

Like I said, I don't get it. I love my kids, but I don't particularly want to read/write about them. So, when other moms spend all a significant percentage of their lives focusing on their mommyness, I find it...not annoying, not frustrating, but just fucking boring.

Also, there is something indefinable (for me, at least) about this blogger that just bugs me. I'm trying not to hold that against her, but still, the skin on the back of my neck spent the entire time I was reading Gonzo's blog trying to crawl its way up and over my head.

And, that's coming from the blog's resident conservamommy former Southern Baptist Sunday School teacher*. I snickered whilst imagining how some of you pinko commie heathens are going to recoil in horror, like vampires confronted by a garlic farm, from her defense of Glen Beck, complete with smarmy fat facial photo.

Gonzo Mama fancies herself a writer, and she's not bad. She's just not my thing. I don't believe there is anything she could do differently to make me care about her blog. We just move in different circles, and have different interests. VERY DIFFERENT.

The blog design is, frankly, hideous. The header color is pepto bismal pink and reminds me of my last horrid hangover. The background image looks like what I puked into the toilet during said alcoholic debacle. I can't help but think that perhaps that wasn't what Gonzo Mommy was shooting for, design wise, but since she named herself after Hunter Thompson, who the hell knows. At the least, she's confused.

I also find it difficult to muster the required enthusiasm for her politics, but I don't hate her. I just don't care. It's great that she's adopted all these children, but the fact that she then spends time online bitching about their mother's failure to pay for their back to school shopping, and that SHE TELLS THEM WHEN MOM FUCKS UP takes the shine off of her halo, for me at least.

My prescription to Gonzo Mommy is this: Girl, you need to watch a little Chris Rock. I want you to watch this entire episode. Taking care of children DOES NOT MAKE YOU SPECIAL. It makes you average.

You have this idea that you're St. Gonzo of the Rural Northwest, surrounded by evildoers, but you're AVERAGE. I am weary of self-righteous bible-thumping mommies parading themselves around rural and middle America these days, tea-bagging it up and patting themselves on the back as if they are the last residue of salt & light in this heathen world.

Goddamn. What WOULD Jesus do?

Would Jesus tell a kid that his/her mom didn't deliver on the back-to-school shopping money? Or would he just handle it?

Would Jesus listen to Glen Beck? Or would he change the channel post-haste on that slimey asshole?

Sometimes, I wish Jesus would hurry his sweet ass up and get back here so he could slap the shit out of some people. To be blunt, I'm not sure you know him like you think you do.

There are ten million snarky Jesus-and Glen-Beck worshipping mamas just like you polluting up the 'sphere right now, and most of us just don't care. In fact, I'd prefer it if y'all started up your own hen parties with warning signs so the rest of us could dodge them, and just clucked at each other incessantly.

Preferably, not online.

Lastly, when a woman who can't even bring herself to use the word "fuck" submits her blog here of all places, I have to assume that she was either dropped on her head at birth and is suffering from a TBI or is terminally stupid. Here's your rating:






*Nobody can deliver a jesus-smackdown like a recovering Southern Baptist.

82 comments:

  1. I try not to let politics play a role in whether or not I will read a person's blog. But they better be really fucking poetic if they are going to be my political opposite.

    As to the mommyblogging phenomenon, you nailed it, LB. It just bores me to no end when it's constant. I like it when bloggers talk about their kids, but as one aspect of their blog, parenthood being one part of their persona, and not letting everything else about their personalities wither away.

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  2. I actually quite liked the Glenn Beck entry, despite her self-righteous way of putting things.

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  3. People who scream about Glen Beck's first amendment rights are usually the same people who piss and moan about Michael Moore's movies (who, as a liberal, I even have a love/hate relationship with) or approve of ratings systems on music and video games. Just sayin'. And seriously, until you fully and publicly support ALL types of speech (including porn and the KKK's right to assembly), keep your self-righteous bullshit to yourself.

    Ugh...I hate talking about Glen Beck.

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  4. Also, my new favorite website:

    www.stfuparents.tumblr.com

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  5. Yeah, LB, I'm kind of with you on the "she's not my style" thing. Let's face it, I'm not a Christian, I'm pretty liberal, I don't have children, and I'm a drunk.

    But I like her guts about stuff that isn't mundane.

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  6. @LB - Thanks for taking the time. When I submitted, I'd only been blogging for a couple of months and didn't know the direction my blog would take. For example, I didn't know that I would edit my language or talk about politics. I just thought it would become a natural and more revealing extension of my newspaper column and zine. When I realized I had a varied and dynamic readership from my column, which spanned from tweens to great-grandmas, I made the decision to not expose that entire audience to my naturally-occurring profanity.

    @Aliecat - I'm not a fan of SEIU (or the KKK, for that matter) but I do respect and promote their right to demonstrate:

    http://citizengonzo.blogspot.com/2009/09/pimps-and-hos-unite-its-glenn-beck-day.html

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  7. All mommy bloggers suffer this plight I guess. I'm a "mommy blogger" myself. I do sometimes write about other issues, but being a mom is what interests me and is proably the biggest most important thing in my life. I love my kids, my husband and the things we do. You are right my blog is my space to write what I choose. I choose to write about motherhood (mostly) Ok. So it's boring TO YOU. Not to everyone. and I don't think most mommy bloggers ride the short bus...just because it's boring TO YOU, does not make them stupid.
    P.S. I feel bad for your kids.

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  8. Gonzo...it's was more of an gripe against Glenn Beck defenders in general.

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  9. Oh, and I kind of hate how our political landscape has been excavated by pundits...you know that old adage about how those who can't do, teach? Those who can't get elected, become pundits. That's why I hate discussing their ideas, no matter what side of the aisle.

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  10. @Aliecat - Thank God I'm not a pundit. I am apparently, just a terminally stupid bible-thumping mommyblogger who can't say "fuck." ;)

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  11. I'm with Blues...blah blah blah, boring, boring, boring. Lately, instead of trying to find new, entertaining blogs to read, I find myself relying on a few standards...those that I know will either enlighten, make me think or make me laugh.

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  12. "I think part of free speech is being able to publicly crucify someone if you don't agree with them." So true!

    I thought this was an interesting perspective, from the comments section of the Glen Beck post. The "So true!" was Gonzo Mama's reply.

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  13. The post on her grandmother was compelling to me. So were other posts, I like the way she writes, though I can't particularily empathize with avid Christianity, conservatism and motherhood, nor should that be all the blog is about.

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  14. SB: You know, there's nothing wrong with mommyblogging. But don't submit your blog to be reviewed by a site with authors that notoriously find other things more interesting. There are plenty of blogging moms who write well and passionately about things that don't necessarily include what cute thing their kids did that day.

    The children I feel sorry for are the offspring of the mommybloggers. Not moms who blog.

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  15. P.S. I feel bad for your kids.

    Funny. I feel sorry for the children of passive-aggressive bitches who can't read at a 6th grade level.

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  16. I feel love bites was directing her dig at me. Just because I'm a mother who loves to write about my kids does not mean I ride the short bus. It's sad you have the memory of a goldfish since I mentioned this a few comments earlier. Trust me...I'm smarter than you. Sorry.... and yes, I feel sorry that her kids are not a central part of her life and important enough for her to write about.and now I feel sorry that you're a goldfish too.

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  17. LB, I don't know too many parents who'd take the time to tape up a dozen signs for their daughter's bday...I'd say she's a lucky girl even though she's probably cursing what you did right now...

    From one lazy and boring ass blogger; reading this one wasn't too thrilling either...I'm not interested too much in politics and would rather read posts with some heart and soul in them; you know their deep dark secrets, what makes them tick, what they hate...

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  18. guess it'd help if I'd post the right blog under my name....

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  19. Some people don't write about their kids because they may, oh I dunno, respect their privacy. Not every kid wants everyone on the internet to know that they made poopie in the potty.

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  20. Ladies, settle down. I think things got a little heated here, lets just calm down.

    Lets all agree that we know the root cause of all this tension and just lez out on each other.

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  21. I feel love bites was directing her dig at me.

    Ding, ding, ding, we have a winner.

    Just because I'm a mother who loves to write about my kids does not mean I ride the short bus.

    You're right. YOU, personally, ride the short bus because you don't understand why THIS BLOGGER does.

    It's sad you have the memory of a goldfish since I mentioned this a few comments earlier.

    God, you're dumb.

    Trust me...I'm smarter than you.

    I think not.

    Sorry....

    No, you aren't. More passive aggression.

    and yes, I feel sorry that her kids are not a central part of her life and important enough for her to write about.

    Well, hello Princess Passiva of the Country of Aggressiva. My kids are everything to me, and I do post about them occasionally, but I feel it would be a betrayal of their privacy to use them as blog fodder on a daily basis to build my reputation in mommyblogging circles and/or as a way of creating a writing career. It's unethical, and not something that small children are able to consent to. I don't think it's right, so I don't do it. I think a lot of children of mommybloggers are going to be in therapy for a really long time when they discover mom's blog and the fact that they have lived like goldfish for an audience of the public.

    Speaking of goldfish.

    But thanks for showing us all what YOU really are, you silly twit.

    For instance, in the case of this blogger, she has a public writing career. Do her kids read her blog? Have their friends found it yet?

    Some of you people, and yes, I'm talking about you, Susan Berlien, are incredibly self-absorbed. Have you ever even considered if your husband and children WANT you to write about them and reveal the personal details of your relationships?

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  22. Is anyone besides me having problems commenting? IF so, use the Name/URL version of the form. That works for some reason. Blogger appears to be buggered...again.

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  23. Chris, somehow I just don't think LB and Princess Passiva will be following your advice.

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  24. Oh, LB, at it again, pissing off the mothers of the God/Guns/CountryFirst Nation. Atta girl. Pssst, the GhostHooker Family went to church Sunday. And nothing burst into flames. So we're going again. I think the sensors in the building were busted. But yeah, mommybloggers, please just open your blog to family members. Unless you're scared what your family will think of your writing. Shame on you.

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  25. Oh, and I guess I'll start blogging again.

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  26. I think Franklin is correct. And, given that I'm not passive-aggressive, just aggressive, and I have some aggression I need to vent, this is, perhaps, Susan's unlucky day.

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  27. I guess Susan is smarter than me, because I do not understand what is going on. Who is a goldfish? Carnival or a pet store? Perhaps it's Pepperridge Farm. Wait - is this bitch calling me a cracker? Or is LB a cracker? That is awesome.

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  28. Oh, and Susan: sure, being a mother who writes about your kids doesn't make you a member of the short bus. Writing unclear and dyslexic comments does.

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  29. I only wish I were a cracker, but since I'm not a native Floridian, I have no hope in that regard.

    I went home last night and thought about what I'd written here, and wondered if I'd been too mean in this review. But, on the other hand, mommybloggers need to realize that the first rule of mommyblogging is "first do no harm."

    In all seriousness, I'm the queen of resenting the non-custodial parent for all the things that he/she doesn't do to take care of the spawn. But, I'm working on that, because inadvertent messages are important.

    When a mother emphasizes to her children that, "Oh, we can't do what we wanted to do for school supplies because YOUR BIO MOM didn't ante up her share of the money," the unspoken message to those kids is, "because you aren't important."

    Adopted kids (and I am one, so I know what of I speak) almost always deal with abandonment issues. Inadvertent messages like that carry a sting that is received loud and clear. We already feel we weren't good enough for our biological parents to love us. Why would you want to drive that message home MORE?

    I say this to--hopefully--make some people think. Yeah, we're all fun and games here, but I meant some of my comments rather seriously.

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  30. Also, Glen Beck is an arrogant cocksucker. I love how he always makes note that he is not a 'well educated' man. Why in the fuck does he have his own show? I'd rather subject myself to a political throwdown with Clooney and Penn and a vial of acid then be subjected to Olberman's yang. Ugh.

    About adoption, I'm with LB on this matter. My bio mom recently told me that she realized I must be pretty fucked up over the fact that she kept my younger brother but didn't keep me. Guess I am. Eh.

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  31. @LB - If there's any confusion about what kids came from where, I apologize. The particular kids you refer to are not adopted. They are my step-children. I would adopt them in a heartbeat.

    In the instance you keep referring to with the school clothes, it was the bio mom herself who told the kids that she wasn't going to contribute anything for their school supplies and clothes.

    She called the kids, talked to them for a few minutes, and signed off with, "Tell your dad I'm not buying you any school stuff. See you in a few weeks!"

    Had I been the one to call the mom out to the kids, it would have been one thing, but I wasn't. It was her, and her choice to let the kids know her intentions.

    It was my job to tell the kids, "We have X dollars for school supplies. Wish we had more, but we don't. Sorry."

    I agree with you that inadvertant messages are important, and I think it's important that you know how seriously I take that.

    I never said I told them about their mom's decision, but I didn't spell out that she told the kids herself.

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  32. Sometimes, when I'm drunk and rowdy, I watch Glenn Beck videos just so I have an excuse to break stuff.

    No I don't, that's a total lie.

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  33. Gonzo, I still like you for some reason.

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  34. About adoption, I'm with LB on this matter. My bio mom recently told me that she realized I must be pretty fucked up over the fact that she kept my younger brother but didn't keep me. Guess I am. Eh.

    I've never met my bio-mom, but I think it's pretty hard to make it to adulthood without being fucked up in some way. Thank god for my fucked up fundamentalist upbringing. It's been such a financial boon for the psychological community. Add on the adoption issue, and well, frankly, I'm buggered.

    I don't know what it was about Gonzo mom that bugged me so much, frankly. I wish I could put my finger on it.

    Gonzo, it's good that you clarified, but I still think, personally, that it's fucked up that you are posting this shit publicly, about real young people, using real names.

    That shit ain't right.

    I seriously think you should do some re-thinking about boundaries here.

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  35. I don't hate Glen Beck. Mostly, I'm apathetic towards him, purely because I think that is the response that would piss him off the most.

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  36. I don't expect to receive any bonus points for not being the more fucked up of two fucked up moms.

    What I do expect to get bonus points for is that I didn't take my name from Hunter Thompson.

    I took it from that freak-nasty porn genre.

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  37. @Rassles - I kind of like you, too; probably because I'm a drunk, too.

    Bring on the communion wine!

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  38. These are the kinds of days I miss around here; LB getting a bunch of mommies wound up, Key making weird announcements, and Rassles showing every incoherent commenter what's up.

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  39. LB: I agree with you for the most part, but you say it is "unethical" for parent bloggers to write about their kids from a young age? That's just silly and it's taking things too far.

    I write about my son, my wife, my family, etc. I asked my wife for permission to blog and she gave it to me with little to no restrictions. And I write about both the good and bad, because the few readers I have want to read stuff that is real. I get a response because I'm detailing my raw emotions and hitting on everyday life. A lot of times it's the stuff no one feels comfortable talking about but everyone goes through, so I just put it out there.

    And while some of it may be off color, I don't think any of it is unethical. Poor choice of words on your part.

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  40. I think it's unethical when the people involved are identifiable.

    But even then, there are things concerning other people that I wouldn't share even though we aren't identifiable. Wait, I forgot I have pictures of myself on my blog. FUCK WHY DID I DO THAT?

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  41. Blues, let us not forget that you also exploit the children of the Spanish Prime Minister, you fucking hater.

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  42. As far as identification goes, any newspaper I pick up has a page with birth announcements sent from the hospital, identifying the name of the child and the names of the parents. Many are sent in by families and include photos.

    Each of my children has been featured in my local paper eleventy million times with their photo and full name.

    My entire family's names and photo with the governor was sent out to 26,000 members of a trade association.

    I'm not breaking some sort of anonymity on my blog - perhaps the illusion of anonymity, but not the actuality of it.

    My newspaper column only mentions my kids by their "codenames," and each of my seven children over the age of five picked their own.

    When I'm putting together a piece for my column or magazine and want to say something about a kid that I think they might take issue with, I frequently ask them.

    When I wanted to read a piece at a performance about Pepper having a crush on a neighbor boy, I asked her if it would upset her. When I wrote about GirlWonder's teacher complaining about her "blurting," I asked her before it went to my editor. Pockets and The Dude read the piece on teen boy fashion before it went to press.

    That being said, as LB stated, our blogs are "ours," and I don't check with every adult I post or write about before doing so.

    I'm pleased to report that a publication has selected one of my writings for my brilliant use of the term "whore bitchcunt," and I am not sorry to say that I did not get permission from the subject of the piece. If it's libel, I'll get sued. If it's offensive, I'll get hate mail.

    (For the record, I didn't state that the person IS a whore bitchcunt; it was simply used in the course of the story. I don't know if the individual receives compensation for any sexual services, and I haven't personally had any dealings with her hoohoo, so don't know if it qualifies for "bitch" status - so I think I'm safe on the libel front.)

    Is it unethical of me to publish the names of my two newly-adopted children, which will appear in a regional newspaper? I guess I'm having trouble seeing the ethical outrage.

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  43. Oh brother.

    ...

    I'll take one, ky. No, blech. I'll take a nuzzle tho.

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  44. I found her template to be more offensive than her blog content, although granted I didn't delve too terribly deeply. What I read I generally respected, which kind of surprises me, really. Except the vegan thing. That's just wrong.

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  45. I know, I feel like veganism isn't really a lifestyle so much as a bold, unjust rejection of bacon.

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  46. Rassles - I'm a total exploiter. I feel a little bit bad, but actually, I was admiring their massive balls for dressing like wizards. Shit, I would love to have the balls to show up for work dressed like a wizard.

    As to gonzomama, I don't know if getting an okay from a four year old if they are cool with you writing a column about how they pee the bed qualifies as informed consent (hypothetical, ridiculous example of course).

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  47. By the way, I have no qualms with exploiting other peoples' families. Only my own.

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  48. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  49. Rassles - that's vegetarianism. Veganism is rejection of cheese. And frankly, I find it offensive.

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  50. Vegans reject any and all animal byproducts.

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  51. And yes, life without cheese is totally offensive.

    It insinuates that cows are only good for steak.

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  52. Steak and leather restraints.

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  53. And car interiors. Don't forget about all them Lexus's.

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  54. Yeah. What's a mommyblogger without her SUV?

    Personally, I drive a BMW.

    (That's Big Mormon Wagon, for those of you not in the know.)

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  55. I thought the Big Mormon Wagon was the Suburban. Don't they give those out for free if you're a mormon?

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  56. They might. I had to get mine on the Clunkers for Christians program, since I'm not Mormon (and not even a very good Pentecostal).

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  57. Know what, guys? Don't even read my blog.

    If this thread keeps going, you'll learn far more about me here.

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  58. Yeah, I gave up being a Pentecostal. I was sick of sucking at it.

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  59. Just don't talk to me about raw food diets. If God had wanted us to eat raw food he wouldn't have given us fire and then Prometheus went through all that bird-eating-guts thing for nothing. I might have mixed my mythologies there.

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  60. I could be on a raw food diet if it was all sushi. Sushi is god's gift to man. Maybe that belief is what led me away from Pentecostalism.

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  61. Well, Jesus did love Him some fish...

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  62. I'm trying to figure out a way to invoke Christ and make him multiply my sushi, so I can fork out 10 euros instead of 30 every time I order it.

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  63. Gonzo,

    Start a new blog and be cool in it like you are in this comment thread, and I might read it.

    We need more days like this. This makes me think I should review mommy blogs more often. They always result in interesting comment threads.

    p.s. Veganism is an evil Satanic plot, just like Walmart.

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  64. How can anyone be anti-cheese/bacon?

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  65. You guys should hug now.

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  66. You see us "mombloggers" are good for something after all. The most entertaining comments all around.

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  67. Some mom bloggers are okay. The overwhelming majority make me want to puke.

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  68. @Chris - In spite of continued efforts, I don't think there's going to be any g4g action... The time for that is college, when everyone is still hot.

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  69. ahem...there's always time for g4g action...college girls know nothing...us older women know everything ;)

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  70. Duh... I meant for ME that time was college. I'm far too picky and cranky now. I'd sooner beat a broad up than get down with her these days...

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  71. @Gonzo mom...haha...me too actually! though some like that too.

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  72. Wait--did y'all say that there are people out there who don't eat cheese OR bacon?

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  73. I was on the other side of the room and I heard lesbian talk here.
    Am I too late?

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  74. Never too late for lesbo action!

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  75. Okay. Okay. I'll ride the short bus. Stick me in the back with a helmut. I need spell check and FYI I write about more than just my kids. My husband does consent to what I write about him, and while I do write about my kids... I respect their privacy and only write things I wouldn't mind if told about me in their situation.

    I lose. You win. I'm not a fighter or a hater. I actually really like this blog for the constructive critism. I think I'll keep my comments to myself from now on.

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  76. I hate this thread. Where's the blood?

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  77. You may see some soon if SB keeps trying so hard to become a victim.

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  78. Okay, I heard "blood." Am I too late? Crap. I hate arriving late to parties.

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Grow a pair.