04 February 2011

The Land of Internet And The Really Creepy Side Of Google...

My kids have been nagging me forever to join the 21st century.  I have a little blog that I really like. What more could I want?  Apparently an Android phone.  It was hate at first sight, but that's another story altogether.  Over the last couple of months I have been dipping my left big toe into the waters of Android phones, Twitter and redesigning my blog that which does not kill us, makes us stronger.  Back in 2006, I learned enough HTML to be dangerous help spiffy up my original blog, so I knew it couldn't be all that difficult to make the changes I wanted, because I'd already done it once... Well...  just paint me stupid and slap an idiot sticker on my forehead.  (BTW, if you were on my blogroll and I missed adding you back, please let me know.)

So after taking a deep breath... AND letting it out again (that shade of blue really does nothing for me) I found an online course in CSS and XHTML.  It had some examples to try on an FB page.  Well.  I didn't HAVE a FaceBook page anymore. I had deleted it a couple of weeks prior after getting hacked and since I only ever checked it MAYBE twice a year it didn't seem worth the hassle.  So I decided to set up a temporary page while I learned how to use this new material and to try and keep in touch with my friend Kelly whom I have been banned from texting to at work. I don't blame her in the least and neither would you if you'd ever had a text or email from me. My first foray into the adventures of setting up a PUBLIC FB page, was less than stellar.
[You know? I really LIKE the rock that I live under. It's a very COMFY rock! I have PTSD. I suffer from depression, panic attacks, claustrophobia, agoraphobia and an assortment of other partridges in a pear tree. I have, unfortunately, learned that I can actually have an agoraphobic attack by using FB. I hadn't expected so many people to:

a) accept my invitations. (Thank you, btw)

b) ask for invitations. (This was unexpected, but again, thank you)

c) make me feel like a CROWD of people had suddenly showed up at my door... out of the blue... and brought a party with them.  (FYI - this is not anyone else's fault)

d) be so overwhelming. (again, not anyone else's fault)

Intellectually, I KNOW that I had not really just started a party at my house. I DO know this. This feeling just came from out of the blue and I think I just tried to go with the flow by being a smart alec. Humor seems to help me get through stuff like this on occasion. Under the circumstances, I think I can look back and say that I was glad I just rode the panic attack out, because REALLY... NOBODY gets an agoraphobic attack from a computer... except for me. Since then I have tried to use FB at least a little every day and I'm trying to get used to it. I LIKE being able to see how everyone is doing... up to a point (I'm not exactly sure what point this might be, because I have not yet reached it, but my imagination, unfortunately, is pretty vivid and here you all thought I was only kidding about not being a natural optimist). I LIKE that there are some AMAZINGLY funny conversations. I LIKE knowing immediately if someone I know needs something. It's just that even thinking about the word PUBLIC really can restrict my ability to enjoy the properties of oxygen. Do you know what I mean?  So, if I pass out, I'll finish this post when I come to, OK?]
Now where was I? Ah, yes. My adventures in the Land of Internet. I never did get to test out any of the things I had learned because I had inadvertently done something wrong in setting up my FB account. Please don't ask me what. I really do not have the slightest clue. I thought I was inviting a few of my friends and fellow bloggers to 'hang out'. Instead, the messages that were going out apparently were inviting these people to JOIN FACEBOOK. Not to be my 'Friend'. (I didn't know you had to HAVE an FB account in order to be friended) So I sent out the following email apologizing for this error...
Lemon Stand to friends:

My apologies to one and all. (the evil) FaceBook hates me. AND I can't figure out how to 'invite' someone to my blog, or to the (evil) FaceBook site. So please excuse the invites to join (evil) FaceBook. I only meant to invite you to be my friend. (Does anyone else get a really weird feeling when you say that last sentence out loud? I feel like I'm in kindergarten again.) You will notice there are parenthesis around that which I wish I could strike through. But Google hates me too. Now that I think about it. I'm probably not someone you should be hanging out with. Apparently I'm cursed.

IMPORTANT: This email is intended for the use of the individual addressee(s) named above and may contain information that is confidential, privileged or unsuitable for overly sensitive persons with low self-esteem, no sense of humor or irrational religious beliefs. If you are not the intended recipient, any dissemination, distribution or copying of this e-mail is not authorized (either explicitly or implicitly) and constitutes an irritating social faux pas. Unless the word absquatulation has been used in its correct context somewhere other than in this warning, it does not have any legal or grammatical use and may be ignored. No animals were harmed in the transmission of this email, although the Chihuahua
next door is living on borrowed time, let me tell you! Those of you with an overwhelming fear of the unknown will be gratified to learn that there is no hidden message revealed by reading this warning backwards, so just ignore that Alert Message from Microsoft: However, by pouring a complete circle of salt around yourself and your computer you can ensure that no harm befalls you and your pets. If you have received this email in error, please add some nutmeg and egg whites and place it in a warm oven for 40 minutes.  Whisk briefly and let it stand for 2 hours before icing.
And then Andi of SpouseBUZZ made me feel amazingly wonderful when she sent me the following message. I took it as a sign that today was going to be a GREAT day!
Andi to Lemon Stand:

Don't feel bad. You're doing better than me. I haven't even attempted to create an (evil) FaceBook page. No idea where to begin....
To which I replied:
Lemon Stand to Andi:

I've discovered that STARTING one isn't the problem... It's the CONTROLLING the darn thing! Really. I do NOT need texts at 2am. I do NOT need a mailbox so full of notices of every persons actions... I'm half afraid it's going to start notifying me of people's bowel movements. REALLY! I've had to get my kids to help me with a lot of it, but surprisingly enough, THEY don't know as much as they THOUGHT they did, so it's still trial and error. I have found myself DREADING turning on my computer OR my "EVIL Android" to check my texts or email. (NOT, mind you, that there is a lot of it that is not classified as JUNK or IDIOTIC.) [I feel compelled to qualify this statement... I meant the normal JUNK email everyone gets sent.  Apparently this is becoming as unavoidable as death and taxes and we are all free to be abused equally in the Land of Internet.] Sigh. I have to now go dig us out and attempt to transport our youngest two to the nearest educational facilities. I keep telling them that they have to at LEAST keep up with me in my old age AND be smart enough to get a job to keep me in the style to which I WISH to become accustomed to.

I hope you have a great day! "I'm" going to have one... even if it kills me. I am determined! (Will let you know how that works out for me, but if you do NOT hear from me, fear not. I'll still be working on it.)
[I have just reread the previous email and realized it could be taken wrong by anyone who does not know me or my experiences well. It is not my intention to offend anyone. This blog has always been meant as therapy for me. I made it public because others have helped me in their comments and I hope something I write here might help another. Which means that sometimes I need to write of painful or embarrassing things. It helps me to try to look at things from a different perspective. To try to find the humor or lesson to be learned from every experience, good or bad. Believe me, I would not have posted this here to expose my naked backside, so to speak, otherwise.]

And THEN I saw it... just to the right of the message box. I thought my eyes were going to pop out of my head and run away screaming! I don't know why, but I immediately sent poor Andi (please forgive me) the following email...
Lemon Stand to Andi:

Ummmm. Just sent you the last email? And Google has on it's AD BAR to the right of the message box, the following (please read the bottom few lines and then tell me I am just imagining this. I told you, I am CURSED. Darn. That's really going to put a damper on my day.)

I am aware that ANYTHING emailed or posted on the internet is permanent and never private, but knowing Google is 'reading' my mail and tailoring it's Ads accordingly and actually seeing it's results?  Am I the only one to find that pretty creepy?  

QOTD: "Just when someone invents a foolproof thing, someone else invents a better fool!" ~ Unknown


  1. I know that google reads everything. But I refuse to do DOUBLEPLUSGOODRIGHTTHINKING.(1984 Orson Wells book good read.) (It;s in the top ten banned books in the USA.) I am guessing the ban refers to schools, you can find these books still in libraries.

  2. Now here's a scary DOUBLEPLUSGOODRIGHTTHINKING was not misspelled by google spell checker.

  3. We're told and told about privacy and the internet yet people have no qualms about posting EVERYTHING and under their real names on Facebook. Then read the new articles of the warnings etc by the Privacy Commissioner, then Facebook changes something and it's in the news.... scary, very very scary.

    Even my foray into blogland pushed me out too far for my liking.

    Had a Twitter account b/c of 15 weeks of bees - LRK, 2 books ago. Gave it up. What a pain trying to follow conversations when you can't hear/read the other half.

    I'll stick to reading other's blogs. Offering my under appreciated opinions :), Goodreads and a couple of sites with online people I've "known" since I dipped my toes online... I am getting better at spending less time on the net.

    Oh... and we don't have a smartphone.

  4. Curses on the evil googly empire! My phone's not smart, either, but hubby is thinking of a Droid Bionic when they come out... so of course, google will know everything about him soon... :(

    I sorta think facebook is evil, too... so no fb pages for me...

  5. I don't do FB. I think it will be the downfall of society. I really do. I do want a droid, however. I have a Blackberry that I got for $50 and I like the clicky keys. I'm thinking of switching to a droid when my contract is up. I do love my smartphone.

  6. you're NOT the only one - that IS really creepy. It's also why I do NOT use google mail!

  7. I was on your blogroll before the change, and I'd love to be added back. Unless of course, it was intentional :)

    Oh, and that Google Ad thing? Seriously creepy!

    I do use FB though, but I keep my personal page's privacy settings pretty tight. I started one for my blog too though so I'm not hiding much. I tried to keep my private stuff private on my blog (names and such) but then I started guest blogging for a major newspaper where they had to use my real name...and they linked to my blog, which I appreciate, but at the same time if someone really cared it wouldn't be hard to figure out who I am I guess. So, I don't give away any info that's too private or against any military regulations :)

    I love my Android phone tho! We just PCSed for the first time, and the navigation on that thing has saved us a ton of time already navigating around town!

  8. Blueyeoki - First, I gotta tell you that I really love your blogger name. And your picture... well, and for that matter your blog too. They all make me smile whenever I see them. Anyway, I hear what your saying about not letting it make you so scared, it rules your life. Or makes you paranoid, but I had just read an article in my husband's Popular Mechanics Magazine (Feb 2011 edition) that talks about how your gadgets spy on you and the war on privacy. It talked about online sites, hidden cameras, cellphone trackers, wi-fi pirates and cyber stalkers. Believe me, it was an eye-opener. Once you are aware of what is going on, you can limit a lot of it and the article has some great suggestions on how to protect yourself as much as possible without going off the deep end. I seriously think that EVERYONE should read this article and then start being aware of what software is REALLY on your computer, what websites are capable of doing to the unwary, not to mention the human element that uses technology in a way not intended.

    As for your spellchecker? It's great for catching a lot of things but I still prefer my HARDCOPY PAPER edition. (Along with a Thesaurus and Atlas) There are SOME things that truly feel more substantial in your hands. :)

    FW2 - I hadn't heard about Canada's take on this until recently. I think there are a lot of countries (hopefully including the USA, I shall have to write my congressmen) who are starting to look at this subject seriously. It effects pretty much everyone on the planet.

    And I agree with you on books, book clubs, and blogs in general. This current generation is not realizing what it is they are truly GIVING UP in not realizing the value of the tangible touch of a book, another person, or a nature walk. It's sad and I can only hope they will discover it before it is gone.

    Pamibe - I had to laugh! A boy and his toys. :P My husband and kids drool over things like the 'droid'. Me, I'd rather have the big old, heavy, black rotary phone my grandparents had as a kid. Now THAT you could use as a weapon! I remember dropping it on my foot once. I thought my foot was broken!

    Bou - Ha! They got you with the 'Droid' too! As for FB. I'm not sure you could really blame it on only one social networking media. I think it's more the culture that it encourages.

    Meleah - yeah. This really has me thinking twice about gmail.

    Midlife Army Wife - Nope. Not intentional (and it's fixed). Just me being stupid in not backing stuff up before I fiddle with it.

    As for FB. Yeah. I did that too. I never intended to really keep either of them, but my blog FB has turned into just a kind of extension of my blog. So I can see the benefits. My personal FB is pretty much restricted to my family and only for my family. (Not that I actually use it very often as my family can tell you.)

    I guess, in the end, I can appreciate the good things technology makes possible but value more the things technology will never be able to touch.

  9. Lemon, I Understand more than you think, it use to keep me up nights and give me nightmares. When the government chooses to round us up and but us in the concentration camps they are building and have built ... well you can finish that sentence the way you wish. Watch conspiracy theory with jesse ventura sometime... it's a real eye opener


Contents from normal neural synapsis goes here....
Should unnatural neural synapsis occur? Take one cherry chocolate Hershey Kiss and carry on.
Should NO neural synapsis occur? Take two full strength chocolate Hershey Kisses and
try again in the morning.