Excerpt from My First Novel Yellow Socks Confessions of a Non Don Juan

June 4, 2012

An Excerpt from my 2010 novel Yellow Socks- Confessions of a Non Don Juan

 

Skeleton Woman or Things Like Me Don’t Happen To You

 

Christ it happened again. Another notch in my “girls that want to be my friend” belt. It made sense. We were perfect friends and she was real cute too. I kept thinking that I was ok with it. I’d be happy just being a friend again. I keep turning to God for strength to accept my fate as “Friend to all women” that I’m attracted to. My acceptance level seems to be ok. I go to my happy place. I go to my cave. I say the serenity prayer over and over I am sure that I will be ok with this. Yes I will. (no I won’t)

 

Cut to a scene from Fight Club

 

TYLER

Stop it! This is your pain — this is your burning hand. It’s right here! Look at it.

 

JACK

I’m going to my cave. I’m going to my cave to find my power animal!

 

TYLER

No, don’t deal with this the way those dead people do. Come on

!

JACK

I get the point, ok, please!

 

TYLER

No, what you’re feeling is premature enlightenment.

 

Ok. I get the idea. Feel the pain. Feel the hurt. Feel the rejection saturating my heart until I bleed more than just these words all over the place and finger my open sore of a brain as it wants to dwell on her over and over again. Screaming and roaring her name with anger and grief and sometimes a slight relief that it’s done and I know that she will not reject me again unless I go back for more and more or less or a little bite of her cheeseburger and a sip of her Pepsi to tide me over until the next one comes along with better food and spirits for my, for me for. Four scores of seven years itch as I scratch the weathered tired out mongrel of an ego that was left stray years ago in a pound for wayward hearts and letches that can only love and never be loved.

 

The pain of being a friend. A friend. I’ve heard that “Let’s just be friends” millions of times in my life as I gargle a new mouthwash and toothpaste hoping my breath will be the answer to my problem. My problem is as follows: me, myself and I. We altogether are the problem. We want to be loved so bad that we give off the vibe that scares the shit out of women so they just want to be friends. Friends. Friends. I think to myself that will be fine. Friends is ok. It’ll do. I can accept that. Bullshit! Feel the pain I tell myself. Embrace it. the pain is your friend. To hurt is to be alive. I’ve never been so alive. I’m alive. So alive.

 

“Did you ever hear about the skeleton woman?” Morton asked.

 

“Was that a Glam rock band from the seventies?” I ask.

 

“Ha. Ha. Nah. It’s an ancient Indian story. This guy was fishing in the middle of a lake. He was totally into it. He was relaxed. Not a care in the world except catching the next fish. All of a sudden he feels a tug on his line and he yanks it up. A skeleton appears on his line. He doesn’t realize that it’s attached to his line and he gets scared. He starts paddling his boat away from it but it follows him. He still doesn’t realize that it’s attached to his line. He gets out of his boat and runs into the village and he is carrying his fishing rod and the skeleton is still right behind him. He jumps into his Tee Pee and it follows him in. He lies down and tries to hide not looking at it for a while. When he finally turns to look at the skeleton it has changed into the most beautiful woman he has ever seen. She is his. The moral of the story is that he was minding his own business doing something he enjoyed and that’s when the right woman came along. In other words when you are not looking for love is when it will find you. ”

 

“I know that but it’s so fucking hard to stay focused on other things without thinking about how much I want to be loved. Fall in love. Ya know?” I responded.

 

“I know. I know.” Morton said.

 

“We’re a generation of men raised by women. I’m wondering if another woman is really the answer we need.” Tyler Durden

 

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Social Checking Services are Watching You

August 5, 2011

 

The work place and technology keep changing. It used to be easy to get a job. You fill out an application, do an interview and you either get hired or not. Simple. Now most corporations have you apply online that takes close to an hour to fill out. They require 2 phone interviews before an in person interview. Then background checks and drug tests. A lot of prospective employers even google your name to see what they can find out about your activity on the internet. Personally I’ve wondered if this has been a reason I didn’t get a response on many job application in the past 5 years or so.

 

The past few years some companies hire “social checking” services to go beyond the general google or any other search engine findings. A recent study by the Society of Human Resources Management (SHRM) shows that 50% of employers are taking advantage of the new services up from 34% in 2008 and 20% are planning on using the services. These “social checking” companies specialize in watching and reporting applicant’s activities on social networks like facebook, Twitter, Myspace, etc. looking at everything from blogs to photo albums.

 

It’s entirely legal and complies with the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). Some question whether it is invasive of individual’s privacy come up but it seems pretty cut and dry. Most of us know by now that what we make public on the internet is open for anyone to see if we don’t make it private. Even if a person makes it entirely private there are ways around it.

 

The question of reliability of the information gathered because people present what they want to say about themselves and try to give the best not necessarily the most honest version of themselves on the social networking sites.

 

Personally I’ve been aware that what I post and say and do onine can be seen by everyone. Some of my sites, blogs, pictures, statements etc are definitely a bit risqué and even pornographic at times. I’ve accepted this fact as an artist and writer. I am willing to put myself out there to be true to myself. My art and writing has never been mainstream and I have nothing to hide. It’s more important than hiding everything to please others including prospective employers.

 

I know a lot of people that won’t have anything to do with me online due to the nature of their careers. They keep everything private and hide out only connecting with their closest of friends and family members.

 

If I’m ever hiring I might use a service but I’ll be looking for honest people not the ones that seem “normal”. I feel bad for the people that don’t think about it and have pictures of their parties and drinking and wild side that a social checking service finds and may ruin their chance of a career that they wanted.

 

Then again is the real you the person that sits in front of an employer for an interview or the “you” you project online? Either way there’s some kind of deception and some honesty.

 

For me, I am just going to keep doing what I do. Post what’s on my mind. Or maybe start my own service. Hmmmm.


Rich Hillen Jr’s Digital Art

February 6, 2011


Another Rant About Unreturned Messages

January 29, 2011

Common courtesy. General politeness. Manners. Proper protocol.

 

When someone you know calls you, text messages you, emails you, or messages you on a social network it is usually expected for you to return the call, text, email etc. It’s the courteous, polite, and maybe even the right thing to do. This of course is a high expectation and depends on the people involved and what’s said in the message (I’ll refer to all forms of communication where you are not in person as a message).

 

I have been personally insulted, hurt and paranoid over some unreturned messages over the past few years. Most of the time I react negatively for nothing. Sometimes I hold grudges or fear of them not liking me.

 

I’m mostly talking about people I know or people I am beginning a relationship with. Not a romantic relationship. I’m referring to new friendships, networking or business relationships. Most of the time I write it off with some people as “that’s just the way they are.” I try to accept it but lately it bugs me.

 

I’ve learned that there are certain types of messages that don’t require a return. Sometimes they can go back and forth for a while and the stop. If I send an email either requesting something or asking a question I expect an answer. Maybe not immediately. I don’t know the official protocol for how long to give a person to return a message but I mostly get aggravated if goes more than three days. If they don’t respond for weeks or months I just move them down the list of a priority friend.

 

If I send a friendly “just wanted to say hi” type of message that requires no return message. I leave it open ended. If I am promoting something and just want to get the information out there to a person I don’t expect a response. One people that I am really close to that I know I will talk to eventually in a day of 3 it doesn’t matter. I just sent a message to my friend yesterday asking him about helping me with something in a future project. I don’t care that he didn’t get back to me yet.

 

If I message someone I don’t know especially women I don’t expect an answer at all. They don’t know me so there is not obligation even though it would be polite. The women I am sure get flooded with many messages from men and probably get tired of it. They are especially forgiven.

 

I was shocked when I was sending mass messages to promote novaboon.com when I did get a message back and even more shocked when they thanked me.

 

There is such a fine line when it comes to my reactions to unreturned messages. I’m sure you can relate. It’s the ones that I anticipate the answer to a question that bugs me. There are a lot of them.

 

I was dating a girl for almost a month and she was the worst at returning messages. I understand that I have always set my life up so I have more free time than most. She was also at the end of Medical school and at the biggest turning point of her life. Still it was no excuse to blow off my messages when all she had to do was take 30 seconds to text me that she is busy and will get back to me another time. The insecure obsessive that I am it drove me nuts. If we didn’t have such great dates and connection I would have dropped her. Maybe I should have because it ended anyway when she moved to do a residency.

 

Then there are a few girls in my life that get back to me when we work on project. Then I asked them out (at different times) and I totally expected them to blow me off.  To my surprise they answered right away. They all rejected me but got back to me immediately. I gained total respect for them for that. Then they don’t return my messages when I it’s regular talk or conversations most of the time. We even make plans sometimes and never follow through.

 

Now there’s a glitch in my complaints about people not returning my messages. I do it too. I mean I don’t do it also. For the most part I have a 95 % return rate. I have a memory problem sometimes and forget to return phone calls and text messages. If I don’t return a message on the internet within a day it gets buried and I forget. I try to get back to everyone within a day.

 

The one thing I’m not sure about is the proper time limit in returning “pokes” on facebook. If you don’t know what they are then good for you. Personally I don’t care if someone doesn’t poke me back or when or whatever. I still do it for fun (I guess it’s fun).

 

I was raised to call people back. I was raised to follow through on things. Although I don’t always live up to it I try. There’s 2 phone calls I got tonight I actually have to return come to think about it.


Fed Up With Facebook? Me Too. Novaboon.com is where its at

November 11, 2010

Ok. I am totally fed up with facebook.com. I joined reluctantly years ago because my friends were all going over there and abandoned My Space. I loved MySpace as it was a few years ago. Easy to use. Band friendly. Although they had some restrictions on photo content and removed some photos without explanation it I was fairly ok with it. I also loved the blog features and had a following reading my blogs.

 

Facebook became addicting. All of my friends were on there and some family too. I felt a little restricted at first but eventually said fuck it and posted whatever. For a time I wanted to just have people I knew as friends but when I published my book and started my own blog site I wanted to promote my stuff and began adding friends like ad. This is when he problems started.

 

Facebook has since been on me about adding too many friends saying that I was a spammer and they want it to be a friends and family site. What if I want to make new friends? I did make new friends across the globe. I go on and off friend adding probation. Then I was on messaging probation for sending our my links to my blog and my books. I get messages all of the time from people promoting things. Then the photo removals started happening. I never could figure out what photo and they do not tell you.

 

This is the latest letter I received:

 

Hello,

 

You uploaded a profile picture that violates our Terms of Use, and this picture has been removed. Facebook does not allow photos that attack an individual or group, or that contain nudity, drug use, violence, or other violations of the Terms of Use. These policies are designed to ensure Facebook remains a safe, secure and trusted environment for all users, including the many children who use the site.

 

If you have any questions or concerns, you can visit our FAQ page at http://www.facebook.com/help/?topic=wphotos.

 

The Facebook Team

 

Ok great. I have hundreds of pics and yes I know I have some borderline photos bit no sexually graphic or violent or racist pics like they forbid. I tried to find out more with the link above and it says nothing. A lot of words but no explanations.

 

Here’s the help page info:

 

Help Center

 

Warning – Photos

 

What kinds of photos does Facebook remove?

Photos are removed if they contain nudity, drug use or other obscene c…

Photos are removed if they contain nudity, drug use or other obscene content. If the photo attacks another individual or group, it will be removed as well.

 

Can I see the removed content?

Unfortunately, for technical and security reasons, users cannot view t…

Unfortunately, for technical and security reasons, users cannot view the removed content.

 

Please go through your profile and make sure to take down any other offensive or objectionable material that violates our Terms of Use. For more information on conduct prohibited by Facebook, please read our ‘terms’ (linked to at the bottom of any page).

 

Does Facebook remove everything that gets reported?

Facebook reviews every report we receive to determine whether or not t…

Facebook reviews every report we receive to determine whether or not the content violates our Terms of Use. Any content that is considered obscene, violent, malicious or otherwise offensive will be removed. If you received a warning about an item that was taken down, then we have established that it violated these terms.

 

Was that helpful? No. This is has been an issue for over 6 months now. So I talked to my friend, now housemate, about starting a social network of our own. After business plan revisions, programming, researching and a lot of hard work, Seth Rosen and I launched NovaBoon – World’s Best Unrestricted Social Network on November 1st 2010 We waited a few days to invite people and we have been growing steadily since last Friday. http://novaboon.com

 

Our motto is “Escape from the social networking jail with Novaboon.”

 

We are looking for people fed up with the restrictions and harassments of the other sites and want a new place to do anything they want basically within legal limits. All are welcome. It might be too unrestricted for some and that’s fine. Were not trying to compete with facebook. We just want a place for people that are more expressive and want more freedom to go to.

 

To quote my partner, Seth Rosen “NovaBoon.com a place for facebook parolees and MySpace refugees.

 

Join now if you are even slightly fed up and not offended easily.

 

http://novaboon.com

 


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