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well. it was my blogiversary. two days ago. but i was sick. like snotty-faced head cold sick. and i even attempted to write a post in that state, but upon perusing it again, realized it makes no sense. it’s all tylenol cold meets shots of whiskey. thus, you get the two-days-late celebration of a year of wasting spending my time writing on this blog. there have been good times. bad blogger times. and all around inappropriate times (that post’s picture, much to my chagrin, is the most clicked on picture on my blog. i don’t know what that means, but it can’t be good). i think i have done a pretty bang up job as a bad blogger and a recovering technophobe. but just to convince you, dear sweet readers who hide from me, i will list some of my accomplishments over this past bloggyrific year as a way of saying screw you, i am gonna keep blogging and nobody can stop me (unless i actually get a job and they force me to). a year in the life of jacks-as-blogger or jackablogger:

  1. i have gone from bitching about starting my dissertation to being close to done a complete first draft. this has resulted in a search for gainful employment. when i began this blog, i hoped it would help motivate me and be an outlet and procrastination place. it has paid off in spades, my friends. spades. (i have no idea what that means).
  2. i taught myself how to use blogger and then moved over to where dr. beth, the alpha-bloggess told me all the cool kids were, that is, wordpress. THEN i taught myself how to use wordpress. it is like i am a computer genius or something. the really, really cool kids pay for their own domain but i am okay being a second-rung cool kid because i have never been one to kowtow to the whims and trends of others. or maybe i am. i have no idea.
  3. every time i think i will never be as pumped about another research project, i discover something like fat and fall deliciously, hopelessly in love with the idea of talking to people about it and turning it into something thinky (and bloggy) .
  4. i went to my first american conference (and blogged about it!) and it made me fall deeper in love with fat studies.
  5. i spoke at a blogging conference about my research.
  6. as a bona fide member of the wordpress community i have so far appeared in the “possibly related posts” section of three different blogs. they are: fat feminism: musings of a rubens woman – which, i might add, actually makes sense and looks like a cool blog; some kid’s blog who wrote a post about incest – okay, this was a little bit of a stretch but from what i saw, he was trying to be witty. i hope; and this blog, which i think is about nordic skiing. the link here – say with me folks – is a blog post about being a un-sexy pole dancer. get it? ski poles, stripper poles…anyhoo. it appears that “possibly related should be highlighted and bolded. i fear that the nordic ski people might not be getting the kind of pole-action they want (however, i posted the ic of when i went pole-dancing just to add to the confusion. hehe. take that wordpress!).
  7. i cat blogged once! sorry shells. and everybody.
  8. this list has to be ten. so here is number eight.
  9. blogging has inspired not only my future research project (about blogging and fat! wheee!) but it has also inspired that creative writing spirit that i lost roughly after i got my license. before that i would crank tori amos or classic rock (i can’t even stand the doors anymore because of how much i listened to them in my angsty youth. borf) and write really.bad.poetry while my father worried for the state of my mental health. it’s good to be back to the good ole days.
  10. basically, i kept it up for a year. and i am friggin’ proud of myself. *big shit-eating grin*

so during this little yay me blogiversary partay, i realized i don’t have a list of my categories. and i still don’t know how to tag things. um, dr. beth? help me…

oh yeah – and how could i forget: HAPPY H-WEEN kids! costume pics to come! (and tell me what you are going to be/were. now. NOW!).


i recently got this saying on a pin from my equally-fabulous friend chaos (um, dude, post something new already!) and i thought i’d begin on a high note cause you know it is all going downhill from here. well, not really. i have just been thinking about how it is coming up on my first year blogiversary and i am still a bag blogger. that’s right kids. welcome to why i am a bad blogger installment…um…i dunno. #6? a lot? a billion?

so there is the obvious situation of my random, some would say, spotty blogging habits. to which i reply, quite haughtily, “i am a blog artiste. and plus, i cannot help that big brother was on all summer followed by a new season of biggest loser (this time with families!) not to mention i am doing this dissertation thing which is REALLY cutting into america’s next top model (go isis you hot bitch!)” or something to that effect.

there is a somewhat related issue regarding my tags. or categories. or whatever. the thing is i have no idea really what they are. or what they do. i just like when categories pop up under my post titles and if there is nothing that strikes my fancy as an appropriate category, i make another. this happens a lot. (okay, now don’t go to my list of taggy categories cause it will cause me shame. do you think i can pay someone to clean that up for me? or make it relevant? or somethin’?).

there is the issue of ‘being on the market,’ which in academicese means trying to finally become employed after years and years (and years) of unemployment (cause face it kids, being a teaching or research assistant is really just about cushy slavery). i am not gonna lie. it is the biggest job undertaking EVER. and i don’t care if some of you are doctors (you know, the kind that actually help people) or executives (yeah, like executives read my blog) and had to go through completely tumultuous application processes. it is not as bad as trying to put together the past 10 years of unemployment in terms that make you seem employable. i’m just sayin’.

there is also the issue of the weather turning. i mean, summer is busy. there are fun things to do. you know when there aren’t as many fun things to do? when it is pouring and doesn’t get light enough for you to differentiate between dawn and dusk. that’s right folks. september in vancouver. but don’t get me wrong. i heart vancouver. i am just a twit who always forgets what the weather is like here in the winter.

and there is my general obsession with fat which i haven’t spoken about in a while. right now i am cooking up a new project which contains the key words: obesity, internet, new media, activism, community, fat phobia, social inclusion, and civic engagement. sounds fancy, huh? it isn’t really a secret so much as i don’t feel like regurgitating all the hours viciously robbed from hell’s kitchen to prepare it.

i am going to end this post with a question – which again goes to demonstrate why i am a bag blogger. i always assume people are going to respond (and those of you who do – i love you more than reality t.v. well, it is VERY close) enthusiastically and verbosely. the fact that i only get a few responses (despite the fact that i think i have hundreds of adoring audience members. yes, i am a delusional egomaniac. thank you for noticing cutie;) means a) i ask the wrong questions; or b) i ask questions that are not compelling enough for people to go through the bother of creating a false name only to have me reveal their true identities in the comments section. sound familiar robinmasters?

okay, my question is: what has been preoccupying you lately? work? school? a hobby? fat? i hope you all say fat so that we can be bffs. for reals forevs.

i thought it might be time for another rousing rendition of my mediocrity at crafting and maintaining this beautiful blog. since this is my like, fortieth-ish post, i am now an expert on why my blog pales in comparison to those that people read religiously and comment on. some of this list may seem familiar while other aspects of suckage will be entirely new. as always, comments for improvement are welcomed but will resultantly make you unlikeable. just so you know. enjoy.

1. this blog continues to be about nothing. i have recently refurbished my “about me” and “interests” sections. it made me feel better despite the fact that you didn’t notice. don’t pretend you did.

2. because this blog is about nothing, i will never be paid consultancy fees for anything. shitbags of hell.

3. t-bone has recently pointed out that i not only frequently have spelling errors, but that i always do. thanks for that tidbit.

4. i may or may not have mis-named my blog. i mean seriously, even i skip over blogs with titles like hate in them because i am trying to spare myself the entitled vitriol of others. what was i thinking? i hated my other blog. however, i am desperately in love with this one.

5. do people even blog in the summer? i mean, is this blog going to contribute to my pastiness? i really need a tan – like even a spray-on one. seriously.

6. i am even starting to think the minutiae of my life is interesting. is this a blog-induced state equivalent to navel-gazing in the social sciences (mainly anthropology – i mean, i’m not judging, i’m just saying…)?

7. i think all lists must contain 10 items.

8. all i want to blog about is big brother – till death do us part. hey – you know how i feel about being judged about my reality television choices. so stop it. now.

9. i have ceased and desisted sharing my blog. that can’t be good. and if i do i always tell people that they won’t want to read it. how is that for a sales pitch?

10. i can’t seem to talk about anything related to my dissertation which is both a positive and a negative thing. i mean, this blog is about procrastination, right? suggested to me by the one and only dr. beth, who has in fact completed a dissertation, hence the dr. appellation. almost dr. jacks can’t even talk about online dating much less have a blog about it. poor almost dr. jacks. is this what i should rename my blog? methinks i am on to something.

okay, so what has this installment of bad bloggerness taught all of us? not much. but it does suggest that i maybe should change the name of my blog and perhaps share it will others with the same kind of resounding endorsement i give to referrals to my hairdresser or for people to watch flight of the conchords. seriously. watch it. its friggin’ awesome folks.

vote now if you think i should change my blog title to “almost dr. jacks changes the world” or some other fabulous suggestion you wonderful people have.

11. i change my blog so often, people can’t even find it, let alone figure out what it is about (just a preview of bag blogger installment #6).

i’m a bad blogger because i suck at sales. these may seem unrelated, but stay with me, i’ll make it worth your while. swears. up to this point, i have not been able to lure my non-blogging friends into commenting in the comment section. i think that i know that they are out there. somewhere. in the interwebnets universe. but they elude the comments section. they are not even anonymously reporting on how irrelevant my posts are. nuttin’. silence. anyone who knows me, knows that melikes attention. so essentially i am bad blogger because i am not selling my blog to those who don’t blog and thus not getting the attention i need. like one of my cats, i am an attention whore. and i am jonesin’ for a fix.

i like that blogs have the potential for dialogue. the comments section creates a space of/for discussion. now, maybe, you say, you don’t say anything relevant to the lives of others and therefore they are not compelled to comment. you might say, your blog sucks. and after i say, shut up, you suck, i will acknowledge that you might be on to something. so i have concocted a top ten list of reasons why people don’t comment. here goes:

1. no one actually reads my blog – this is no. 1 because it is the most likely. in that case, i am a bag blogger because no one reads my blog – save for the four people that i am sure of – and even they are not always compelled to comment.

2. no one can figure out what my blog is about.

3. as in life, i talk too much and only pretend to listen. (kidding. i do listen. if its about me).

4. no one likes me. (impossible).

5. my blog has bad breath.

6. commenters need to get drunk with me first. (i am available most days for intoxication, save the days i teach. you’d know that if you invited me somewhere in my comments section. jerks).

7. the comments section is too complicated.

8. people are afraid of openly acknowledging that they know me.

9. people want me to pick a topic and stick to it. (don’t fence me in. seriously).

10. lurking is more fun than writing. i get that.

the most common and probable reason, besides all of the above, is that people who don’t blog don’t feel it is their “place” somehow to comment. i felt this for a long time. i was internet-paranoid: not filling in my email address on any website, not giving any information unless it was to online bank, not commenting on compelling blogs, not participating in any social networking. at all. but now that we as a culture have ridden the wave of facebook’s rise (and some say, fall) from grace, we can be the master of our so-called internet domains, no? this bad blogger post will therefore attempt to empower those of you who, like me, are afraid of certain types of internet participation. for fear of spam or public humiliation. i am a bad blogger. so, too, can you be. or you can at least be a friggin’ blog commenter in the friggin’ comments section.


(don’t make me turn this into a blog about cats. cause i’ll do it. just watch me).

at this time of swirly-headed busy-ness, i thought i might take time out to berate myself after realizing the key ingredient that i am missing on this blog which made me realize again that i am a bad blogger. unlike every good movie, i have failed to sufficiently get you invested in the character of me and those in my life. failed to introduce you to my quirks, the lovely people i spend time with, and the rhythm of my everyday life. yes, my dear blog readers, this is an opportunity to talk more about me. and like smiling, me is my favourite. (extra bonus points for anyone who can name where that bastardized movie quote comes from).

my loved one and i usually agree on movies – mainly because he loves movies and is one of those strange people who must, against all odds, watch the crappy films to the end, just in case they miraculously get better. i, one the other hand, pretend to be discerning. but really am a sucker for good characters. characters i can relate to, become one with, and ultimately be invested in. i think that is why i love love stories so much – and i don’t mean hokey comedy/romance debacles starring the likes of matthew mcconaughey and j-lo. i mean the beautiful, epic love stories like bridges of madison county and brokeback mountain. gut-wrenching, make-you-cry-like-a-baby love stories with characters you adore, pity, and love yourself by the end. ANYHOO. my point is, characterization is important. and key to the success of well, everything. (oh my goodness, isn’t that just a key nugget from the world according to jacks).

another reason i am a bad blogger is because i have no idea how to effectively and efficiently carry out this characterization. i know what you are thinking: it comes with time, the evolution of who you are through an unsaid number of posts. but for those who know me, and know me well, know that i don’t like to leave anything up to chance. plus, that takes patience and time. a whole lotta patience and time. (even more super extra bonus points for anyone who can name the song those lyrics come from) and waiting is boring, no? so here is the deal. i will admit to three quirky bits of erratic jacks behaviour and hope that i get some doosies (from all ya’ll) in return. here’s to hoping!

i) when i was very young, i used to use the clothing racks at sears for unspeakable acts. unspeakable. (and my mother still brings this fact up to anyone who enters the doors of her home. yup. i’m a very lucky person).

ii) i love baby animals. i know this doesn’t sound unusual, but the fact that i want to take EVERY baby animal home is somewhat problematic. pigs, goats, caimans, rats, fish: EVERYTHING. is was virtually impossible to travel around south america without filling my backpack with baby things. (and no matter what my loved one says/thinks, i never did. at least that is the story i am sticking to).

iii) every time i get a smidge-y tipsy, i think i can speak spanish. si. jacks + borracho = hablo. mucho hablo.

i don’t think this makes me any more endearing but it was a sufficient waste of time that allowed me to talk about my favourite subject. 😉

in other sad (for me, happy for them) news, my lovely friends M. and C. are off to galavant for 6 months and sit on beaches, get tans, and generally have a wonderful freakin’ time. while i am happy for their adventure, i am desperately jealous and sad for me. here is to much skiing in their absence to make up for my losses.

alrighty folks, now i want to hear about the quirky characters that read this blog. whether you like it or not, we are in this together.

and p.s. – matthew macconaughey is a douche.

i was going to title this post as the next in my sequential ordering of “bad blogger” posts but i’m too full. i think i am on a tryptophantastic high. anyhoo – i’m a bad blogger because i was under the impression that bloggers take christmas holidays. but i was wrong. all the blogs on my blogroll have faithfully and miraculously replenished themselves with the same insightful, witty, and creative stuff of always. so you heard it here first folks: bloggers don’t get a holiday. armed with this knowledge, i too will try, high on turkey and massive quantities of carbohydrates (including my grandmother’s kick ass stuffing which i am proud to say i can adequately approximate), attempt to write something. insightful. creative. witty. jeesh.

holidays make me think of food. which is obvious if you take into account that i stuffed myself like a christmas turkey moments before realizing my requisite duty to my dear, dear blog. also, this past christmas eve, i watched the new version of hairspray (and btw, wasn’t there an old version with ricky lake? did i dream this? is this the turkey talking? help me out here folks). the film is about difference and accepting difference (exemplified in the themes of life-as-a-fat-girl who wants to be famous and a racially segregated baltimore seeking integration through the vehicle of a local television show aptly named the corny colin show or something equally retro-tastic). this intersection of holiday feasting and fat phobia apparent in the film resonated compellingly as i think about what is ahead for many this new year. that’s right folks. exercise. dieting. the quest, as one gym i saw today advertised, for the “new you” this new year.

i, of course, pig out on holidays. take a break from everything. including worrying about how big my thighs are or how flappy the skin under my arms is when i wave (chicken wings i believe they are called). and i guess we all do. it is why we have holidays – to take a break from the always and everything of worry. plowing ahead. getting through the day. and perhaps this is why we panic when the new year hits. not only were we dissatisfied with our bodies in the everyday but then we went ahead and ate. and ate. and ate. (now i am making myself slightly hungry thinking about all the chocolate under the tree. i know. i’m full and still frothing at the mouth for dark chocolate. i never said i was strong. or not disgusting. or well-disciplined). getting back to the everyday means allowing those voices to once again control us. mentally measure our thighs. watch the flaps of skin flail.

what i was most astonished by watching hairspray was not how distracting john travolta was as a woman or the fact that christopher walken can still move like he did in his deer hunter days. nope. it was the fact that a young woman was portrayed who was strong. uninhibited. proud. talented. and fat. this is an image we never see. isn’t available. does not exist in hollywood. but there she was. beautiful and bold. never once wincing at the slights, the insults, the discrimination against her fat that the movie depicted with hilariously horrifying (a expert john waters technique) clarity.

i don’t want to get into a conversation about how the media does this to us. to women. and increasingly to men. because it is not enough. to think we are put upon. agency-less. void. but i do want to encourage thinking about difference as a way of experiencing the world. we can worry about our “new selves” – which are just copies of what is ultimately similar (that is, youthful, thin, fit, active, well-adjusted, happy – the list goes on. and on. and on) – as something beyond the confines of our embodiment and the narrow ways we have to inhabit those bodies. rather our “new selves” can be defined by different categories. and we can perhaps realize, much to our surprise and decreasing worry, that our “old selves” are increasingly habitable. because difference exists. no matter how hard we try to stamp it out with resolutions. to encourage our bodies to be something other. ultimately, and unlikely, similar.

and perhaps a smidge less fabulous.

now where did i put that chocolate…

i’m a bad blogger, or simply an annoying person, because i think that since i have begun blogging – everyone must. i’m like one of those people that finds a new restaurant and the EVERYONE has to go, reads a new book and EVERYONE has to read it, turns a certain age and then EVERYONE has to be that age. well, perhaps the last one is a bit of a stretch, but you are smelling what i’m cooking. suddenly, i can’t help thinking about the fact that everyone i know is interesting, have compelling pursuits, and are talented in the arts of the mind (is that immodest to say? everyone i know is fabulous ergo, i’m fabulous? (fyi, i just accidentally put a “t” on the end of ergo, because i thought it was silent, and found out that ergot is actually the name of a species of parasitic vagina among certain grasses and grains – no joke, look here. don’t say i never taught you anything, especially about the interspecies cornucopia of vaginas).

anyhoo. i am going to continue to be a bad blogger by attempting to make my fabulous friends torn among the doubtless fabulous blogs my other fabulous friends are wont to make now that i have incessantly insisted that everyone must blog their respective and collective fabulousness. whew. that is a lot of immodest fabulousness.

in closing, i am going to leave you with a collection of words i am not super fond of. of course i had to name my blog “i hate my blog” thereby compelling me to think of things i actually do hate and thereby perpetuating hate on “i hate my blog” blog. a disclaimer: i love love. swears. just look at previous posts.

gross words:

* panties – however, panties has significantly grown on me. when i was 11, saying panties to me could have resulted in copious amounts of vomiting.

* mustache – it is gross to say and gross on people’s faces. for real.

* skakum – a country road near where i grew up.

* taste – i don’t actually hate the word taste but i hate when waiters and waitresses ask you how something “tastes.” i find that a deeply personal question that should not be asked flippantly. 😛

* speaking of vaginas – the t word. i can cosy up to the c word in a subversive kinda way, but the t word? please. it’s horrible.

what are some of your unfavouritest words? what words give you the creeps? induce vomiting? tell me – i need to add to my repertoire…

in what i hope will become beloved feature of my blog, i present why my emergent blogging abilities suck. this is done solely for the purposes of improvement and not for purposes of pure masochism. because grad students LOVE masochism. it’s how we do. reason number one that i am a bad blogger is as follows:

i don’t not provide my readers with paragraphs. apparently this eases the reading process and makes reading inane blog posts more palatable. who knew? i thought my endless ramble of text was visually appealing. even seductive. apparently reading masses of meaningless text sucks ass. i get that.

henceforth, i am committed to paragraphs. i say, “the more, the BETTER!”.

another, somewhat related reason, that i am a bad blogger is that the rules of grammar, at times, elude me. i mean, what actually are grammar rules? did we learn them? when? and can i get my time spent in like grade one through twelve spent on learning the english language back? please?

i realized this grammatical elusiveness when i was meeting with my lovely fellow soci phders who talk about such matters as grammar. we are potentially the coolest group of hipsters one can find. 😉

also, i can’t properly pronounce the word “egg.” i hope this doesn’t interfere with my blogging.

finally, i think when people use the word “douche” to describe a person, it is freakin’ hilarious. i have committed to trying to use this word subversively as a feminist and not perpetuate the misogyny that gave birth to this trend.

this final point is a testament to how i am a bad person however. not a bad blogger.