Marissa Lingen (mrissa) wrote,
Marissa Lingen

Ohhhhhh, the draaaaaaama

Helpful hints in dealing with the Mris from this week:

1) (from today) Random unsolicited criticism of my life and/or my family, especially without observation or context, is not going to make me a huggy happy girl. If you only stay on people's friendslists when you can make that kind of comment with no cranky response, you'll probably be happier elsewhere. I'm not sure where, since few people in my experience actually find that fun and useful. But elsewhere, anyway. Consider it fair warning.

If you don't think I'm doing a good job raising my dog because the said dog bit you or in some other way misbehaved, please do let me know if I didn't observe the misbehavior or did not seem to find it a problem. (Some people, for example, do not want dogs in their laps; let me know if you're one of them, and I'll do my best to keep her off you. Other people want small dogs in their laps, so I don't consider it a general misbehavior.) If you don't think I'm doing a good job raising my dog but you haven't actually even met the beast, keep your mouth shut.

This goes double for kids, when we have them.

Further, if you don't like how I'm handling my writing career, my relationships with friends and family, my health, my religion, my politics, my yardwork, my hairstyle, or my collection of interesting Belgian cheeses, odds are still fairly good that I didn't ask you. If I become pantingly eager to know if you think I'm doing all right with these things, I know where to find you. Really.

ETA: Please note that, say, a political argument is not the same thing as a personal criticism on political grounds. Right way: "Here's why I think working within the two-party system is more effective on the national level." Wrong way: "You're a member of the [third party]s? You must be stupid!"

2) (from yesterday) The great thing about arguing with me is that I'm here to do my side! You don't have to do my side! You can just do your side! I will take care of telling you what I think!

I know e-mail can take forever. Up to two weeks, even, when I'm busy! But I feel sure you can wait. It is perfectly okay to say, "Do you think X? Is that what you're saying?" This is reasonable. This is useful. Proceeding to phrase the rest of your argument as though I have argued X, and that you have defeated my argument of X! you emerge triumphant! scoooooore! may have worked to win points in high school debate. But it is not actually a way to conduct an adult argument where both sides are interested in what the other side has to say. If you are more interested in "winning," congratulations! You win! I forfeit; I'm done. But for me, even conversations that have become arguments are still supposed to be conversations, so assuming I mean something I haven't even slightly said and then doing your victory dance because you've out-argued yourself? Called a straw man. Not cool. Cut it out.

So okay? Okay.

Some days I hate the internet.

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