Tag Archives: ignorance

Thanks For the Helpful Critique!

Just received this email from a stranger in my blogger inbox.

IMG_0477

And you know, there was a time in my life when this kind of baseless, spiteful, wholly unconstructive criticism would have gotten me really riled up, and set me on a path to fire back with a similarly vicious retort.

But then I graduated Kindergarten and knew better.

Not sure what happened to this guy.

Early Warning Signs of Social Awkwardness

When I was a 4th grader, I dressed up as Michael Jackson for Halloween by putting on a wig, a glove, and covering my entire face in white face paint.

Fifteen years later, it is just now occurring to me how horribly offensive that was. I somehow managed, at age 9, to unknowingly create a more awkward and offensive scenario than going in blackface. I even remember one neighbor hesitating to give me candy. I figured he just wasn’t a Michael fan.

The year before that, in 3rd grade, I went as a hobo. I wore a sign around my neck that said “Buddy, can you spare a dime?” In the town of Potomac, Maryland, where there is now a Real Housewives series (inexplicably devoid of any Jews or white people, but that’s a subject for another post) being filmed. Enough said. We had a school Halloween parade (this was back in the days when schools let children have fun), and I marched through the halls and recess yard wearing my dirty t-shirt, disheveled hair, and “hilarious” sign. The other Potomac parents loved it. The other students didn’t get it (they had never seen a poor person). The teachers, who could not afford to live in Potomac, looked away. I figured maybe they felt bad that they didn’t have a dime to give me.

“Don’t worry!” I told my teacher, laughing. “You don’t REALLY have to give me money!”

She did not smile.

Finally, at age 16, I decided to be something normal for Halloween. A friend was throwing a big Halloween dance party, and I went as Cinderella. Full-blown floor length ball gown, crown, the works.

“Finally!” my mom cried as she dropped me off at the party, “I’ve tried for years to get you wear something like this for Halloween!”

I rolled my eyes, slid the mini-van door closed, and walked into the party, fluffing my skirt upon entrance.

I was the only one in costume.

It’s a wonder I ever leave the apartment.

 

img_7086-3

 

This Prejudiced Guy

Some people might see this as the downside to speaking openly about my mental health, but I actually think this is the UPSIDE. Look how much time I saved weeding out THIS stigma-perpetuating assclown!

(Note: This happened a WHILE ago. I took screen shots of it knowing that one day, I’d find the humor in it. Today, as my story is emailed to millions as part of Active Minds’ End of Year campaign, is that day).

#changetheconversation

Alex1

alex 2