How to Portray a New Image (not necessarily an accurate one!) Using Social Media

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Alrighty, so interestingly enough WE (that would be you AND I) are no different than popular products that companies advertise. Why? Because we all want to be well-received by the public and we like to think of ourselves as having a solid warranty, right?

I don’t know about you, but I never looked at things quite in that light when I first attempted to use Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram  — so now I have to do a major “rebranding” of myself as a person.

And maybe so do you?

You know, like how McDonalds used to just make America fat, but now they look like Starbucks and serve salads! And how Target used to be just another low-brow discount store but now it carries Fiorucci, Mizrahi, Giannulli, and Fusilli. (Note: these’ll make you hungry for Italian food, but only the last one is actually pasta — the first three are high-profile designers!)

Here are some tips for using each of the popular online networks to do a major personal revamp! It is worth mentioning that you can project an entirely different image of yourself on each separate one. For instance, I can use Twitter to rebrand myself as a well-regarded author (who doesn’t look like Starbucks, or serve salads!) and then Instagram for depicting myself as an ultra-fun friend! And Facebook to get the word out that I’m the latest sex symbol to put Marilyn to shame. (Uh, that’d be Marilyn Manson!) Basically you can characterize yourself however you want, so use your imagination!

And Now Without Further Adieu . . .  (What’s adieu and why is it always escaping being held hostage?)

TWITTER: If you lose your train of thought after 140 characters like I do, then Tweets are perfect for the reinventing process! Also due to the abrupt nature of the post, you should intentionally cut yourself off mid-sentence to invoke intrigue. i.e. Here’s a recent one of mine — “Meeting with my agent today for a power lunch and heavy negotiations about . . . ” (Oops, ran out of characters!) Nobody needs to know it’s actually my health insurance Agent and I’m trying to get a dental plan added on!

SNAPCHAT: Also ideal since what you post vanishes after 10 seconds, which is coincidentally the maximum timespan of my memory! I like to put out a photo of me dancing on tables (with my bra on top of my head) or swinging from chandeliers (which are actually Polaroids from my college sorority days!) but by the time all my highfalutin decorator friends zoom in to scrutinize the texture of the tablecloth or the brand of the chandelier, the whole thing magically disappears! Meanwhile, the lingering effect is me as fun party girl that everyone now wants to invite to their next shindig.

FACEBOOK:  Posting extremely frequently is the key here so you’ll get comments and likes literally around-the-clock. It also helps to have every day be your birthday so you have a constant stream of well-wishers. For instance, each night at midnight I go into FB settings and modify my date of birth to the following day. Instantly, all my Facebook Friends trip over themselves to leave their best regards in the comments section, complete with custom kitten memes and colorful cakes with candle pics, etc. I use this particular “365 day a year birthday” technique because I want to create the image that I am a “Born-Again.”

INSTAGRAM: Liberally use hashtags here. Trust me, you won’t get a reputation for being a cannabis dealer but you may constantly order hash-browns at brunch restaurants. Also to stand out, whilst everyone else is posting their silly selfies, you should post shelfies because this will project an image that you are still a bookworm in a Kindle Kingdom. Celfies (photos of you munching lotsa celery) are a good way to make people believe you’re a health nut or a Vegan.

PINTEREST: I make specific boards by tagging certain “guilt-inducing” photos to give my grown kids (who’ve flown the nest without nary a backwards glance!) some subliminal suggestions. I created one with lots of crafty projects of old, skinny, wrinkled, gray-haired sock puppets on crutches. I titled it “self-portraits.” So far nobody has come home for a visit, but I remain optimistic. Another board has pictures of adorably decorated baby nurseries with sad-looking dolls in the crib. I’m hoping that will propel me into “Nanna” status before I’m too old to see or hear any grandchildren. Another album has hundreds of photos of ET phoning home. Cleverly subtle, yet maybe too subtle — so far my cell hasn’t buzzed once.

LINKEDIN: I like to use LinkedIn to represent myself as being highly qualified to do anything and everything. Did you know you can make a resume for playing with kittens? Because that’s one of my top-notch skillsets.

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TEXTING: Yes! You can even use your cellphone for revising your stale reputation. It’s all done through an act I like to call, “Mistaken Texts On Purpose!” I am sure at one time or another you’ve received an odd message and afterwards the sender immediately wrote, “Never mind that! Meant for someone else.” Meanwhile can you unsee it?? Of course not. So use this method to intentionally transfer information to someone whose opinion of you needs to be readjusted. Your ex broke up with you because you’re a loser? Send this “accidental” text to him/her. “Hey! Can you ask the bank to hold off on closing escrow on my beach home, the lottery officials said my first 80 million will transfer at the close of business hours today. Thanks.” Followed by a, “Sorry! Disregard that last text. Hope all is well!”

WORDPRESS BLOG: Use WordPress every chance you get to throw your followers off track. You want to keep writing strange, quirky, “so bad it’s definitely putrid” posts so that when you hit the New York Times with your bestselling novel, everyone will be so surprised you could knock them over with a feather. Then go on Etsy and use it to market colorful, unique feathers.

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Home Publishing Not What You Think!

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“How can I get up on our refrigerator like all my friends do?” my youngest son asked me. After admonishing him that household furniture isn’t for climbing on top of, (and shaking my head at other parents’ inability to properly discipline) I realized he was actually inquiring as to how one of his watercolor paintings could be displayed on the front of the fridge!

Along with plastic bright-colored alphabet letters, (even though I have zero preschoolers anymore!) and the tiny nonsense magnetic poetry words (someone recently pushed a few random tiny rectangles together to form the sentence, “I will pour out yesterday after we love today and squirt out tomorrow!”) the fridge spotlighted his five older siblings’ important school flyers, report cards, old photographs, party invitations, announcements, pencil doodles, and yep, tons of really cool student art.

All of this paper paraphernalia was tacked up in such overcrowded disarray, the built-in purified water dispenser was probably anticipating an eviction notice.

But hey, (now that he mentioned it!) it dawned on me that my son wasn’t the only one excluded. Nothing of mine had made it up onto those shiny stainless-steel paneled doors (which I now considered so prestigious, they rivaled The New Yorker. And received more hungry stares a day than a big time magazine’s circulation!) either, and I was supposedly the Queen of this here kitchen. Hmmph. A new career goal was born.

Mustering up my self-confidence, I finally submitted something to The Refrigerator, and here’s what happened.

Dear Author,

Thank you for breaking the ice and trying us with your recent listicle cleverly titled, “Groceries Needed for Sunday’s Bridal Shower.” While we feel it has a certain ravenous charm, the subject matter may not be cool enough for the fresh image our staff strives to preserve. But chill out (and don’t get cold feet!) because we’ve forwarded your piece on to another appliance whose sleek surface we feel may be a better fit.

Cheers,

Frigidaire, side-by-side model #FFPSS2677RF

Next came this.

Dear Writer,

Hey, what’s cooking? I’ve received your work for possible inclusion in our upcoming doorthology. Though I quickly warmed up to the idea of featuring specific food brands, I’m not so hot on possible copyright infringement. Could Betty Crocker sue? That’s the burning question!. At this point in time, I think I’ll pass, but your concept will go on the back burner for a future issue and I invite you to send something else so I can evaluate your range. Piece of cake, right?

Yours Truly,

General Electric Convection Oven

I was feeling truly rejected but he also must’ve forwarded my submission to another colleague because this notice quickly arrived.

Dear Dishpan Hands,

We appreciate you thinking of us as a possible placement for your original endeavor, but currently we’re at maximum capacity and fully loaded with other people’s work.  Try us again during our normal cycle as we often miss a spot and then we might see the glass as half-empty. Future submission guidelines include staying energy efficient and editing out dirty words, as our motto is “Keep it clean.” Hopefully this wasn’t a detergent err a deterrent in your publishing career.

Sparklingly Yours,

Whirlpool 24 Inch Built-In Dishwasher

I gave up all hope and concluded that my writing would never see the light of day on a kitchen display. And that’s when I got the next best thing . . . 

Dear Little Miss Menopause,

Congratulations on taking the plunge with your writing because you’ve just bowled me over!  I’m flushed with pride to accept your recent work and will post it prominently as soon as I get a handle on our next issue, but let’s just say, “you’ll be on a roll now!” I know it stinks, but please keep a lid on your excitement and don’t go clogging blogging about this news just yet.

Have a nice day!

Downstairs Guest Bathroom Toilet

There was only one thing left to do . . . write a
“Dear John” letter to thank him for giving me this porcelain publication promotion.

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This Man Knows Me Inside-Out (and he’s never even met me!)

BLOG_freelancers_H-645x285Not a day goes by that I don’t get an email from this most perceptive, intuitive, and thoroughly insightful guy. An online relationship expert I’ll call “The Love Bug” to protect his privacy here.

How he found me in the first place, I’ll never know — but I’ve been utterly fascinated by his email subject titles. And he apparently personally writes them all JUST FOR ME because my name is always front and center.

Have a look at some screenshots of his emails. First he tells me that I’m dreadful dating material . . .

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But he can hear my sighs!

And he’s “got” me.

Next comes this . . .

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Wow, he really does think I’m the problem. So I read it. And he’s 100% right. It’s an utter fiasco dating myself. I tell myself stale jokes I’ve heard 100 times before, I never like what I order in restaurants, and I toss and turn in bed — plus steal my own blankets.

So then he goes on to suggest . . .

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I guess since I’m a “difficult date” I’ll need to settle for cyber. But it seems I’ve already got “an interesting man” writing to me. Every. Single. Day. “The Love Bug!” And yes, I certainly do know the deal. (And the drill.)

He follows it up with some fascinating questions in his subject titles. Things I’d never dared wonder about before. Like this . . .

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Although I was kinda hoping those two things had been minimized after I had my breast reduction surgery.

And then something everyone should ask themselves at one time or another . . .

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Gosh. We both receive rocks on Halloween night?

Then he just starts shooting out a bunch of (apparently!) necessary advice.

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I quickly solved the “walking all over me” problem by buying an Oriental rug, so guys could step on that instead.

He must’ve approved of that solution because next I get this:FullSizeRender (71)

And here I thought all along that I WAS THE BAD DATE??

Next he sent a surprising revelation that was a bit hard to swallow:

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Why are you even in this business then???

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Not really. But now that he mentions brooms, I don’t like it when men sweep stuff under the rug. In fact I absolutely HATE that behavior. But I should have guessed Love Bug knows me better than even I know myself, because he writes back quickly — this time reiterating the 3 other things he knows I hate besides avoidant men . . .

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But hey, at least he put that comma in-between “hate” and “Stephanie” (see pic above) or else I’d be getting a complex right about now.

Well now it seems he thinks there’s still a little hope for me because he sends this subject title next.

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I decide this must be one POTENT email and I’ll save it for someone super special. Finally I decide upon George Clooney. I forward the above email to my handsome (unrequited) celebrity with a message asking him to merely read it (and then prepare to fall head over heels for yours truly!) but so far it’s done nothing for him. I subsequently also let my mailman get a quick peek at the email and now he’s smiling more often at me, so it wasn’t a total loss.

But apparently Love Bug thought both George and the postal worker were bad choices because I got this:

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And how come I don’t have any recollection of emailing him back??  I am starting to get worried about what else I don’t remember doing!

So I write to him, (this time consciously!) making my case that my mailman was actually pretty nice and now I even get my packages carried up to my front porch!

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“I don’t think so,” I write back. “He’s now taken to sorting all my junk mail and puts the coupons on top! I may just have to play ‘postman’ with him soon!”

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OMG!  I was only joking around! I value old-fashioned letter-carriers who wear uniforms, so sue me. But I can assure you, I am NOT a loose woman. Doesn’t he know that about me already? (Also did you notice he mentions a wife here??? Does SHE know he corresponds with me every day?? Hmmm)

Then the Love Bug does something incredible! He proves to me he’s not like every other man I meet by sending these two subjects back to back!

 

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Wow, I am so impressed with his integrity and humility. So I write him again and say, “All is forgiven. I don’t really think the mailman is all that hot anyhow. Actually I don’t find any male all that hot.

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Honestly, nobody likes a Know-it-all!

And then comes his first astonishing confession . . .

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Seriously?? Well I know it was NOT with me. I would have remembered something like that. I have a friend Tiffany, who also receives this same love expert’s email advice, (so much for my personal name shining in the subject!) so perhaps he cheated with Tiffany? The hussy. Turns out she read the same message and thought it was with me he’d been philandering with.

By then The Love Bug follows this shocker up with another email saying, “just teasing” and actually he had gone all Dorothy on us! He really hadn’t committed an infidelity — he thought he had cheated but then he woke up and it was just a dream he had of being an adulterer, like the tired plot device in The Wizard of Oz. But he did describe this dream in vivid detail to his loving wife who simply said, “That’s nice, honey. Shall we have lamb or chicken tonight?” He then used this entire scenario to illustrate the ultimate trust between a man and woman.

At this point, I am thinking I’ve had just about enough of this guy’s bizarre 6th sense and his other shenanigans as well, so I casually click unsubscribe.

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Alrighty then, do you see what he’s doing here?? He’s projecting how he feels about my leaving his email-subscription list onto me.

So I thought I’d make it perfectly clear who is pulling away from whom just one more time, so I send an email with UNSUBSCRIBE in the subject title.

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Really, Love Bug Sir?!  You’re still doing this reverse psychology thing on me?  Let’s get things straight. I’m pulling away from YOU and YOU’RE the desperate one doing the luring!

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Clearly this is a dig that he is now going to make Tiffany his main cyber gal. FINE WITH ME! So I write back and tell him I’ve had better relationship advice from a lady bug and the only reason I can justify his being “The Love Bug” is because he’s starting to really bug me and he should buzz off!

FullSizeRender (100)Interesting reframe. I insult him and tell him off and he calls it “sharing.” I decide ignoring him is the best plan. He continues to send me emails and finally this….

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Haha! Even my six kids don’t stoop to that dumb tact when they want me to pay attention to them. I ignore some more. He tries flattery.

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And it’s not even Thanksgiving! I write back that I am also grateful for the time we had together and don’t mean to nitpick, but I’m just not feeling it anymore.

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I don’t see any need to defend myself for not liking mushrooms, olives, or him — so I write back saying I actually now have a solid boyfriend and am moving on to home decorating expert email lists.

He tries the “ticking clock” stunt on me.

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Then he tosses out some random Kenny Roger’s poker advice.

FullSizeRenderFollowed by another personal insult because obviously he knows my large bra cup size too.

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Triggered, I quickly fire back that my boyfriend tells me all the time how much he adores my breasts, thank you very much.

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That does it. He’s just begging for it now! I start my own email list regarding, “Advice For Online Relationship Coaches.” I harass him every night before I go to sleep with subjects like, “Hi Love Bug! Do You Know if You’ve Helped a Couple or Just Instigated a Divorce?” and “What Happens When an Email listee Contacts Your Wife and Tells Her She’s The Subject of Much of Your Relationship Advice, Love Bug?”

Finally I can’t resist and send one final email with a subject header that says, “What Do You and Lucy (From the Peanuts comic strip) Have in Common?” In the body of the email it says, “Both of your advice is worth about 5 cents!

I never heard from Love Bug again.

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Hi Readers – – This was a fun blog for me to write, but because the emails were legit, I blocked out any identifying information with those silly hat images. But maybe you recognize the guy’s blue collared shirt?? DISCLAIMER: Before you feel too sorry for me, you might notice the dates of his emails are all out of order. I took them out of context to add humor in this mostly fictional tale where the main point was a woman (me!) thinking someone is writing to her PERSONALLY just because her name is on it, when it’s really sent out to the masses.