Tuesday, June 3, 2008

It's not that I'm a total bitch via keyboard


Emails are a fantastic way to lose friends! And occasionally certain relatives. Well, losing relatives is harder, because basically you're stuck with them for life. But, friends...well, you may not intend to lose them, except that your email zipped off all too quickly may seem abrupt or just downright rude. Or not. But, they think so. Emails give new meaning to the word "backfire." And the phrase "insert foot in mouth" can have seemingly far reaching consequences. I find myself frequently zipping off emails and then later, always later, questioning my words. And forget it if I'm having an off day. I'm far more likely to take it out on my email recipients than I would in person. And there's the rub.... in person, I can present myself as a fairly stable, nice and calm person. In email...well I can come across as a psychotic loon.

It's not that I'm a total bitch via keyboard. I'm not looking for a fight. I actually tend to go along in life avoiding conflict with friends and family. But, when I receive an email that just doesn't sit right with me... that's when I'm in trouble. Because then I get all fired up, inflated and filled with self-righteousness. Granted, occasionally it is warranted. Occasionally. Now, for the most part, I think the sender has not sent me an email meant to intentionally provoke. But, now they've gone and DONE IT and I am just not going to sit idly by. Some things said in email just send me over the edge. God, save me from clicking on "reply" or worse, "reply all" when I meant to just "reply" to one person! Oh...SO Guilty.

What IS IT in emails that rocks my world? Things that are usually out of my control. The problem with this is that in life...things are out of my control MOST OF THE TIME. You'd think I'd be used to it by now. But, NOOOOO. Yep, this chocolate gulping, caffeine pounding, occasional whiskey sippin' gal doesn't like the feeling of her fishnets dangling ...without her in them. You get the picture. Luckily, I haven't sent any emails that are truly scandalous... yet. But, just give me time. "Insert partially clad leg" could be my middle name. So, until they invent a little voice on my keyboard that talks to me before I hit the "send" button, I'm susceptible to looking like a virtual jackass. As opposed to just a plain, in-person type, jackass. And if I could write the dialogue, this is what my computer would utter...perhaps sotto voce: JCK....CHILL! Get the self-righteous probe out of your ass, bag the caffeine and have yourself a whiskey followed by lots of chocolate ...BEFORE you hit the "send" button!



**Picture credit: Google images


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18 comments:

Hen said...

My mouth often starts work before engaging the brain... my foot spends much of it's time in my mouth!
So don't feel bad!

Lisa said...

The problem I have with emails is we are missing all the nonverbal cues that go with so much we say--so we could be joking but sound really mean :0

Jen said...

I am a brutally honest person, to a fault, so I get myself in trouble often. That being said, I really wish more people said what they really felt. I want to truly know the people in my life, the REAL them, not the person they think they should be. So, feel free to tell me off at any time. I can take it...I might just shoot you off an email myself.

Janet said...

I rarely respond instantly to emails anymore because I'm the same way. What I think is perfectly innocent comes across as offensive to some people who are overly sensitive, er, misunderstand. There is one certain person with whom we correspond regularly who sends offensive emails deliberately to be provoking. We ignore that person now.
This is why I like pedicures. I like my feet to be nice and decorative since they spend so much time in my mouth.

barbra said...

I have sent emails that have gotten me in trouble as well. With the result that all emails I send are now bland and boring because I am afraid of being misinterpreted. Sometimes I seem pissy in an email just because I was being succinct. That aspect of emailing sucks.

Angeline said...

Seriously, I would really be interested to see one of 'those' emails sent to you.

if the emails could really fire you up....it really makes me wonder if they are your 'true' friends, or rather, worthy to be called 'your friend'

flutter said...

or perhaps the people who take offense should ask you if you mean things how they took them before they freak out?

just sayin'....

HRH said...

hahaha. Sounds like the lost friends may be a relief. Who needs people who can't see through a caffeine-induced self-righteous rant...really, who needs 'em?

Madge said...

Daniel Goleman wrote a book called Social Intelligence -- in it he talks about how our brains are reading/scanning people as we interact with them even before we speak, etc. it happens on the phone too -- but not on e-mail. so it's easy to misunderstand an e-mail or take it the wrong way because you can't read all the subtexty stuff.

ok. that was exhausting.

drinking now.

Rima said...

I am dying to know the content of the email that precipitated this post!

Jenn @ Juggling Life said...

I find the "send later" feature on e-mail to be invaluable!

g said...

Hah! I used to work for a protocol office, so sometimes we literally proof-read each others emails before we hit "send"!!

At work I have a very different take on email than a lot of the people I correspond with - I am very careful and try to parse every word. I guess its the training from the protocol office.

sometimes you get nutsy emails - like one of my favorites, in response to a question of "Which choice would you prefer, A or B?"
the answer was "yes!"

phd in yogurtry said...

Some experts say 90% or more of our communication is nonverbal. Emails contain NO nonverbal communication, so that leaves 90% up for grabs.

MamaGeek said...

I'm with Rima, I'm DYING to know what was in that e-mail! :)

Mighty Morphin' Mama said...

One of the biggest issues in this virtual world. I hate instant messaging for exactly that reason.
My ex-business partner was notorious for coming across horribly on im and would alienate potential customers and contractors alike. ugh.
I hope that this was minor and is now fixed!

Jennifer H said...

Details, lady, details?

I know that feeling. I used to love AOL mail because if the mail I sent was to another AOL user, I could hit "Unsend" and take it back. No such luck with the email I use now.

Jason said...

Oh, yes. I've gotten myself into trouble this way, too. It's worse than spoken words because people will go back and read your written words over and over....getting angirer and angrier.....

Black Thirteen said...

I admit, at this juncture, I have nothing more constructive to say than I've been here for 10 minutes, and I really enjoy the title graphic you have.

Especially "Mommy's Medicine".

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