I Wonder What Dating Was Like Before Social Media.

Wildflowers Unscripted Writing Challenge Day #3: A story–setting 70s, 80s or 90s

As I plan to do several times this month during the writing challenge, I’m taking some editorial liberties with today’s topic. Because 1) no one wants to read my fiction; my fiction is pretty abysmal and 2) if I wrote a story from personal experience based on one of these decades, I’d be writing from the vantage point of a fifth grader. Also not appealing content.

For those who want to argue that I’m not fully living up to the “challenge” of a writing challenge by taking a detour from the topics, I would like to invite you to kick rocks. And I wish you a good day.

If I were, however, to write a story set in the 70s, 80s and 90s, it would be a love story. And, when I thought about that, the first thing that came to my mind was “Wow, love in the pre social media era. I wonder what that would have been like.” I imagined the kind of characters akin to Darius Lovehall and Nina Mosley, getting to know each other’s psyches, souls and silhouettes without the interference of social media.

I was having dinner with my best friend this past weekend and we somehow started talking about when is the appropriate time to post pictures of the person you’re “talking to” on Instagram. Let me tell you that I have done this twice in my dating life and both times, the score was Instagram: 2, Tyece: 0. Both situations were ephemeral at best and only caused way too much speculation from friends and strangers alike once they were posted.

Instagram also includes the social politics of “liking” someone’s photos. Like a photo too soon (i.e. 38 seconds after it’s posted) and you seem desperate. Like a photo that was posted weeks ago and you’re labeled a creep. God forbid you actually, oh, I don’t know, really like the photo you’re seeing. With all the social politics, you better just like it silently in that little heart of yours and not actually click anything.

Then there is the endless stream of assumptions that accompany any interaction you ever have with any human being on Twitter. Any and everything on Twitter can be taken out of context. All I can say is thank God people have finally retired that “one of my followers” bullshit because that got me into trouble more times than I would like to admit.

There is Tumblr, the dark and emo cave of social media where you go to drop subliminal messages about your dating life. “Today was a good day.” And probably because you got laid, not because you didn’t have to use your A.K.

And, finally, Facebook. The place you go to completely romanticize every detail about your love life. The place where you go to receive 289 likes for your engagement ring photo. Or, if you’re me, the place you avoid at all costs. Either/or.

Yes. I wonder what life was like before all of this.

We could lament the fact that it feels virtually impossible to date in today’s world without the intrusion of social media. Or we could just work our hardest to still forge genuine connections with people. I had a conversation with a friend many months ago and he dropped a piece of advice that I still hold close to my heart: “What matters is if he shows up.” I sat there overanalyzing all the fickle signs like texts and tweets. Then he said that and it’s an adage I’ve always remembered. 

Social media will send you into a tailspin trying to figure out someone’s moves and motives. But, when you cut out that noise, you are left with a person. You are left with what they are truly giving you or what they are truly keeping from you. You can twist a tweet to mean anything you would like. But when a person shows you who they really are, you don’t have much of a choice but to believe them.

Xoxo,

Tyece

The Relationship I Never Write About

Wildflowers Unscripted Writing Challenge Day #2: A past or current relationship

You say I never write about you. I’m not sure how much you even frequent my blog, so chances are you won’t see this until or unless I mention it to you.

Awhile ago we had a brunch date. I walked in mildly irritated, sweating underneath my enormous purple coat because I always get sweaty when I’m stressed out trying to find parking. I plopped down and when you mentioned I probably didn’t pay the meter correctly, I got even more annoyed.

But, then it went away. It all dissipated as we found ourselves in a sea of laughter and drinks. I sipped my mimosa as we traded stories from our week. We pontificated about everything and nothing. We talked about the future, we joked about all the hipsters in Hampden where we were having brunch and we eyed other people’s food wondering if we should have ordered that instead.

I do not know what my life is without you. I never want to know what my life is without you. You know my insides, you know how my heart beats, you know me. You get me. In a way that no one else does and no one ever will.

You are often times the last person I talk to at night. Sometimes you are the only person I talk to on Sundays. (Well…my mom, too. Obviously.) If we go a day without speaking, something feels off and I remind myself the next day not to let that happen.

And, even though our relationship is not without its kinks or disagreements and sometimes full-blown, knock-down-drag-out fights, I love you. I love you in a way that I hardly ever blatantly express. I love you in a way that this blog post will never encapsulate. My love for you is a reflex, a second layer of skin, a natural reaction.

I love you because you are everything I am not. You are funny and instantly likeable and loving. You are nurturing and protective. You are charismatic. You strike up conversations with complete strangers with aplomb. You wear bright colors and bring life into any room you enter. Where my edges are rough, yours are smooth.

We always find it strange how people can have such frayed relationships with their siblings. We say that. “I know so-and-so and they hardly ever talk to their sister. Isn’t that weird?” But, maybe we fail to realize just how fortunate we are to have the relationship that we do. Maybe we forget the stars and the moon and the sun gave us something special when they gave us each other.

sisterMy sister is my other half. She has walked through fire, stood in rain and still managed to come out with a smile on her face. I don’t know if I can say the same for myself. My sister is my sanity. She has heard every idea about Twenties Unscripted before it was born. She regularly listens to me wax poetic about my dreams and my fears alike. She knows the DNA of my heartbreaks, hook-ups and holy shit moments. My sister is my best friend, my pillar, my rock.

See? I finally wrote about you. Now we can put that debate to rest.

 

Xoxo,

Tyece

Words About Me/My 2014 Vision Board

Writing Challenge Day 1: “About Me” done creatively (collage, poem, etc.)

Detalis for the challenge.
Detalis for the challenge.

Today kicks off the From A Wildflower and Twenties Unscripted February Writing Challenge. In the name of honesty, I should tell you I wasn’t quite sold on doing a writing challenge this month. Aside from my day job and blogging nightime life, I’m in the last four weeks of planning and producing my first art and performance showcase. So, tired is an understatement. I know; isn’t this such an optimistic start to the challenge?

But, I did a writing challenge back in August and even though I was exhausted and close to hurling my laptop out the window by the end of the month, I felt good. There’s something vainly fulfilling about saying that you wrote every day for 30 or 31 (or, in this case, 28) consecutive days. And, if anything else, it makes you appreciate the breaks you take from writing to unwind and trap new inspiration. The beauty of this month’s challenge is that we’re not being asked to produce 500-700 words the way I usually do when I write. There are short pieces, poems and even visuals built in to the month.

In fact, today’s topic called for us to do an “About Me” in a creative way. So, I decided to spend an evening surrounded by a bunch of my magazines cutting out words from them that I thought represented me–who I am, where I’ve been and where I’m going. I also think this collage will serve as my 2014 vision board.

collage

There are two quotes on the photo that are a bit tough to see, so I’ll type them out:

“What I like about young people is the potential is there but not developed yet. In a way, they’re sort of abstract.”

“I think people think I’m harder and more arrogant and cocky than I am because I know how to put on a front, but it’s nothing like who I am inside. To be honest, I’m really, overly, scarily sensitive.”

If your mental stamina hasn’t run out yet, consider joining the challenge. And, be sure to tweet me at @tyunscripted and my wonderful wildflower crew at @fromawildflower when you post. And use the hashtag #wildflowersunscripted. Don’t worry; we won’t crucify you if you miss some days. Well, at least I don’t think we will. That wasn’t part of the deal when we set this up.

Let’s write, fools.

Xoxo,

Tyece