Googling Yourself

Yesterday, I made the stupid decision to google “Sister Wolf.”

It’s weird to see yourself as others see you. I’m used to interacting with strangers on my own territory but finding yourself being discussed elsewhere is the equivalent of hearing what people say behind your back. And naturally, they want to talk shit about you.

I was so pleased to find several people who loved my blog! But the pleasure gave way to annoyance when I came across a website devoted to criticizing bloggers. There was even a forum for the critics to chat among themselves, but I didn’t read it. It was enough to find some people dismissing me as crazy, with one commenter even noting disgustedly that I should be getting grief therapy instead of blogging.

It has never even  occurred  to me that people might disapprove of my grief.  And I never think of myself as crazy, or even weird. I think the critics were upset that I outed a troll, and that’s something I’ve thought about a lot. Upon reflection, I’d do it again, because that’s the only way to effect a consequence for cowards who want to hide behind anonymity.

Well, you can’t please everyone, right?   It’s better to not google yourself. It’s the one instance where ignorance actually is bliss.

But then, I was buying my kid a wallet at Ross Dress for Less, when a sales assistant asked me if I was aware of their Every Tuesday Discount for seniors. Sure enough, my reflexes are so slow that I didn’t slap her in the face for suggesting that I am a senior. She went on to explain that it’s for people “55 and older.”

I glared at her and said something like, Okay, I’ll take the discount but you’re not supposed to think I’m 55 or older. She smiled back, sweetly and blankly. What a fucking cunt! ™

God, it’s so awful how you can’t control people. I’ll never get used to it. But I can write to Ross Dress for Less and complain about this assault on my self-esteem. It might be fun to try to get them to apologize. I could even call it grief therapy!

Good idea or not?

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30 Responses to Googling Yourself

  1. Tanya says:

    Fuck! You DO NOT look 55+, goddammit! I honestly thought that you had to be in your early to mid-forties when I first encountered your blog. Damn be the sales associates/cashiers who think that it’s in their best interest to ‘err toward the older’ when servicing. It’s rude and unnecessary. To her tiny bit of credit, I remember thinking how ‘old’ 24 seemed when I was seventeen or so… Also, my mom looks like she’s 63, when she’s actually a decade younger. I shudder to think that one day I may age in the very same way. Point being, you look great, and fuck that cunt. Let’s see her at 57!

  2. Joan says:

    The addition of the yellow glove is truly inspired!

  3. Kelly says:

    It never occurred to me that I should take my husband to Ross on Tuesdays until I read this post. He looks like he’s about 45, but he will be 58 in October. Thanks for the money saving tip!

    Of course, it will take a lot of convincing for me to get him to go. “God, it’s so awful how you can’t control people.” Hahahahahaha.

    I say write away…it’s right up there with the hotel desk clerk who asked me if I was pregnant (when I really just have the body of Mrs. Doubtfire).

  4. RedHead says:

    Isn’t a website criticizing bloggers…a blog?

  5. RedHead says:

    And yes, definitely write to them. That’s appalling.

  6. David Duff says:

    Well, I can only say that on my one and only (alas) visit to your great country to celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary and our 50th year, I was absolutely delighted when the desk clerk at a Hampton Inn checked my passport and proudly informed me that I qualified as “a senior citizen” and was thus qualified for a discount. Splendid chap! And God Bless America!

  7. Pam power says:

    I just love you Sister Wolf. You are gold.

  8. Dexter VanDango says:

    , did you take advantage of modern dentistry while in the colonies? I’m sure they could have FedEx’d your new choppers back to Old Blighty..

  9. Dru says:

    Pay no attention to the whiners, Sister.

    I mean, you know they exist, since plenty of them come here to do their bitching too, but they’re not worth the bandwidth. And if anyone can claim with a straight face that you look over 55, I’ll eat my hat.

  10. Andra says:

    Grin and bear it, darling, grin and bear it.
    Old age actually becomes fun and there are new tricks to learn.
    Like, when an argument with a shop assistant or a tradesman is not going your way you can always resort to the old, “Well, I’m an old woman and I don’t know what to do” trick and give a little sniffle.
    I haven’t had to bring this big gun out so far but I am keeping it in reserve for emergencies.

  11. Tallulah Eulallie says:

    Those cocksuckers from the AARP are relentless. Every week they send me an invitation to join. How in hell did I get on THIS list?

  12. patni says:

    My parents are divided on the issue. When they reached 60 they stood separately in line for the movies, my mom proudly declaring she was a senior and wanted her discount dammit, and my dad who refused to claim senior-ship even if it got him a dollar off.

  13. tartandtreacly says:

    But ARE you 55+? Are you offended because she was tactless, or because she was wrong?

    When I was younger people always used to guess that I was at least 5+ years older, and it bothered the heck out of me. Now that I AM older people understimate my age. I anticipate after a decade or two, the inevitable Asian Melting Face Syndrome will hit, the cycle will revert, and people will be shocked when I tell them I’m not an octagenarian.

    I’m trying to make peace with it all. My age is my age, and my looks are my looks – the only thing I can do is to take ownership of it. Society doesn’t need to cater to my vanity, and I certainly don’t need to cater to its ideals and value judgements about youth or the lack thereof.

    I think you can probably find something more enjoyable to do with your time than write a complaint letter to Ross Customer Relations about a hapless sales associate.

  14. Sister Wolf says:

    Tanya – Let’s see her, indeed, godammit.

    Joan – Yep, it’s brilliant. I really like her stuff.

    Redhead – Well, it has a forum, so it’s not a blog in the usual sense.

    tratantreacly – NO! I can’t find something more enjoyable, obviously.

  15. kt says:

    There is no way you look 55+. But kudos that you handled it as well as you did. I freak when I get “ma’am,” which is especially confusing considering I still look about 12. (Asian.)

  16. David Duff says:

    Dexter, let me tell you that I am the proud owner of what can only be described as the very ‘best’ of 1940s British dentistry! The damn things are so higgledy-piggledy it was a positive relief the other month when one finally fell out. I did suggest to my dentist that he might like to whip out the lot of them and give me a nice set of even, pearly whites because then, I said to his young nurse with a roguish wink, I’d look just like George Clooney, wouldn’t I? She was not amused. No sense of humour, these young people!

    Anyway, I have now discovered why you Americans wear sun-glasses all the time, it’s because you can’t stand the glare from all those ‘fright-white’ teeth you flash at everybody!

  17. Marky says:

    Write the letter! I’ve known you for ten years now, and honestly, I don’t think you age at all. I know you have birthdays, but I don’t think of you as someone who actually ages.

    The letter and its response could be hilarious. Please write it.

  18. Debbie says:

    Sister, if you haven’t googled the address for Ross I have it for you. 4440 Rosewood Dr., Pleasanton, Ca. 94588. How old we are or aren’t is none of their fucking business. You look fabulous.

  19. Andra says:

    Re Duff and his choppers ..
    Why DO Americans have so many teeth?
    I’m thinking Mary Tyler Moore here but there are so many more.
    Surely they have more than their quota.

    And yes, I can definitely see a bit of George Clooney there. I just won’t say where.

  20. Dexter VanDango says:

    “The more teeth we lose the more biting we become.”

  21. Dexter VanDango says:

    A young hair-dresser once said to me – I kid you not – “Cutting your hair is difficult.. gray hair is so dead.”

    She never saw me again.

  22. Mo in KCMO says:

    Sis: I love you; and this you know from my past comments!

    FOA (First of all) the image you chose is from one fine photographer and social commenter that people must explore!

    Second, “It has never even occurred to me that people might disapprove of my grief.” For starters, Sis, grief is an individual, spiritual, and sacred passage, and NOT open to review, approval, or disapproval. No one EVER has the right to an opinion about an individual’s grief. Period. So. OK. fuckum, OK!?

    Third, Sis: please fret not those “young-stas” at Ross. They only trying to make they rent. They NOT Nordstrom, Sacks, or any cool boutique. They paid minimum…IE, for having no experience, or finesse. No Biggie. They do a great job of checking you out efficiently with your merchandise.

    Girl, if someone perceives you worthy of a “whatever” discount, smile your broadest, toothy smile, and say “YES, GODAMMIT!…I AM SOOOO WORTHY!”

    A discount in this economy is worth a hellovah lot more than having any “whatever” stranger recognize your truest inner self. 🙂

    A dear “friend’o’mine” told me to never be “too proud”. I pass along this wisdom. Age is a wunnerful thing!!…and all so relative!
    I often hang on your words…..

    Hang loose!
    Love you.
    Mo in KCMO

  23. candy says:

    People are not all nice, you know, some people are passive agressive like that lady at the cash register..that’s passive agressivness…once you talk about personal things online, people tend to judge you more because they know more about you, you give them more to talk about. THAT DOESN’T MEAN THEY KNOW YOU. That’s not your fault, some people don’t tend to want to understand who you are as a whole entity and the power of the words you use when writing. I think you help a great deal by talking about grief because this helps people like me who go through depression and it helps you understand where you are at in your grieving process. People will alwasy criticize no matter what. You look beautiful like I said before and there is no age for beauty, age is just a number.

  24. Dru says:

    ^ couldn’t have said it better myself.

  25. Lynz says:

    That would cause me great internal conflict as the pragmatic midwesterner in me would say “Ooh, a discount”, while my vain female side would counter with “wait, don’t I look the age I feel?”. Ultimately, I would need to know how much of a discount was involved, and would then pro-rate my outrage accordingly.

    The first time I went into a Ross was on vacation and I had to ship 5 flat rate boxes home- full of shoes.

  26. WendyB says:

    “God, it’s so awful how you can’t control people.” — I’ve always been extremely bitter about this.

  27. WendyB says:

    And I think I have to save Candy’s “That doesn’t mean they know you” comment for future reference. Good comment.

  28. don't.make.our.job.harder. says:

    don’t complain about the employee. she is doing her fucking job whether she likes to ask or not. if you want to do something about it, write a letter about how the company should not have employees tell older looking people about their senior discount.

    I work retail and when customers hate us for what our bosses make us do, it angers me so very much. please take this into consideration next time u go shopping anywhere. we have nothing against you. that girl was not trying to insult you. she is working under a huge corporation that is very very rigid in its’ rules. And if you dislike their policies… why not stop supporting the company by not shopping there?

  29. Danielle says:

    I arrived here because I was curious about the people who spend a lot of time bitching about teenaged fashion bloggers. I thought at first you were a teenaged girl full of hate & hormones but obviously I was quite wrong. I like how you eventually chilled out about Rumi. And I can now appreciate how bitching on privileged little girls & their affectations can help you deal with the heavier stuff in your life. As a coping strategy, hating on stuff like this is relatively harmless, and I guess I’m less dismissive of fashblog haters now even if I’ll never really understand it.

    I probably spent over an hour on this site going through archives. It took about that long for me to get through the wall of hate and start to empathize with you. No wonder people aren’t so empathetic on the internet, it really does take patience and an open mind to get there.

    Well done for outing a troll.

  30. Sister Wolf says:

    Danielle – With all due respect, you can’t “hate on” or “bitch on” people. There is no “on.”

    If it took you an hour to understand my sense of humor, and to learn about my recent life, you probably aren’t the sharpest tool in the shed.

    My wall of hate is real. And so is the rest of me.

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