I thought I’d be blogging under complete anonymity. I mean, duh.
Women@Work is a placement firm, and really, I do hope to keep working. Writing about work and women issues in the marketplace where you hope to one day be gainfully employed, well it’s a long shot for big mouths like me.
But writing anonymously lets me say what I want and people can relate . . . or not . . . commiserate or argue or laugh or wonder, who is this woman? Does she make this stuff up?
But alas, they asked for a headshot.
A headshot, like in LinkedIn. Or Facebook. (I can pretty much bet the farm that no one in my address book has a headshot. Or even knows what LinkedIn is. The fact that I even have an address book and not a palm-berry-i-whatever is the writing on the wall.)
A photograph. Of just me. Not such an easy task. So kid #3 takes a picture, complete with make-up and a lame blow-dry (that’s ‘blow dry’) attempt. Kid #4 gets the photos off the camera and onto the computer and waa-laa! But wait, look! Here’s an older picture of me when I’m thinner, with real hair and a real smile and a real bottle of wine in front of me so I send that one instead. Denied. “We’ll take the more conservative one.”
And truth be told, what I really, really wanted to do is submit a photograph of my smart, good-looking, and funny friend instead. Who just happens to be a “real writer.” Who, sadly, lives far, far away from me. But that way, when people read and think perhaps they know who I am, they’ll look at the photo and say ‘oops, nope, not her.’ But RealWriter denied me too, and so I had to send in me. The real thing. I hate it. It’s worse than trying on swim suits. I feel so naked.
Thing is, I’m the one behind the camera. I’m the chronicler of life. The fly on the wall. I don’t want anyone to know who I am because, well because, honestly, I don’t want to be outed. I want the freedom to write unencumbered by guilt, ties, loyalty, love. I don’t want to piss anybody off. Or embarrass or hurt or ridicule anyone . . . especially myself.
I want the anonymity to tell you that my mom thinks long-term care insurance is a scam and parties where I have to buy something make me puke and my sister is one injury away from being homeless and I love talking to old people and my childhood friend left porn on my computer and a client once asked me, just what do you do all day? and what do you do when your boss confides he hates gay people and I love someone I committed to a psych ward and kid #1 thinks I’m paranoid and the wireless/blackberry/hyper-techno age is leaving return-to-work moms like me lost.
And really, the very best part of my work is putting all this life down, the good stuff, the real stuff, the life we stare straight in the face every single day — not writing the junk mail that actually leads to a paycheck that pays some bills, and perhaps, buys larger cleats.
Husband asks, why do you care if people know it’s you? What if they like it? What if they like you? Shouldn’t people know you exist; you’re real and this is real life and you’re the one that captures it all?
Hmmmmm. But what if they don’t?
Yeah, but what if they do.