Thursday, February 19, 2015

Surly Thursday: To the Friend of a Friend Who Was Bitchy to Me on Facebook

Contrary to what the post title seems to indicate, this is not actually a letter to the person in question. This exchange happened a few weeks ago so I'm enjoying blowing on the cooled embers of my righteous fury.

So someone had posted a recipe for something that called for almond milk. I had just bought my very first carton of almond milk to make banana-applesauce cookies, so it piqued my interest that someone posted on her recipe: "But almond milk is bad, don't use it."

I replied "almond milk is bad?" to her comment, hoping she would elaborate. Instead she replied "Yep." Uh, thanks, very illuminating. I said that I was asking for clarification. SHE said "best you look it up yourself. Google saves time and lives, I always say." This was followed by a smiley emoticon.

Hold up, sister. Did you just go all "Let me Google that for you" on my ass?

I tend to think the "Let Me Google That For You" response is appropriate, if ever, for questions like "how late is the Bank on Whatever Street open?" or "who won the 83 World Series?" To be fair, although I have never said it to anyone, I have pointed out its relevance in posts like this one, so I did ponder for a second whether her use of it was warranted.

I don't believe it was. I had, in fact, Googled it quickly between asking her for clarification and her response. Googling brought up several results on the health benefits of almond milk, and one article expressing reservations about the carageenan in it. There certainly weren't any clear-cut "almond milk is bad" results. When you express a negative opinion about something that a lot of people think is positive - voting in elections, say, or the long-form census, or vaccines - you might want to give some supporting information to avoid sounding like a strident yahoo, in my humble opinion. By asking for clarification, I was giving her a chance to do this - for all I knew she was a dietitian, or had just read a revealing article and had information that I didn't.

And then the scalding insult of the smiley face. Don't get me started (ha! just kidding, it's clearly way too late to not get me started) on the off-the-charts passive-aggressive cowishness of saying something bitchy and pretending you're not being bitchy. It smacks of those concern trolls who comment on articles something like "well, I'm terribly sorry to say it, but by feeding your baby formula you're practically guaranteeing that he'll grow up smoking pot and liking Justin Bieber - best wishes!" Or the people who write to Richard Dawkins "you're a fucking gay stupid faggot and you're going to burn in hell for all eternity - God bless!" If you're going to be stubborn and opinionated and refuse to substantiate your assertions, just own it already.

I didn't engage on the Facebook thread. I don't know her, I don't know if she's always like this, I didn't want to make my friend uncomfortable (on the off chance that she's reading this - sorry, but where else can I air my petty grievances with all humanity but on my blog?), and as hard as it might be to believe, I do try to uphold a modicum of classiness on social media.

But this is the response I gave in my head: "Fair enough. You don't know me, so I guess you had no particular reason to provide a response that was kind or helpful. I, of course, had no way of knowing that you're the kind of person that needs a particular reason to be those things."

Perfect mix of classy and snotty, don't you think?


Alison said...

Haha--I felt I should apologize on her behalf to you! If it helps, I have no idea if she is normally so annoying; I don't really know her. Since my dad is a pastor I get a lot of friend requests from people who feel they know *me*, but we aren't close.

I was all, "Dude, you're going to come on my page and post some passive-agressive nonsense to my friend?" but I don't know how to say that as a recovering people pleaser.

TL;DR You are justified and I think your mental response was spot on!

Hannah said...

Because I'm me, I read the title and thought OMG IT MUST HAVE HAPPENED ON MY PAGE WHYYYY.

I was quite relieved when it wasn't. No one ever has strong opinions about almond milk in my hearing.

The passive-aggressive smiley face never fails to piss me off, BTW.

Nicole said...

OMG I have so much to sayyyyyyy.

First, remember the tetra-pak of almond milk? No? LET ME TELL YOU ABOUT IT. I buy my almond milk in tetra-paks, sure, it has carrageen, sure it's probably not as good as the "needs refrigeration" cartons, definitely not as good as the "I just make my own almond milk daily in my vitamix." I use a lot of fucking almond milk and I like buying the goddamn six-packs at Costco. I don't have a lot of fridge room and so I buy the tetra paks. I ran into a "friend" in Costco when I had the tetra paks, and she looked into my cart and started going off about how bad tetra-pak almond milk is, how I should never buy it, and don't I know fresh is available in Costco? Just down that aisle? THIS WENT ON FOR FIVE SOLID MINUTES AND I JUST WANTED TO GO STAND IN THE GIGANTIC COSTCO LINEUP. Anyway. Why are people so goddamn weird about almond milk? And the kicker? SHE DOESN'T EVEN USE ALMOND MILK SHE'S NOT VEGAN OR ANYTHING.

Okay, so that's number one. Number two, if someone puts a comment about almond milk being "bad", at least KIND OF BACK IT UP. At least say why you don't like it in the briefest of ways, not "google it". This is not "what time does the Brentwood Co-Op open on weekends" kind of question. This is an opinion, and you should be ready to BACK IT THE FUCK UP BITCH.

OMG I'm so worked up right now. Then the smiley face. Remember that Modern Family episode? "Oh, she used a smiley face. Oh, that's okay then. I just water-boarded my baby! LOL!" Hopefully you know that episode or I'm going to sound like a nut. Or more like a nut. OR LIKE AN ALMOND GODDAMMIT.

It's like I'm using your comment section for my own blog but DAMN that shit bothers me.

Kerry C. said...

Nicole wins the internet for the day. Best. Comment. Ever.

Sasha said...

Ok, so first of all, because the last thing I would want to do is respond to the discussion at hand when there's a perfectly good tangent to run down; it took me THREE TRIES to type in your blog address without accidentally clicking on

But, like, anyway. Yeah, what was her problem, exactly? I hope she was having a bad day... because people having a bad day sometimes deserve a little snark; but mostly because people being undeservedly snarky deserve to have a bad day. I once had this woman go postal (in an rabid anti-vax kind of way) when I posted a comment on a friend's thread (I don't remember the wording, but it wasn't intended to be confrontational and what's more, I was pretty sure my friend was in agreement, you'll see why in a sec). I subsequently bit my tongue, not knowing what the relationship was between her and my friend. Turns out she was the mother of his daughter's best friend... which was particularly appalling to me since his son was in chemo at the time. So, like, she's letting her unvaccinated kid play with the sibling of a cancer patient. Nice.

Crap. I just realized I may be inviting a vax-debate on your blog (which I'm sure will be ok, because we all know how thoughtful and respectful those tend to be).

I'd say more but - oh look! There's another tangent! #seeya

Sasha said...

P.S. Now I'm paranoid about my tetra pak coconut milk.

Sasha said...

Oh. And google is a *great* place to go for balanced, scientifically sound, peer-reviewed research on controversial topics.... said no intelligent person ever.

(There. That's my snark.)

Amy Boughner said...

The passive aggressive emoticon should be banned.

Swistle said...

I am completely in agreement with you. I recently had a situation where someone on my blog said something was WELL-KNOWN---and then I couldn't find anything about it online on ANY site that was in ANY way legitimate. I composed SEVERAL replies asking for more information, and then decided not to do it, in part because I was afraid of JUST THIS SORT OF THING. Why does it happen?? WHY??

Shan said...

Well first off almond milk is bad...... because it tastes like ass, but that's just my opinion and what do I know? Secondly, your mental response is kick ass.

Bibliomama said...

See, now THAT'S a valid response. It tastes fine when you use a quarter cup of it in cookies, that's the sum total of my experience.

Maggie said...

Allow me to pile on and agree with everyone.

Look, unless someone I know has in their basket at the grocery store, where I have happened to run into them, something that has just been recalled as toxic or similar, I can't fathom the need to comment on their food choices. PLUS it's not like almond milk is twinkies or something that everyone universally acknowledges are bad for one, so just vaguely referring you to google it was complete BS. Feh.

Hairline Fracture said...

I love you, Nicole.

DaniGirl said...

Oh my god, I was so excited that "surly Thursday" is a thing, and then I got to giggling over your post and these awesome comments (best thread of the week!) and now I'm not surly anymore and I feel like I've wasted my Thursday.

Damn. Do over?

collette said...

Almond milk is bad. It's not even milk...It's juice. It should be called almond juice. I hate almond juice. But what she did was peculiar. If she didn't want to answer you, why would she tell you she didn't want to answer you? Why not just not answer? I doubt you would have cared at all then.
Feel free not to answer this...

Steph Lovelady said...

I think I want Nicole on my side if I ever get into a street fight, which admittedly, seems unlikely.

As someone who regularly wades through contradictory dietary advice for a living, I have to say other than a few things (eat less sugar, avoid trans fats, eat more vegetables) there is no obvious dietary advice.

Lynn said...

Came here to comment but now am having trouble typing due to snorts of laughter. I'm with Dani - best thread of the week!

Also: "I use a lot of fucking almond milk" is AWESOME.

Also: your mental response is AWESOME. Why can't I be that clever, even in 20/20 hindsight?

Sarah said...

Hahahah. This made me laugh! Nicole's comment, too.

Yeah, I agree. That was a ridiculous and unnecessarily snotty reply to you. In fact, it's the unnecessary part that makes it particularly galling.