politics is perception

In the film The American President, President Andrew Shepherd (Michael Douglas) is repeatedly attacked by rival senator, Bob Rumson (Richard Dreyfuss), and in the face of these character attacks, he chooses to simply “not dignify it with a response.”  His staff pleads for him to stand up to the guy, but he’s convinced that answering to him is meeting at his level.  Until the end of the film, when he makes the decision to address the press with a kick-ass-takin’-names impromptu speech, where he answers to the accusations, setting the record straight with efficacy and aplomb.

Is this the way it works?  When should you–or your children, friends, whomever really, when, and in what circumstances, should you– stand up for yourself and dispel the rumors?  When is the high road the wrong road? We’ve all struggled with this at some point in our lives, had people cough up lines about “yesterday’s news,” urging us to just ignore it.  It will all go away eventually, and of course, it always does, and if you’re one to bite your tongue, it goes away and you’re left knowing some people got it really wrong.   And then you have to ask yourself if you care.  And then, why do you care?

Once upon a time ago there were sites, plural, dedicated to hating me.  Now, the “once” in “once upon a time” isn’t really accurate because I’m sure they still exist.  I looked at them once in a while but never once, ever, commented.  I never posted under pseudonym coming to my own defense.  I never responded.  Ever.  No matter how angry or hurt or wrong I thought they might have been.  I made the choice not to respond. I’ll get to the why in a second.

There was a case of someone I knew in the periphery of my life, who took offense when I didn’t want to befriend him.  He was unbalanced, sad really, and took to calling me vicious names and wrongly documenting my life, diverging his take on things, painting the picture he wanted people to see, more incongruous than a Magritte.  The press notified me asking if I wanted to comment, to clear things up, and I all but said “no comment.”  I said I wished him only good things.  There was my chance to clear it all up, but I didn’t.  High road.  Why?  Well it certainly wasn’t because I didn’t have plenty to say.  It was because, really, what would have been the point?  When telling your side of things it’s just giving people something to throw more shit at.  No matter how right you may be, people who want to vilify you will, despite the evidence.   Why?  Because it’s entertainment.  Because it gives them something to do.

I’ve never been one to read a tabloid, but it’s impossible to exist without knowing Britney shaved her head, and I do feel bad for her, for anyone, honestly, who’s attacked so publicly.  “Yeah, but it comes with the territory” is a sad little excuse for people to be atrocious.  “When you put yourself out there, you ask for it.”  I assure you, no one who puts themselves out there asks for it, but they get it, and the more they’re in the public eye, the harsher the lashing.  I’m not here to comment on the ills of it because I too have been entertained in the same small way.  People subscribe to it for entertainment’s sake, even when it’s your life.   But it really isn’t ever about you.

I was able to step outside myself and see all the really mean things that were happening for what they were: entertainment.  For everyone involved, both the hater and the hated, the rumor/situation/sites/all of it seems much bigger than it really is.  When it’s about you, suddenly, it’s a big deal.  It’s all you can think about.  You hit refresh and drive yourself crazy with what to do.  Let me say it again, for ALL people involved, you’re making much bigger a deal out of it than you should.  You think it’s this huge thing, but it’s not.  It’s called having a sense of proportion, and it’s so so easy to forget this.  It’s why I say, GO OUTSIDE.  Go to the gym, get a manicure, see a movie, realize there is a life outside your dramas.  And eventually you’ll realize–with some distance, but eventually–that none of it matters.  And that makes it easier to not respond.

People will love you, will absolutely HATE you–people who don’t even know you!–because it gives them something to do.  So eventually, when I refused to respond to any of it, people got bored of the saga and things became “yesterday’s news.”  I never once defended myself or said one harsh word about any of the people who were inexorably attacking me, or heartlessly creating their version of snarky humor at my expense, not because I couldn’t.  But because adding “a side”, albeit my side, by giving my information, meant people would continue to take them, sides.  And while part of me believed, “But if I tell my side, then people won’t believe her/him/them,” the rest of me realized, “Yes, yes they will.”  No matter how convincing you can be, people will respect you less for it.  And fueling any of it would make it worse.

I sometimes respond to harsh comments in the small moments when I forget it really is just about entertainment, when I take it personally, because really, it’s only human, and any one of us would eventually feel the same way, that need to defend ourselves and respond to accusations.   I pull a Shepherd and set the record straight, but I’ve learned when it comes to the public, blogs, press, gossip, it’s best to let it run its course without me. Besides, we all know how I feel about running…I’d sooner give blood to a first-year medical student who cannot find the vein.

American President Movie


  1. It's got to be SO hard not to respond to the haters. I can't imagine the restraint it takes, and know from personal experience that taking the high road blows a big fattie.

    but it's the right thing to do. keep it up.

  2. I've found as life has progressed that nothing diffuses my personal haters faster than me telling them that if they are going to hate me, to attack me, to try and hurt my feelings that 1) I would have to first care about them to have them be able to hurt me and 2) PLEASE make it something I haven't heard before. And believe me, in my vicious nature, i've heard most of it, if not all of it before. I've found that renders them speechless or at least stops the comments from finding their way to my door/inbox.

  3. What goes around comes around, that's what my mum always says. Just be true to yourself and your own truth will out, just be you. You can't be everything to everybody. I will never forget a flatmate once telling me they were disappointed in me – they didn't think I had lived up to their expectations (honestly, I always found him to be really self-righteous) – I am proud of my record and as a student worked fiercely on behalf of street children – in the end, to the detriment of my own health, and I learnt really learnt that you just have to be true to yourself. You know what I mean? :-)

  4. "My name is Andrew Shepard, and I *AM* the President." Easily one of the best lines, EVER!

    I read one of the sites that parodies you when someone sent me the link, and I read the whole blog in a couple of hours. And honestly, it was really funny. Probably funnier to me because I read your site too, but it would be funny on its own.

    I think you should respond when you're moved to, for whatever reason. No matter which way you decide to go, some people will think you did the right thing and some will think you did the wrong thing. That's why you have to do whatever will make you feel at peace with your decision.

    I disagree with you – I think some people DO ask for it. Don't make a public appearance if you know you're going to fall over drunk. Or at least, don't go if you can't count on yourself to act appropriately. Yes Britney didn't call a press conference to have an audience when she shaved her head. But for months now she's been doing outrageous things to attract more and more attention, setting up a situation where people know she's someone to follow, because they won't have to wait long for her to do Something.

  5. I am sure it's incredibly difficult not to respond when you see a blog attacking, criticizing or even parodying (sp?) you, but I think that,generally speaking, you are taking the correct approach. I do think some of it comes with being somewhat of a public figure, but responding would only add fuel to the fire. Just be glad you don't have people following you around 24 hours a day waiting to get an unflattering shot of you like many celebrities. I don't see how they stand it, frankly.

    There is something to be said for staying above the fray.

  6. Here here. For me it falls back on the fame motive. Yeah I want to be known, but not if I'm not liked in the process (hey, I'm insecure). I'm not cut out for celebrity–I'd much rather have people not know who I am than have a hateful opinion of me. That's probably why I'm not successful in the media world, but it is a small comfort to know, even just to have it as a pre-emptive strike in the back of my head, that I have a clean slate. You know, should I want it.

    Yeah, that's it, I'm in control ;)

  7. I speak from experience when I say to say nothing is best. I've been involved in some very heated disagreements with people, via email of course, and found that even when I was seething with rage, it was always best to say nothing.

    It's elementary. Literally. When you were little and got into a playground fight with one of your friends your parents told you to just let it go, don't say anything. That it would frustrate the other person even more than saying anything at all. They would learn you can't be forced to react to such obnoxious behaviour, and go make somebody else's life a living hell.

    People like this don't deserve any attention at all, and that is probably the saddest thing about it. It's likely the only interaction they have with others. All they know is how to be destructive. It's the only way they get pleasure.

    Though, I have to agree with Green to some extent. Sometimes, you have to speak up, and put that person in their place. And even if you never verbally slap the little jerk silly, you should release that anger. Don't let it bottle up. Once again, I speak from experience.

  8. I work on a huge office full of women. I take the same road you take. I also dont voice my opinion of the ones that I dont like. AND you know what? I find that I never get caught up in drama and I never get my feelings hurt by those that dont like me because after a while people stop trying to gossip with me.


  9. I've always found myself using a line from the movie, "Mask". I can't remember exactly what the criticism to Cher made by Sam Elliot was, but I do remember her line. "Excuse me… you've mistaken me for someone who gives a shit." I've used it ever since. Yes… I suppose I'm simple, but the times I've used it, or cleaner variations of it, I've always felt above the gnats. And you're so right about offering ANY defense. It just feeds the fire and people will believe what they want to believe anyway.

  10. This was an interesting perspective. I agree with much of what you've written. I am a huge fan of the high road. Taking the low road in cases such as these only indicates that you care too much about what others think. I also think it's important to remember that there is rarely *one* truth. Of course, I think people who waste their time with the sole purpose of degrading someone else, whatever their real motive, are sad.

    I have to add, though, that I had a hard time buying into this post when, right off the bat, you say that the person who writes the blog about you decided to do so because he was mad because he couldn't be your friend. I find that to be a simplistic analysis, and difficult to believe. Of course, I don't know the guy so it may absolutely be true. But it may not, and your explanation just sounded sort of high school-ish. It detracted from what otherwise was a thoughtful post, in my opinion.

  11. i'm currently trying to stay on the highroad in a dramatic office situation, sadly, i'm constantly falling off and therefore, being as small as (she) is. you've motivated me to be bigger and better!

  12. I remember coming upon a mean site about you when I had deleted my history and tried to type it in from memory. I was really surprised, but honestly pretty uninterested and just googled your blog instead. So, if it makes you feel any better, I don't know that the(se) blog(s) are very widely erad or anything. Its a pretty juvenile thing to do, to start a blog bashing another blogger. Sucks, I'm sorry.

  13. Some people are "energy sinks" — they inhale and absorb energy from all around them; responding to their attacks merely adds to their energy and gives them impetus to continue. With no response, they run out of steam and have to listen to their own echo in an empty room.

  14. I actually wrote something relevant about Britney Spears the other day.

    In any case, I think you do a good job of balancing responding and not.

  15. "Yeah, but it comes with the territory" is a sad little excuse for people to be atrocious.

    I love this line…we live in a society where attacking people is now considered good clean family entertainment. Anybody who has watched an episode of American Idol can attest to that.

    I read somewhere (maybe here??) that if you are in a group of people that you have never met before you will have a better chance making friends if you bond over making fun of or gossiping about someone else rather than trying to start up a conversation by saying nice things about someone else. I've definitley stooped to that level at times. I guess we are wired that way, but really, we are also wired to know better…

  16. "…Realize there is a life outside your dramas."

    I'm having this put on a plaque…and giving it to my mother.

  17. I agree with you that the "high road" is the more productive one. I was just surprised that you feel that way based on your history in responding to some of the comments on your blog and on other people's sites. (I have seen a few sites that criticized you where you or Phil had come to your defense immediately after the post had been published and with somewhat snarky comments of your own. I guess those might be the occasions you mention that you just responded on a gut instinct, which is totally human of course and who can blame you for it.)

    But in your comments section you also often respond to your critics in a way that doesn't totally jibe with the approach you describe yourself taking above. At times I've been amazed to come here and read the way you respond to some of your readers. Terms such as douche, ass, and go f**k (not sure if you are still bleeping out that word) yourself, or some similar language are not uncommon in your responses, as you know. I realize many of your readers find these types of responses highly entertaining and admire you for it, perhaps believing that commenters with dissenting voices are "asking for" that type of treatment, but I think many would agree that that approach is a bit more "low road" overall than "high road."

    As for ignoring the critics, I have also read several posts here that were dedicated completely or partially to addressing your critics, in fact two such posts went up just this week (coincidentally, both posts question the mental state of the bashers; one is labeled as delusional and the other unbalanced). Those types of responses are obviously thought out and deliberate, since writing a post and publishing it and keeping it published requires forethought and commitment and isn't similar to a quick comment made in the heat of the moment.

    Maybe you're making a distinction between comments on your own blog and comments about you in other places, I think maybe that's what you're saying in your last sentence of this post? Maybe you resort to name calling and attacking your critics if their comments are found on your blog but try to ignore them if there comments originate elsewhere? It does help keep the critics off your blog that's for sure. Who wants to come here, voice their opinion, which theoretically is what the comments section is for, and then be called a douche bag by you and/or other commenters (that you set a tone for by the way)

    I like the "high road" approach and agree with your reasoning for it but reading this post made me wonder about all the times when you seem to take a strongly divergent approach from the one you've described. I know you said you sometimes get caught up and respond to things in the moment, but with this blog it happens regularly enough and similarly enough each time, and I think if I remember right that you have even defended those types of responses, and there's no sign of regret over it (like a retraction, or deletion, or avoidance of repeating that type of response in the future), that it makes those comments seem like a deliberate choice and not an accidental gut instinct response to a comment before you realized what you were doing like you indicate above. And honestly your responses are so harsh that it's hard to reconcile them with the high road approach you advocate. Defending yourself is one thing but vicious nasty insults are something else completely.

    Either way, I agree with you about the "high road." I think it's good advice to others who might be just starting to have to deal with this issue that you've had to deal with for years now, and I know I admire those who take that path on a regular basis, including the celebrities who manage to ignore the latest rumor of the day about their exploits. Of course if comments about someone become serious and dangerous like someone becoming threatening or printing lies about you that damage your career you should definitely do something about it but that is very different from the simple criticism or nastiness that is usually found online and is best ignored. I applaud you for putting yourself in the position of being vulnerable in such a public way. I do think doing that makes a person a target for criticisms and parodies but that ignoring them like you said reflects more highly on you and just emphasizes the critics weaknesses if they've taken a nasty approach.

    FROM STEPHANIE: I see what you're saying. I do. I've NEVER responded to comments about me, ever, on any other site, aside from my own. Like I said, sometimes I just feel like it here. I read something, much as I just did, and decide to respond. I shouldn't always do it. I should let it go sometimes, but believe me, waaaaay more often than not, I ignore it. And let's not forget, I also sometimes just won't post something nasty, simply because I don't have to. But I certainly never create fake posts or use pseudonyms on this blog or any other. And I actually have discovered that on this blog, on the off chance that I do respond, it usually shuts their nasty little mouth. Not always, but usually. And as for the delusional people… dude there just ARE delusional people, who see things that just aren't so. See secret messages in my posts, thinking I'm communicating with just them. That's delusional. People who think I'm in cohorts with google and working out deals… they're just severely disillusioned.

  18. I am a little conflicted on this post as I feel it has a bit of a self-righteous tone with a touch of superiority. Perhaps that is part of why your detractors criticize you? That being said, I agree that the high road is the ideal route, but theory tends to be way easier than reality.

    I couldn't disagree with you more regarding your comments on celebrities and the way that they are treated by the media. While I agree that there are cruel aspects to the media, I think it is particularly convenient to only accept the public accolades, but then when that same person makes bad choices, they should be shielded from the backlash? Being a celebrity is selling yourself as a product and your persona in its entirety. If one is uncomfortable with that accessibility they shouldn’t put themselves in that position.

  19. I can understand deeming those who try to read too much into your writing delusional, to a certain extent. But, I seem to recall you also writing (a few entries back): "And sometimes, they're just very mean people with very little lives." I think it's just as wrong to assume that those who criticize you have no lives, just as they make several incorrect assumptions about you. And I don't think it makes you any better, or the road you take seem any higher. I think that puts you on a level playing field with them. Was that not an attack on them, even if only a reciprocal attack? This reminds me of trivial high school drama, stuff I deal with on a daily basis. The drama only ends when one decides to take the higher road — the one where they drop the issue altogether and cease making any references to it.

    I find the whole situation of responding to your attackers repeatedly (as you've done in a few recent posts) kind of petty. That's just my opinion and I expect that you and others will disagree. I think that you're a great writer, but I'd love to see less of a focus on the people who attack you and more of a focus on issues that don't make all parties involved look immature and childish. And this is your blog, so you'll write about whatever the hell you want. But, comments are a forum for getting feedback, so this is just my (unasked for and probably unappreciated) two cents.

  20. The same thing has happened to me. I have a blog and I have and thaat happen to me too. But to me it's entertainment, lol. I TRY not to respond either even though I've been guilty of doing it in the past. – Melissa

  21. I sometimes write about my husband on my blog. He doesn't always like it. "You are making me sound like a jerk", he bellows at me. Well, I am not making him do anything.

    How does Phil feel about your blog? Granted, your writing existed before he entered your life- and mine evolved due to the chaos of getting married and dealing with infertility issues.

  22. Stephanie,

    I know that I've seen your responses to comments several times on other sites. If you are certain you have never responded then I suppose it could be someone who is impersonating you?

    Both show comments from someone with your name that writes in your style and both comments are in response to criticism or "poking fun" of you on other sites. Are those really not your comments? If they aren't, that really is crazy, if someone is taking on your persona and commenting with it online. If that's the case, you really do have some delusional types reading your blog, you weren't kidding.

  23. You SO typify the tortured girl on the playground that was made fun of (admittedly for no reason…kids will pick a target and ur doomed) and all this shiite you write about "you don't care what people think" is just hooey. You are an accomplished adult but ur stuff wreaks of being SOOOOOO hurt as a child. Sorry but it's SOOOOOOOOO obvious that's where it comes from. You're a great responsible adult with kids, blah, blah, blah but MAAAAAN you is so LYING to youself if you say ur unaffected by all the negativity….dont know what else to say…..peace out, girl!

  24. I'm with My Thoughts, I've also seen your name and/or phil's on other sites(I've actually read one today and I was surprised to see both your names there), responding to their criticism. If is not you, then that's ridiculous and creepy.

  25. She's not persecuted because she's a JEW, she's persecuted because she's a self-absorbed, neurotic, whining, superior, miserable, unhappy with her life, former promiscuous fat girl who thinks because she's finally thin and finally landed a husband (one only imagines what kind of man he is to marry such an obvious train wreck – yes, we know she doesn't like that word, but it's so perfectly descriptive of her and her life) that her life is somehow worthy now.

    The worst part is that she's going to pass on her personality traits to not just one, but possibly both of her unfortunate little children (unfortunate because they were born to her). This is just one of the many reasons some people shouldn't have kids. She talks about delusional people on her blog, but what's funny is that she sees none of the delusion that relates directly to her, when writing about herself and her life..

    THAT is why she's "persecuted," not because of her being a Jew, but because she is incredibly unlikable. She actually does "Jew" pretty well – she embodies everything one thinks of when someone says "JAP" or "self-promoting" or "using money to buy what you want in life, whether its an education or book deal or friends or men or whatever…"

    She should have stayed in New York and not sully another part of the country with her crap filled life.

    From one of the previous posts berating me, Julia she writes "….I have to say, when I read in your book (which I sat down with recently in Barnes and Noble)…" The dialog is now open to discuss how someone who hates me so much continues to read, comment and seek out my writing. At least BUY the book, friend.

  26. Well, I suppose you can't please everyone and it really shouldn't matter all that much what people think. Yep.

    That said, after following the "Go Outside" link, I do have an opinion on the matter. Maybe not all of the people setting up hate sites claim to know all about your life. Maybe they just object to the harsh assessments (such as pimply fat dog girls, or whatever it was) you make of other people. Because, after all, even the people you think are ugly (and c'mon, we all have opinions like that we just know when and how to express it, if ever) are still PEOPLE for God's sake. I know you try to tell it like it is in your blog, to be real, and that's the appeal. But there is a line betwen "real" and "mean" and I notice you crossing it all the time. Seriously, do you want to teach your kids to hate on people like that? It so sad.

    I read this blog for the technical merit, because I can learn something, not because I think you are that great of a person. Actually, the superficial viewpoint is getting exhausting. If I saw you on the street, I would be afraid of your judgement if I weren't wearing something fresh from the pages of April's Vogue, you know?

  27. What you said in this post is so true! It's pointless to try to give people your side of things because it will end up being more fuel to the fire.

    Good thing you decided not to friend that guy because he turned out to be quite the snake. Reminds me of how this girl I knew totally turned on me for no reason..I gave in & tried to confront her about how I've been nothing but nice for her, and she's being the way she is for no reason. Of course, it came to no resolution, and it's best now to still not speak to her. I read this post & recall that it really wasn't worth it to get into it with her. Now I can really stick to my conviction of not doing that in the future because you brought out some really interesting points.

  28. I can not for the life of me understand this post. You respond to even lukewarm critique in the most scathing manner. How is that ignoring? I enjoy your writing (though less the content) but think these preachy posts about how to rise above the negative, coming from you, are ridiculous.

  29. I love your blog. What makes it so brilliant is your ability to bring forth content that makes us think, confront fears or remember a time in our lives. The result is one of two responses, either an epiphany of sorts which shows validation or people stomp their feet like little children trying to avoid the content and attack the messenger. This post is a perfect example. You write eloquently questioning taking the higher road and people try to focus on you rather than the subject. Whether in 4 years of writing a blog almost every day and being written about by press, bloggers, etc. you clarified a position on someone elses blog or not is ludicrously so not the point. It's as if people are trying to catch youin some super lie to prove you are duping them. As if you have hurt them directly by saying or acting as you see fit. I've read these comments and they always come from the same people. They are in a class by themselves. They are the people that go to a restaurant to have a bad time and complain about the food or service. They berate the cashier. they debate with customer service phone attendants. So when I read some critique about you personally on here(you are self absorbed, superficial, hypocrit, whatever) I just laugh cause I know everyone sees them for who they are and who you are. You are someone who creates. They attempt to break down.

  30. It is really tough to know that people are saying things about you that are not true. Especially when those things depict you as doing immoral things that you would never do, and that go against principles you have adopted and even sacrificed for. I had this happen to me not long ago. But usually, it really is best not to go around saying, "You know how X is saying Y about me? Well, it isn't true." For one thing, it just brings attention to X and Y. More importantly, people are still free to make up their minds what to believe, and you have just chosen to make it important to you what they believe, and to let them know that they have power over you, in choosing sides.

    What's important is what you did, period, not what they think you did. To a lesser extent, what's important is what your friends and loved ones and colleagues believe – but not what the uninformed and uninvested believe. In the end, though, you've got to believe in your own choices, not make other people believe in them.

  31. You know what? Sometimes when you take the HIGH road…it only counts when people KNOW you took the high road…and if they don't KNOW then it looks like you just haven't gotten there yet but if/when you do you'd surely take the low road. So maybe this IS her way of telling all those people that HEY—talk all your shit but I won't be mean to you or fuel YOUR site with MY celebrity because YOU have no life besides dedicating your time to MINE—

    I recently was involved in the same issue but the girl made it private so I couldn't read what she wrote–only her friends could…HOW PATHETIC–yeah I wanted to read it but I'm kind of glad I couldn’t because I’m sure whatever she wrote was way off AND mean and I have an amazing talent of "educating" people about their wrongs with my words–I would have responded and she would have shut her mouth…and if her rebuttal would have been anything but intelligent–I would have gone for the jugular—glass houses/stones…ya know? BUT I realized she got irritated more and took them off her page because she thought that I didn't even read them b/c she thought I would have DEF. commented if I had… (she made several–the meanest she kept private)…so she realized that she meant nothing to me—so little—that I didn't even read her blog (a total LIE but it served its purpose)

    I don't think that being a 'celebrity' is an open door for insults but I DO think that if you can dish it out be prepared to have it shoved back in your face…so I choose my words carefully but I feel you do too—I think you only make comments that if reciprocated similarly you could handle

    whatever FUCK the critics…I can only appreciate educated truthful rebuttals so just saying mean things is mean…I think you, like me, could very easily offer a "touché" to anybody who appropriately put I, you, us in our place. (As you did above)

    It just sucks that nobody knows you took the high road so you might as well have not.

    p.s. that girl had a following post about her ex and how she took the high road…I felt like saying "honey you couldn't find the high road with a map and a compass" but I giggled knowing that her readers had already realized that point without my help. UGLY PEOPLE. (Inside not necessarily out, but in her case yes outside too here)
    Maybe I’m silly but you can really do NO wrong in my eyes—people are too sensitive these days

  32. I wanted to find some of the SK haters, for kicks, because I wasn't even aware of it. I came across a blog and a comment from SK in response. So, not to pick it to death, but she has responded to comments about her.

  33. As Stephanie is saying goodbye to Linus now on the way to Montana, I thought i'd chime in(not that she would have responded).

    I know Stephanie to be an incredibling giving, loving and caring person. Anyone trying to find a response from Stephanie to a "hater" will show just the rare occassion she clarified something NOT put anyone down, said negative comments in retaliation or did anything negative to someone as they were doing to her. She always says she tries to live "like God is in the room". Is this always the case? No. Is it easy to not do so? Sure. But I know her consistent response is either "no comment" or "I wish them well". So go search the internet for her mean response. With the overwhelming amount of criticism on everything from her weight, mothering, choices in cars, her religious beliefs, me, etc. Stephanie has lived like God is in the room. I'd suggest some of the commentors consider the same or at least be truthful and figure out what their motivation is.

    Now go ahead and put me down for responding…

  34. I never thought I'd be one to read blogs written by people I've never met, but after reading your book I've found myself enthralled by your writing style, your honesty, and your blog. I'll catch up on your blog at work during my lunch hour sometimes, but have never found a need to comment.

    But I just wanted to say that I thoroughly enjoyed reading this entry… and LOVE that you quoted my absolute favorite movie ever… The American President!

  35. Agree or disagree with Stephanie, like or dislike her, she has to be given credit for writing it in the first place, and letting it all hang out. When you blog, you have the choice of being (a) semi-anonymous (b) totally anonymous or (c)like, Stephanie, completely public, which is the most courageous choice of the three. In both the book and the blog, she bares all, opening herself up to the worst of the worst: critics, stalkers, idiots, mean people, etc. etc. How many of us who blog can say that we would be willing to do the same? How many bloggers are willing to state their first and last names, our towns, the names of our husband AND children? And then write openly about every little aspect of their lives, be it a Braziian wax or failed relationships? NOT me. And that's why my blog is a bore. :)

    I do not always like Stephanie's perspective, her tone, attitudes and some of her values (more evident when she was more of a New Yorker) but fellow readers, we ALL do just have to give her credit for being gutsy. Isn't that why we're all coming back to read??

    One last thought. An A-list celebrity (I forgot who it was)was once asked in an interview how do they handle their fame? The answer was…"You just cannot believe your own press, either when they love you as your star is rising or when they tear you up when your star is falling." SO true. It applies to all of us, whether we are A-listers, semi-famous like Stephanie or ordinary folks like most of us.

  36. Stephanie, if you had a sense of proportion, you wouldn't write a lot of what turns up here. I'm still laughing (at you, not with you) about your Valentine's Day griping…

  37. Phil, I'm not going to put you down for responding. I can't say whether or not Stephanie lives her life like "God is in the room" b/c I don't live w/ her, and I don't know her. All I can say is that I think it's incredibly sweet of you to come to her defense and be a supportive husband. You're lucky to have one another, and I truly hope you're happy and that the babies are doing well. (Any new pictures to post?)

    I hope Stephanie is doing ok w/ Linus going to live w/ Lea. I know that will be hard on her, but I'm one of the people who thinks it's best for everyone involved. Good luck to all of you. Thanks for posting.

  38. LIKE GOD IS IN THE ROOM???????
    That is so funny I don't know where to start. Wait I found one- ok, ok ready? Was God in the room when she used cooking spray to lube up some guy? Was God in the room when she wrote the #6 post? God in the room, whew Phil, that was awesome!

  39. well damn. i just received my first hate email…from my ex's friend and i damn sure didn't take the high road. i didn't respond to his email but i sure did write a whole blog about it. i have mixed feelings on this. i had to re-read the post about sometimes taking the high road only counts when people know you took the high road. and for a minute i agreed with it. but i guess at the end of the day its whatever you know. and whatever you are good with.

  40. UM GOD DOESN'T CARE IF YOU HAVE SEX AND GOD ALREADY KNOWS WHAT YOU'RE THINKING SO YOU MIGHT AS WELL GO AHEAD AND SAY IT—its when you realize what you said or are thinking is wrong and you stop yourself…god cares then.
    gods not afraid to tell it like it is…just like stephanie.

  41. Ok, I'm not going to get involved in this debate but I just have to say this:

    Natalie? Were you perhaps intoxicated when you wrote that last post? It sounds like you were comparing Stephanie Klein to…God?

  42. Sara, I hope you are intoxicated so the poor reading comprehension is explained. She was calling out godupeoplearefunny for being obtuse.

  43. Talk about poor reading comprehension…

    First of all, Dom, my name is spelled with an "h" on the end. How odd that you misspelled it when it was written right there in front of you.

    Second, Natalie's post was, quite frankly, a bit incoherent but the phrase that I was referring to in particular was "gods (sic) not afraid to tell it like it is…just like stephanie".

    Poor grammar, spelling, punctuation and sentence structure aside it STILL sounds as if the comparison Natalie was making was between SK and God.

    But really, I was just kind of poking fun because I thought the fact that anyone would make that comparison was amusing. I seem to have ruffled your feathers a bit – sorry.

  44. Dom, I hope you were intoxicated when you wrote your post. It would perhaps explain your failure to see Sarah's comment as a somewhat witty and intelligent response to Natalie's slightly odd ruminations on the opinions of God.
    I myself am not currently intoxicated, but feel that it would perhaps help in order to swallow some of these remarks.

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