17 Oxymorons For Morons

by anna on June 7, 2010

oxymorons for morons

  1. community keynote
  2. awesome freebies
  3. respectful protest View definition in a new window
  4. radical blogging moms
  5. accountability post
  6. generous sponsors who value the entire community
  7. free loaner set
  8. powerful human brain
  9. exclusive opportunity with Xbox 360
  10. Nestle View definition in a new window’s public relations masterstroke View definition in a new window
  11. Twitter party
  12. change agents speaking at BlogHer View definition in a new window 2010
  13. yummy food Nestle View definition in a new window makes
  14. Babble.com editorial I will just love
  15. disinterested product review
  16. a brand who is there to support women who blog
  17. brand sponsors that do not have unethical corporate practices

Got a list to share? Here’s what to do:

  1. Write a “list” post on your blog.
  2. Copy this code, and paste in the text of your post:
  3. Either comment or email me at anna at abdpbt View definition in a new window dot com to let me know you’re participating, and I’ll link you up below.

Check out these list lovers:

  1. Take-A-Part Toys By Battat | ABDPBT Commodity Fetishism
  2. Kevin At Always Home & Uncool
  3. Ginger at Ramble Ramble
  4. Alexis at the Well-Read Mom

{ 32 comments }

Ginger June 7, 2010 at 12:37 am

Oh, Anna, this is why I love reading your stuff. Community keynote–ha! Brand who is there to support women who blog-haha! But free loaner set is still the masterstroke.

My list is up.

anna June 7, 2010 at 5:59 am

I couldn’t believe some of these were being used, not only without irony, but without anyone coming in and CHUCKLING afterwards. I mean, come the fuck on! Brand sponsors that do not have unethical corporate practices? Where are these people from? Mayberry?

Kerry June 7, 2010 at 5:28 am

Number 17. Because the only people who don’t know that are people who haven’t worked for enough big companies.

Did someone really say “masterstroke?” OMG.

anna June 7, 2010 at 6:01 am

Kerry, you have got to read the comments over on some of the posts from the PhD in Parenting blog, because they are a laugh riot, I am telling you. Not only is the word “masterstroke” used, it is used several times *without irony* in total earnestness. Please, I beg of you, go over and read it so there is somebody else who can appreciate it for the marvelous spectacle that it is.

OHmommy June 7, 2010 at 6:11 am

What post? I have a free moment for a laugh riot.

anna June 7, 2010 at 6:19 am

Most of the good comments are by the more militant anti-Nestle people in the “BlogHer Accountability Post” over there. But she’s got a second one up now, too. I also appreciated the quotes from Elisa regarding why Nestle was chosen as a sponsor on ShePostsStupidShit.com.

Alexis June 7, 2010 at 6:03 am

Masterstroke…..ha, I am 12, but that is still pretty funny. The “free loaner set” is actually the most brilliant marketing ploy I have ever seen, though you did a much better job at explaining just why that is. I may need to change my job title to “radical blogging mom,” but with no sense of irony. None at all.

Have a list up.

anna June 7, 2010 at 6:22 am

Wait a minute, Alexis . . . you mean all this time you’ve been sleeping with the enemy?! I didn’t know you were speaking at BlogHer! What session? Is it really the Change Agents thing? I need to figure out what sessions I’m going to go to.

I just find the whole concept of radicalism and BlogHer to be hysterical. Because really, BlogHer choosing Nestle as a partner is a perfect match. I mean, perfect. That’s the thing.

Eliz June 7, 2010 at 6:45 am

It is sort of a masterstroke, because what Nestle has done has forced dozens (hundreds?) of bloggers to chose between their politics and the mostest sparkly girls’ weekend evah. (The same politics some have used to catapult themselves to the top of the momblogging heap, some might even say, ie, their raison d’etre.) Maybe not “choose,” per se, but at least write posts explaining how it’s not inconsistent to still attend BlogHer.

This was solid. And here I was, expecting a Monday list about Teresa’s bankruptcy filing!

anna June 7, 2010 at 7:08 am

Well, I mean . . . come on, though. You were at BlogHer last year. Do you remember the Prego luncheon? I mean, this is an event that is sponsored by the worst of the worst companies in American business, year after year, with the most garish of events put on. I think of a “masterstroke” as something that nobody saw coming. You mean to tell me nobody saw Nestle as a possible corporate sponsor here? Please. I’m only surprised they weren’t one of the first ones signed up.

Kerry June 7, 2010 at 8:09 am

I was going to say: am I the only person that things going to a conference is hell? Because for me…hell. I hated conferences. One of the best things about being out of corporate life is that I no longer have to go to conferences. So to go to a mommyblogger conference…no. No way.

But then I got to the part about Teresa filing bankruptcy, and now I must go read about it. Immediately.

anna June 7, 2010 at 8:59 am

I think that many of the people who look forward to BlogHer haven’t been before and/or are drinkers. They look forward to the parties. Also, they don’t go to the sessions. If you don’t go to the organized sessions then it’s probably not like a typical work conference.

For me, it’s kind of stressful, and not super enjoyable. The post-game analysis tends to be enjoyable and it’s worthwhile from a business perspective. I did enjoy meeting Eliz and a few others last year and I anticipate meeting some other people this year like Jonna and a bunch of people that I meant to meet last year but somehow missed. The problem with BlogHer is that it’s too damn big. There’s not enough time. But yeah, conferences are not a whole lot of fun. For me they are insanely stressful and a work event, not a fun event.

Kerry June 7, 2010 at 10:35 am

HR conferences are all about the parties too. HR people like to get drunk and have sex with other HR people at conferences. No one goes to the sessions, because they’re all done by a bunch of consultants anyway.

I’m an introvert. I hate parties. I don’t drink. I’d rather be shot in the head than have sex with another HR person. So those weren’t my thing.

BlogHer sounds pretty much the same…probably less sex, but more fully-clothed drama, so it balances out.

monkey June 7, 2010 at 10:35 am

It reminds me of Model UN conferences from high school. And ahem, I only went to those because my boyfriend was a super competitive model UN-er. My gig was debate (so much cooler, of course).

Anyway, at Model UN, about 2% of the attendees are there to be Super Serious about acting like UN representatives and put it on their resumes for college the rest of us are just there to be on a hotel trip to NYC with very little supervision (NYC being the most famous high school model UN conference).

It rocked. So I can see the appeal. If it doesn’t conflict with a recruiting conference I applied to, I will Fung-wah my way down to say hi to some friends I don’t get to see very often (like Cagey of Rancid Raves).

Ginger June 7, 2010 at 10:12 am

I’m with Kerry, conferences blow. Even when you’re getting stuff out of them, they’re exhausting, and mind-boggling, and, just…ugh. It’s always been obvious to me that BlogHer (the conference) is just about the parties and grown up playtime, NOT the conference, for most of the attendees.

Michele June 7, 2010 at 8:46 am

7 is equal to all time favorite Oxymoron, Free Gift.

I know you want to see some of your friends, but couldn’t you all meet in Vegas, a cruise or some spa weekend getaway, instead of Blogher? That’s a lot of money to just be pissed and ostracized.

anna June 7, 2010 at 9:06 am

I’m glad to see some friends there, yes, but actually that’s not why I’m going. Conferences are the single best investment of money for your blog that you can make, in my experience, in terms of getting your readership to grow in a short period of time. My readership grew about 20% immediately after BlogHer last year. And Mom 2.0 gave me tons of material that helped me grow this blog into a much better resource for myself and my readers. So I find going to conferences (the right ones, anyway) to be an important investment of time and energy, even though they are expensive and psychologically difficult for me.

I go to BlogHer because it is the biggest, and I go to Mom 2.0 because it is the best. I’ve already bought my ticket for Mom 2.0 next year. Unless there’s a major sea change, I probably won’t alter the plan much in coming years, except possibly to go to SXSW, though I canceled my plans to go last year because it was just too much to go back-to-back with Mom 2.0, and my impression is that SXSW has gotten so big that it’s kind of outgrown its utility. I’m still kind of undecided on that, though. I might consider some of the other, smaller conferences, but for now that’s my plan.

If I were not doing it for business, though, no. I would not go. I would not find these things enjoyable. But then, I’m a recovering alcoholic. So keep that in mind.

Alias Mother June 7, 2010 at 9:09 am

You and your commenters are all smarter and funnier than me. Not that this takes much these days but still. It’s appreciated nonetheless.

I will probably never go to BlogHer because, like Kerry, I hate conferences and get plenty of them in my day job. Besides, there is no way that the entertainment value of the actual conference could in any way rival entertainment value of the pre- and post-conference kerfuffles. It’s just not possible.

anna June 7, 2010 at 9:15 am

Yeah, the conference itself is pretty boring. I mean, there’s a lot of frantic DMing to other people who are of like mind, where you’re like, “Did you SEE that?!” and “How many FUCKING PEOPLE do we have to hear in this community keynote?” etc., but the post-game is WAY WAY more entertaining, and you can get that all from home. But somebody has got to go and do the actual witnessing so that we can report back. I actually thought, my first year blogging, that this was a real market gap — no joke, I’m being serious here — that we really needed more people doing honest reporting about what happened at BlogHer, minute by minute. That was the year that the Dooce v. Bloggess thing happened, and I remember it was like pulling teeth to figure out what actually happened because people were terrified to actually report it at the time.

This year, I’m thinking of commissioning a camera crew MTV style and then splicing everything up and calling it BlogHer Shore. It wil cost $19.95 for PPV access.

Kerry June 7, 2010 at 10:40 am

I would definitely pay for that. Seriously.

In fact, although I would never in a million years go to the conference, I can’t wait for you and everyone else to go. It’s better than anything Bravo or MTV could come up with.

Eliz June 7, 2010 at 11:16 am

If my husband can pay $49.95 for a PPV fight where the main event only lasts 47 seconds, then I’d be willing to pay a helluva lot more for BlogHer Shore.

anna June 7, 2010 at 11:40 am

How awesome would it be to hire some film students to follow me around like I’m on the next season of The Hills, plus put some more in the crowd, and see what happens? Because you know they’d believe that it was some new blogger reality show, and sign releases, and then I could just air everything here. Hmm. I might actually have to think about doing this.

anna June 7, 2010 at 11:44 am

Except:

1) I need to lose weight for TV;
2) I have to convince Jonniker to be on it and that might be a tough sell; and
3) guaranteed — guaranteed — I will come off as the biggest asshole, there’s just no possible way it would be otherwise.

Steph June 7, 2010 at 9:31 am

Is it bad to admit that I had NO idea WTF the deal was with Nestle? I had to look it up. To be honest I still don’t fully understand it. I guess maybe that’s because I couldn’t breastfeed and the only thing my son could eat was Good Start which I believe is a Nestle brand. I owe them my life and my sanity so I don’t get it. *shrug*

I have seen over the past few days SO many opinions on this. The backpedaling is phenomenal. Boycott Nestle, they are the devil but wait, I didn’t really mean that because it is now inconvenient for me.

anna June 7, 2010 at 9:49 am

The Nestle stuff has been going on so long that I think it hasn’t been rearticulated for GenX. But their biggest sin I think was going into Third World countries and feeding formula to babies and getting them off breastmilk, which of course messed various things up and made these people who were not able to afford formula need to buy formula, etc. I don’t even know the whole story and don’t really care all that much because I’m not a militant lactivist person, but a lot of these people seem to think that Nestle is singlehandedly responsible for why more people don’t breastfeed.

Personally, I breastfed for two months until I had to stop because of his protein intolerance. Before I did that, I went to a lactation consultant who cost like $500 an hour or some absurd amount of money and made me feel bad for not trying harder to make my son eat the milk that made him scream out in pain. Then we gave him special formula that had broken down protein molecules (Alimentum) and finally he could eat without screaming. So you know what? Fuck you, lactation consultant.

Do what works. I’m glad that my son got the colostrum and I wanted to breastfeed him longer for the immunities and all that, but his little tummy couldn’t take it without pain. Life doesn’t always work out how you want it to. He’s a healthy little kid. Life goes on.

Some people can’t breastfeed. Some people don’t even want to try. Who cares? Leave them alone. Isn’t parenting hard enough? Jesus. What a bunch of assholes. It’s none of your business.

monkey June 7, 2010 at 10:52 am

Eh, here’s where we differ. I am not a militant lactivist (having never really lactated) but I do have a BIG chip on my shoulder about companies that go into the third world and pull this shit. It’s not like Nestle is the only one, or even the worst offender. Developing economies are often treated like the free-for-all that the US and South America were when they were first discovered. And I’m not relinquishing blame for the internal idiots who facilitate corruption etc..

I think it’s easy not to care when it seems so far away. That’s a very natural reaction. But growing up, I went to India (and not just India, but a bunch of developing economies, because my dad worked for an MNC) and it’s difficult to get those images out of my head.

This is not to say that anyone in my family has given up working for the Man or anything-but all of us (my dad, my sister and I) have boundaries that we just won’t cross. My father refused to give up on environmental standards when he was designing manufacturing processes in places like Brazil/India/Africa (perhaps the reason why his company has never been involved in a BP disaster), my sister won’t attend drug dinners and I…well, I’m the black sheep of the family, anyway :P .

Personally, I think the the Ph.d in Parenting post is stupid. You can’t resign from life. That doesn’t mean you have to be a douchebag even when working in a Big Bad Multi-National Corporation. My parents have managed it for years.

anna June 7, 2010 at 11:55 am

No, I agree about the part with going into developing countries. I think that was bad. I don’t get really worked up about it because, like you say, I don’t have personal experience that makes it close to me, but I do find it very objectionable.

My “what a bunch of assholes” was directed at the La Leche league types. I think, honestly, that you have to have walked that path to really understand what a bunch of assholes they are. I know that sounds patronizing, and I hated it when people would say that to me, but there is something about being a brand new parent that is just so humbling and terrifying, and that is when they pounce on you, and make you feel like shit, when you’re trying to do something that is really quite hard for some people to do and NOT just simple and natural and wonderful — for some people it is that way, but not for all. And they make you feel guilty and crappy about it, which you already do, and it’s really like emotional terrorism. Which is part of why, I think, the PhD in Parenting (and can we talk about that for a minute?) woman is getting a bad response, because she is militant about stuff.

Maria June 7, 2010 at 12:11 pm

Jumping in here…

I’ve read Annie for a LONG time and I really, really like her. So of course I’m kind of biased here, but she’s SPECIFICALLY written post encouraging lactivists and the like to adopt less aggressive, shitty ways of sharing BFing information. I think she goes out of her way pretty frequently to be approachable and not come across like a dick when trying to educate others about nursing.

It’s a double edged sword. If the info wasn’t out there, women who WANT VERY BADLY to breastfeed and have a hell of a hard time with it wouldn’t have the (free) resources they need. A little support and a few weird videos babies latching can go a seriously long way. That was my personal experience anyway.

Just bringing a different perspective to the table.

Also, I still have nightmares about that giant Prego bottle. Just, no. However, the lunch at Mom 2.0? The subtle, yummy one? That totally left a good impression on me. However, it may have been the delicious prosciutto more than anything else. Yum.

anna June 7, 2010 at 12:21 pm

To be fair, I don’t read her enough to know about her methodology for her lactivist stuff, so you’re right, I shouldn’t be critical without doing more research. My overall impression of the Nestle Family thing was that it was a militant, in-your-face kind of thing, and I remember her name at the forefront. Now, maybe that is an unfair and inaccurate perception, but that’s my recollection of it, so I’m guessing that’s not far off from how many people who aren’t intimately involved with it are going to remember it, which is basically what I was trying to say to her — this is the reality you’re dealing with now, like it or not.

I agree that info is great. But from the perspective of somebody who took all the classes and hired the damn consultants and pumps and lives in a very, very pro-lactation area, there is a pressure that is kind of agonizing. I understand that it can work both ways, and I understand why people might feel like they need to put pressure on people, but I think they are losing sight of the fact that babies thrive. Bottle, breast, babies thrive. Breastfeeding is awesome. But there are so many other things, IMO, that are so much more important, and it’s just so, so personal, and made at such a fragile time in a young mother’s career. Sometimes I want to take those people and smack them down, I will tell you what.

That Prego thing was OUT OF HAND. And yeah, the Barilla one, by contrast, was way better done. Much better food, and also more tastefully executed. I’m sure both brands are totally corrupt, but who cares? We’re just talking about what they looked like, here. When I walked into that Prego room, I was like, “Well, HERE’s a brand that is totally ruining the fabric of Americana if ever there was one.”

Steph June 7, 2010 at 12:44 pm

I had Hell with BF’ing too. My son nearly starved. Well, it might not have been quite that bad but he lost a lot of weight and we were absolutely miserable for three weeks. His doctor made me stop BF’ing. I saw a lactation consultant too. My milk just would NOT come in. Even she admitted I just couldn’t do it. I cried for quite a while and felt really miserable and no one but me was pressuring me to do it. I just knew it was “the acceptable thing to do”. So I have a pretty strong aversion to lactivists too. When we adopted our daughter I was super relieved because I just didn’t have to worry about the whole thing. Now I find out women are actually having injections to cause them to produce milk to breast feed adopted babies and/or are buying breast milk from milk banks. Ummm… No. Not that I care what they choose to do, it’s just not for me.

Lisa June 7, 2010 at 7:09 pm

I just went to read the PhD in Parenting post, very entertaining. And then I ended up on the fake blood and fake milk post. Wow. There are no words.

anna June 7, 2010 at 7:16 pm

Wait, you trolled the archives? Now I’m going to have to go over there. Because I don’t know anything about THAT.

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