Tap your right toe to the ground for five seconds…wait for the beep.

Here’s a nice little review of  some new shoe innovations going on here in MA.  Take a read.  While New Balance’s smash lab I thought was pretty cool to hear about, the whole Verb For Shoe thing was a little more curiosity-rousing.  Sure, telling your computer how you walk funny might be useful.  ANd knowing what parts of your shoe are wearing out is useful, but something that could be put to better use on say, a spaceship or submarine, where your life depends on the integrity of the parts.

That fol-der-ol aside, the contact exchange system is hilariously brilliant.  At first I was contemplating the idea of being able to subtly check out some guy on the T, noting his shoes, and then grabbing his contact information on the sly.  Of course, then there’s a correlary of a scary old guy getting yours.  But after checking out the website, I wa a little more reassured.  For privacy reasons, there has to be user prompted interface on both sides.  The ‘dance’ that prompts this interface, however, is hilarious.  If you go to the website, look under ‘tech’, then ‘share’, then ‘click to learn more’.  The resulting video just flattens me.  Be sure you have your volume up.

My new pen pal.

Occasionally ordinary incidents of the day strike enough of a chord in me that I feel the need to record them.  To others, there may be nothing singular or striking about these events, but I still find they have worth.  I don’t pretend to know the meaning behind each, other than to prove the world of Stacey is a strange place.

Of late, I have been doing some online dating.  When I say ‘online dating’, I mean trolling the internet for people I might actually like.  Usually there are some emails exchanged, and some of them even result in live, real-world dates.  At the moment I am on match.com which has been highly rated by two people I trust, Mike and Gina.  However, I’ve had little success with it.  No one has emailed me out of the blue, and those who I’ve emailed have not responded.  I’ve also been looking at postings on Craigslist, which is where all the actual communication and dating has sprung from.

Even online, there’s no gentle way to let a person down.  Whether you’ve actually met them or not, the final ‘let’s be friends’ death-knell is difficult to give.  I myself have occasionally been prone to the ‘chicken’ method – never emailing or speaking to them again, no matter how many times they call/write.  I just hate to be mean to people, even when I don’t really like them.  I guess it’s because, despite the reasons and even a lack of interest in both parties, rejection stings.

I was pleasantly surprised then by a recent return email from a guy I’d told I would be willing to meet, but only as friends.  He said that he’d been talking to this other girl too where he had quite a bit of interest, so this kinda made the decision for him.  I don’t doubt that, but I do doubt his feelings in that regard were, as he said, ‘good’.  He did also say he didn’t really want to meet as friends, since he had trouble being friends with girls he like and wanting more.  Again, understandable and pretty much what I expected.  But then, he wanted to keep emailing anyway.

While I’m not opposed to the idea in principle (hey, I get bored at work – just look at how often I post in a single day), I don’t get it.  Is he trying to keep communication open in case I realize my mistake or things go horribly wrong for him and this other girl?  Is he really an identity thief on my trail?  Is he a Nightwatchman, a la Special Topics in Calamity Physics, looking to recruit?  Does he just really really like writing emails?  I’m not sure, but I think I find it intriguing enough to keep writing.  Why not?  if nothing else, it will shape up my form for the next online dating dive.

Miss Mumble

Some of you may be familiar with the game ‘Is Miss Mumble Home’.  It involves a group of people (typically children, though not always, especially in my ‘special’ friend group) sitting around and talking to each other.  But like the also-popular ‘Telephone’, it’s about not communicating.  The game goes like this – one person starts by saying “Is Miss Mumble home?” to the person next to them.  The next person replies with “I don’t know – let me ask my neighbor”, proceeding to ask “Is Miss Mumble home?” to the next person in the circle.  And so on.  The trick is this – you can’t show your teeth.  So when you talk, you cover teeth with lips and end up speaking like a toothless geriatric.  If you show your teeth, you lose.  If you crack up so hard that you can’t pass along the message, you lose.

While the game may be good practice for  all of us who plan on living to a ripe old age (and who still wish to converse, listen, and be understood), on some of us it has a different effect.  For me, perhaps it helped fuel my ambition to be a crazy old lady, possibly one with cats.  For others, it may have helped them in daily brushing once they realized they will always want their teeth.  The unfortunate side effect for me was that I can no longer distinguish when I’m talking like a normal person.

My family would say that I’ve mumble from a young age.  However, their definition is slightly skewed.   What they mean when they say ‘mumble’ is not that the words I speak are incomprehensible and unclear.  Instead, the words are completely clear, but the meaning of the words, when placed together, becomes blurred or too long.  When they say mumble, they mean ramble.  Personally I think they just have short attention spans – I know I’ve needed every word I’ve said.  More disturbing however, are recent effects.  Evidently, now I  mumble.  Evidently, now I get tired and talk into pillows.

I know I have a problem.  I know I need help.  But with time (and possibly a few mouth exercises) I will triumph once again.  But  others out there, beware!  Parents especially, please realize that games like ‘Miss Mumble’ can have a lasting and possibly detrimental effect.