Thursday, December 28, 2006

The Washingtonienne

I just read about Jessica Cutler, the Capital Hill Aide and blogger that wrote The Washingtonienne. She's being sued because she wrote explicit information about her boyfriend, amongst the other men she was "dating". It was published, then taken down once all the drama started.

As a blogger myself, I was intrigued by the story. The issue is basically whether she has the first amendment right to publish information about her personal life, including those she associates with, online (Keep in mind, she did list her conquests by letters of the alphabet, although anyone in the same social circle could have deciphered her genius system). This issue is one that's foremost in my mind as I type away. What do I want anyone who has a computer to know about me?

My list of DON'Ts:
1. My last name
2. My friends and coworkers first or last names.
3. Any identifying information about my clients, as well as any sort of issue going on at work that would be a breach of the confidentiality statement I signed when I was hired.
4. Personal information about my family.
5. I WILL write in generalities about The Boyfriend, but I don't write about anything pertaining to OUR relationship...such as fights, finances, sex (oh wait, I was raised Catholic, I don't have sex), etc.
6. Anything I think my parents would find offensive or inappropriate (my bleeding heart political views are exempt to this rule).

My list of Don'ts are pretty clear cut for me. I was going to post a couple lines from her blog, but I shuddered at the thought of my parents reading her choice in language. I sound like a prude, but I think in this day and age of posting personal information on the internet, we can lose our private lives.

I feel like I need to say that I don't judge her for her sexual choices - I'm a firm believer in everyone doing what they want to with their own bodies. What I do have an issue with is her complete lack of concern for the reputations of the men she's doing all this with. In an interview, she stated her original intent was to "keep friends updated on my social life". It was clearly a blog about her sex life. She now has a new website with a button where people can donate money to, "pay for slutty clothes and drugs". Classy.

So the lawsuit. Was her blog illegal? Probably not. But there are such things as ethics and judgement. I think she got caught up in more and more people reading it and sending comments about how interesting she is. She probably began seeing herself as this happening East Coast hipster with the world in her hands. And the dude who filed the lawsuit is probably really embarassed...but I would think he'd want the attention to just go away, not end up in a court room for public review.

When I googled her blog, an entry came up for her on Wikpedia. If I were in there, I think I'd want to be listed for more than a Washington blog sex scandal.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

The Binder

T is my supervisor, as well as the Executive Director of the agency. He has a secret side life as a life coach and goal-planning-motivational-stuff. He's very intense and lives and breaths by The Binder.

"A", "M" and I (the three of us make up the leadership team) have been tormented by The Binder since T's arrival at EFA. Let me tell you what it is. It's a black binder with goal setting sheets, agency and personal assessments, and lots of exercises that people who are set in their ways don't have time for.

For the last six months, T's answer to everything is "Go get your binder". We never did. And let me say, I think we all realized it was just a matter of time before T didn't ask that we work with The Binder...he's been pretty patient with our resistance.

The agency is in, let me say, a transitional period. Due to agency confidentiality and my firm convictions in my obligation to professional ethics (as well and wanting to tease anyone who's nosy), I shall say no more about the transition. So in order to put the agency in as strong position as possible, we're working together to establish goals and objectives for 2007.

Enter The Binder (again). Because all three of us care about the agency, and T has earned our trust and respect, we've become less bratty towards it. We've entrusted our futures to this man who insists The Binder with change our lives. So when he asked that we each come up with 5-10 goals and work through The Binder method for planning to accomplish those goals - I did. And I have to say, I can see where this is going.

As much as I hate worksheets and making actual plans that will hold me accountable (as opposed to coming up with a "mental plan" that in NO way holds me accountable, mostly because I don't let anyone know what those plans are), I see how this type of plan can build a structured approach to accomplishing goals.

I actually hesitate to post this because "A" is going to be FURIOUS when she reads it - mostly because she hates The Binder the most (that statement is true, but may have also been written in case T sees my blog...I just think it's important that he knows I'm not the biggest hater of the binder). :)