Laughing in Public- fou rire

So I was reading a book at the dentist office while waiting. The dentist office is a… not so funny place. Everyone looks nervous and anxious, but here I was reading and well… it was funny.
Not done it yet, but enjoying it so far...
I guess it's my type of humour
I tried to muffle a laugh, but dang it, it was FUNNY!

And my quiet throat-giggle turned into a snort. Which is always funn--ier.

So there I was giggling like a nut. I glanced up. Everyone was trying not to look at me, but when someone snort-laughs all to themselves at the dentist office, it’s grounds for a few smirks. So everyone had this little grin they couldn’t really hide while they avoided making eye contact with anyone.

I had this urge to read them the page that made me laugh so they’d know I was not as crazy as I was coming off, but I did that before and no one else thought it was funny, so then I really did look crazy and even got that eye-roll thing that makes me want to run.

Looking at the cover of the book, well it looks serious so they probably thought I was a bit of a weirdo. I had no idea it was going to be so funny, but this kid. *shakes head and wipes laughing tears that materialize* Anyway,  I was tempted to tell these strangers it was a good book, but they were trying so hard NOT to look at me I decided to just sit there and giggle to myself. But it's hard to do this properly and without drawing attention to yourself. At one point my entire body was shaking with the laughter which of course was funny and you see how this was not cool.

In French we call it fou rire and I never found an expression similar in English, but this is the perfect example, just laughter that explodes from inside you at the worst time or place that you can't get a handle on. 

So, I finally collected myself and dived back into the book. Well… it got more funny… so there I was, right out laughing to myself, not caring where I was. I mean, let's face it, by now I was already on the nutso list, I might as well just go with it.

No one else laughed, just stared ahead pretending I wasn't nuts. I know right?

What do you do when you’re in public and can’t stop laughing? This ever happen to you? Do you ignore strangers laughing or get in on the joke? Where is the weirdest place you ever caught the fou rire?

Time Travelling to 1907

During my research, I came across some interesting finds and thought I'd share this one.

This document was found in a desk. What a treasure. It's from the first school board annual meetings in the area. It's written in French, and says that for the year of 1907, they are hiring a teacher for 10 months, with a salary of $75/month.

This is a pic of the school/convent with church and rectory in the background. 

What interesting gems did you com across during your research or cleaning?

Technology Advancements? Part 2- Your eReputation

With all this snappy technology, things should be so easy. Yet, somehow, it means higher expectations, unknown dangers, and a lot more work. Sounds fair, considering how small the world suddenly got. I mean really, I used to write for the local newspaper, now, I write for the world. And! it's archived, so really, I write for the future. We all do.

It goes a lot further and even pours in to our reputations. I mean let's face. Do you Google your babysitter before leaving her alone with your children? Do you check online for the reputation of a restaurant before venturing out? Do you read book reviews on Goodreads and Amazon before buying?

I had a difference of opinion with a colleague not long ago and we agreed to cool off before we talked again. During our next encounter, it was clear I'd been Googled. I know this because even though I want to be real online, it is only a part of who I am. Yet, I was judged, classed, and shoved down because I... (wait for it.... wait for it... ) because I blog. I know, the horror of it. How could I? Apparently, it's something over dramatics do.

I've been teaching technology classes for teens and we end up discussing some interesting challenges they face, well... that we all face. There is a new type of bullying and a new stress on their lives that other generations didn't live as teens. What can they do when they're walking home from school and someone is making a video that catches the exact moment a gust of wind blows up their skirt unexpectedly? (why is someone making a video you ask?? ... someone is always apparently making a video. They just are. This isn't me being over dramatic or anything.) What can they do when this funny image is shared on social media and goes viral? (why would someone share this you ask??... someone is always apparently sharing a video. They just are, and yes, I am over dramatic.)

We ended up calling it Private meets Public. Because the places where they should be safe and private, like their bedrooms, are now public places. Places where 200 friends can come in (if they let them) and find out that they are doing homework. Where walking home from school becomes a public venue. Where potential bosses can check to find out where they eat. Where angry colleagues can search for things to use against them in their next encounter and curse them: "you.... you blogger you!"

How fast can your reputation be affected? Instantly. (gee, maybe I am over dramatic.) I tested it the other night and put out a post on a social media where I did nothing with it. Nothing. I just put it out there. In twenty minutes, 238 people had seen it. I had one share but had set the privacy settings so no one could share. To get around this, this person went to the link and shared it from there. I couldn't track that share and only found it because someone tagged me in their share of that share (still following?). That initial share is out of my control in some new life being shared with strangers. Of 238 that saw it on my page, only one left a comment and a dozen liked it. Overnight, while I was sleeping that number jumped to over 800 views. I saw it all over being shared. Some were collecting comments for me as if this was their post... How accurate are these tracking numbers? If they're even close to the truth, it's scary, because imagine if I put a little effort behind it at a normal time of day? Imagine if each share saw 800 views overnight! Can you see how fast your name could be bloggered? (still feels like a compliment to me...)

How quick will others class us based on what we post? I can't hold this against my colleague, I do it myself. I unfollowed a blog once because the blogger ditched coworkers in a very vulgar way. Two years later I went back to this site to see if he was still doing this. (his name came up on my twitter sidebar and I was curious, I guess, but point is I took a mental note of his name to avoid being linked to it.) His site was cleaned up, full of useful information on how to use social media properly, there were author interviews and book reviews. I was shocked. I'd classed him as rude and didn't want my name linked to his. Sure he used several swear words, but they were funny in a very over dramatic way. And it's clear this is the intense reputation he is after. I felt bad for having unfollowed him when he was probably having a bad day and made a wrong choice.

Cleaning up our own image isn't that hard to do because people can be very forgiving. But!!!
How do we control what others post about us or link to us? Common sense will prevail, and just like we got used to not listening in on those party-lines (okay maybe not.), we'll learn not to post things that damage the reputation and ruin the lives of others. Right?

And has anyone figured out Google+ yet? Someone told me it was important in building an online presence as it was searchable.  And Google rated posts on it higher... no idea if that's true... if it is, you all see where that might help our reputation... or quickly destroy it. There I go, being over dramatic again.

Are you finding these leaps and bounds in technology a hard adjustment? Is it ruining your life or improving it? Do you do an online check of your reputation regularly? How do others see you? Is your online reputation the same as your off line one? What do you do to maintain a healthy online reputation?

Here are a few links I enjoyed reading and sharing;
7 dangerous aps
8 step clean up for your ereputation
Clean up your online rep
Norton security tips