Every now and then I notice some Odd Activity on my Flickr account. There’s a page where you can see activity over the last X amount of time, including comments on photos, notes, and who may have add what photo as a favorite. It’s the last function that sometimes reveals weird results, like when a photo gets favorited that I posted months and months ago. If it’s a photo of, say, the moon, or a flower or whatever, I don’t think twice about it, but every now and then the photo is something just sort of—well, the other day someone favorited a photo of me wearing knitted slippers. No big deal, except it seemed a little odd, and when I looked at the person’s account they had no photos of their own (FLAG), their name was something like pxy205m (FLAG FLAG), and when I looked at their favorites page, every single photo was of a woman wearing knitted slippers (FLAG FLAG FLAG WTF).

I guess in that instance someone could have been collecting inspirational photos for their big slipper-knitting project of 2007, or something. There have been others, though, where the circumstances are the same—weird user name, no photos of their own—and the photos they’ve collected are all clearly fetishy in some way. Feet, for instance. Or boobies. Not that I post pictures of my boobs on Flickr, but you know, sometimes they are just Present and Accounted For.

This kind of stuff mostly makes me shrug—whatever gets your rocks off, you know? If slippers are your thing, fine. Have at it. But. BUT. This morning I found that someone had favorited an old photo of Riley, one I’d taken during the summer where he’s viewed from the back playing with a hula hoop. He’s also naked, with his little butt completely visible.

I took a look at this person’s account (no photos of their own, natch) and here are the photos they’ve collected. All little kids, all in various stages of undress. Little boys, specifically. I might have been convinced that this person just liked colorful candid native kid-focused scenery if he hadn’t added my son’s blindingly white suburban butt to the page.

I don’t know how this person found the photo of Riley because I don’t tend to tag things, I certainly wouldn’t have added some descriptors like “NAKED HEINIE” or “PED0PHILES WELCOME”. Maybe they just stumbled across it, maybe they spent a lot of time going through my son’s photos looking for a naked one.

Either way: fuck. Fuck fuck fuck. Someone slobbering over my feet? No big deal. Someone slobbering over my son? VERY. BIG. DEAL.

I deleted the photo, but the whole thing has given me the heebs. I mean, one thing I can do is never post a picture of him unless he’s fully dressed—how sad is that, that innocent pictures of babies should be censored? I could limit photo viewing to friends and family. I could stop posting any kid photos on Flickr and just use that site for documenting my thrilling fashion choices. Which would be so, so lame. I love looking at family photos from the people I follow on Flickr, and I love sharing pictures of my own family.

I suppose I’ve been kind of naive, assuming everyone that looks at the snippets from our lives is doing so with good intentions. Or if not good intentions, at least not sweaty, creepy intentions.

Having a rotten cold is never fun, but if you’ll allow me to be complainy for a second, having a rotten cold while also enormously pregnant is sucky to the extreme. Being felled by some rampaging virus (thank you RILEY) in the third trimester takes your average everyday discomfort and cranks things up to the Pray For Relief And/Or Death level, and I’m officially nostalgic for the days when jimmy legs and sciatic flareups were the most annoying physical symptom I had to deal with.

Also, I am just going to go ahead and say this: I now fully understand the benefit of doing one’s Kegels on a regular basis. It’s got to be better than grabbing your crotch like Michael Jackson each time you feel a sneeze or cough coming on.

On the subject of health, have you seen Sicko yet? I’m not the world’s most rabid Michael Moore fan, but I recommend renting this movie if you haven’t already. It isn’t a perfect documentary, but it is infuriating and disturbing and yes, depressing.

JB and I are phenomenally lucky in that his workplace offers one of the best healthcare benefits programs I’ve ever encountered. We don’t take this for granted, it is every bit as important as salary to us. I take medication to manage a health issue (not mental, I don’t know why I feel the need to clarify that but I do) and recently I looked up what those drugs would cost us out of pocket: $50 a day. Over 18K per year in medications alone, never mind periodic doctor’s visits, and of course everything related to pregnancy (over 25K for that last c-section!), etc.

With JB’s insurance, I don’t have copays, and at least so far I haven’t encountered any HMO hassles over seeing specialists that may or may not be preferred providers. The only limitation I’ve run into to date is that Regence doesn’t want me to get ahead with the medications—they won’t refill a prescription until the current prescription is in theory 75% depleted, even though we’re not talking about controlled substances here. But obviously on the problem scale that one is way over in the Nearly Painless zone, because hell, at least they’re paying for the drugs.

I don’t have any kind of knowledge on whether or not the way Moore represented healthcare in other countries is a fair and accurate portrayal, that’s not really what impacted me most about the movie. Instead, it was the woman whose little girl died because the hospital she brought her to wasn’t covered in her insurance plan, and the HMO executive physician who testified that she was actively and repeatedly encouraged to deny coverage to sick patients. These things I believe happen all the time in our healthcare system.

I have family members who currently have ‘catastrophic’ insurance because they can’t afford comprehensive coverage; their regular visits, preventative care and medications are not paid for. Some of you probably don’t have insurance, or your coverage is stingy as fuck. I guess none of us want to subsidize healthcare for people who deliberately destroy their health, or pay higher taxes so everyone who wants a boob job can get one, but when it comes to basic care and treating illness, it doesn’t seem like it should be a privilege to have access to our country’s health resources. It seems like it should be a right.

Anyway, see the movie if you have a chance, I don’t think you’ll regret it.

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