After a bunch of hemming and hawing, I finally decided to say goodbye to ParentDish. Considering our increased household expenses (groceries! gas! Similac with Iron, which is apparently manufactured from pulverized Hope Diamond, uncut cocaine, and space meteorite particles, based on the per-ounce cost!), I worried that it would be irresponsible to give up any paying gig right now, but after listening to some of your feedback and thinking on things for a while it felt like the right thing to do. It wasn’t so much that the occasional negative comments directed at me were too difficult to deal with (although I won’t lie, they sometimes lingered in my brain for hours after reading them), it bothered me more that the environment can be so consistently hostile over there, about every ridiculous topic you can possibly think of, and being a part of the conversation was starting to feel like supporting a perpetually angry mob, their pointy rocks and Caps Lock keys aimed to fire at whoever crossed their path. It felt icky to ask you to join me there. It felt icky that I was sharing stories about the most important part of my life there. And the job was taking the subject that gives me the most joy to write about and making it an unpleasant, often unrewarding chore.

Despite how it sounds, it’s not true that I only have bad things to say about ParentDish. Writing for PD was like therapy while I was on maternity leave and tasked with churning out two posts a day — it was a lot of work, but helped me maintain a feeling of having accomplished some little thing (ANYTHING) other than the endless cycle of feedings, laundry, and cleanup in the early days after Dylan was born. There are a group of insanely talented writers working for that website (whether or not you enjoy reading celebrity stories or news items, consider the effort it takes to constantly search and report with skill on these topics, often without about five minutes’ lead time), the editors I’ve worked with have been unbelievably awesome, and there really are a ton of smart, cool, friendly people reading, fellow parents I wish lived down the block from me so I could stagger over with my kids in order to bleat over their fences: HELP HELP NEED ADULT COMPANY IMMEDIATELY ALSO CHOCOLATE.

I don’t know if there is a way to drive ParentDish towards developing a more positive environment without, at the very least, enforcing some comment moderation guidelines, but it would be nice to see it happen someday. There are missed opportunities when a community becomes so, well, cannibalistic, you know?

Okay, jesus, more than you ever wanted to hear on the subject I’m SURE, so anyway, how was your weekend? Mine was fairly vigorous: JB’s birthday, visiting grandparents, roseola-inflicted toddler, succumbing-to-another-mucusy-illness-just-as-we’re-wrapping-up-the-fucking-10-days-of-amoxicilin baby, a lengthy meandering train of thought which led me to this (that video is so totally why JB and I have been saying “WTF mate?” for about 5 years now).

Birthday presents with the inevitable zombie invasion in mind. WHAT?

Cake preparation, with extra contagious saliva.

Suspicious damn kids.

Random cute baby photo, because SMOOOOOOOOSH.


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