Careless Talk

I was going to say nothing, but in the last hour things have changed. However, is it a struggle? It is bothersome and it does make me wish I had the ability to electrically zap people… but if I had that kind of power, would I really use it?

There’s this conundrum which presents itself when it comes to wishing for things like magic powers when you don’t have them – Since you don’t have them you can freely imagine what you’d do if you had them, but what would you actually do if you had those magic powers?

If I could kill people with my mind, would I do it?

Yes, I know it escalated from non-fatal zapping to psychic killing rather quickly… it’s weird how that happens, isn’t it.

One minute you’re all peace, love, and joy-joy, and the next minute you’re pressing the kill them kill them all button.

Let’s rewind a bit.

It all started innocently enough this morning with a bit of bleary-eyed and foggy-brained contemplation of:

Should have known it would take a turn for the mama just killed a man, since it all began with Fandango’s Provocative Question #9:

What are you struggling with the most right now?

As a blogger, do you enjoy ‘virtual relationships’? Do you consider them to be real?

But the should have known’s always come after the caught in a landslide, don’t they. Hindsight keeps quiet while you’re trying to figure out what to do or not do, and waits for it to go all thunderbolt and lightning, then suddenly it has much to say, including “I could have told you that would happen…

Yeah, Hindsight, you could have told me but you didn’t, did you, because that’s not your style. You wait for me to make a mistake and then you tell me all about how much smarter you would have been, how you would never have made a mistake like that.

As I was staring blankly at the new cyber page I’d opened in the editor, thinking about the first of the two FPQ’s, all I could come up with was nothing.

My life at this time is remarkably free from struggle, I didn’t even struggle to get out of bed today. Perhaps it’s because last year was chock full O’ struggling and I finally gave up the struggle… it’s strange to give up the habit of a lifetime.

So there I was without a care in the world, and Brrring Brrring… the phone rang. I rushed to get it before it woke my partner, otherwise I would have just let it ring because my ESP told me that it was exactly what it turned out to be – A scam call.

They’re not even using people anymore, the new scam calls are automated. There’s always a few seconds of silence after you say “Hello?” then click and “This is a recorded message from your phone company…” and that’s when I go click. Hang up and add the number to my real phone company’s blocking service.

I settled back into staring at the blank post in my editor, still thinking that “Nothing” was my answer to the first FPQ. And Brrring Brrring. Same message, same scam call, using a different phone number to add to the block list.

Those kinds of virtual relationships are a real pain, and I don’t enjoy them.

Relationships have been a struggle for me for most of my life. Mainly due to my very first experience of relationships being with narcissists.

WWII Careless Talk Poster

There’s not much difference between what phone scammers do and what narcissists do. The relationship is all about them taking and you being duped into giving.

They’re super sneaky smart and you’re an idiot. They’re a clever con artist and you’re a stupid mark.

They offer you a fantasy and then watch as you jump through burning hoops to grab it before it disappears or someone else gets their hands on it.

They invent a terrible monster chasing you to eat you up and then offer to save you from it. Or they demand that you save them from something that doesn’t exist.

They pretend to be a friend you can trust, maybe you should exchange secrets to seal the deal, you go first… but they’re really the enemy in disguise and everything you tell them will be used against you to their advantage.

A relationship with a narcissist is invariably a virtual one. Almost, nearly, seems real, but it’s just not quite real… even if you really want to believe that it’s real there’s just something substantial missing.

HMSO warning poster

They’re a Catfish, and like with many of the Catfishers on the MTV show, if they get caught and confronted, somehow it’s never their fault, there’s a long sad sob story…

cue violins and a flood of emotional cons…

And if you refuse to be swayed from victim to sympathiser with your victimiser, you then become the victimiser of the poor Catfish, who hates your effing guts for being and having everything while they have and are nothing. All they had left to keep them afloat was their Catfish identity and you’ve just killed it brutally.

Scammers and narcissists are the Robin Hoods while all of their victims are the Sheriff of Nottingham.

They’re the heroes and we’re the villains, and there’s no convincing them otherwise because the life story they craft for themselves is the only story they want to hear (and no, they don’t listen to it properly because if they did they might notice all the inconsistencies and clash of the titanic facts).

They’re so attached to that tale that they become rather intrepid salesmen, battering us with propaganda, the one and only true story, all other stories are lies.

Virtual reality, virtual relationships, virtual appearances, virtual emotions, virtual lives, virtual personas is the natural realm of the narcissist.

They love this world where at the push of a button they can be whoever they want to be, all they need to do is say it and, hey presto, they’re it.

They can wear whatever face they please, wear different faces for every one of their different online personas. Steal the faces of others and use them as their own, steal the hearts of those who are so superficial they fall in love with pictures, are fooled by easily said I ❤ U’s, and believe everything they’re told.

They can create new accounts in the blink of an eye, and kill them off the moment that creation becomes a problem for them or they lose interest in that facade the story it’s currently telling.

No one can get close to them, no one can touch them, they’re invincible, unbreakable, no one can ever find out who they really are, but they can get close to others, study them, take from them, take what they want without consequences.

They can amass followers and use them as they please to fuel and feed their persona, and grow their cult of a virtual personality.

Falling for a scam or a narcissist can inspire you to reassess yourself, what you value, what you have and don’t have, who you are and who you are not, what you look at and look for in life, in yourself and in others, in relationships and interactions, transactions.

It can help you to understand how your relationship with yourself influences all your other relationships, with things, with ambitions, with ideas, with technology, with people, including the one you have with your social media self.

Who is this person that you are online, is it you?

Who is this person following your online self? Why are they really following you?

Who is that person your online self follows? Why are you really following them?

Blogging is a bit different from other social media. The pace is slower. But the comings and goings are in some ways quicker than on the faster social media.

It requires consistency to blog. It requires substance to hold it together, and true grit to keep it going.

Especially once the honeymoon phase ends, and the real relationship between blogger and blog gets tested to see whether it was a fling, a Summer romance, temporary virtual insanity or something deeper which will last longer.

Most narcissists and scammers tend to fall by the wayside in the blogging world. They tend to do too much all at once, they go too big too fast, they burn the candle at both ends and snuff themselves out. Their dreams of blogging superstardom tend to burst like a balloon which has been over-filled, over-stretched, the skin is too fragile.

The ones who stick it out tend to be those who have become dedicated to one scam, one persona, they’ve invested too much in it to abandon and discard it, the virtual facade has set in place, the mask can no longer be removed, it has become real for them.

They tend to be very rigid in the way that they express themselves, they will not be moved, and behave in a manner similar to the description in the quote below:

“But one of the saddest, most deprecating misuses of power is the withholding of love, affirmation, and delight from other people. Few things keep people in line with our wishes more than an attitude of reserve or aloofness. It is paradoxical that in the power struggle of relationships, the one who loves and encourages the least, gains the most power. This puts people on edge, keeps them guessing, and plays on their need for assurance about their worth.”

― Lloyd Ogilvie, Lord of the Loose Ends

Bloggers reveal themselves in every post, in every word, every story told, every image created or chosen to accompany a post, every action taken or not taken.

Bloggers expose themselves over and over again… it helps if who you’re exposing is actually who you are.

As a blogger I do enjoy the relationship I have with my virtual self, my blogging self, my blog… I’ve learned a lot about who I am and who I am not through the experience.

I’ve struggled a lot with what was real and what was not, who was real and who was not, both past and present, in offline and online worlds, and shared much of that struggle in my posts.

That has helped me feel more comfortable in my own skin.

I enjoy the relationships I have with other bloggers, through interacting with them, reading their blogs, with the people who comment on my posts, with those I talk with through my posts as I have conversations with myself…

I don’t know if they’re hearing what I’m hearing in my words, if they read what I say the way I read it, if the images I use speak to them the way they speak to me, if they notice what I notice, see what is there as I see it.

I sometimes wonder if I’m real to them… but that is an old wondering I used to have long before the virtual world became a reality.

Yes, I consider them to be real.

They’re as real as I am.

Make of that what you will.

“There’s something, no doubt, in the hand you may hold;
Health, family, culture, wit, beauty, and gold
The fortunate owner may fairly regard
As, each in its way, a most excellent card;
Yet the game may be lost, with all these for your own,
Unless you’ve the courage to go it alone!

In battle or business, whatever the game,
In law or in love, it is ever the same;
In the struggle for power, or the scramble for pelf,
Let this be your motto—Rely on yourself!
For, whether the prize be a ribbon or throne,
The victor is he who can go it alone!”

– John Godfrey Saxe, The Game of Life

Featured image is Tell No One Not Even Her! a WWII Careless Talk poster


  1. Propaganda post? Beware the narc who poses as friend. Definitely so. Virtual relationships are a beware thing. We get caught up in the idea of the person we converse with. Like you said with blogging, all feelings, “truths” are put out there but is it still really them? Social media is notorious because it builds on fantasy. Heck, the internet mostly is pure fantasy. Sigh😫 but we have to guard our hearts.


    • Yep, it’s WW2 UK wartime propaganda. I fell down a wikimedia wormhole last night exploring wartime propaganda, some of the images I think were drafts of possible propaganda. Fascinating stuff.

      Strangely enough social media has helped me become less hypervigilant, less paranoid, less guarded, less worried about protecting myself from being hurt. I think it’s partly because I’ve been very lucky online and met some really lovely people, like you. Overall in the virtual world I’ve interacted with more good people than shitty ones. Maybe it’s karmic payback for all the shitty people I’ve interacted with in RL in the past 😉

      I agree about being careful, particularly of our fantasies – they’re what really get us into trouble.

      Liked by 1 person

      • WW2 was a strange time of prejudice and psychopathic fear mongering, such a time of narcs!

        Aww, thanks 💟. I think I’ve found genuine people more so in blogging than social media (FB), but I’m very hypervigilant online and in real time. It’s just me, always been apprehensive.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. “They invent a terrible monster chasing you to eat you up and then offer to save you from it.” Sounds a lot like Trump and his border wall.

    I have learned a lot about who I am through blogging and sometimes I feel that my Fandango persona is more of who I really am than the me who exists in the real, physical world. Perhaps my anonymity allows me to be unfiltered. There are real people behind all of the bloggers I interact with, but I only know their online persona plus whatever brief glimpses they might share in the posts about their realities. I do consider my virtual relationships to be real. And in some cases, more honest than those I have in the offline world.

    Thanks, Ursula, for your provocative answers to my provocative questions.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you very much, Fandango 🙂

      I think your Fandango persona suits you. I get the impression from your posts and your comments that you’re very much you. The way you express yourself is fluid, natural, easy-going even when pissed off at your muse-not-muse, the big Narc. And yes, the wall, typical narc ‘brilliant’ idea to solve a problem they’ve created, their solution always causes real problems.

      Fandango is what could be considered your ‘power name’. I can’t recall the exact definition of a ‘power name’ because I read about it decades ago, but it’s basically considered to be a person’s ‘real’ name which when used by the person endows them with their natural gifts – thus when you express yourself as Fandango you feel free to say what you really want to say, and your writing is powerful, your words have zing, impact. In theory you must never reveal your power name to anyone or that will give others power over you. But that’s silly. If you can’t reveal your power name for fear of others having power over you then others already have power over you.

      Love your FPQ series. Great idea from a real great person!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I love the propaganda posters. It makes me think to share the propaganda posters I collected from some of my year 9 students last term. LOL
    (and also, sigh. I just.. feel all of the things right now. because of my damned stupid blog being… too fucking honest about myself and life. and all the fucking drama everything I have ever said has caused me, and come back to haunt me. but they’re not ghosts or shit. just… people may as well be ghosts because they’re all long gone anyway)


    • Yes, being honest about yourself and your life can come back to haunt you, and will probably cause drama. But what’s the other option? If you hide behind a false front and say only what others want to hear from you – that too will haunt you and will also cause drama, lots of inner drama.

      At the end of the day you kind of have to pick the haunting and drama which you prefer to deal with. Which one is the lesser of two evils for you personally, inside out.

      Blogging longevity usually comes from just keeping going, don’t look back look forwards. Write new posts, leave the old posts to the archives. Trying to tidy up the mess made at the beginning of doing it is a good way to get stuck going around in a circle which sucks all the fun out of it. If there are old posts that worry you, switch them from public to private and just leave it like that.

      It’s good to keep in mind that sometimes you have to be careful about what you say, but there’s careful and then there’s censoring yourself silent which is very frustrating.

      You’ll figure it out, you’ve got a very good head on strong shoulders 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Er, it is not so odd that you came up with zilch for the ‘struggles’ portion of his question. I had nothing either, and therefore declined to answer that one. Doesn’t bother me none.

    You bring up several great points about on-line personas and what might well be the reality behind them. Me? Naive I suppose, but I tend to take my virtual ‘friends’ at face value (ironic much? well sometimes, because I’ve never actually seen my on-line friends’ faces, except for one or two that I’ve known for a very long time). I trust that they’re not lying to me about who they are, but I’ve also been caught out doing that. Had someone reveal themselves as a rotten individual in their personal lives, which made our virtual friendship moot. I don’t cotton to liars. Probably because I’m a real good one myself. I don’t share all my bits and pieces, but unlike Fandango, I do share a weensy bit. I think ID thievery is a real danger and therefore I don’t share all my bits and pieces, only fools do.

    I have ‘real’ friends that are virtual. I respect their opinion, laugh at their jokes and humor, and enjoy them. The best parts of friendship without the stress of possibly awkward face to face interaction. And I’m fairly certain that if most of my virtual friends ever met me IRL, they’d be shocked and probably dismayed. I’m (in my own perspective any way) pretty different from how I present myself on line.

    And yes, I think the best ‘friends’ on line do read each other’s thoughts with amazing accuracy, ‘get’ each other in a way not possible for some of us in the real world, and build each other up, again not always possible in real time.

    Fascinating take, but you’re pretty fascinating. Thanks Ursula!


    • Thank you, Melanie 🙂

      I think everyone is different online than they are in person because the means of interacting and communicating is different. Online we can bypass a lot of the social rituals which we do in person. For instance we can lounge around in pyjamas while having a political debate online. We can fart and burp without needing to apologise to those we’re chatting with 😉

      We can get straight to the point, rather than discussing the weather first. We can leap into a conversation and share our views even if we don’t know the people who are having the conversation and more often than not they won’t mind because that’s what you do online.

      There’s more time to listen to what someone said because you can re-read it as many times as you need to. There’s more time to consider what you want to say, you don’t have to rush to reply, and you can re-read your own conversations.

      We can meet people from all over the world without traveling. We can find groups which are interested in what we’re interested in easily, which can be difficult where we live. It’s easier to meet kindred spirits.

      We get to know more about how people think and feel because we meet the inside of people more than the outside of them, and people feel freer about sharing themselves online whereas in person there are all these added extras which can inhibit self-expression. In some ways being disembodied gives us more of a physical presence.

      Of course a lot of what happens in person happens online too because wherever humans are human stuff happens. The online world does allow shitty people to do shitty stuff which is harder to do in person. We can’t avoid problems, but sometimes the online world can give us a better chance at finding solutions to problems. The online world also allows good people to do a lot of good for more people 🙂


  5. This is a strange and mysterious world this blogging one but I have found my contacts here to be more genuine than on other social media. We bare our souls here. It is easier to see what is genuine and what is not. I have found through the years of baring my soul I became more and more myself , my true one. Not the one I picked years ago which is Strawberryindigo. Not really the one I was born with, Nancy, but something more like myself, the one I am growing into. Sorry for rambling–You have made me think and I thank you for that! Great article.


    • Thank you very much 🙂

      I agree completely, baring your soul on your blog is a great way to really connect with who you are. You get to see and hear yourself more clearly, and it helps you to recognise which parts of you are yours and which parts may have come from others.

      I used a nickname for my blog to free myself from the inhibitions associated with my given name. My given name had too much input from other people telling me who I was, and I never really felt connected to that name. When I first dipped into social media I did use my given name, and then I decided to try not using it. It’s interesting to see what we do when we give ourselves permission to be whoever we want to be, to say what we really want to say, and do what we want to do.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I could swear that my ex best friend is a narcissist. It was interesting, because I didn’t even realise until I stopped being friends with her that that’s what she was/is.


    • Going by what I’ve read about your ex-bf she definitely sounds very much like a narcissist. If she was a teenager behaving that way, it would be normal since we’re all narcissistic as teens to a certain degree due to hormones, emotions, thoughts which are intense and exaggerated, everything is a huge deal, growing up is frightening and stressful, but once a person gets to their mid 20’s behaving like a ‘mean girl’ doesn’t make sense anymore, and if a person continues to behave that way as they get older as though they’re stuck in a behaviour rut, refusing to ‘grow up’, then the chances of them being a narcissist increase.

      Once you make the connection, if the narcissist shoe fits then the pieces of the puzzle which baffled you tend to fall into place.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I’ve been picking up more scam calls in the last half year than the last three years maybe five lol That’s because I turn on the ringer these days where in the past, it’s only turned on if Im expecting a call. When reading this post, I was thinking will she one day call me? I say my wishful thinking lol but one disagrees.

    People you meet on social media are a mix of genuine and fakes. I have experience with both during those insta days. And there is one online friend that I still keep contact with (not the one mentioned in my post though). To me, this friendship is as real as it can be.


    • Hmmm… that’s quite a thought. What would you do if she did call you – prompt for a future post on your blog perhaps.

      The people we meet in social situations offline are also a mix of genuine and fakes. In some ways it’s easier to get to know the real of people online, but it does depend on the social media platform, I think.


      • That’s a great prompt you suggested… I will do that surely because I haven’t think yet. Right, I’m finally fix things on my site (was trying to preview a new theme but crashed all my custom settings in the end) and just published a long overdue post with some questions from your recent posts.

        Have a look and your comments are always welcome 😉

        Liked by 1 person

      • After reading this post again, ah- I remember a few females have told me I look like a player… Lol I’d considered myself lucky if I didn’t get played by them

        If she did called, first I would apologize for my rude behavior whatever that made her wrote her last text.

        Next, I would ask her if she think I’m a player or a con artist? Lol haha… She probably never given a thought this about either.

        Neither did I 😀


            • When someone makes a judgment about your cover, are they seeing who you are or seeing a fantasy of who you are which serves a purpose for them?

              A stranger once asked me if I was a ballet dancer. A few seconds after that question about my being a ballet dancer they asked me if they could pick some of the grapefruit hanging on the tree in the garden of the property where I was standing. It wasn’t my property, it was the property of a friend I was staying with, they had given strict instructions not to let anyone pick fruit from their trees. So I told that person they couldn’t pick grapefruit. I’m guessing they stopped seeing me as a ballet dancer after that 😉


              • Either way really don’t matter. Im quite used to being an imagery thus I qouted ‘Those who have eyes, let them see’… Im contemplating on something else really. Thanks for reading and offering me an alternate perspective.

                I like the story of the grapefruit in the garden 😉

                Liked by 1 person

  8. Good post. 🙂

    I think that as in face-to-face life, most bloggers are trying their best to be who they are, although I agree that this is a different communication medium and some characteristics or tendencies may emphasised or de-emphasised. We’re always going to have to deal with scammers/narcissists who spend more time and energy trying get things “the easy way” rather than by just getting a job and doing the work. I consider blogging friends to be real friends.

    Like Fandango, I love your statement that “They invent a terrible monster chasing you to eat you up and then offer to save you from it.” All the best dictators have done it that way. 😉


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