Tuesday, September 10, 2013

I am a "Condescending Bitch..." but I still hope she takes the trip.

When the BF embarked on this "We are getting motorcycles" mission, ADVrider.com became a part of our lives. I'm still making up my mind how I feel about ADV.

On one hand, it's a HUGE online community. Seriously HUGE. There's a thread there about everything... no, really, everything. If you haven't found it yet it's because you haven't looked hard enough. My head spins at the attempt to comprehend the breadth of the site.

On the other hand... it's largely populated by men who ride motorcycles. Any woman who has spent a healthy portion of her life being "one of the guys" either has no clue why a giant online community full of boys is an annoying, smelly, sophomoric place to hang out... or totally knows what I'm talking about.

Hey! I'm not talking smack... well, no more than the annoying, smelly, sophomoric boys do. I like annoying, smelly, sophomoric boys. I've spent a healthy part of my life hanging out with them. I knew what I was getting into when I registered as a member. I'm not pretending to be all sissy/prissy/princess baby. I'm not saying I'm offended by the smelly boys or that they ought to stop being smelly boys.

But that much online testosterone can get overwhelming. No lie.

Still, ADV remains my favorite online community for the motorcycle portion of my life. And even if the boys are sophomoric and smelly-- at least they're blunt and honest and you always know exactly where you stand with them.

Which is how I came to learn of the Jesspa project.

In the convoluted way that that Internet works; this guy started this thread on the ADV forums... the thread now resides in the "basement" forum "Jo Mamma" where the boys are extra smelly and most threads devolve into "show us your tits" posts.

Nevertheless, I found myself utterly unable to tear myself away from the thread. Then I found myself utterly fascinated by Jess's attempt at this so-called adventure.

The thing is, I absolutely, completely, 122% agree with the overwhelming attitude of the smelly boys:
Yeah, honey! Tell us about your JOB.

  • Are YOU earning any of the money toward this epic Vespa odyssey yourself?
  • Do you have parents
  • Do you have a relationship with them? 
  • You said you graduated college-- with a degree in what, exactly? 
  • You say you traded your car for the Vespa to "avoid going into debt." What kind of car was it? 
  • Did you use the rest of the money from the sale of the car to pay off debts?
  •  Do you have school loans? 
  • Do you have any debts now? 
  • Your expense break down includes "rent"-- for what? 
  • What are you going to do when you get back from Sedona?
The specs on the Vespa say it has a top speed of about 59 miles per hour, and gets 70-75 miles to the gallon... why do you need $500 for gas? My math says that's almost twice as much as you'll need.

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Oh yeah... I'm with the smelly boys. Sweetie, you are almost a quarter of a century old and you make no mention of working-- not for a living, not for your dreams-- and you are expecting strangers to give you money because why?

On the other hand-- I don't want to see your tits. And, I assure you, the smelly boys are no more likely to donate to your cause if you show them your tits, so don't do it. And I'm sincerely sorry you got introduced to the ADV community in this manner. It's kinda like when Q and introduced the Borg to humans much earlier than would have naturally occurred.

Yup... that's what it's like.

So anyway, on to my "on the other hand:"

Buried in the ADV thread, there are actually a few good thoughts that are far more philosophically enticing than whether Jess has a big nose or is "hot" or not.

Where she's headed.
The overwhelming part of Jess's blog-- if you can call it that-- is that she is perpetuating so many stereotypes about her generation. She comes off spoiled and entitled and isn't showing any inclination to work toward the realization of her own goals, no work ethic, no concept of earning her money. She sees herself as her product, and believes that all she should have to do is ask for handouts and people will give her money. She doesn't see her proposed journey as a "vacation" and doesn't seem to understand why so many people are inclined to see it as frivolous.

So why is it that there are so many "kids" out there who think that this is an entirely justified, respectable, normal way to "earn" money?

Well... the Internet, for one. People really do make money blogging. Or from their YouTube channels. I totally understand why some people would get it in their heads that all they have to do is create a blog and open a Pay Pal account, link them together and VOILA! Instant career!


grumpy old timers-- and smelly boys
Then a bunch of grumpy old timers come along and grumble about how that ain't workin. It ain't a real job. You ain't gonna make a living just writing stupid stories about your life or postin' vids of your dog climbing stairs.

Except for all the people who are doing it.

So it seems that, like many members of her generation, Jess sees herself as her product. She doesn't see what she's doing as begging or panhandling, because she honestly feels that she is offering a valuable product in exchange for your donations-- she's writing a blog. She's going to share her story with us. And, if you donate enough money, she'll send you a post card.

She hasn't yet learned that not everyone is going to think she's worth their hard-earned money just because she started a blog.

One ADVer in the thread brought up an interesting point relative to my perspective-- he pondered if this was what we get from raising a generation of children who "earn" money for their dance troop, soccer team, cheer program, by passing the hat-- asking for "donations."

I have really honed in on this point. I find it so relevant. We have brought up our children to view themselves as a "worthy cause" just by virtue of being involved in something. Just ask people for money and they'll be happy to help out.

Why would we expect them to think otherwise when they need to raise funds for something?

Jess claims that she plans on embarking on her ride whether she has reached her goal of $2,500 or not. THAT sparks my interest. I don't know if that means that she does, in fact, have a back up source of funding this trip? Or if it means she's actually open to the possibility of a true adventure and thus, learning experience.

I haven't donated any money to her cause yet. I haven't ruled out the possibility that I might. I haven't decided if she's a spoiled princess who expects others to support her, or if she's genuine in her efforts to earn sponsorship by virtue of her story and just presenting herself poorly.

I do know that if she wants to build a readership for her blog, she needs to write stuff that people want to read. Which, thus far, she hasn't. And all those "mid-week pick me up" pics are not keeping me riveted to my seat, anxiously awaiting the start of her journey. With a little less than a month left before GO time, I'm likely to wander off and forget her entirely if she doesn't get to writing more interesting stuff.

But that's the beauty of a free market-- if there's no demand for what she supplies, her business will fall on its ass. And hopefully, that will serve as a big learning experience for her that will help her future efforts prove more successful.

Decide for yourself: Jesspa

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