What are you doing on that thing?

My husband is not a jealous person.  In that sense he’s an atypical Italian man.  He doesn’t have an issue with male friends or ex-boyfriends.  He’s very secure in our relationship and trusting of me.  But there is one thing – one relationship I have that makes him very uncomfortable.  It’s with my computer.  And according to him, my attachment to it is unhealthy.

In a sense Enzo is right. He’s one of those people who has almost no use for technology.  He’s not on Facebook.  He doesn’t have email.  He pays his bills the old fashioned way.  Heck, he’s not even really that into texting.  I on the other hand have to be somewhat connected most of the day.  Thanks to wireless access my laptop is never more than a few feet from me when I’m home and when I’m not I have my iPhone and Safari to keep me connected.   I  get a little antsy when my computer battery starts to run low or if the internet connection is spotty.  Most nights it sits with us on the sofa and entertains me while my husband gets lost in Clash of the Titans or one of the super gory Saw movies he loves.  Sometimes if I’m laughing or seem really enthralled I’ll get, “Mon, what are you doing on that thing?”  And the beauty is I can be doing just about anything.

Like 175 million other people, I usually start on Facebook.  That’s always good for at least 30 minutes of entertainment.  I have about 500 friends, many of them people I’ve never met or met only in a professional setting.  They’re certainly not real friends so I shouldn’t really care about their dogs learning a new trick, the funny things their kids say or their pseudo-philosophical musings about life.  And it’s not so much that I “care,” but I’m interested.   There’s no relation but I love to see what Monica Pandolfi, my Italian FB friend did last night or pictures of her and her friends singing karaoke.  It’s also awesome to see what the offspring of people I went to high school with look like.  It’s even awesome-r to see what they look like themselves.  Nothing picks me up when I’m feeling fat and ugly faster than seeing how well I’ve aged compared to some.  Here’s some advice – say no to Bud.  I may not be runway material, but at least my hair style has changed a few times since graduation.

Since I started blogging another thing I’ve become borderline obsessed with is analyzing my blog stats.  How many people are reading?  Where are they coming from?    Which posts get the most traffic?  What times of day?  How do they find me?  You know what the number one search term people have used to land on my blog?  Madonna Holiday.  Ya, not happy about it.  Whenever I see that someone has found me by searching for The New Mrs. Carbone I get a little tingle.  Someone, somewhere, knows about my blog and they have gone to their computer wanting to read it.  That’s cool.

OK, so if I’ve gone through Facebook and am up on my blog traffic sometimes I’ll go to Craigslist.  You wanna really be entertained?  Check out Craigslist “missed connections.”  I think you’ll be surprised at the encounters taking place all around you.  For example I learned that while I’m at the gym killing it on the elliptical, there are budding relationships everywhere and some of them aren’t so pure.  Word to the wise – if there’s a steam room or a whirlpool at your gym, don’t use it.

Zillow.com is another site I can get lost in.  You type in any address of any property and it gives you all the details and its market value.  Being the somewhat competitive person I am, I know exactly how my home’s value compares to all 79 in my neighborhood. (I also know that I can easily afford a 5900 square foot home on a 15 acre lot in Omaha.)  Zillow also shows you what homes are on the market, what homes have recently sold and what the sale price was.  Sometimes for shits and giggles I put in addresses for places in Beverly Hills, CA or Telluride, CO.  Today I found there’s a home for sale on Tower Road in Beverly Hills.  Enzo and I walked that neighborhood while we were there on our honeymoon.  It’s on the market for the bargain basement price of $17,995,000.  And if you put 20% down your monthly payment is only $97,100.  Imagine?  Even though the house is on the market for almost $18 mil, the assessed value is only about $8m.  Whoever owns the house now paid $92,700 in taxes last year up almost 150% over the last five years.  Sucks to be them.

Another great thing about having a computer is that you never have to go to the doctor.  Just do a search for the symptoms you have and you can easily find out what’s wrong with you and how to fix it.  For the last few weeks I’ve had this burning feeling right above my ankle.  It also coincides with numbness in my hands in the morning.  So I either have Guillane Barre syndrome, peripheral neuropathy, pernicious anemia or Raynaud’s phenomenon.  See how easy that was?  All that info including how to remedy those conditions was free.  I don’t even know why I have health insurance.  Waste.

Starting in 2007, those crazy kids at Google deployed a fleet of specially adapted cars, tricycles and snow mobiles to give street views of almost everywhere in the world.  That means you can type pretty much any address into Google Earth and see 360 degree views of what it’s like there.  It’s great for checking out hotels and planning trips or just virtually exploring places you’ve never been.  I used it recently to check out the section of Naples, Italy where my family is from.  When I showed my Dad he actually got teary eyed seeing the storefronts, apartment buildings and alley ways of his old neighborhood.  We went from there to the beach town where my family used to vacation, to the place my grandmother lived, to where my grandfather had his gas station, down the bus route my dad drove and on and on.   Just imagine the tremendous effort it took for Google to pull that off.

So, those are some of the ways I pass the time online.  Nothing to be alarmed about.  But still I’m sure when I go to the back bedroom to grab my laptop tonight Enzo will roll his eyes.  “That thing again??”

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