What I'd post if I didn't OPT OUT

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I was driving to work the other day, and you know what they say, we get the best ideas when we are least likely to be able write it down…In the shower, on a run, while driving….Driving seems to be a time when I do my best thinking. So I’ve started audio recording some thoughts. Sometimes I have these funny observations and I think about how I would tweet them or post them on social media to share a laugh with everyone. But then I’m like,ok, Number 1.) Who is this “everyone” I am referring to? and Number 2.) Why do I care? Why do I need others to see it?

I recently decided to stop using and sharing so much on social unless it is for the purpose of marketing my photography business. Because with that sharing, comes checking and comparing. Checking to see how many likes, retweets, reposts. Comparing my life to the curated lives of others. Some I know personally, most I don’t. And for the most part, it doesn’t leave me feeling good. There’s tons of research on how social media can have incredibly negative affects on our mental health. In fact, Instagram is considering getting rid of like counts and working to make Instagram a healthier place for people. If you’re someone who is more prone to comparing, either because you suffer from anxieties or depression, or some mix of the two…this could be a welcome change. These days, most people lie on this anxiety/depression spectrum somewhere. It’s natural and normal to compare ourselves to others. But social media exacerbates this comparison to an unnatural and unhealthy level.

Now, sharing is good. Sharing stories, ideas, laughs, creativity. It’s an amazing asset that us social humans get to do with our species. But if I really want to share with people, I will share it with the friends who actually care. That’s maybe just a handful of people who I am “friends” with on social media. I’d much rather share it in person, over the phone, through a text, or on my blog. This blog is as much for me to keep a record of my life and thoughts as it is to promote my work. And again, to share this work, I have to share this site with you. You have to ask, or be interested. It will create a more genuine connection and a more genuine life. And if you know me at all, (which, if you’re reading this, then you do…), you know that genuine people and a genuine life is what brings me joy.

So…In the absence of social media, and in the intention of enjoying the process of writing and creating and sharing it with my future self and those who support me, here’s what I would post if I didn’t choose to opt out (I will add more as time goes on):


I wonder how many other people who regularly listen to KCRW mouth along to the common phrases and intonations of the reporters. Specifically when Chery Glaser lists the radio stations that NPR supports like KCRI for Indio and “Poahm” Springs. (The way she pronounces “Palm” is so specific to her, I legit find myself mouthing it along.)

  • Fun fact, Chery interviewed a band called Cherry Glazer, which named their band after Chery. Because they thought her name was great. It’s really cute to hear how Chery reacts to them. Listen here.


Things I see while driving around LA: A woman driving a van advertising Lebanese cuisine. She looks Lebanese to me. It probably also has to do with her smoking a cigarette, with curly, frizzy dark hair, and a stern expression on her face. I’m wondering if she smokes while the food is being transported…maybe that’s how it adds some Middle Eastern flavor?

  • I have a weird fondness for cigarette smoke. I don’t support smoking by any means, and have never been a smoker myself. But coming from a Middle Eastern background, I’ve been around my fair share of smokers. It has a scent of nostalgia and warmth. But only in small doses, just wafts of it. It reminds me of a place that is my second home. I am brought back to the beaches of Tel Aviv, and the narrow, uneven roads of small Israeli cities. Too much of this smoke and I am back in the crowded bars where smoking is somehow still allowed and I can feel my lungs and sinuses begging me to leave before I pass out from this headache. They say too much of a good thing….you know the rest.


What online dating is like: I’ll be texting a guy and he’s all, “I’m at the gym. What you up to?” And I’m...sitting on the toilet mid shit...so I’m like...”Just getting home from yoga 🙏” 

  • Jk, let’s be real, I probably just tell him what I’m doing. It’s important men know that women are humans too.


I just lifted up an earphone and my water bottle at the same time and brought the earphone to my mouth and the water bottle to my ear...humans are totallyyy capable of multitasking! 

  • NPR said it, and so it is fact, “As technology allows people to do more tasks at the same time, the myth that we can multitask has never been stronger. But researchers say it's still a myth — and they have the data to prove it.”

Shani LeeadComment