Hazel is not my real name, it’s Renée. I started this blog to add personality to my online clothing store. SEO for Dummies suggested I post regular content and link it to the website to create back links and make Google bots happy and stuff.
In a saturated market, I was trying to differentiate my product and my brand. It didn’t work. Hazel’s House was a six figure fail. I kept blogging as “Hazel” because I had a real job in a real office with a real boss and not everyone loves the idea of an employee swearing on the internet.
For a few years I posted with naivety. I assumed that people who stumbled across Hazel’s blog (or were directed to it), and didn’t agree with something Hazel said, would just carry on with their lives. I underestimated the amount of spare time some people have.
I am an extroverted introvert, I don’t enjoy being the topic of conversation (except of course if Julio and Dave from Jewellers Workshop are talking about how I like my diamonds…). The idea that people read Hazel’s posts and conjure up shit to attack Renée’s character makes my anxiety levels skyrocket.
The anxiety around posting on the blog and Facebook has contributed to a chronic dose of writer’s block. I try to write posts, but when I read them back it doesn’t sound like me. What you read is what you get – and truth be told, Renée is actually waaaaay more opinionated than Hazel.
I am paid to have an opinion. Big corporates engage me to extract data, manipulate it into meaningful info and offer suggestions for big business decisions. I am often sitting in a meeting and I get asked, “what do you think we should do?”
“I dunno, I don’t really wanna get involved, but I’ll message my friends and see what they say. Can I get back to you tomorrow once they’ve helped me decide?” is not an appropriate response.
The other week I offered Julio’s mum an unsolicited suggestion about a racing name for a horse. Now, there’s two outcomes;
- Julio’s mum will accept my suggestion and Spice will race as *insert amazing name here*
- Julio’s mum will decide on another name for Spice
If Spice races as *insert embarrassingly perfect name here*, I will still yell, “run Spicy!!!!” from the VIP area at Flemington when she wins the Melbourne Cup like the sassy bitch she is…because, “go *insert extraordinarily well-matched racing name here*!!” doesn’t really roll off the tongue.
If Spice races as *insert a different name that Julio’s mum picks* (which won’t be as good, but she pays my rent, so I will pretend I like it, even though I will always think, ‘my name was waaaay better’), here is what I won’t do…
I won’t write a pointed status update on Facebook for my solitary friend (Zebby the cat) to read and jump to conclusions about:
“Won’t mention names, but don’t you hate it when you put yourself out there and offer a suggestion for a racing name for a horse and your partner’s mum decides to name her horse something else?!?! – feeling disappointed”.
I won’t leave cryptic comments on other people’s pointed status updates on Facebook:
“Know what you mean hun, having the same issues at my place. So hard when you try to be involved and your partner’s family just shuts you down. It’s a tough one *hugs*”
I won’t take to Snapchat and rant about how unfairly I’ve been treated because Julio’s mum has just registered Spice under her new racing name and that bitch didn’t use the name I suggested!!! Followed by a long pause as my eyes well up – I am clearly upset!
I won’t set aside time in my “busy” schedule to write a blog about how offended I am that “someone” didn’t name her horse *insert my phenomenal name here* and instead named it *insert nowhere near as good name here*. And list all the reasons that I am so upset about her complete disregard for my feelings.
If Julio’s mum calls her horse whatever the fuck she likes because it’s her fucking horse and she pays the fucking bills, here’s what I will do: I will carry on with my life.
P.S. Julio’s mum, I know you’re reading this…and I know that you know, and I know, that my name is a great name #justsaying