Saturday, January 22, 2011

Ellie Tries To Write A Bio

Can we talk about Bios for a second?

Can we talk about how much they suck?

I've had a couple of occasions recently where I needed to submit a brief Bio about myself.  

I'm not allowed to answer the question, "So, who are you?" with "I dunno... who do you want me to be?"  anymore.   But encapsulating who I am, what I do, changes constantly depending on the day, my mood, the time of the month and my current level of self-esteem.

Today, for example, I was Chief Sock Folder.   I did seven loads of laundry today.  SEVEN.  I folded everything and put it all away.    I feel like I deserve a parade.   But this sort of thing isn't really Bio worthy now, is it?

So, how to summarize myself in three or four perky sentences?

The first rule of thumb, apparently, is to speak about myself in the third person.   That much I can do.   It's so enjoyable that I may adopt this pattern of speech permanently.    "Ellie is displeased with the level of cleanliness in this room," sounds so much more professional than "clean up this pig sty!"

"Ellie is a ...."   Sigh.   "Ellie is a....." 

Hmm.   Maybe I'll browse other people's bios for inspiration..... 

Okay, that was a bad idea.   I didn't realize everyone else I know is so damn impressive

The second rule of thumb is never, ever read other people's bios when you're trying to write your own.

"Ellie is ... "   No.   "Ellie enjoys..."  Too hokey.  "When she's not...."   Too negative.    "A stay-at-home mother of two...."  Too cliche.    

CRAP.  I know I'm busy, like, ALL THE TIME.   What IS it that I do, exactly?

Maybe the truth would work?   "Depending on the day, Ellie can be found pounding out jewelry, kicking laundry into a pile, chasing a half-naked 5 year old, playing a mean game of Super Mario Brothers or staring blankly at the white screen on her computer." 

Nah.   Too flighty.   True, but flighty.

Should I try serious and brooding?  "Ellie is a woman in recovery from alcoholism.   She is passionate about breaking down the stigma surrounding addiction."

Hmmmm..  that one won't exactly make people seek me out for small talk, will it?

"How do you solve a problem like Ellie?  How do you catch a cloud and pin it down?  How do you find a word that means Ellie?   A flibbertijibbet!  A will-o'-the wisp!  A clown!"

Do you think the producers of The Sound of Music would notice if I used that one?

"Ellie is a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma."


"Ellie is a stay-at-home mother of two young children, because when it comes right down to it that is the most important thing she does.   She can multi-task like nobody's business, makes a mean stack of pancakes and once held the highest Bejeweled score on Facebook for one whole week."

Will someone please save me from myself?

"Ellie enjoys speaking in the third person about herself.   In the third person, Ellie can do anything, because it gives her emotional distance from all her insecurities."

Ellie gives up.

Ellie just IS