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Have you ever read a headline and thought: “I really need to read this article?” Or have you read a headline and said to yourself: “Self, it’d be a waste of time to read any farther?” Headlines can make or break a story. Like back cover blurbs on a book, a headline has to grab attention and elicit feelings of wanting to know more.

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Facebook uses artificial intelligence to flag certain words and phrases that it deems “inappropriate,” and if you use those words or phrases, you’ll be sent a nastygram and your comment or post will be made invisible to the public. This is common knowledge. People get their comments removed quite frequently and they even find themselves in FB jail for posting certain content. (So much for freedom of speech, but whatever.) But, here’s what you don’t know: Facebook AI does NOT use a thesaurus. And that’s where the fun comes in.

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There’s a first for everything and a couple of weeks ago was my first time. I’ve got to say, it was a very pleasant experience. I highly recommend it. That’s right, it was my first time and I’m sharing it with you guys! You’re welcome.

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I love to read. Most writers do. Books are our drug of choice; the thing we rely on to keep us motivated, inspired, eager to put our own ideas down on paper. Writing can be exhilarating. So can reading. But, like writing, reading is not without its dark side. Read on and I’ll explain.

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I don’t know if it’s because I’m a writer, overly curious, or just plain weird, but my brain sometimes astonishes me with the things it wonders about. Some days I just fixate on the absurdness of a random thought that stopped me in my tracks. Let me give you some examples:

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So . . . apparently, like Roz, Big Brother really IS always watching. And, if he doesn’t approve of your activities, BAM he’ll swoop on in and shut you down until you can prove you’re worthy of Big Brother’s approval.

So . . . apparently, like Roz, Big Brother really IS always watching. And, if he doesn’t approve of your activities, BAM he’ll swoop on in and shut you down until you can prove you’re worthy of Big Brother’s approval.

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I really enjoy reading. I’ve been reading almost my entire life and before I could read my mother read to me. I credit my mom for my love of books. I’ve always liked a good mystery, like Nancy Drew, the Hardy Boys and Phyllis Whitney books as I got a little older. My taste in books has expanded over the years, especially since I started writing. I still have my favorite genres, but I sometimes challenge myself to read something beyond my normal literary go-to’s.

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All through my years of schooling, I maintained consistently high grades; honor roll every year. Except for algebra my junior year of high school. That ruined my GPA for one entire year. (Stupid math.) I did redeem myself in college though. While still struggling with numbers, I managed to get a B- in algebra my last year. I had to pass that class or I wouldn’t graduate. But I did. Again, with honors. Whew. But, I digress. At present, there are many days I do some incredibly stupid, not A+ or even B- things, and certainly not honor roll things. It’s like my brain forgets to do its job. I used to be “with it.” I used to not need notes to remember things. I used to use common sense and logic to figure things out. Nowadays, not so much. Some days I don’t even recognize myself because I do some really dumb stuff.

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Happy new year! Grand tidings for brighter, more peaceful days. Only 75 days until spring officially starts! I think we’ve all breathed a sigh of relief that we’ve made it through 2020. That is behind us. Done. Gone. The End. Time for a new beginning. A new year. A new opportunity. Every day is a chance to make a fresh new start.

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It’s week of Christmas. Can you believe it? Not too long ago it felt like time was standing still. But, time is constant and marches on. And so, here we are, 4 days from the one day almost everyone looks forward to all year long.

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