Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Administrativa: The Found Goddess of Yahoo Groups

Here's another post from Barbara Ardinger, book editor extraordinaire.  First, before the article, Barbara would like to introduce her "Found Goddesses":

Finding New Goddesses

You have no doubt noticed that spiritual and religious writing is almost without exception Highly Serious. The standard-brand monotheistic holy books, mainstream metaphysics, Eastern wisdom, channeled "wisdom," books on philosophy and meditation—hardly a smile in any of it, never a giggle. "This is Deep Thought," the earnest and learned ones seem to be telling us. "Our Religion Is Nothing To Laugh At."

Why not? What on earth (or in the various heavens and hells) is so holy that we can't make fun of it? That's why I started Finding new goddesses. What are Found goddesses? They're made-up deities, goddesses who cope with issues not even dreamed of in ancient Greece or India or the northern lands. Please note that I didn't invent Found goddesses. Morgan Grey and Julia Penelope coined the idea in 1988 for their wonderful little book, Found Goddesses. Their first Found goddess was Asphalta: "Hail, Asphalta, full of grace:/ Help me find a parking space."

Now, here's Barbara's thoughts on "Administrativa":

Here is Administrativa. It’s 7 a.m. She’s sitting at her computer, parsing posts and picking the ashes out of the lentils. It’s noon. She’s still sitting at her computer, nibbling on the bread crusts the friendly doves have brought her. It’s 7 p.m. She’s still sitting at her computer, nibbling on some nice cabbage soup the friendly mice have delivered. It’s 2 a.m. She’s still sitting at her computer. The owl from down the block is fanning Administrativa’s cheeks to help keep her awake so she can do her eternal job of keeping track of what’s doing what to which group. If she looked into a magic mirror instead of at her monitor, the voice in mirror would laugh and say, “Dudette, you are majorly fair. Have an apple?

Administrativa takes her work Very Seriously. “Snip and clip,” she tells the girls in the group, “so people who get digests don’t have to read a whole month’s worth of posts just because it takes you twenty-seven day to reply to something you think you read.” She looks at the list again. “Do not forward anything from this list to any other entity on the planet,” she types. “We do not want anyone to know what we know.” She considers a thread she has been following. “Stay on topic!” she writes. “Do not post your banned Craig’s list ads on this list.” Administrativa follows all threads and reads all posts. She is seven times more attentive to her lists than those grumpy, lazy, thoughty, sleazy little men were to that sleepy little girl. Administrativa is helpful and kind and gently uses her virtual whip to keep everyone in line. She can spin the dimmest post into pure golden prose. She has a quantum brain and actually understands what everyone is writing. She is always doing cutting-edge research and is able to present new ideas for discussion.

Thank you, Administrativa. You keep our fingers happy. You explain social networking and HTML. You tell us where we can put our attachments. You share clarifications that we can collectively consider. You neatly snip away the non-text portions of our posts. You reply to our naïve questions promptly and without obfuscation. Thank you, Administrativa. You are never trivial.