Overly Full Disclosure

Today’s post comes from 9th District Congressman Loomis Beechly, representing all the water surface area in the State of Minnesota.

Greetings Constituents!

Beechly Provides T.M.I. to the Boating Public

I’ve been writing to you quite a lot lately, and I apologize for that because I know many of you see your elected representative as someone who should not be heard from unless you have a need for my services or a face a government related problem that must be solved immediately.

Otherwise, you would rather I go off to Washington DC to argue with the other Representatives and try my best to do as little as possible in the way of creating policies that might interfere with your life.

I get that, and I’m trying to be the kind of servant you want me to be.

At the same time, I know you need instant access to all existing information about me. Every little detail. Even though you don’t like me very much, it’s important that there not be any secrets between us. I’ve been in some personal romantic relationships like that so I’m very familiar with the Personal Evasion / Privacy Invasion bi-polar disorder that increasingly characterizes our constituent / public servant contract. It’s OK. See how cool I am about it? Your feelings about me couldn’t be more conflicted than MY feelings about me.

And really, I’m ready to submit to any kind of scrutiny as long as you agree to keep voting for (loving) me.

Here’s the good news. Thanks to modern technology and the ongoing merger between reality TV and journalism, you don’t have to work very hard to get a chance to go over my tax returns and even see photos of my car in all the different places I’ve driven it. I also hope that I can soon make it a regular practice to keep my cell phone GPS turned on and linked to my Facebook page so people can always see where I am! Why? It’s a great for us to connect, or conversely, an easy method for you to avoid me if you find me appalling. After all, it’s much easier to duck into a shop or a restaurant when a phone app tells you I’m two blocks away than to wait until you see me and then cross to the other side of the street. And it supports small businesses, which of course is an approach I favor.

I hope that by using these convenient tools, you’ll be able to get comfortable with me, feel that you know me, recognize that we are very much alike, and see that I am as ordinary and mundane as you feel on your very worst days!

As your elected representative, I may not always do exactly what you would do in a given situation, but I do pledge to you that I will be as human as you are, if not moreso. Even if that means I have to be petulant and snippy, a little bit vacant, somewhat clueless, occasionally gaffe-prone and always, always emotionally needy.

Your Congressman,
Loomis Beechly

I already feel a little uncomfortable with Congressman Beechly’s level of sharing, but I think he is doing this because he doesn’t have a political opponent this year, and thus he is forced to run against himself. That thing about his earlier romantic relationships should make this Fall’s contest against Write In Candidate a barn burner! Rep. Beechly’s support staff always goes on vacation in August, but before they left someone should have told the Congressman not to write constituent newsletters after his bedtime nightcap.

When do you know someone has given you Too Much Information?

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95 thoughts on “Overly Full Disclosure”

  1. if its rocking dont come a knocking is the wrong campaign message for elected officials. loomis beachly may have something with his open door policy. he may tell me more than i want to know but if i have to worry about if my elected officials are at rest stops with people who would be illeagl if they knew who i was it is indeed more information than want to know, thank you rep beechley for giving me the solution before i even got the question out. .

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      1. YUM! The Mini-sota Donut Ice Cream was even better than I’d imagined it would be. There is a very brisk cinnamon flavor in contrast to the honey-vanilla background. The donut pieces are big and amazingly enough they’re not soggy. So fun to taste in the Sweet Inspirations conference room equipped with a freezer and ice cream scoop!

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  2. Good morning. Tell me anything you want. I can keep a secret. I will only tell your secret to other people who can keep a secret. Maybe you better not tell me any secrets that you think the public should not hear. I might get up the nerve to be whistleblower, like Julian Assange. Of course, I might decide not to become a whistleblower because the government doesn’t seem to appreciate what he has done. I don’t want to spend any time in jail or hiding in an embassy.

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  3. There are some folks I know going into any conversation are likely to tell me more than I need to (or should) know. You just brace for it and think ahead of something polite and non-committal to say about whatever that day’s TMI topic includes (really? boils and buboes? that sounds, um, uncomfortable..). I have also been on the giving out too much end of things…most recently in a sleep deprived and decongestant-induced haze…I didn’t give up any state secrets but provided a more detailed answer to “how are you” than one normally gives…oops. Clearly a life in the CIA is not in my future if an OTC cold medication can cause me to babble.

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    1. I see no harm in providing a more detailed answer to “how are you” to friends than you would to casual acquaintances, Anna. In fact, I’d expect you to.

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    2. I think people who ask “How are you?” should be prepared for whatever they get! If you don’t want to know, just say “Hi!” I, too, have answered that question with WAY more information than the person ever wanted to know. And I wasn’t in a haze – I just needed to tell somebody how I was!

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  4. Maybe some of those inappropriate things that politicians have said are due to their minds being out of whack from taking cold medications. Do Romney and Biden use a lot of cold medications?

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    1. People who babble secrets can be useful if managed properly. Obama can tell Joe Biden that our latest secret weapon is a souped-up version of the boomerang, and then hope the Chinese ply Biden with NyQuil to get him to reveal all he knows.

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  5. In my line of work, full disclosure is the norm, and let me tell you, after 25 years of doing therapy in the same small town, I know more about many, many people and families than I care to even think about. There is an urban standard in psychology and psychotherapy regarding dual relationships with clients and how you need to avoid them, but the rural environment necessitates a different norm for those kinds of relationships-It’s all well and good to say that you don’t have any dealings with clients outside of the office, but what if your pipes burst and the only reliable plumber in town is your client? The other day I had to have the oil changed in our van, and the person assigned to the job was a former client. There was no way I could say “That person can’t change the oil in my van but I can’t tell you why, because it is a secret”, since that would have given the game away, as everyone here know what I do for a living, so I just had to trust that he would do a good job and not remember when I gave him such a hard time in the office when he was a really naughty 17 year old boy. (He did a fine job, by the way.)

    Earlier this week I was in the bank with my daughter, and a young man I had just evaluated walked into the bank and gave me a huge grin and an even larger wave. My daughter was, of course, embarrassed and asked who he was. What could I say except “Oh, no one.” That answer is pretty obvious, of course, and daughter knows by now what that means, so she said “I guess that means I can’t date him.”

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    1. I know what you are talking about Renee because I know a person who is in a similar situation and it does create problems like the ones you mentioned.

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    2. I had a run-in with my board in the mid-90s which took two years and thousands of dollars to “win” (which I did). After that, I was paranoid to the point that when a client showed up on a two-foot snowfall day in his plow truck, I turned down his offer to make a sweep of my driveway. I’ve loosened up since then and would gladly accept chickens in return for therapy :)

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  6. Loomis Beechly is running against himself. Wouldn’t it be embarrassing to run against your self and lose? Of course, not long ago John Ashcroft (Dubya’s Attorney General) ran against a dead man and lost.

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  7. One of our custodians wasn’t born with the filter for what and what not to say. He and I have a lot in common that way. (Hey – that rhymes!) Anyway one year he eagerly shared the good news that his niece was pregnant which was a real surprise because there was something wrong with her vagina. I’ve shared this before but it’s a classic!

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      1. Steve – don’t make this harder than it is. But come to think of it – maybe the problem didn’t have to do with her at all! Maybe it was her husband’s abnormality. I’ll have to ask if he’s French.

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  8. OT (or maybe not) – in our new wing at school, Apple TVs combined with iPads and digital projectors have replaced interactive whiteboards. I’m all for it! The only problem is my two remotes have gone missing. I swear I never saw them. I was told they were on top of the built-in cabinets and I must have moved them. So yesterday I scoured the room, looking in every conceivable and inconceivable spot. Nothing! Now this morning I wake up and there’s a stye in my eye. I can’t wear contacts or eye makeup till it’s gone. My first graders are going to be freaked out! I’m considering a patch. Any advice re the remotes or stye would be appreciated!

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    1. Donna, stye advice; hot compresses as often as possible. And a wipe of the area with a 50/50 water/white vinegar mix. It is definitely more visible to you than to little 1st graders who are most excited and concerned with their own little/big fears.

      A patch may trigger more concerns than the stye, unless, it is applied in front of them with a complete explanation so that their imaginations don’t go wild with imaging what is behind it. It may or may not be appropriate, according to today’s topic, to share the info about your “owie” and allow them to share when they have had to wear band-aids. Although, that conversation could veer out of control if not directed by a strong leader.

      They can be so dear and compassionate at that age. But I think they are focused on fitting into the new world of 1st grade not on the small stye that feels so big. Hope this isn’t TMI. : )

      No advice for the remote. They must have spares?

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    2. My first grade teacher was Miss Crandle. And she seemed to me at the time to be about 70 yrs old. Your classic, stereotypical elementary school teacher. I would have loved her even more if she had an eye patch!

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    3. Aye there captan donna arrgggg
      Me thinks maybe 21 little sodak pirates might be in order. Ain’t that right boys???? Arrrgggg!!!! The eye patch and a bandana on your hair with a pirate theme in the classroom maybe the jolly roger flag unfurled in that troublesome window. Amy little matey who looks out the window in a daydreaming way like they did back in kindergarten walks the plank ayere

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      1. Hah! My students would think it great fun to start out the year with a pirate theme. And I wouldn’t have to shower all week!
        Anyone else notice how much better a speller tim is when he’s in pirate mode?

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    4. Donna, get yourself a small bottle of Similasan Sty Eye drops. They work great, don’t sting, and are about $10 for a small bottle. You should be able to get them at Walmart or CVC pharmacies. They help ease the swelling and pain, you should get relief within 48 hours. These are no in lieu of Nan’s hot compresses but in addition to. You’ll be good as new in no time. If they don’t have the stye relief drops, the drops for pink eye will work too.

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    5. Re: the eye patch – I am reminded of a favorite teacher I had in high school. A lot of kids met her before we started the school knew she had a prosthetic leg – we had met her when she came to our junior highs to recruit for the magnet program she ran. Those that didn’t, probably just figured the limp and cane was because she was one of the older teachers at the school. Well. When I finally had her as a classroom teacher, I found out how she dealt with the kids who didn’t know about it, might giggle, or feel that it was a weakness to be taken advantage of: she came into the classroom after the bell rang, walked right up to the desk, sat down on a corner and whacked on the prosthesis with her cane. Started right off by saying that yes, the leg was fake, she had lost the original to cancer and had been using this one for several years without incident. If anyone had questions they could ask now – if not, then let’s move on to British Literature and Beowulf.

      I got nothing on the remotes – except for what’s already been said. I’m sure there’s an app for that.

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    6. The information about the stye came so close on the heels of the information about looking for the remote that I thought you were going to say that you got the stye from germy hands poking around in “every conceivable and inconceivable spot”.
      I hope other people’s suggestions for the stye and/or pirate getup will help.

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      1. I insist on hearing about where the remote shows up
        I’m thinking Edith may have taken the bus down there and stolen it.
        Does anyone want to back up Edith’s lame alibi?

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  9. Morning–

    It’s really weird this topic of ‘too much information’ as I had a dream last night about talking with two guys who were working as male prostitutes… One had just gotten married and I was asking what his wife thought of that. That’s about all I remember. And then this morning there’s Dales blog about telling too much. Weird. Let me clarify, I was NOT participating… just talking! :-)

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  10. There was an old man who used to work here, a technician with a long list of physical problems. He retired the year after I started. Almost immediately after being introduced to him, he sat down in a chair near me and began removing his shoes and socks. He wanted to show me his feet: crooked, misshapen old pale toes; yellow, thickened toenails; corns; callouses – ew. I tried to be polite but I almost gagged. My supervisor smiled and said, “Welcome to Waterville.”

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  11. This will be TMI – I started up on Facebook a few days ago. I’ve spent hours looking up settings, etc., and how to post stuff… meanwhile a couple of out-of-state friends keep posting things I’d really rather not have on my wall, a LOT of stuff, TMI, and there is supposed to be a way to “hide” things you don’t want there, but their instructions don’t seem to work. And it wouldn’t let me add Husband on my profile… I’m about ready to just delete the whole thing, or at least wait until winter – it’s too nice out to waste time on this! If anyone want to tutor an inept facebook newbie, shoot me an email at mmbbhassing@usfamily.net .

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    1. You can at least un-tag yourself from photos (though that doesn’t put them in the shredder). You can also change your settings so folks can’t post on your wall – that doesn’t hide them from your news stream however. If you want to hide folks from your news stream that is slightly different, but still do-able (you can also change settings to only show select folks what you are posting, including status updates and photos)…I can come show you sometime (full disclosure: my next couple of weeks are pretty busy, so you may want to take up other offers if anyone could help out before Labor Day…).

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  12. poetry alert

    He Attempts to Love His Neighbours

    My neighbours do not wish to be loved.
    They have made it clear that they prefer to
    go peacefully
    about their business and want me to do the same.
    This ought not to surprise me as it does;
    I ought to know by now that most people have a
    hundred things
    they would rather do than have me love them.

    There is a television, for instance; the truth
    is that almost everybody,
    given the choice between being loved and
    watching TV,
    would choose the latter. Love interrupts
    dinner,
    interferes with mowing the lawn, washing
    the car,
    or walking the dog. Love is a telephone
    ringing or a doorbell
    waking you moments after you’ve finally
    succeeded in getting to sleep.

    So we must be careful, those of us who were
    born with
    the wrong number of fingers or the gift
    of loving; we must do our best to behave
    like normal members of society and not make
    nuisances
    of ourselves; otherwise it could go hard
    with us.
    It is better to bite back your tears,
    swallow your laughter,
    and learn to fake the mildly self-deprecating
    titter
    favored by the bourgeoisie
    than to be left entirely alone, as you will be,
    if your disconformity embarrasses
    your neighbours; I wish I didn’t keep forgetting
    that.

    by Alden Nowlan

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  13. It is sad that so many people give away TMI. I guard personal information with ferocious secrecy. Wild horses could not rip my secrets from me. Wine, however, works well. Two glasses will usually do.

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  14. Very rarely do I think someone has shared TMI. I seem to be the go to person for those who want to share personal stories at the bus stop, in libraries, working in my yard, in grocery stores, at the park. I nod, empathize and, maybe, ask questions. I think the world is a hard place for some and telling their stories and being listened to gives them comfort and validation.

    On the political, celebrity front, I don’t have much interest in listening to and dissecting all of the gory details. I think it is the public part that is distasteful to me and the over and over thing.

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    1. I, too, rarely feel that someone has given TMI. I am not easily shocked or grossed out and as long as the story isn’t too boring, I’m happy to listen.
      I may be a bit unguarded myself at times but not so much that I can remember getting myself (or anyone else) in trouble for what I have revealed.

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      1. Works for me since I’m still wide awake at 2AM, ardently searching for a fresh forum in which to engage. By this time, the Strib, Fox Nation, and Huff Po are pretty stale. By the way, another liberal Strib writer offered up her old user name & password, so I’m back on and being really careful to refrain from “crystalbay” characteristics so as not to be identified. I’m now “omnipresent”. Tim – what was your idea??

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      1. Lisa, I googled “more than you need to know.” I just couldn’t think of any songs that fit the bill. I know Holly would have come up with something, but I drew a blank. Tammy Faye Baker had nothing on XOXO.

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