CEO of the Universe

10 Aug

(Dedicated to a dear friend who is currently struggling with haters who aren’t worth the ground she walks on:  “Keep on rollin’ Baby and do what you do, ‘cause haters gonna hate, no matter what you

Do you know what I’ve discovered?  Mean people really do suck!  You can find them everywhere where two or three humanoids are gathered:  in your family, in your schools, in the workplace, in your place of worship, driving on the highways, or serving in public office (“cough—Michele Bachmann”).  There’s always that one person who thinks God died and made them the reigning deity or CEO of the Universe, who gets to decide whether you’re “following the rules” to their satisfaction, or if you’re a “real American” (“COUGH-COUGH—Sarah Palin”), or if you’re going to Heaven or Hell (“A-CHOO!—Pat Robertson”) .  If you’re strong enough you’ll spend half your time keeping these haters from trying to take over your life, but if you’re weak, sometimes through no fault of your own, they will walk all over your heart with cleats and serve you up to the vultures (the haters that roll with them) for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

“Haters”|Image from

You have to learn early how to “get over” on the haters or they will beat the shit out of you if you’re vulnerable.  And if you are pint-sized and vertically challenged as I was as a child, then your mouth has to become your first weapon of choice, and your first volley needs to punch them in the gut with the power of a sledge hammer so that they can’t easily get back up and retaliate.  As a child, “Your Mama” jokes served as the best salvos to attack the person’s nearest and dearest on every front from their mama’s size to her intelligence.  The quicker you were as a kid with the mama taunts, the faster you could demoralize your opponent—no matter what their size—because what little kid doesn’t love their mother?

“Yo mama so fat when her beeper goes off, people think she is backing up.”

“Yo mama so stupid she put paper on the television and called it ‘paper view.’”

“Yo mama so poor when I saw her kicking a can down the street, I asked her what she was doing? She said, ‘Movin’.”

When you grow up as part of a ghetto trash heap as I did in The Cleve, you learn that you’re always going to have haters either trying to keep you beneath them on that heap (“Yo mama’s got two gold teeth, one says 24k and the other says ‘Believe that shit if you want to’”), or trying to keep you from getting out and leaving them behind (“You ain’t never gettin’ outta this dump, asshole—you need money to do that!  Yo Mama so poor I walked into your house and three roaches tripped me and tried to take my wallet!”).  I’ve had hardcore haters from various races and both sexes all my life, but it breaks my heart to say that most of my haters have been women.   Why do women do this to other women?

“Bitchy Women”|Image from

I don’t get it!  I’ve been in church choirs, I’ve led Bible study groups, I’ve lived in a Christian commune, I’ve been a secretary and a school teacher, I’ve toured with an opera company, and I’ve been in too many professional theater productions to count, but almost without exception, it was the women—my sisters (be they black or white)—that got on my every last nerve.  Some bitch always tries to set herself up as the “Alpha” biotch, and then she surrounds herself with her hand-picked court (think Rizzo, Frenchy, and the Pink Ladies from the musical Grease) and tries to run rough-shod over everybody else.

The Pink Ladies from “Grease” (Didi Conn, Stockard Channing, and Dinah Manoff)||Paramount Pictures

Usually Ms. Alpha Biotch misjudges me because I’ve been saved, sanctified, and filled with the Holy Ghost, so she assumes that I’m nicer than Jesus and that that niceness is a sign of weakness.   But girlfriend doesn’t know from whence I’ve come and therein lies her surprise ass-whopping—always!  I’ll work with the chil’, go the extra mile, and turn the other cheek for as long as my God gives me strength, but then there comes a time when “homie don’t play that,” and enough is enough.  And then Miss Thang has to have her come-to-Jesus-meeting with me.  (IMP. NOTE:  There have been a few male haters who have tried to take me down in my lifetime as well, and let’s just say, I agree with Elton:  “I’m still standing better than I’ve ever been” and they are not.  My husband (WW)—the love of my life—says that he was the only man with cojones large enough to ask me out on a date, and I say, I married him because he’s the only man I ever met who had balls big enough to treat me with the respect I deserved.)

But being able to put low-lifes in their place when they try and treat you like shit is a very small aspect of “getting over” in life.  The major problem is not letting the altercation affect you—not letting it steal your joy or damage your self-esteem.

Image from

Once I became an adult I had to put away childish things—I could no longer think like a child.  So out went the “Yo Mama” salvos and in came the mental gymnastics that keep my heart and soul intact.  But in the process of compiling my new arsenal, I learned and am still learning that it’s all about possessing my spirit.  It’s discovering that the meaning of life is that I am the only CEO of my attitude about life and no one—absolutely no one—can steal my joy.  I have to give it to them and that ain’t ever gonna happen.

Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.” –Viktor E. Frankl


So I have formulated a short list on how to survive—no, triumph!—over the haters.  Below is “ET’S HEART AND SOUL PROTECTORS—REPLACING ‘YO MAMA’ SALVOS”

What they call you is one thing; what you answer to is something else.”—Lucille Clifton

  • No one but God gets to define me—no hater, no player, no betrayer.  If your definition of me doesn’t fit who I really am, then yours gets flushed down the toilet without so much as a “by your leave.”

 “Hanging onto resentment is letting someone you despise live rent-free in your head.”― Ann Landers

Once people show you who they are, believe them the first time—there’s no need to wait until the ninth time.”—Maya Angelou

  • Meaning: The mean girl will usually verbally spit on you within the first ten minutes of meeting you like a petulant hissy snake, so why wait for the 9th spitting to realize she’s full of shit.  Give her a wide berth.

“Don’t pander:  don’t try and win over the haters; you are not the jerk whisperer.” —Anonymous

Here’s the thing:  We only go around once—only have one life to live, so “do you” and fuck the haters.  They are everywhere, in every nation and every tribe, so you might as well “strut” the stuff that God gave you and roll
with joy!   Yeah, Baby!

“Haters Gon’ Hate”|image from



“Yo Mama so poor that when she asked me over to dinner I took a paper plate from the kitchen and she growled—‘Don’t use the good china’”!


I am discovering that sometimes haters really cross way over the line and take the lives of our
innocents, but even in our grief, we pray for the ability—the courage—to choose how to walk in peace, sow
with love, and come together in unity so that one white-supremacist hater doesn’t rob us of the true meaning of life as he tried to do in Oak Creek, Wisconsin last week, because we all bleed red.

Sikh Memorial in Oak Creek, Wisconsin||Image of

Our thoughts and prayers are with the Sikh community in Oak Creek and throughout the world as they mourn the loss of their family and friends.


“We who lived in concentration camps can remember the men who walked through the huts comforting others, giving away their last piece of bread. They may have been few in number, but they offer sufficient proof that everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms — to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.”Viktor E. Frankl

“I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.” – Nelson Mandela

“If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude. Don’t complain.”― Maya Angelou

“You may not control all the events that happen to you, but you can decide not to be reduced by them.”― Maya Angelou, Letter to My Daughter

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Eleanor Tomczyk and “How the Hell Did I End Up Here?” with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.


Posted by on August 10, 2012 in Uncategorized


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28 responses to “CEO of the Universe

  1. Elyse

    August 10, 2012 at 10:45 pm

    Words of wisdom to help us get through these crazy times. And I think you have more coughing/sneezing to do to list all the crazies …

  2. notquiteold

    August 10, 2012 at 10:50 pm

    Nice reminder. Here’s another quote from another Eleanor for your collection. “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” – Eleanor Roosevelt.

    • etomczyk

      August 11, 2012 at 7:03 am

      Nancy. I love, love, love this quote. It is one of my favorites and I can’t believe I forgot it when I wrote this post (sometimes I think my head is on another planet–blame it on the menopause, long since gone, but that is my excuse and I’m sticking to it)! 🙂

  3. societyred

    August 11, 2012 at 8:01 am

    Powerful and right on target. We all have a finite supply of energy to spend, and we are the ones who choose where to spend it. Love your work!

    • etomczyk

      August 11, 2012 at 1:34 pm

      Hi John. Thanks so much for dropping by. I really appreciate your comment and your encouragement. Loved your family reunion story, as well. All the best.

      • societyred

        August 11, 2012 at 9:54 pm

        Thanks Eleanor. I really enjoy following your blog. You cover a lot of ground and tell it like it is. Love the duck picture…

      • etomczyk

        August 12, 2012 at 9:19 am

        John: 🙂

  4. imagesbytdashfield

    August 11, 2012 at 8:22 am

    Whoa! Serious burr under your saddle on this post but yes indeedy! Haters are out there and seem to be multiplying. The amount of hate going on lately (Gabby and her hair and uniform comes to mind) is enough to turn your stomach but to quote two songs – JayZ – Dust that dirt off your shoulders and Jill Scott – Go ‘head and hate on me, hater, I’m not afraid of What I got I paid for, you can hate on me.

    But sometimes you just have to tune up some of these haters when they try to step too far in your face. BTW – love the quotes.

    • etomczyk

      August 11, 2012 at 1:55 pm

      TD: Don’t you just love that Jill Scott song about the hater. The first time I heard that song I was on a treadmill and almost fell off due to the power in that song. Couldn’t you just tell that the lyrics and the music came from a deep place of betrayal and pain in J. Scott. I was stunned!

      Yes, there is a lot of passion in this piece–not for myself but for people who are vulnerable. I’m a real street fighter so there is little that frightens me. I really have learned how to be “slow to anger, quick to listen, and slow to speak.” BUT when I see people who don’t have the tenacity or the verbal skill set to protect themselves from bullies, that’s when I get hot under the collar. The person this story is dedicated to is such a person. I know all the players in this scenerio and it is a classic “mean girls” movie. Why do women do that to each other?

      • imagesbytdashfield

        August 11, 2012 at 2:55 pm

        Something genetic? Jealousy? Insecurity? Something the media has done to us? Hormones? It’s bullying no matter how you look at it and it is a biotch like the ones who are mean.

  5. Cdn Stormlover

    August 11, 2012 at 11:37 am

    Eleanor. Not only is this a truly profound post but it was perfectly timed. Thanks for the smile. May I reblog please?

    • etomczyk

      August 11, 2012 at 1:59 pm

      Hi Lee. Thanks for reading my post and your encouraging note. Yes, you may reblog this post (thank you for asking), especially in light of the subject matter of your blog and the journey you are taking with your writing. I think it will fit right in. Cheers!

  6. Hudson Howl

    August 11, 2012 at 3:42 pm

    And you can’t even hate the Hater, well I can’t, at least not totally.To do so causes more pain within. But you can do as you have prescribed, be the best CEO of yourself and release we all stumble even when we know better. Your right, the biggest hurts can come from those you least suspect.

    • etomczyk

      August 11, 2012 at 4:18 pm

      Hi Hudson. Oh, I can hate with the best of them (it gets me motivated to help bring “change”), but I can’t let it linger in me because I know that it is poisonous, so I will keep working on it until forgiveness replaces the hatred. But it is never easy, especially when the hurts come from those you least expect. Thanks for stopping by–as always.

  7. Cdn Stormlover

    August 11, 2012 at 7:21 pm

    Reblogged this on Life In The Dash Lane (1962 – ?) and commented:
    Have you ever dealt with haters? This blog will cheer you up…..(thanks Eleanor, you’re the best!)

  8. Magnolia Beginnings

    August 12, 2012 at 1:28 pm

    I’m so glad that Lee reblogged and introduced me to your writing. Love it!

    • etomczyk

      August 12, 2012 at 1:46 pm

      Magnolia. So glad you took the time to read the reblog of my post, and I appreciate you taking the time to leave a comment and to follow my blog. Please drop by again and explore the rest of the stories. If the subect has something to do with living, then I’ve probably written a humorous story about it.

  9. aFrankAngle

    August 13, 2012 at 8:12 am

    Goodness is one of the top-shelf qualities of being human. Unfortunately, some don’t get their share. Others are taught to overcome it. … yet goodness doesn’t mean people have to agree!

    Because you mentioned one of the shining examples of goodness and positive thinking, thought I would supplement your post with an appropriate headline from the The Onion – Michele Bachmann Thankful No Americans Died In Sikh Shooting.

    • etomczyk

      August 13, 2012 at 6:57 pm

      Frank – was that really an onion title? Yikes! I wouldn’t put it past Bachmann for actually having said that in real life. I just read an article today about how our “home grown terrorists” are joining the army and the marines to be trained on the government dime and then they get discharged and return to their hate groups. The hate group memberships have grown exponentially since President Obama took office and they hate anything that isn’t white and right-wing thinking. What drives me crazy is where is the outrage of the churches–all the churches? Yesterday Oklahoma, today the Sikhs, tomorrow the little Pentecostal or Episcopalian church on the corner. This just breaks my heart. Thanks for commenting. . .

      • aFrankAngle

        August 13, 2012 at 8:43 pm

        Fortunately it was an Onion headline, but I’m with you – it doesn’t seem out of the question for her. Nonetheless, your points about the hates is both profound and yes – scary. Gotta keep the faith.

  10. BroadBlogs

    August 13, 2012 at 1:47 pm

    When I see how loving some are, and how hateful others are, I sometimes wonder at their being the same species.

    • etomczyk

      August 13, 2012 at 7:14 pm

      GPlatts: Thanks for stopping by. I wonder the same thing. But it is at the core of human nature. These days that type of behavior is so prevelant that I am amazed when I stumble upon true love or genuine graciousness. Cheers!

  11. Tina

    August 16, 2012 at 12:13 pm

    I have to say I’m especially taken aback by so much divisiveness and down-right meanness that I am witnessing 1st hand as the election approaches. I mean, sure, I’ve seen folks get energetic about their views but this is out right war. Brothers against sisters type war. I don’t get it. It’s like some sort of crazy virus. People who I truly considered tolerant and intelligent acting like they’ve been possessed by a demon. What happened????????

    • etomczyk

      August 16, 2012 at 6:15 pm

      Tina: It’s the Zombie Apacolypse! At least that is what I’m going to blame it on in my next post–stay tuned!:)

      • Tina

        August 17, 2012 at 9:40 am

        I’ll look forward to it! I knew there must be an explanation.

  12. composerinthegarden

    August 20, 2012 at 12:26 pm

    Oh, Eleanor, thank you – I needed this essay. Coming out of a rough week, I’m taking to heart your wise advice and so many of the quotes you used, from Ann Landers to Maya Angelou. But especially Victor Frankl; I have a copy of his “Man’s Search for Meaning” and it is still one of the most powerful books I’ve ever read. And from now on, I’m going to try not to be “the jerk whisperer.” Thank you, my friend.🙂

    • etomczyk

      August 20, 2012 at 6:33 pm

      Lynn: This story really hit a nerve with a lot of people. I’ve gotten a great deal of response offline about it. It really is something we all deal with at one time or another. And I agree with you about Frankl’ “Man’s Search for Meaning.” That book broke my heart (in a good way), and I’ve never been the same since reading it.

      I too fall into the trap of being the “jerk whisperer.” I find myself pandering to people just to get them to like me, and I recently decided: no more! The jerks don’t change, and I don’t need to give them entrance to my heart and allow them in with cleats on. Oh hell to the no! Take care.


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