Every once in a while lightning strikes and I am summoned to answer many questions at once. I accept this challenge. Let’s get on with it!
What’s the difference between mansplaining and garden variety condescending?
Mansplaining is a sub-category of condescension. IMHO, someone who is being condescending thinks they’re better than you. They have an air of, “Ugh, let me educate this pleb so that they may be blessed by my knowledge.” Anyone can be condescending. Rich white women who give backhanded compliments, in laws, the barista at that coffee shop you hate but has really great wifi. It’s a tool for jerks. Jerks love thinking they’re good people and will dole out advice to anyone who they think is in need of their supreme knowledge.
Mansplaining is when a man thinks that just because he is a dude, he knows far more than your silly little lady brain ever could. He thinks it’s really cute how you code websites. A lady who codes?! Hah! Adorable! But he wants to make sure that you know exactly what you’re doing, so he’ll start with the basics and explain it to you like a child. You’re a silly little girl, but at least he’s there to save the day! Has he ever coded a website? No, but he read a long article about it once so he totally knows what he’s talking about.
The biggest thing about condescension and mansplaining is that nobody asked. Unsolicited advice is unsolicited because no one wanted to know.
Rebecca Solnit has a great (and short) book, Men Explain Things to Me, that goes into much more detail about mansplaining. I highly recommend it!
How do you approach a Twitter crush (platonically /// as in you like their content but not in a creepy way)?
Favorite their tweets, reply to them when you have something fun to say, retweet them. I guess just act how you normally would with any other person? If it’s a woman and you don’t know her, refrain from DMing her more than once, or at all. Unless she specifically asks for DMs. Doing all the previously listed things shows the person that you like their content and that you want them to keep on making that content. Are they following you back and also liking/retweeting your tweets? Looks like the feeling is mutual! Cool!
When is it okay to RT yourself? (Is it ever appropriate?)
When the tweet has become relevant again. Or, when you are wanting more attention for the tweet you decided to write at 3am. But if you do that you have to then reply to yourself with some major self-pity. That can be insufferable when done too often, but sometimes it’s cute and funny because it’s sad and then people feel bad for you. It’s a tricky game, and must be done as infrequently as possible.