Daily Archives: January 25, 2014

WIT :: of winning and tarnishing the win

newyearstylewinnerMaricel

So how utterly stoked (Yes, I said stoked. I’m so old!) am I that I won the 40+Style contest?! I’m one of those people who never win anything. Or if I do, it’d be something ridiculous like a 24 pack of toilet paper. (Fact. That’s what I won at my hub’s Christmas party raffle.)

To win the style challenge, then, especially in the face of some pretty stiff competition, is a grand honor indeed. I spent the greater part of Thursday (when the winners were announced) unable to concentrate on work and debating instead on which pair of shoes I’d purchase with my $75 Zappos voucher. I also used up my precious lunch hour perusing then finally choosing the top I’d get from Covered Perfectly (it’s that zebra top in the collage above). And I kept getting all these lovely congratulatory messages in my inbox from the ladies in the community who participated and hopefully voted for me to win.

It should’ve been a slam dunk day.

Sadly, the same notification updates that allowed me to receive all the congratulations also brought to my inbox a rather noxious comment regarding the contest and the way it was run. I refrained from commenting on Sylvia’s blog out of deference to her – I doubt she needed/wanted a flame war – and also because she handled the situation with class and aplomb, but nothing is stopping me from getting on my soapbox in my home turf.

To be fair, the commenter was very specific and logical in what I’m sure he perceived were valid arguments. And he wasn’t outright combative or troll-like. He was, however, accusatory and pompous, and he intimated that the winners won – not because of quality and effort – but because it was a popularity contest! To quote my newfound friend Anne Bray, I gnash my teeth at him!!!

Popularity contest indeed! I don’t know that many people, let alone that many people who’d go on a random site and vote for me. Sure, I did a Facebook status update and shamelessly self-promoted, but I garnered one vote from that. (Well, one that admitted to doing it anyway.) And sure, I pumped it up at work and ran around like the proverbial headless chicken asking my coworkers to vote. But I work at a school of 20 teachers, half of whom were in class and therefore couldn’t be bothered. I doubt my last-minute campaigning tipped the scales. And I’m sure the other contestants hyped it up on their ends as well.

Argh.

Okay, rant over. I don’t know why I’m still so upset. The slings and arrows weren’t directed at me and the target herself didn’t seem too concerned. I should just let it go. I guess I just feel my win diminished by the intimation that I didn’t deserve it, that I won – not because I worked hard and followed the parameters – but because I purposely chose “popular” images to clinch the prize. And I’m also saddened at the thought that there will always be people out there who, for some inexplicable reason or another, feel that they’re well within their rights to ruin everyone else’s good time.

My mother taught me that if you can’t say anything nice, then don’t say anything at all. I wish more folks had moms like mine.

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