Blah Blah Zah Zah
And This Was BEFORE They Handed Out the Vibrating Pens

DM me if you want to buy the TV rights...

Oh my God!

You guys!

In between all the craziness of...uh...sleeping and eating and taking like, THREE WHOLE SHOWERS IN FIVE DAYS, I completely forgot to tell you about the most exciting thing to happen to me ever in my whole life:

Picture 2



PHHHHHHFFFFFFFFFFFFTTTTTBBBBBB! pretty much what I said when I got the notification on my phone, right before involuntarily flinging the thing upward, like it was on fire (VOLCANO FIRE), where it collided with ceiling of my car, teaching us all an important lesson about Checking Twitter DMs While Driving, i.e. Don't Do It, It Could Be A Celebrity.

I drove home with this huge dorky grin on my face, composing hypothetical replies in my head that included the somewhat embarrassing factoid that I was a devoted Reading Rainbow watcher until the age of 12, maybe 13, SHUT UP YOU, and that I record the show for Noah whenever our PBS station decides to air it, and that a rerun this past summer was about composting and I sat there watching it BY MYSELF, with GREAT INTEREST, shouting to Jason in the next room about how we were TOTALLY gonna plant us some potato chunks in our backyard this year, because one potato turns into like, 45 potatoes according to Reading Rainbow, and think of how much money we'd save on potatoes? MILLIONS, probably. Also, yes. Reading was more of a strong point for me than math, as a child. Or ever.

Obviously, I planned on...editing all that down once I got home. Into one concise, non-crazy-fangirl reply, embodying both the reverence a Really Important Childhood Idol deserves with the grown-up understanding that we're all just regular people and stuff. 

Then I call Jason and screamed into his voice mail: I JUST GOT DM'D BY GEORDI LAFORGE. JEALOUS MUCH?

(For the record, he SO WAS.)

Then I loaded up TweetDeck to actually compose my masterful reply and found that I couldn't. Because LeVar Burton doesn't actually follow me, because I am endlessly baffled by the Direct Messaging Rules of Twitter, always asking people to DM me and then they're all: I can't, Dipshit.

So I thought...well, maybe he plans to follow me and just hasn't gotten around to it. I should wait a couple hours and see what happens. Play it cool. Yes. I am cooooool.

Of course, he didn't follow me, because...why would he? I am a terrible Twitterer. Tweeter? Twit? I would probably use it solely to keep the world abreast of my children's bowel movements, if I could. I mean, I'm aware that I could, I just often forget that Twitter even exists for days at a time, while everybody else seems so much more...into it and plugged into the whole concept and @ @ @ RT RT #hashtagcakes.

My point is, Twitter makes me feel patently uncool, and we all know that my fragile vagina flower ego simply cannot handle that. So, when faced with the LeVar Burton Direct Message Quandary of Doom, I opted to simply ignore Twitter for a few days until it came to its senses and LET ME SEND LEVAR BURTON A DIRECT MESSAGE, DAMMIT.

Then Jason asked me why I didn't like, just thank LeVar Burton for his message on Regular Twitter, talking to him like everybody else does. And I fretted about that, because you know, he sent the message awhile ago, so I felt WEIRD bringing it up, plus wouldn't that seem kind of obnoxious, like I was BRAGGING to everybody else that OH HAI, LeVar Burton sent me a DM and not you, let's all bask in how AWESOME I AM?

Jason: Seriously, do you not get how Twitter works AT ALL?

Amy: Not really.  But remember that time you asked me what the hell "RT" meant? I totally knew the answer to that one.

@LeVarBurton: *is just really wishing Amy had just sent the danged public tweet because OH YEAH, a whole blog entry about this is soooooo much less creepy*

Anyway. I'm writing this because today TweetDeck crashed and I opted to go crazy old school, using Twitter dot com...where I suddenly discovered that I do indeed have the option to reply to LeVar Burton's Direct Message, even though he doesn't follow me. And that I could have replied to him ALL THIS TIME. ALL ALONG, I had the power. And then I went back to TweetDeck to yell at it, maybe kick it a little bit...and discovered that I actually could reply there too, but I'd simply been looking for the wrong icon:

Picture 3 

In my head, the lack of a little arrow box in the top left corner meant I couldn't reply. I checked the little gear wheel setting and all the little drop-down menus, but for some reason, THE BOX WITH THE ENVELOPE, THE ONE THAT SAYS "DIRECT MESSAGE LEVARBURTON" WHEN YOU PUT YOUR MOUSE OVER IT, never once came to my attention.

No. Seriously. This is the dumbest thing I have ever done. I admit that. Worse than getting off the train in Newark. Worse than the Not-Pregnant Mistaken-Identity Lady. It's failing at TWITTER. Topped off with a bonus of it involving a VERY MEANINGFUL CELEBRITY CHILDHOOD ICON.

But what could I possibly say at this point, because I would feel the need to explain WHY I hadn't replied earlier, which was so RUDE of me, because Oh Em Eff Gee, he's LeVar Burton and he took the time to cure me of a lifelong phobia and I couldn't even be bothered to come up with a single 140-character reply? Like, I don't know: "THANK YOU." That's only like, 34 characters, or something.

Clearly, my only real option was to turn to my blog and 1) tell you guys about what a freaking dumbass I am (again) (some more) (six bloggy years and counting!) and 2) go ahead and completely freak poor LeVar Burton out and get myself blocked on Twitter for the very first time.

So it is written, indeed.



you know, these sort of posts are a real comfort to me. welcome to the dork club ;)


So what DOES RT mean? I don't Tweet and am constantly baffled by the mechanics of it.


so you have to tell us... how do you REALLY feel now about volcanos?? did LeVar reeeeally make you not afraid?? he has those powers??

Dr. Maureen

I am totally super jealous too. And if it makes you feel better, I do not understand Twitter. At all. I use it because no one emails anymore (Email is now OLD-FASHIONED WTH), but I don't get it at all.


A-Ha! HAHAHA! You do it too! I'm enjoying this post entirely too much because I felt the same way when you answered my Smackdown question.

Take THAT!


Omigosh, omigosh, omigosh!


I had this exact same experience when Amber Benson aka Tara from Buffy sent me a direct message when I started following her. I also completely geeked out to Rachel from Signing Time. I sent a total dorky fangirl tweet thanking her for like curing my son of his speech delay and she sent the nicest response ever back to me. Again proving that Rachel from Signing Time is like the coolest person ever. God, twitter turns us all into dorks.


I am trying to click the little star next to this post but there isn't one.

Sherry Osborne

I must know if his super powers worked. If you think about volcanoes or load up a YouTube video of a volcano erupting, can you remain calm just from his powers of suggestion?

Because he could totally market himself as a calming remedy with his voice alone, but think of the possibilities if he can cure phobias with text!


I had the same reaction when I got the email saying you were following me on twitter! Yay us!

Eh. Siobhan's right. Twitter is turning us all into dorks. Except you. Shoot, if I got a DM from the Reading Rainbow guy, I'd freak too!


Out of all the people on Twitter, I think I would be most happy to get a DM from @LeVarBurton. Seriously. I would take a @LeVarBurton DM over one from @Oprah, @jack, @shockozulu or even @NeilGaiman. I would be happier if I got a DM from @LeVarBurton than I would if @BarackObama DMed me and asked me to interview him AND Michelle at the White House. So I totally understand why you're sort of stalking him. And now I will make you look less crazy:

When I was a nerdy little kid whose few books were among her most prized possessions, going to underfunded schools that functioned more like prisons, growing up in rough neighborhoods where kids got beat up for acting too smart, getting shuttled back and forth in a divorced family, spending half my time, but court order, with a criminally neglectful parent, Reading Rainbow was a fantasy world where the adults all appreciated children, treated them with respect, and wanted them to learn. In real life, my mother was the only adult I knew who seemed to value learning as much as I did. But Reading Rainbow taught me that, somewhere, in a part of the world I hadn't reached yet, a love of reading and writing and learning was highly prized.

I am honestly not sure I would be a writer today if it were not for shows like Reading Rainbow. And so, I would love to get a DM from LeVar Burton, just so that I could reply, simply, "Thank You."

Besides, I'm a major sci-fi geek ;)


(Oh, and now Neil Gaiman is NEVER going to DM me anyway because I forgot for a sec he is @NeilHimself. Heh.)


I'm sorry but I'm still laughing at *my fragile vagina flower ego* and I may never stop!


Call me a dork or just from the stone age cause I don't twitter. I just can't get that connected. If I did I think I would be pretty dorky about it so don't feel bad.


who is LeVar Burton?


who is LeVar Burton?


Rosie O'Donnell once answered one of my questions on her blog and I nearly had a coronary. And then I couldn't even tell my friends because I didn't want to admit I follow Rosie O'Donnell on the internet. Heavy sigh.


You crack my shit up.


@all_is_one is also SO jealous.


I am so jealous. I love LeVar Burton!

To the person who doesn't know who he is...he was the host of Reading Rainbow and was on Star Trek The Next Generation.

So, basically he is a king in the land of nerds.


Somehow I missed "Reading Rainbow" (my kids are now middle aged) - but I'd be thrilled to get a message from Kunta Kinte.

Megan@Blueberry Scones

For some strange reason, MARIA SHRIVER is following me!!!!! So, I get this post, completely. And Levar freakin' Burton! That's cool!


Wait...did he actually block you, or is that your prediction for when you stalk him by saying "Thank you"?


Holy wow, this is a special kind of hilarious and awesome :)


Oh my holy CRAP that is cool! The DM dilemma just makes it all that much better because I totally would have freaked out about how to reply without being all Crazy FanGirl. Fortunately I think my chances of being DMed by anyone even nearly that cool are slim to none so it is a dilemma I will never be faced with!

Amber McN

OOOooOOO! Banana Clip Guy! He was my fav on TNG. Banana Clip guy knows his shit, Amy. No more fearing volcanoes.

Miss Grace

I love you.

Sprite's Keeper

What exactly is RT anyway? I don't touch Twitter unless I'm out of things to do and I am NEVER out of things to do according to my husband..



Sorry, I just can't stop screaming with fangirl joy at the idea of LeVar Freaking Burton DMing you.



I watched Reading Rainbow well into middle school, also.

And, I don't get Twitter at all. I don't mean that I don't know how to use it, I mean I don't get the "why" of twitters existence. Guess I'm an old fuddy-duddy.


I had to come here to comment because my Twitter client won't let me dm you cause you're not folllowing me, but.... I started following LeVar on Twitter earlier and you are totally now on his list of people he follows!


i asked Stacey London (TLC What Not To Wear) a question on Twitter a while back about a dress she wore in one of the show's episodes and she replied back right away saying she'd look into it and then she replied again with the answer. I've also had a DM from Mariel Hemingway and someone else famous I can't remember right now.

I think it's great how Twitter lets celebrities just be people. Makes the whole papparazzi scene seem so silly when you can just chat with your fave celebs on Twitter.

Amelia Sprout

OK, I'm adding him to my very short list of cool famous people on Twitter. Right up there with NPH, Captain Tight Pants (Nathan Fillion) and John Cleese.

You just got cooler in my mind because Reading Rainbow DM'd you. I loved that show and watched it offten by myself when I was a nanny.

Mrs. D

This post made me all giddy and swoony on your behalf because AHHH! LeVar Burton! So freaking awesome.

Amy in StL

"fragile vagina flower ego" is my new favorite phrase.

cindy w

I so hope you write another one of these posts if LeVar Burton actually does block you. Not that I think he will. Just saying. *IF*.



O. M. G!

I love that little cyclops rainbow dude.


Hate to break it to you, but just because TweetDeck shows the little envelope doesn't mean the DM will go through.

How do I know that? Just tried sending you a DM through TweetDeck and got the "Recipient not following [myTiwitterusername]" message :(


OMFG! I totally just spit coffe all over my keyboard out fo sheer jealousy and SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!

I'll try to get it togteher before my client call this afternoon, but let's be honest, that's probably not going to happen. LeVar Freaking Burton!


I LOVED Reading Rainbow growing up! My favorite book was Gregory The Terrible Eater.

I'm 32 with no kids and will watch RR if I'm home during the day. It's quality tv.


So, when do you book your Hawaiian vacation? I hear Haleakala is nice this time of year.

Pinkie Bling

You are KILLING me right now. I totally heart you.


I have no idea who or what you were talking about.


If it makes you feel any better, I am a complete idiot when it comes to twitter. Like I really don't even know what it does. Or what its purpose it. Can someone explain?!?


A) I had to google Levar Burton. B) Can he get rid of any fears? Or just volcano fears?


Levar Burton ROCKS!


I'm clearly in the minority here, but I just don't the whole contact-with-a-celebrity-omg-omg thing. I mean, they're just people with jobs; granted, we get to watch them do their job, which is a bit unique, but still ...


I don't usually comment on anything but this is sooo awesome that I had to say so. Also, you may be able to check out Reading Rainbow DVDs @ your library. I know I order tons of them for my library because... it's Reading Rainbow! It's LeVar Burton! How could I resist?


I think this is the most awesome twitter account/story I've ever heard! Behold the power of the internets.


ZOMG - I would be so excited too!! And, I have a hard enough time with Facebook. Twitter is just beyond me.

Also, for the benefit of others who asked about LeVar Burton, he not only hosted Reading Rainbow FOR.EV.ER and was Geordi on "Star Trek: Next Generation," for nearly ever, he also was Kunta Kinte in "Roots." He was, like, 10 years old, but kind of a big deal.


I think you might be my favorite person ever.


Yeah, so I just tweeted from my company's twitter account that we were looking for social media consultants and asked people to DM me if they had suggestions, which, as you know, doesn't work unless YOU follow THEM. Me looking like an asshat I can handle...making my company look like a jester is highly embarrassing. Clearly I need help, on several different levels...

Mrs Soup

Oh good, I'm not the only crazy person...this is comforting.

Oh, and...





So jeals.
I'll admit, I watched Reading Rainbow at age 12, too. But I really love the older ones. My all time fave was the episode where they go to the library and have a huge sing and dance routine. "Check it out-don't shout!!"
AND "Miss. Nelson is Back." Why was that so scary to me?
LeVar is so cool. But you don't have to take my word for it...



Amy--I think you were right the first time. I don't think it is possible to DM someone unless they are following you. I had the same situation (although with much less of a celebrity) where I received a DM a few weeks ago from someone who doesn't follow me and I could not reply! Based on your enlightenment in this post I went back in to DM her and it would not go through! Chris is right!


Should I feel bad that I don't know who this person is? Some sports athlete? Soap opera star? Musician? Now I must google...


I love Reading Rainbow too! Let's take a look, it's in a book, it's Reading Rainbow! Or, that's how the theme song goes in my head.

I wish they would come out with a Reading Rainbow for adults. Then I could pretend I'm a book club without ever leaving the comfort of my couch and sweat pants.

Bachelor Girl

As a blogger, I will know I have Made It when Levar Burton DMs me on Twitter.

I can die after that happens.


I totally have written on Twitter about my child's bowel movements. And now I hang my head in shame.

Steph the WonderWorrier

OMG! This is the best story ever!!! I loved Reading Rainbow when I was a kid too. Whenever they played it for us at school, our whole class would ALWAYS sing along to the theme song. Ahh, memories!

This reminds me of my surreal Twitter experience when British author Louise Bagshawe (who I actually don't follow, but she follows me... so weird, I know) wrote to me OUT OF NOWHERE to say I should change my screen name because I shouldn't "label myself". (My screen name being "wonderworrier").

SO WEIRD. I wrote a post about it.. um... here:


That is one of the coolest things.

I loved Reading Rainbow too. My favorite episode was the one where they dug dinosaur bones up. Because of that, my brother, sister, and I spent many an afternoon digging up 'bones'.

As an aside, I was unusually sad to hear that they were canceling that show this year. I am a sucker for those types of kid shows.


congrats to your famous-ness!
i SO don't get twitter.
interesting, b/c i also don't get facebook- and i just posted about that very thing.

so much of your post- while it had me laughing (of course!) also left me confused...


I totally also squealed when I got the email that you had followed me back.
I then thought I saw a blonde woman in Silver Spring with 2 kids and decided I was weirding myself out (though, um, if you were in downtown SS over the weekend and wondered about the girl in the green coat staring at you, that was me trying to decide if it would be weird to go up and say "um, hi, are you amalah? your advice smackdown totally helped my skin and gives me hope for my bad makeup/hair skills"


Please tell me that I am not alone in having that Reading Rainbow song totally stuck in my head now.

Butterfly in the sky, I can go twice as high
Take a look, it's in a book - Reeeeding Raaaaainbow!

I could not be more jealous of the LeVar Burton tweet. Not only do I love the RR, TNG is also one of my all time favorites. I once saw Captain Picard in a hotel lobby and proceeded to follow him into the elevator, up to his floor and had to stop myself from walking with him to his room. Probably the most self-restraint I have ever had to exhibit. Yes ... I am cool.

Elizabeth C

This has to be the funniest thing I've read in a long time! I heart RR too!


What's a Tweetdeck? I'm guessing it has nothing to do with an addition to a birdcage in a Warner Brothers Cartoon.


I am a dork because I remember I squeeed (sp) when I saw a picture of you and another blogger I follow at BlogHer at the cheeseburger party.
Yes I am a nerd.

P.S. Reading Rainbow will always rock. Now I am going to follow Levar Burton.

Michelle Madayag

On Halloween my family ran into Grant Imahara from Mythbusters in a parking garage in San Francisco. My husband even got him to take a picture with our 5 year old. I stood by and said stupid things because I get that nervous chatter thing going.

Later I uploaded the pic to Twitter and thanked him for the photo op (in reasonable, non-stalkery, succinct english). And then? HE RESPONDED! ON TWITTER! TO ME! PUBLICLY!

I vote you respond. No need to explain why it took so long. :)


LeVar Burton was on Star Trek. He has known much creepier fans than you. Also? When I showed him the screen shot of the DM? My husband had spontaneous nerd joy. So it's not just you. : )

Woman with Kids

OMG! Loved Reading Rainbow, because books! A whole show about books! Really, how much better could it get? (well, if I could have been ON Reading Rainbow, that would have been even better but... um, what was I saying?


Yay for you. So exciting. :)


Be still, my heart! In your honor, I shall wear my plastic headband in Geordi-visor fashion.

Ah! The warp core!


ZOMG. Just checked Twitter for the evening. I think he likes you.


So I was just over at Shit My Dad Says who follows LB and OMG did he tweet you again???


WHO IS LEVAR BURTON?! Pffft, watch, next they'll be asking, "Who's Wishbone?" (If you get a DM from Wishbone, now, THAT will be sweeeeeeeeeet.)


DUDE! Dude. Dudedudedude! LeVarFuckingBurton. Am quite jelus!!!!


OMG! I am sooooo jealous! LeVar Burton.....Reading Rainbow!!!
Feel your pain, dislike twitter and love your blog!


First of all, oh my god I love Star Trek.

Second of all- I was on Twitter and Sandra Bernhard made a comment about eating locally and I wrote back recommending (recommending? holy crap suddently that sounds so presumptuous) the book Animal, Vegetable, Miracle and SHE WROTE BACK. Omg. So I told my husband, John, and he was all: Who is that? And I was all: IT'S SANDRA BERNHARD!!! And he was all: What was she in? And I was all: ...well, I couldn't remember... all I could remember was when she was the guest star on Will & Grace & my husband did not grace that show with his presence. So I was just all: WHO THE HELL HAS NEVER HEARD OF SANDRA BERNHARD?!!! (just in case you haven't :) :

Mrs. Q.

He just shot up my ranks of superstar. This story is just awesome.


That is, indeed, the greatest thing ever! The only better possibilities would've been William Shatner or Leonard Nimoy!


Oh, the sad thing is now that when you think of volcanoes, instead of fear, you will feel OH CRINGE I DID LEVAR BURTON WRONG feelings.
Which is not so much an improvement, really.
My advice? Avoid volcanoes.

Melissa Z.

Hey Amy! I found your blog, believe it or not, not quite directly from the infamous LB, (but close enough) and I just want to say that you are awesome! How ONE person, celebrity or not can affect our lives, is so valuable and honoring. Thank you for sharing your feelings openly and honestly and being so transparent. Your experience was TOTALY WORTH all the fuss! You are a delightful inspiration to me (to keep blogging) and also to enjoy those special moments that we are blessed with every single day. Namaste!

bingo woman

Congrats to that? I'm not so much into Twitter! It just invites more stalker to take a look in my life.


I don't think you're dumb. I think TweetDeck is dumb, because that's a horrible non-obvious UI choice and I totally would have done the EXACT SAME THING. So, blame TweetDeck is what I say.

Also: DUDE. Awesome. (About the DM, not the ensuing reply adventure.)


I used to stage Reading Rainbow-style book reviews all the time. For myself. Because I had no friends. Wonder why?...

kate the great

You check your texts while driving? Tsk tsk!


OMG I can't believe he DM'd you. Also, I think celebrities are accustomed to striking people dumb.


Oh em gee. I love Mr. Burton so, so much. JELLUS! <3


Spectacular. Truly. I can't imagine what my reaction would be if I'd received a message from a childhood hero, especially if it was in the form of curing me of an irrational long-held fear. If it's any consolation, I have a Twitter account (and about 10 creepy followers, you know, those people who when you go to see who they are, their accounts have been suspended?) but have never Tweeted a damn thing and don't follow anyone. I figure I can't keep up with phone calls and emails. I don't need another way to be bad at communicating.


I love it. Go obsessive neurotics!

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