Sunday, February 14, 2016

Oh, Pinterest, You Get Me (Except When You Don’t)

I love trying to figure out why Pinterest puts certain pins on my homepage. Some of them are obvious: when I’ve been pinning a lot of homeschool ideas, it suggests kids’ crafts, science projects, and math games. When I’ve been writing a lot of cocktail blogs, it pulls up bartending recipes. When I hunt for crockpot recipes, it comes up with lots of slow cooker sites.

But sometimes, it’s so off base that I have no idea what it’s thinking. Let me give you a few examples of pins that are right on target and pins that are way off in the weeds.

Right now, among the first pins on my homepage are recipes for “One Skillet Chicken with Lemon Garlic Cream Sauce” (yum), “Crack Pie” (I know, but YUM), honey butter roasted carrots, and baked teriyaki chicken tenders. 

I would absolutely give any of those recipes a try. But there are also recipes for “Roasted Vegetable Quinoa” (blech), “5 Minute Vegan Kale Pesto” (insert cat hork noises here), and broccoli tots (Pinterest, have you even met me??).

Even though I wouldn’t eat any of those latter three recipes, I suppose I can see where they came from. I did search for vegetarian recipes a while back.

A few pins do have a vague connection that I can figure out if I think about it. Like those horrible “dress yoga pants” that pretend to be actual business attire while actually being yoga pants. 

(Newsflash: They still look like yoga pants, they just have unflattering pocket flaps.) I do post regularly about wearing yoga pants, but I wouldn’t wear them to an office, even if they did have pocket flaps. Or how about that recipe for “pet Kombucha”, which is apparently some kind of fermented probiotic tea? I’d never drink the stuff in a million years, but at a certain level it could be considered a valid science experiment, so there you go.

But there are some pins that have no connection whatsoever to anything I’ve ever pinned, looked at, searched for, or even considered offline.

Like an ad for the Dollar Shave Club. I am quite certain that I’ve never searched for razors online. I’ve never bought them on Amazon. I don’t even use them that often this time of year (TMI, sorry). Or a link for BarkBox. 

It's cute, but here's the thing: I don’t have a dog. And if I did, I wouldn’t buy him mystery treats online. Or how about the Tan-in-a-Can that bills itself as “nutritive serum”? I could care less about being tan and I automatically write off anything involving the words “nutritive” or “serum.” I laughed at the blog on “How to Boil and Eat Lobster.” I’ve lived in eastern Massachusetts my whole life; if I don’t know how to manage a lobster by now they might as well revoke my Yankee license and exile me to the west coast. And how about that article about “Ten Things to Hang Above Your Bed”?

I’m quite certain I haven’t been discussing either my bedroom or its lack of above-bed decorations online.

But maybe Pinterest is trying to drop me subtle hints. Maybe it’s noticing the kinds of things that I haven’t been looking at, and subtly telling me that I should be checking them out. I have been complaining about these extra pounds that have been sneaking onto my butt of late – vegetarian food and dress yoga pants could help with that problem. My husband has been dropping hints about getting a dog (or at least, borrowing a dog) – maybe I should be giving that thought more serious consideration. And the décor in my bedroom has been unchanged since I got married nearly 8 years ago, so maybe it really is time to freshen the décor up a little.

One thing is for certain, though: It’s time to buy some lobsters and prove that this New England girl knows how to cook and clean the cockroach of the sea!! YUM!!

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