Elan Morgan is a writer and web designer who works from Elan.Works, a designer and editor at GenderAvenger, and a speaker who has spoken across North America. They believe in and work to grow both personal and professional quality, genuine community, and meaningful content online.

Five Star Friday's 197th Edition Is Brought to You By Gene Roddenberry

This week's Five Star Friday is brought to you by

Fifty Shades of Grey

, the brutality of cancer, the perils of personal branding online, big goals and bullshit stories, lying to get ahead in blogging, using steady love to win the war on women online, good people and Joe Paterno, and

Gene Roddenberry

:

gene-roddenberry.jpg
A man either lives life as it happens to him, meets it head-on and licks it, or he turns his back on it and starts to wither away.
     — Gene Roddenberry

Happy Friday!

"

Product Review: Masturbation to Fifty Shades

" from

The Sponsored Lady

:

As with any consensual sexual practise, bondage is not evidence of a disease. Conversely, WANKING TO THIS BOOK IS EVIDENCE OF A DISEASE. "You're very beautiful, Anastasia Steele. I can't wait to be inside you." I urge anyone who masturbated to this sentence to seek immediate medical aid. Medical aid and a copy of Strunk & White.

"

Half the Moon Is Gone

" from

Edenland

:

People are grotesque. Cancer is the $2 shop chemicals, the vegetable section of your supermarket, the food dye in your cream bun. Cancer is the salt on your fries and the fake-leather tassels on your brand-new pair of whatever the fuck you just bought but didn't need while children die from hunger. Cancer is the smokestacks of China and the grease-traps of fast food.

"

I Am Not a Brand

" from

Nerd's Eye View

:

I realize that I am not entirely in control of how my own identity plays out. At times I am a cartooonish left coast woman, a user of public transit, an eater of kale, a wearer of Goretex, a driver of a modest and practical car, a technically literate and creative writer. My globally acquired affectations are ridiculous, a fondness for Vietnamese coffee, European baking, the ukulele… I'm no better than the mood boards produced by that branding agency I worked for, a series of pictures cut from travel and lifestyle magazines and pasted on to pressed board in a projected order. I'm am not immune from the prints left on my work by sponsors, I'm keenly aware of them, in fact. I'm also not saying that it's entirely negative, I've had the chance to do some great work in brand based relationships. But I had dinner a few weeks ago with the results of taking this idea much, much too literally and much too far. It's not a good look. Not at all.

"

Bullshit Stories, 'Impossible' Things, and That Time I Spoke to 1,000+ People at World Domination Summit

" from

Nicole Is Better

:

What's your big goal? And, most importantly, what's the bullshit story you keep telling yourself about why you can't achieve it?

"

2 Truths and a Lie

" from

The Extraordinary Ordinary

:

There are as many reasons for blogging as there are bloggers and for the most part, we are telling the truth. We are cheering each other on in everything from parenting to weight loss to battling cancer or healing after the death of a child. We are real people with honesty pinned to our hearts and minds and coming out behind a blinking cursor. We hate the reputation that is given us by those that cannot find Enough in their lives to make them feel Enough. If the goal of lies is "blog fame" with an increase in unique visitors and a sky-rocketing klout score, it is still born of that need to be seen and to feel. The problem is deeper and more complicated than a mistake in a moment behind a screen that snow-balled out of control.

"

How to Kill a Troll

" from

Incisive.nu

:

...my best shot in fraught discussions is try to remember that actions rooted in love are the most practical tool we have. It's a position of extraordinary resilience, too, because it doesn't rely on the back and forth of an exchange of blows. It's steady, unexpected, and weirdly difficult to defend against—the rhetorical equivalent of stepping inside someone's guard. And it can't be faked.

"

What Can I Say About Joe Paterno

" from

The Six Year Itch

:

When alumni and current students and football fans chant "We are Penn State!!" they are good people making the wrong decision. Their screams and chants are in fact deafening silence for the victims. Of the true monstrosity of their university. When those same people defend Paterno and worship him in bronze, they look the other way at evil.

Please come back and share good writing with us over the coming week to be featured on the next

Five Star Friday

. If you have read a really good piece on someone else's weblog,

submit it by Thursday at midnight CST

to have it featured on

Five Star Friday

.

And because you are a fan of finding good new writing on the internet:

A New Website for People for Animals of Saskatchewan

Morning Light From an Airplane