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.


Before I build up the steam I will need to bore you with the travails of my ugly Saturday afternoon, I have a tip for those of you who may or may not want search engines to be scouring your site and/or caching your pages. The instructions are very simple to follow and implement. Those of you who are interested in remaining anonymous in this here Intarweb should take special interest in this.

This meta tag - < META NAME="ROBOTS" CONTENT="list of terms here" > - depending on what terms you choose to list separated by commas, will allow or disallow search robots to ignore, index, or follow links from your page. Of course, these terms can be used in whichever combinations best suit your desires, and you can choose one, two, or more terms to suit your needs. Following is a list of the terms you can choose from:

• NONE tells all robots to ignore this page (equivalent to "noindex, nofollow")
• ALL signals that there are no restrictions on indexing this page, or following links from this page to determine pages to index (equivalent to "index, follow")
• INDEX welcomes all robots to include this page in search services
• NOINDEX means this page may not be indexed by a search service
• FOLLOW welcomes robots to follow links from this page to find other pages
• NOFOLLOW means robots are not to follow links from this page

If you don't want search robots to have anything to do with your site, insert the following meta tag near the beginning of your source code after < HEAD > (you will have to remove the spaces before "meta" and after "nofollow" before inserting the tag into your source code):

If you do want search robots to have anything to do with your site, insert the following meta tag near the beginning of your source code after < HEAD > (again, you will have to remove the spaces before "meta" and after "follow" before inserting the tag into your source code):

If you don't want your site to be found, this is not a sure-fire method of dodging the public. Some search services honour this HTML and some do not, but I know that many of them claim to. Without this meta tag, though, all search engines will freely spider your site. For more information, check out "Robot Exclusion Standard Revisited".

Having this last week off did not really feel so vacatiatastic. I did my best, but I am human, and as such, I have my limits. I have learned what some of those limits are over the last while, and I present them to you now in an unordered list: I cannot pretend that I don't have allergies and that I don't need some freaking allergy medication any longer, I am in dire need of a chiropractor, not eating makes me bitchy, and I have to take my psychological issues seriously and be vigilant with my St. John's Wort.

That 's quite the list. I started out this spring in a miserable state, because that is how I naturally react to spring, but then I took a sudden upturn out of the blue, and I was going along thinking Oh, how nice is this! Spring's actually a great time of year! I'm not dysmorphic or depressed or paranoid or socially anxious! I honestly should know better by this time in my life that sudden upswings in thought and mood usually signal a psychological and physical crash ahead. Feeling suddenly energetic, positive, and excited about new ventures usually covers up an underlying level of stress that is slowly ballooning.

I am amazing in my ability to remain completely unaware of stress for months at a time. My lack of awareness is so complete that by the time my stress actually does break the surface, I can't for the life of me figure out where the hell it all started. Now this is very odd, I think to myself, I was fine until a couple of days ago. I check my calendar to see if it's time for my period, and when that doesn't pan out, I'm stumped for a clear answer.

The stress that builds up inside me produces more and more side effects as time goes along. A short synopsis of what I'm dealing with this afternoon should give you a good idea of what it can do to me: I am hungry and losing weight but have little appetite, a headache is eating away at my frontal lobe, my spine is out of place and pinching a nerve which is causing the funny bone in my left elbow to ache constantly, my allergies are vicious, my intestines are being uncooperative, and all of these things combined with my agitation of late is making me feeling a little more than evil. I'm hoping the muscle relaxants I just took will mellow me out enough so that I can go eat some comfort food.

Okay, I'm not feeling so evil, because I am planning on taking the Fiery One out for supper because he was such a sweetheart yesterday evening, and sweethearts should be rewarded with vast amounts of cheese.

Part of this recent downturn is my fault, and I'm kicking myself for it. I could have prevented it so easily simply by packing my bottle of St. John's Wort for my trip to Cosmopolis over a week ago. Also, when I arrived there and realized that I was without it, I could have gone to the pharmacy and picked some up. I did neither of these things, assuring myself that I would be fine, and then I proceeded to inch my way down into a hole for the remainder of my trip. Simply put, I am brilliant when it comes to self-sabotage.

So, there you have it. My body has turned into that of an eighty-six year old because I have yet again neglected any and all signs of stress and lapsed in my taking of the calmness-inducing St. John's Wort. I will recover shortly, though. I have been taking it regularly over the last couple of days, I have loaded up on some muscle relaxants, and I am just about to take my lovely partner out for the fatty goodness that is the Sante Fe chicken burger at our local dive. Things are looking up. Wish me well.