Blog Administrivia

For those of you who read the blog on Facebook, you may have noticed some formatting errors recently. Please bear with me.

I’ve been using NetworkedBlogs for many years to push to Facebook because I can’t stand the default WordPress integration. However, they decided to make their service really crappy in order to force people into paid accounts, so I am experimenting with different methods.

So far, all of those methods suck and I don’t like how they look on Facebook.

I apologize and hopefully I will get something working before too long. In the meantime, the links will still be posted, even if they have redundant text, bad images, or generally look stupid.

–The Management

In regards to Quote Mondays

It has become increasingly difficult to get enough quotes to fill in Quote Mondays lately. You may have noticed that I have skipped them here and there in the past few months. The older the kids get, the less hilariously out of context they are. Their too-serious comments are thoughtful or spot-on, rather than funny.

I have always maintained a sort of “editorial vision” when it comes to Quote Monday. There have always been comments that one or another have urged me to put into Quote Monday, but I have refused on the grounds that it didn’t “feel” like the right kind of quote. So I am very sensitive about not forcing quotes, or writing down “inferior” quotes, just to make my quota. (Get it? Quota?)

Therefore, it is with a heavy heart that I am going to have to retire Quote Monday as a regular feature here on the blog. There are currently 275 entries in the “From the Mouths of Babes” category; more than enough to occupy you should you feel the need for some quotes.

I know this breaks everyone’s heart. Quote Monday has long been the favorite feature of the blog. Alas, all good things must come to an end.

I will still post quotes occasionally when I have them, but I don’t yet know how often that will be.

— The Management

No Quote Monday Today

Sorry everyone, no quotes today. Lots going on lately, and not much time to blog. Updates will probably be slim until at least after Thanksgiving.

So…how are you?

-The Management

Whiffing on a big milestone

I had been keeping my eye on the fact that I was coming up on my 2,000th post here on the blog. You know how they say to keep your eye on the ball? Okay, so, this is actually my 2,004th post on the blog. Whoops.

In any case, 2000 is a pretty big number considering how short lived most blogs are. On the other hand, it sure feels like I’ve written more than 2000 of these things (you have, you idiot, 2000 and FOUR of them!) WordPress doesn’t appear to have a way to count the total amount of words I’ve published, but if we pick a nice conservative number of 200 words per post (I suspect I’m well above that…I do tend to go on), we’re talking about a minimum of 400,000 words (again, I think that’s low, but that’s not even counting stories I’ve written in that time, papers at work, etc.)

And yet my wife still says she can’t get a word in edgewise.

So here’s to another 2,000 opportunities for me to go on, and on, and on, and on…

 

…and on…

 

…and on…

 

 

…and on…

10 Years a Blogger

10 years ago today I wrote my very first blog post.

10 years is like 1,000 years in Internet time. By Internet standards, I’m definitely a dinosaur. I predate smartphones, Twitter, Youtube, and Facebook only beat me by 13 days. Myspace was less than a year old in Feb. 2004. Friends was still on the air!

Forget Internet time, 10 years is a long time to do anything. 10 years ago I didn’t have kids. I wasn’t married. I didn’t live in Chicago. I wasn’t writing, knitting, or even really cooking anything more complicated than a frozen pizza. Apparently, judging by all my early posts, 10 years ago I was also the whiniest emo crybaby on the planet.

This is my 1,887th post. I have 2,855 comments here on the blog proper (not counting anything on Facebook, Glipho, Google+, etc.) I’ve been interviewed about blogging, been a guest blogger, and received a comment from a childhood hero.

I don’t know if I really have anything to say about it that I haven’t covered before. I mean, in 10 years I think I’ve pretty much used up all the words. So, sorry future generations, I’m the reason there are no more words left.

Who knew that when I started this thing I’d still be doing it 10 years later? I’m definitely proud of that as an achievement. Someone commented on my first post and asked if this was the first blog post in recorded history. The funny thing was, when I started a blog I knew lots of people who had been doing it for a lot longer than me. The difference is, none of them are still doing it. The vast majority of blogs don’t make it to 1 year, much less 10. So, you know, congratulations to me or whatever.

I’m not really sure what the future will bring, as far as blogging goes. It’s still something I enjoy quite a bit, but I periodically change directions around here as well. If it ever stops being enjoyable, I have to do something new to keep it interesting. Maybe that’s the secret to making it 10 years. Probably not, though; I’d have to attribute that more to pigheaded persistence than anything else. I’m nothing if not relentless!

Anyway, I hate to say here’s to 10 more years because I don’t know if I’ll still want to be doing this in 10 years. I’ll be in my 40s(!!). Ollie will be on the verge of being a teenager, and Evie will be getting ready to drive (in her FLYING CAR). Besides, by that time the two of them will have long since killed me for all the embarrassment this blog has caused them.

Cutting Back (Again)

The Internet basically only exists to suck time away from us. This is especially true in my case. Some obsessive aspect of my personality really latches on to the Internet and can’t let go. I have to friend every person and read every status, tweet, or blog post of anybody I ever even remotely knew, as well as anybody they recommend, etc. I try to suck it all up and absorb it, but the Internet is endless. There is always one more website to read or blog post to write or link to share on someone’s wall. Slowly but surely, the Internet eats me until there is nothing left.

This is not the first time I have crawled my way out of this black hole. In defense of my sanity, as well as defense of all my other hobbies (including sleep), I’m going to throttle down a little bit. So if I don’t comment on your Facebook as much as I used to, or if I unfollow you on Twitter, Please don’t be offended. It’s not because you are uninteresting. Quite the opposite in fact.

Additionally, I will also be cutting down on my blogging.

On Jan. 3rd 2009, I started posting on my blog 5 days a week. It was a little bit of an experiment to see if I could. At that time I didn’t think it would last very long. It seemed impossible, and I also worried it would hurt the quality of the posts. A little over 4 years later, I am ready to call the experiment quits.

I’ve really enjoyed the challenge and I think that, not only did the quality remain high, but I think it actually improved. Blogging is still something I love, and it really became part of my personality during that time. I’ve received such nice feedback from people, and it’s really kept me in touch with a lot of people that I wouldn’t otherwise had any contact with. Lately, however, it has become too much of a burden. Sara could tell you how much time I spend fretting about things like, “I need another post for this week!” or “Is this really good enough for a post?” or “Why is my traffic going down? Was I boring this week?” or “Make the kids do something funny! I’m short on quotes!” This becomes doubly difficult when something’s going on, like stress at work, or queuing up posts for a multiple week vacation.

Since I receive no tangible benefits from blogging, there’s really no reason to add this kind of stress to my life. I will still continue to blog whenever I feel like it, which will no doubt be multiple times per week (maybe even every day!). However, I will no longer force myself to make an arbitrary post count.

Thanks to you who have enjoyed my blog over the years. I hope you will continue to enjoy it as it enters yet another new chapter.

-The Management

Someone said I’m lovely!

First time for everything I suppose!

Sam from A Few Fine Things nominated me for the “One Lovely Blog” award!

I don’t believe I’ve ever received any sort of blogging recognition or award before. And though Sam is not exactly a *stranger* per say, since she comments on Glipho frequently, it’s nice to be recognized by someone I don’t exactly know! So thanks Sam, much appreciated (and also for cluing me into some new blogs to read!)

Rules of the award:

– Add the “One Lovely Blog Award” image to your post
– Share 7 things about you
– Pass the award to seven nominees
– Thank the person who nominated you
– Inform the nominees by posting on their blogs

It’s been awhile since I’ve done one of these “things about me” lists (since Feb. 2009 apparently), but nonetheless I can’t think of a SINGLE THING about me that I have not already plastered all over the Internet. Not one. Really struggling here.

Okay, here goes….

1. I am afraid of busses. Well, afraid of them is not really the right word, but they make me anxious to the point that I would never choose to use them if I could help it. Trains are okay. Trains are on a rail and they can only go where they can go. A bus can just close the door and drive to Abu Dabi.

2. I used to be blond. Like, really blond, all through my childhood, long after you would have assumed my hair wasn’t going to change color. For that matter, I USED to be cute:

3. Speaking of things I used to be, I used to be a mallrat, like you read about. I would spend hours there, bumming around stores, buying things, getting pizza at Sbarro (or free samples from Chik-fil-a), meeting up with people, etc. I could still probably draw you a pretty good map from memory, with all the key stores marked out. But it was so much more than that! There were like rival gangs. For example, for arcades I was a Tilt guy. I wouldn’t have been caught dead in the Golden Nugget. Likewise, I would only buy music in NRM. Sara finds all of this absolutely hilarious, and can’t fathom how this could be a part of my past.

4. I come from an *extremely* big extended family. My dad was one of 7 kids, and my mom was one of 17 kids. No multiple births (twins, etc.). Just lots and lots of babies.

5. I am ranked as one of the top 3 pillow jugglers in the world.

6. One time when I was driving my car caught on fire. There was the smell of burning wires and smoke started pouring out of the steering column. It turns out that with that particular model, it was not exactly unheard of. The weirdest part about the whole thing was that the car ended up being totally fine without any sort of repair required.

7. I am a terrible cook, but I like baking. It’s not crazy to go through 5 pounds of flour in a weekend, although not as much lately perhaps. A lot of that is bread for the week, and most of the rest is pancakes. Lots and lots and lots of pancakes. We usually go through 30+ pancakes on a Sunday.

On the matter of my own nominees, here are some of my favorite Gliphers at the moment:

1.  Tess Wynn – I’ve been kicking myself for missing her on my Meet A Glipher list of favorite Gliphers!! So glad I got a second chance. Love her sense of humor, plus we’re both originally from Wisconsin, so there you go.

2. Kami McArthur – Kami is a super sweet, just starting out writer (like me!), and I feel like her sincerity and ernestness really come through in her posts.

3. Woelf Dietrich – Another writer, but sort of the photo-negative of Kami. 🙂 Dude’s got HP Lovecraft and a giant man-eating squid on his homepage right now. Not only is that awesome, but I want to see how he’s going to fit a “Lovely Blog” award on there with the rest. 🙂

4. Laura Locket – Laura writes every day, and no one knows better than me what a challenge that is, not only to do it, but to keep it interesting!

5. Garden Geekery – Bees! I am currently fascinated by bee keeping, as we’d like to keep bees one day, and therefore this blog.

Alright, I hate to go outside of Glipho for this, but…

6. Alexis Abell – An old friend, with some hilarious kid adventures. If you’re a fan of Quote Monday, you should check out her blog.

7. Rodan – A VERY old friend! It’s kind of hard to explain his blog, but I lurves it. Each post is like a surreal dip into the inner workings of his strange brain, where everything starts out normal, but nothing is as it seems.

To my nominated (Glipho) bloggers – if you could click the version button at the bottom of this blog post when you wish to do your own nomination post then it will link all our blog posts together in harmonious loveliness.