October 15, 2005

new template--thoughts?

feedback?

October 14, 2005

A comment on comments

well i turned blogger comments on. i didn't like them. i switched to haloscan. I didn't back up my template. my sidebar is screwed.

If anyone has a lovely template for me, now would be the time for a quick re-design, considering i blew away all my nice little links in the sidebar. they'll be back soon--including the blogroll.

I the meantime, oh please tell me you like the new comments, courtesy of halo scan, courtesy of Tony Pierce, who admirably can use grammar as a verb.

in other news, Gonzo Engaged, who turned 4 today, is looking smashing!

commenting and trackback have been added to this blog.

The road to aggression

FUCK YOU!

Someone said that to me today, and told me to put it on my goddam blog.

I decided to oblige.

October 13, 2005

One for the pres

specially after scatological encounters.

Snarl, Devil Man




Respect to Hossien Sharifi

I have used YACCS as my commeting utility on this and other blogs since 2001. In all of that time, when other blog tools were sucking at comments and letting in spammers or not offering comments at all or forcing you to develop 'black lists,' YACCS performed like a champ.

Hossein has rocked this house multiple times, never charging a dime. I don't know what his business model is--I don't know him at all--but if he's like the good folks who have been around here for a while, he didn't have a business mmodel when he started playing with comments. He was curious. He was already passionate about running a data-driven conversation platform.

Unfortunately, of late, YACCS has been throwing too many errors for me to keep up with on this blog. I get emails from folks who say, "why'd you take your comments down!" I've never taken my comments down, but sometimes YACCS has to go hurl and then it comes right back. In the mean time, it makes the blog take a LONG TIME to load. Too long.

When Blogger finally incorporated a commenting utility in this tool a year or so ago, I stuck with YACCS. I have four years of the most meaningful conversation of my life sitting in Hossein's database(s). I was not moved to switch.

But today I've turned on Blogger comments. What I want is for someone to buy YACCS and pay Hossein $2-$5 million like Dave Winer, because Hossein has also offered an incredibly valuable, free service and has never said a nasty word or pontificated or complained or jumped up and down. And he's provided what I think is the most reliable comment utilities in blogging for the longest time. Comment spam? I don't get any with YACCS.

So, in the mean time, while I wait to see how long it takes Hossein to get YACCS cooperating again or putting a few million dollars in the bank, I've saved the line in my template that lets me put YACCS back in. Hossein, I'm not leaving--I'm just taking a break and hoping you get rich. Keep my conversations safe.

THANKS,
respect.
jeneane

I just said "Scatology" over the Georgia radio airwaves and now I feel like Dooce.

Kevin, Grayson and I were on Atlanta's progressive station 89.3 WRFG this morning to talk about blogging and blogging, blogging and politics, blogging and business, and like that. Our nearby Florida neighbor Josh Hallett also called in to the show.

I've never done a radio interview before: Big Surprise. So when the phone rang and it was the radio station, I was of course Blogging in my bed...errr...I mean doing investigative reporting. Thank the Lord that Kevin and Grayson were on to make blogging legit, because I think I just took the topic down a nasty -- albeit well deserved -- path.

You see, I was finishing up my interpretation of the scatology memo from President Bush, exhibit A below.

Being progressive 'thinking with their own minds' kind of folks, the talk-show host and Grayson were in the studio actually looking at our blogs as we talked about them -- CLUED -- and so the clever and funny host, Mr. Monroe, asks me to talk about this Bush memo thing--> "Tell me, Jeneane, what you think the memo says...."

And I say, well, I don't think I can say that word on the air.

Here's the deal: Progressive radio really does rock better than conservative radio because indeed you can say scatology! And so I did. And then I said my only doubt on what the P.S. actually says is that I don't think the President knows a word with that many syllables.

So now you know the story about how I had to say Scatology on the radio and why I feel like Dooce because things like that only happen to Dooce.

Okay then. Paul, my business partner, will be glad to know that I plugged The Content Factor and Scatology on the same radio show. How many people have that opportunity?

The next time I'm asked about what blogging has to do with business, I will relate this anecdote.

The Scat Singer

I'm going to ask you all again: Does the memo below from the Leader of the Free World (and freer by the day, I might add, if I were a nutjob neocon) to Supreme Court Justice Nominee Harriett Miers not advise said candidate to refrain from PUBLIC SCATOLOGY in the future.

Okay--I'm willing to take future google hits from freaks looking for pictures. The least you can do is tell me, no. No, dumb ass, it doesn't say that. President Bush wrote: "P.S. No more public _____________."

Let's review what ____________ might be.

No more public scientology?

No more public scaffolding?

No more public scat singing?

Help me out here.

...tap tap tap... waiting....

No music with this one.


Excuse me, but does that p.s. say: "No more public scatology?"

Okay I thought so.

Cool.

Okay.

I mean, I was just trying to be sure.

i know that you can lend a helping hand

Keepin your head above water....

And then there's who?

Barney 1.0

I love searching audio on dogpile

October 12, 2005

passive aggressive dentist woman

I have to come clean about some stuff here. Number one, as you know, well, some of you, I have no dental insurance. Like most merikans, that went away with my 9-9 job a couple of years back. So, when I was eating some air about a year ago, and my bottom left molar decided to collapse, I had to get a crown.

They call em crowns because the cost like $340,033,000.22, or they might as well cost that much since coming up with a grand out of pocket was about as likely as coming up with the $340 million.

Well, my dentist was nice enough to work out payment arrangements. I always like when they do that--and back during Web 1.0 I was even careful to make those payments. But then I learned during Web 1.0 that no one really meant all those good things they promised in return for working hard, so I realized that meant I could take my time paying off my creditors.

Which brings us back to the bitch at the dentist's office.

My crown fell off two weeks ago when I dared to bite into a milky way--we're talking the snack-size square which is 93-percent soft center--and me being in a client meeting did what you would do: I showed it to everyone.

That notwithstanding: After that I stopped by the dentist, to find he has a new receptionist, Ms. Bitcherella.

I show her my crown and I tell her jeez since I've only had it on like 10 months, can't she just stick it on there herself for me, like if I put my face through that little sliding window she can give it a good shove, and I can be on my way?

Well no, of course SHE has other ideas, like looking up my account balance so she could shame me.

Funny thing is, RageBoy was on the phone the whole time because I was jabbering to him on the drive back and I said, hold on, I have to see about my crown, and took him inside.

So Ms. Bitcherella fires up her PC and begins to show me, with more disdain than I rightly deserve, that I still owe $200 on my account, which had been at $1,200.

I am jubilent--that means I've paid off like $1,000 ! This is the best news I've had in weeks! I point at the screen and say: "Isn't that great--look how much I've paid you!"

But she sees it differently and keeps reminding me that I'm a useless deadbeat with teeth she could take back if she wanted to.

I hear RB laughing out of my phone's earhole. She stares at my cellphone. I think she thinks I'm up to something.

I'm all like: Please, understand here, I have paid you a lot of money--I'm good for the rest.

She's all like: We have a communication problem.

In the end I scheduled an appointment and left. In the car RB was wheezing: "That was like listening to two completely different conversations going on simultaneously. You're all about: 'look how good i did!' and she's all about 'you're a fucking looser.' HA HA HA!"

And I'm all "HA HAHA HAHAHAHHAAA!"

fastforward.

I had to call Bitcherella back to move the appointment when a client meeting came up.

She told me this was my last chance--she can't keep rescheduling the doctor's time this way.

I said if she wanted that balance, I had to take client meetings when I could: I have to bill to pay her. AND I told her I didn't like her attitude.

She told me she wasn't trying to give me an attitude but it was clear that I didn't want to pay the balance and that I should come in and get my crown fixed either way. Somehow she has this mock concern going on for me all of a sudden, and so I look over my shoulder to make sure she's not at my house.

I told her I'd think about it.

Then I said okay, Thursday, but don't think I'm giving you any money.

The moral of the story: I think I have them on the run.

buy coastal

If you're in NY, you better catch up with tony pierce on monday night, because it would be so stupid not to.

God Bless Get Your War On

Hey, Mr. DJ--Do you take requests?


This little number goes out to Bill O'Reilly at billoreillysucks.com.

Chuck's Take on

Chuck Tanowitz takes on the noble task of defining just WHO is a journalist - or who a journalist is -- or maybe it's whom. Or really, maybe it's WHAT. All of which is made more difficult, he points out, by legal differences, even among states...

...How does New York define a journalist?

A "professional journalist" is...one who, for gain or livelihood, is engaged in gathering, preparing, collecting, writing, editing, filming, taping or photographing of news intended for a newspaper, magazine, news agency, press association or wire service or other professional medium or agency which has as one of its regular functions the processing and researching of news intended for dissemination to the public; such person shall be someone performing said function either as a regular employee or as one otherwise professionally affiliated for gain or livelihood with such medium of communication.

There are a number of interesting qualifiers here. My favorite is as someone who provides information "for gain or livelihood..." in other words, you have to make money doing this. How many bloggers out there make nothing for their work but do it for the love of writing or finding things out? What if one of these finds themselves with a “source” who provides some sensitive information? Could this person duck behind the shield?

Chuck is right to look closely at the qualifiers. In the legal arena--which this debate seems destined for--lawyers will have a blast arguing. And whether you take the angle of who's a source and who's shielded, or who's writing and who's funding them, it really comes down to truth and facts.

But truth and facts in the online world are not always easily discernible. What if I disclaim, say in every other post, "That story I posted 20 minutes ago? It might not have been all true." Because we can play with the truth here--serious journalists or entertainent journalists. AND we can also TELL the truth more easily by uncovering falsehoods that are hard to find elsewhere (ala rathergate).

We can claim to play with the truth. Or we can not make such claim. We can be a card-carrying journalist and anonymous all at once. And if our ISP gets hauled into court, can we make like Tony Pierce and point to his top-level blog disclaimer: Nothing in here is true?

I would.

But you know all of it is.

And none of it is.

One subtle but huge difference is that we are not part of a corporation: We don't have the cost of print, ink, paper, advertising, distribution, sales--just some of the dollar realities that make accuracy important in offline, hardline news, where corrections can cost $ as well as credibility.

Does that make us more frivolous with the facts? I'm probably guilty of that.

So there.

Luckily though, when we write in a space that is, as either Doc or David once said, inherently self-correcting. That means, over time, the facts have an opporunity to take care of themselves.

Read Chuck's And Part 2 he discusses burying the shield for once and for all, calling a source a source:
I think we should bury the shield. Yes, a journalist's most key asset is the ability to gain information, especially information that may otherwise be hidden. But, remember that any source generally has a reason for talking, and that reason is often far from altruistic.

Beautiful Is.

Beyond the Goat(TM).

What the suits still don't get

TODAY I BLOG MY OWN INTERNAL CONFERENCE SESSION: WHAT THE SUITS STILL DON'T GET ABOUT BLOGGING 101

The right hemisphere's up next:

It's about areas of interest. Read Gonzo Marketing--study the parts in between the naughty bits. Your as usual corporate-comm doesn't work here.

The glue of all conversation is shared interest. Without that the conversation stops.

This is not necessarily similar thinking on a given topic--but shared interest. I hate cats / i love cats - still about cats.

Now let's say you are a restaurant - then you have to drill down to areas of interest your patrons are gathering around - and they are limitless: who are the people who eat with you? they are business people, artists, photographers, moms, dads, doctors.

They are vegetarians and they meat lovers. They eat. But that's not engaging--that's what they come to you to do. Drill deeper.

Think of the opportunities.

What you don't want to do is create or sponsor a blog about restaurants. Heck no. You want to undrestand why the man at table three is passing around pictures of farm animals. Is he the only one? Maybe. Keep watching. Don't judge. Don't stop the commotion. You notice all your customers have those camera phones. You see one lady taking a picture of her pork chop. BINGO. It's real then. Is the common area of interest farm animals? or is the area of interest cooking? Or is it photography? Watch your customers. Talk to them. Camera phones, pork chops, photos. Go deeper. Photography would work here. It doesn't have to be food pictures. It depends. Your customers are NOT your comptitor's customers or they'd be over there at this very minute. Find out about YOUR customers.

Nothing of value is within the first layer.

Don't confuse common interests with commonality. Mistake.

The more professionalized blogging comes, the higher the value on the quirky, the odd, the funny, the obscene, the joyous the inane. Which has always been the way of the net. Old timer netziens will beat you to these ideas every time. You have to engage their services here or you will fail.

There is a code. You don't always have to belong--if everyone belonged the value would disappear. If you don't care, don't join. If you don't join, engage others who are there.

You don't have to want to blog. You don't have to blog. You have to understand and appreciate. Or you can go away.

Reframe how you talk about communications--read read read blogs and study, even if you don't want to blog.

Take a blogger to lunch.

Send a blogger some product samples.

Adopt a blogger -- call them a consultant or evangelist.

LEFT HEMISPHERE IS NEXT ON THE SCHEDULE:

The currency in blogging is links. Bloggers will not want to admit this, so don't run around and act like a link whore. Don't spam to get links. Don't act like you even want links. Just write good stuff and be incredibly interesting or funny. Links follow.

Be liberal with your own links. You are not instapundit.

Put the top half of the Technorati 100 on your blogroll and blogger relations list, and then delete them all. This will make you feel like you've targeted the important poeple, but make you more likely NOT TO target them. The top 50 have no value to your company. They have become noise. Their links are eyeball links, not area-of-interest/passion links.

Eyeball links don't buy.

Passion links do buy.

The ROI in blogging is a lot like the ROI in any long-term communication program--the kind you're used to. Except it's more invisible, unless you put on a pair of glasses that bring into sharp focus the connecting strands among online participants.

Those strands = value.

The value is in the space between and the jumping across.

[[We're breaking for cookies now.]]

I saw Charlie at Web 2.0!

Once again, I have to say, online discrimination chaffes my scrote--and I mean on both ends of the gender gap.

Here is yet another example. Just check out who's missing from this lineup. For crying out loud, the one representative male looks like he just got off the plane from an O'Reilly conference!

(And I mean Tim, not Bill, but could be either, sweet Mary help us).

I'm with Madame Levy in the head shaking department. But then, the other part of me says a business model is a business model.



Charlie unwinds at the hotel after a grueling
conference schedule and some bad seafood


Did you know you need some kind of PIN?

I didn't know. I want to get my $ out of google adsense (see above) since I have $93 in there and not a hot dollar in my pocket, and I'll be darned if I just read and it says you need to enter some PIN they sent by mail.

Well, I've lived here for 10 years and I can tell you that Google never sent me a letter--I never even got a Blogger t-shirt even though I started the first group blog on Blogger, whose 4th birthday is Friday--and yes I checked my snail mail address (it's fine) and thank goodness they have that little contact form, because I just sent them an email.

Tell me I'm the only one who had no idea you needed a PIN number to get your dough out of adsense.

I better add the PIN to my will. They can put a nice daisy on top of me with my earnings and go to lunch.

October 11, 2005

The Book Whisperer


*click me bucko*

even regular people

Even regular people--that is to say not just fundamental christians--are talking about Revelations and how can you not what with plagues and quakes and floods and Bush.

Even my friend who's a Methodist, and you know they're pretty liberal when it comes to open doors, open hearts, open mouths-singing type religion, even she says the Methodists are talking about it. I don't know much about denominations aside from Catholicism, inside of which I once kind of functioned but do not now, but I know when the Methodists start talking about Revelations, well that's big news down here in the South. Mostly they're busy in pantries and food kitchens or taking soup around to sick neighbors.

So I said to my friend, you think? and she's like yah I think, and I'll tell you she's a church going Methodist on Sundays but the rest of the week she can lay down some good times--ANYWAY, she was like yep, I think. And I was like, I kind of think so too, to which we both agreed it would be nice to see the Lord return, us on our cell phones agreeing on the second coming, and then she said except for the sin part which has her a little worried, what with some of her weekday behaviors, and she wondered if she might be stuck here while her kids went on to heaven, at which point she said, well, hell, I'm glad they'll get in anyway.

I had to agree with her not only because she's from Mississippi, but also because she has the most wonderful 14-month old baby and she's turning 45. That doesn't happen every day. And then she said of course you don't have to worry if you hang with the non-denoms that believe you're saved by Grace, which is kind of what I'm thinking and so I'm nodding my head on my cell phone.

My coffee swisshed on the dashboard, and if there is one really bad habit I have that I won't have after the rapture it's keeping a ceramic mug full of hot coffee on my dashboard.

We agreed there is something to be said for the non-denominational worship-and-praise Christians compared to the sin-and-hell focused doctrines, especially with the end so near. I told her I very much enjoy the singing and again, she agreed, because the Methodist hymns sound only slightly more optimistic than the Baptists'.

And that's how regular people are talking about prophesies.

seems like every six months

i have to remind you to comment, because when you don't comment i get all pissed off. and when i get all pissed off i feel like picking up a cigarette. and when i feel like picking up a cigarette i don't. and when I don't i get all pissed off. and then i remind you to comment again. viscious. cycle.

The State of the Knee Address

Follow the highlighted google terms.

Who the fuck am I trying to fool, spending unavailable $ on an expensive bike thinking I'll jump on and ride on up the umpty-ump-teen hills around our house and get in shape--just watch me. Day one. Day number one I'm like--damn this seat seems low well that's weird, so now I think, after researching how you're supposed to ride a bike -- stupid me thought I remembered from when I was 12 -- that I don't know how to ride a bike, especially not with 24 speeds, especially not up hill, especially not when the lady left the seat down at it's lowest setting after she had it on that machine and that's how I rode it and tore up my knee going uphill.

All that, and will the check even clear?

These are the things I do that make me crazy. George, he KEEPs asking me if I stretched, and I suppose people know what stretching is, but I keep telling him, isn't riding a bike stretching? And here he is, Mr. Stretch, and Mr. Filter, telling me, no. You're over 40 and you're beat like us and out of shape--you stretch.

I'm thinking, stretching is a lot like exercise, so one or the other has to go, which is why even though I love my new too-expensive bike that I can't afford, maybe I should stretch every day for free, and forget the exercise part, and my knee wouldn't look like a watermellon. Plus it's a lot cheaper. And I'd have time to take up smoking again. Which, as you know, I do miss so.

What a Woman Is

I've been saying it for a while now, and I'll say it again: She is the real deal.

its like that

sometimes when you've lost a lot of things in your lifetime, say starting early before your mind is really developed, you get this instinct thing that says a loss is a-coming. sometimes it takes you by surprise still, and really, most of the time it still surprises you, but when you get one of those feeling-so-low-stomach-crunch-cramp-wrenching instincts that loss is on the way, well, you have to know you're right.

How do you know:

the air is thick and falls from the sky in layers.

you hear the rubber souls on the bottom of your shoes separating from the pavement when you walk.

children appear from nowhere.

the jiggle of the bulbs in light sockets drives you mad.

when you vacuum the wood floors you can't believe it sounds so much like A Love Supreme.

A word about school

so after our two hurricane days a week or so back thanks to the wisdom of our Leader And Redneck Sonny Perdue, not the chicken man, but could have been, we now friday off from school because teachers need to prepare for conference week -- can my clients understand if i tell them i need a day off to get ready to work? not -- okay -- so -- then next week we have what they like to call early-release days all week so that teachers can make parents drag their sorry asses in at the most convenient hour of between 1 - 3 p.m. to look at papers they've already seen at home. Early-Release days mean kids actually arrive home before you take them, and with Jenna's two sick days from throwing up, plus friday off, plus a week of early-relesae days next week, I'm pretty sure we just time warped back to first grade.

The Top 10 on Human Suffering

Supersize me a disaster. Don't disappoint. Make it big, make it news, make it so so big. Chart Topper, blockbuster, ballbuster, lifesucker.

Tom's better at this.

Doing Dilligence

That wiley culture phenom Tony Pierce sets the record straight on the genesis of the term blook. But on the genesis of the idea for blooks, I'm including the ass of yours truly:

In February of 2002 on Gonzo Engaged, I was looking for a way...

In Nov 2002 I talked about blog "year" books here.

I stuck my first poetry e-book PDF (damn, I suck at branding) in Demcember 2002.

None of this is to say jeneane made up blooks, but don't forget jeff jarvis wasn't the only guy online then.

Now I guess I have to start making me some.

Bird sighting, North Main Street

There he goes again.
Bird sighting, North Main Street
Originally uploaded by allaboutgeorge.

Bird Watching

from all about g.
Pre-metering light bird sighting, Bay Bridge
Originally uploaded by allaboutgeorge.

Technorati's Sprung a Leak?

My inbound link are dropping like flies.

If I keep losing links via Technorati, pretty soon I'll be sunk and you'll have to send an exploration crew to dig me off the floor of the blog sea.

Thing is, I KNOW my link love is still abundant because most of my link love is a two way street, baby. So HOW is it I fell from around 400 to 300-something (yes, I know, I know: there was an enhancement that counts SITES linking versus POSTS linking) a week or so ago, only to fall again down to 222. That was a great TV show back in the day, but it's not representative of my link numbers.

And while I'm admitting that I give a shit about links -- a rare moment -- how is it that site meter fails to show my my linking referrers that I know are sending me traffic. Like the day Doc and David and Five Other Really Important Bloggers linked to me in referencing my CEO's and Blogging article, yet site meter showed zero folks coming here from those sites. I'm so pissed I think it's time to trade in the old site meter for something newer.

Now, you and I can say it's piddly, this link business, and on any given Wednesday I'll be leading that charge, but it's not so simple anymore, because recent history (really recent) has shown that a lot of money is at stake in the blog tool space. And that should somehow be relative to quality and happy customers. In fact, I've given both of these companies my hard earned cash in the past. So, I might say, I have a vested interest. In fact, I'm a goddam stakeholder.

So tell me straight up... what gives?

October 10, 2005

Moi? Naw.

Frank takes the opportunity to blame it all on me, when really it's mostly his fault. Most everything is Frank's fault. He's the guy who goes out and interviews all of these nobodies-turned-somebodies right in the middle of whatever severe and traumatic life change led them to this blog place in the first place -- because no healthy person, especially in 2001 would take the opportunity to out themselves as an idiot in front of four other people. Then once Frank interviews you, you realize everything you said was a lie to yourself and then your life transforms itself YET AGAIN through a BRAND NEW set of trauma and upheaval, during which you plug away posting these words because by then it's a sort of turret's thing.

And so THAT? ALL OF THAT? It's Frank's fault.

And thank you for taking me back to my favorite blog on earth, Mr. Sandhill.

what does blowing your knee out feel like?

does it feel anything like, oh, blowing your knee out? Like when you're out of shape and in your forties and you think you can get on a bike for the first time since you were 12 and immediately ride up and down hills starting at the edge of your driveway? You manage to feel proud that you've gone up and down six times in two days. Next one knee hurts and swells up and you're all like, that's weird, ouch, where's the Ibuprophen. Then a few days later you suddenly can't walk because one knee doesn't work and keeps buckling, and man it sure has this weird swelling thing going on?

Is it anything like that?

In Your Moment of Sorrow

The death of a parent is one of the most traumatic things that can happen to a child. In time, in therapy, in recovery, in love and in grieving, kids can survive it. But that's not why I'm writing this. I'm writing this to tell surviving parents something very important: Watch the people around your children after your spouse dies. It's a catch 22 for you. You need support--you need to grieve. And maybe that's too hard to do because you can't afford to. You can't afford vulnerability at a time when vigilance is due.

People will offer help to you and your children in this time of need. Many of those people will be helpful. But watch for predators because predators watch. And I don't mean wait and see. I mean, expect them.

Predators watch. They watch and wait for moments just like this. They look for prey in distress, the baby zebra who can't keep up, who is slowed, whose senses are dulled by injury, bewildered, the baby who has lost is lost. A predator zeros in on tender flesh, ripe, a flank, a loin, and at the moment when that baby is farthest from the pack, out of reach, separate from the wisdom and protection of the more experienced who know how to zig and zag, he strikes, she strikes.

Widows and widowers, watch your babies.

D.W. Really Does Rule.

As a side project, I'm writing an article on D.W., Arthur's little sister, and as a result I got the chance to talk to the inspiration for D.W. -- Marc Brown's sister, Kim Brown. (No, her name isn't Dora Winifred like you might expect).

Kim is a neat lady and was great to talk to. She travels around the country giving presentations in schools and working with kids on writing and illustrating. She helps bring the Aurthur and D.W. stories to life. Her courses look like fun. But the funniest part of this whole thing has been Jenna's obsession with this little project. DADDY, MOMMY GETS TO WRITE AN ARTICLE ON D.W.!

She nearly fainted when I told her D.W. would be calling today.

As it turns out it was just the right remedy for Jenna's stomach flu. Kim took the time to talk to Jenna on the phone--I saw Jenna's cheeks turn bright red as she mumbled out some niceties. It might as well have been Jessie McCartney himself on the other end of the line.

The great news is, she hasn't thrown up since. Thanks Kim!

p.s., I'll put a link up when the story is finally online.

Senior Bucket Holder - Job Description

I've been working away on work projects with little time to blog, mostly since my side occupation for the last two days has been "senior bucket holder" to Jenna who has had the stomach bug.

Do I need to go into a job description for senior bucket holder? I think I will, because it's about more than holding a little waste basket. It's about letting your kid take over your bed and mind and soul and sleep--and doing it with love because you can't stand to see the look on her little face when the throwing up begins and the aliens come lurching out of her system. And I'm hiring!

If you have a weak stomach, go read insapundit. Oh wait, that won't work.

SENIOR BUCKET HOLDER JOB DESCRIPTION

REQUIREMENTS:

Should be a mom in her early- to mid-forties, with at least 5-10 years experience catching vomit while simultaneously comforting and cleaning sick child. Survival through at least one child hospitalization required.

SKILLS:

Ability to effectively place and secure bucket, small waste basket, throw-up bowl, or in true emergencies a bath towel, underneath the chin of wobbling, dizzy, half-lifeless child in order to catch what is expelled. Looking for 90-percent or better catch rate. Multi-tasking is a must--candidate needs ability to sooth child and hold head during expulsion while simulaneously maintaining bucket position.

Ability to dump sloshing bucket into toilet and rinse well in tub with anti-bacterial soap, spray entire area with disinfectant. Must also be able to kiss child on forehead after disinfecting without vomiting herself.

Senior Laundry Skills--knowledge of pre-wash procedures for vomit stains of all hues required. Also knowledge of disinfectant soap effectiveness on specific viral loads, direct experience capturing water temperature and wash cycle data for laundry workflow procedures.

Experience with on-child cool-water washcloth placement also required, as well as non-traumatic suppository insertion.

OTHER RESPONSIBILITIES: All.

ATTITUDE: Must maintain a cheery attitude and good overall health at all times. Desire for Sleep not necessary. Inexperienced sleepers will be trained to delay sleep onset until project completion.

Apply to ewriter@bellsouth.net. The pay is inversely proportionate to love for the child, but someday you might get to watch them graduate from Harvard and say your name on stage, or at least ring you through the check-out line at your local Safeway. Apparently that makes it all worthwhile.