October 18, 2002

The Friend of Our Friend is Our Friend

Shelley clued me in on the details of stavrosthewonderchicken's friend Rick who was hurt in the Bali explosion. His condition is currently critical, and the family is encountering some serious medical expenses for his care. A trust fund has been started to help. Shelley has the details on where and how to lend a helping hand. From what I've gleaned, Rick was on holiday before starting a new chapter of his life with a new job when he was caught in the blast that killed and injured so many. Life is far too fragile.

October 16, 2002

sometimes I want to have my say without linking to you or emailing you, dammit.

Alright, this needs to be said and I'm going to say it. David and Halley need to add comment capability to their blogs, and RageBoy needs to fix his comments forthwith.

I love all of these blogs. Everyone knows that. Which is why I get so frustrated not being able to run off at the mouth instantaneously in some form of comment or discussion spot on said blogs. Sometimes I don't want to have to go back to my blog and dedicate an entire post to something you said. I just want to add my two cents. The ability to talk back, respond, vibe, chortle, as well as listen, are all vital parts of conversation, non?

I used to get on my blogging nemesis' ass about this all the time. Mike Sanders' blog was the first to frustrate me by relegating me to linking to him in order to continue the discourse. discord? I slammed him for this many times. Which means it's time I hold my blog friends up to the same standard, albiet without the personal vendetta.

Commenting, threaded discussions and the like are essential for this blogging exercise we're involved in to work. They add layers to our writing, to our conversations. They enlarge our community. A quarter of the folks on my blogroll are there as a result of someone else's comment boxes. I read their comments, say wow this person talks some interesting talk, click on their "homepage" link, spend ten minutes finding out who they are, and usually add them to my blogroll. I also get a few new visitors to this blog each day who hopped here via a comment I've left somewhere else. New friends, new twists in the conversation, new wrinkles, new ideas, spark to flame, pop pop pop, the loosely joined become tighter and more loose all at once.

Got it? Get it.

October 15, 2002

it always comes down to prepositions

about or from?
that's really the distinction.

A sometimes subtle distinction.

But a significant disinction. One that can mean the difference between personal disarray--family mayhem, lost friends, lost jobs and a host of non-specific offline maladies--and very moving writing.

there ought to be a law

against this. Our dear RageBoy is off to crush all we hold dear again. Poor Gary and Fiona. I read at Frank Paynter's place that poor Gary happened upon RB's parenthood sacralidge just after returning home from a parent-to-be class. Yikes!

Sir Locke (Sherlock?) breaks some more rules with the post above his Dr. Spock abomination, in which he demonstrates the incredible talent it takes for winners of the Bulwer-Lytton fiction contest to confound their readers.

Is nothing sacred to this man?

Esther? Help me out here.

dictionary.com, add this one

Tom Matrullo has the best definition of blogs I've come across yet:

"Blogs are extensions or representations of individual selves, which enter into relations of esteem, commerce or criminality."

Don't miss his take on bloggers on the take.

I wish I were a blogger on the take.

Better than wishing I were an Oscar Mayer Weiner. Although, if Oscar Mayer wanted to sponsor this fine blog, I'd be happy to throw some weiner mobile icons on my archives page. Oh okay. I'm lying. I'd run over to the kosher Hebrew National folks jack-rabbit fast and tell them why they should sponsor me for $100 more, thereby solidifying a relationship with the sponsor whose product I always choose and sharing the good news about some really good weiners with my friends. In other words, Utopia.

Does that make me a bad blogger? Or a good weiner? Or Dave Winer?

I don't know.

i have seen the hitler, and it is us

I found a link to this over on Bearman's way-worthy blog. You know, I've been reading through all the war talk and peace talk around these parts for a long while. This story floored me but good. If we are to believe the Sunday Herald about the Bush administration's blueprint for US global domination -- and there are enough quotes from the document, brainchild of the neo-conservative think-tank Project for the New American Century (PNAC), to make me believe it -- well then holy shit we really are rolling down a steep hill into obliteration.

Of all the things in the article, this one scared me most. Think of this tool in the hands of the neo-cons and wonder who exactly they might target for genocide:

"...advanced forms of biological warfare that can 'target' specific genotypes may transform biological warfare from the realm of terror to a politically useful tool."

Yes. Politically useful. I get it.

say it with me now.

politically useful politically useful politically useful politically useful politically useful politically useful politically useful politically useful politically useful politically useful politically useful politically useful politically useful politically useful politically useful politically useful politically useful politically useful politically useful politically useful.

October 14, 2002

Calling all small businesses...

Eeeeks. Where I come from we call this PR and smile about it. And yes, I still sleep at night.

In truth, Gonzo Marketing covers the "how blogs might make money" thing in detail. I don't think taking money from sponsors would ruin the integrity of blogs. The company we keep here in Blogaria keeps us honest enough, whether we like it or not. We sniff out coverups as fast as any conspiracy theorist. And, generally speaking, the types of sponsors we should go after should be complementary to our blogging, but not necessarily related to our blog's theme (of which, mine has no theme except death, loss, and love, so unless we're talking casket manufacturers or Fanny Farmer, I guess there's not many businesses directly related to my blog).

On the sponsors/corporate side, there's so much to gain from standing up for the great writing and significant conversations going on here it almost makes me insane that more businesses aren't doing it. There is perceived risk too. The risk of sponsoring a blog that comes out and complains about the product of the sponsorer, or, worse, falls in love with the sponsorer's fiercest competitor. But that risk is not really risky at all. Once the first wave of sponsors jumps on, they will necessarily become less paranoid about these eventualities. We're the Howard Sterns of the net. THAT we are talking among ourselves, for our sponsors, will be ultimately more important than our current pet peve or gripe of the day.

I think, small companies will be the ones to jump in with us first. They have the most to gain from bloggers. If I owned and SMB right now, I'd be looking at blogs. Bloggers are mostly suspicious of big brands. Either that, or we're already zealots with firm opinions. But the lesser knowns--that small online specialty food or gifts company, that family owned business who knits covers for golf clubs, whatever--should swoop in here with us little guys ASAP and help us turn the mofo upside down.

Either that or fuck business PERIOD. We bloggers pledge to one another. We each decide on a blog WE'RE going to sponsor every month. Every blogger adopts a code of support... like a co-op or something... and I say, I'm adopting Marek this month for $10 (or 13.52 to be exact--all the money I had in my paypal account), and next month I sponsor Tom, and so on. If each of us could support one blogger at $5 or $10 or $20 a month, we'd all end up somewhat happy, no? Am I totally wacked here?

Too tired to think about it more tonight. Later, though. Let me go find my copy of Gonzo first.