January 25, 2003


wow. she's really good. and will you look at her?

Serena kicks ass on this site.

she digs me!!!!!!!!!!!

Way better than a bloggie. Way better. This:

oh yah! Brooke says this about me:

"the blogger who most deserves to be in the bloggies because she is simply the blogger most in love with this community and what we do."

Dig it.

The Blogs I Eight This Week

Here are eight blogs I've stumbled across lately, ala my post below. They include, but are not limited to, demonstrations of fine writing, or humor, or rants, or pain, or all or none of the above. In no particular order, check 'em out:

a girl named bob - you name it, she writes about it. and then some. check out the freaky contact lens post.

Because I Say So - "buttery, bite-sized bits of tender bitchiness from your favorite Wandering Jew." Her words, not mine. Damnit.

Greg Beato - Greg, are you a relative? valentis? diminos? Rochester? You know Rick? just curious.

Blu - She loves my husband best, but that doesn't hurt my feelings. much. ;-)

citizen of the world, aka glovefox - what a fine writer! her post on bullies should not be missed.

dasheekee jones - you fucking go, girl.

Diary of a Madman - what did you expect, something galant and enchanting? I'm thinking he's one of Halley's alpha males. His boobs of the day pics are usually stunning, and ya, okay, I look at them. so what?

Friday Fishwrap - creativity on par with Gary Turner. Her fridge is on par with his too.

p.s., more to come...

there are so many great kick ass blogs out there I'm going out of my mind reading them and adding them to my blogroll like six times a day.

...and that doesn't count any of the bloggie also rans, which I haven't had a chance to check out yet.

Where did all these great blogs come from? I remember a year and a half ago stumbling around our little circle.

The circle doesn't have edges. I should have known. But words have edges. They are cutting me, these new blogs I'm reading.

I'm bleeding.

what are we going to do? what am I supposed to do? Where is the manual for what we do next?

I thought it would be different. I thought those who followed after us--you know--I thought we'd reach critical mass.

I thought a bunch of not-so-great wannabes would wind up here--listen to me, will ya, what kind of shmuck am I? I thought a bunch of, well, not very interesting people would wind up here and this place would not be the same and I'd get all crabby trying to find stuff to read.

But the opposite. I should have known.

There is so much great writing and thinking and humor and pain. And joy. But lots of pain. And fun. Did I mention pain?

I'm reading at least five or six new blogs a day. By accident. We're really cooking now. I'm hopping from my "regular reads" blogrolls into their "regular reads" blogrolls and I'm traversing humanity at light speed.

I'm imploding or something.

I need more eyeballs.

I need blogs on tape.


I can't



THIS is just the coolest place.

blogging our journey

Our age is only one dimension of who we are. But it is a dimension. Isn't it? Or is it? This is what I was thinking, in relation to blogging, as I drifted to sleep last night. I enjoy reading bloggers of all ages--my blogroll attests to that. I have friends from the blog world on both sides of my 40 years.

But I do admit to an affinity for reading bloggers who wade around in the same 40-ish trenches as me. What they write, because of where they are in their journey from birth, often resonates with me. They're looking back at the hard stuff that brought them to this edge of mid-life, and they're looking ahead, lugging a backpack of worries and concerns not unlike my own.

Naturally, I hyperlink in my head to what blogging must feel like for the 20-somethings who've grown up online (like we didn't), and for the 60-somethings who are braver than most of my relatives of the same age for just being online. If bloggers are, in some way, a family--which many of us have said is so--then our ages, our birth order, do come into play in what we say, what we write, how we relate. No? I think yes. Not every post, certainly, but in the bigger picture of our blogs.

I think of how boring I must seem to some of the cool, hip, young bloggers who probably aren't so interested in my meanderings over my daughter, house, family, work. I think of how trite I must seem to some of the older bloggers who've walked this road before me.

They must want to shake me sometimes.

I think of Elaine who is a blogger, mother, grandmother, on the far side of 60. I try to put myself in front of her keyboard and wonder what it must be like to watch the younger bloggers leap, stumble, fall, and how if I were her, I would probably want to be forever saying, "Watch out!" or "Oh no, don't do that--I tried it and it did not, I mean not, work."

I admire Elaine and other bloggers of age for mostly taking a seat beside us as you watch us fumble along--sometimes succeeding, sometimes realizing, sometimes hesitating--on a road of years you've already traveled. For trying to stay positive and reassuring as we find our own way. Please do that--we need it.

And I am going to try to remember these thoughts I've had, 20 years from now, if I'm still here, if I happen upon a post of some 40-something blogger who's making her way through an unkind world as best she can, revealing herself online as she goes.

I'm going to take a seat beside that woman-I-once-resembled and maybe I'll place my hand on hers, just for a moment, as she looks out her window to the East, and I look out mine to the West, as we take this ride together.

January 24, 2003



(thank you Richard for the link.)

thanks to farrago, you will never run out of really cool popular blogs to read.

She who gave me an award (okay, well, if you're on her blogroll it's yours too... just look down by my amazon crap--you'll see what you've won) has a great post of all the varied Bloggie nominees complete with hyperlinks. I agree, whatever about the Bloggies, like, who cares, I wasn't nominated, no sour grapes here, whatever, they're young and cute or Oliver Willis, (dude, I'm kidding; you've been on my blogroll for over a year), and all that, so fine, it's not like these awards mean anything and the prizes aren't all that great, so really, like Farrago, I don't care or anything. BUT there are some really awesome blogs to get acquainted with in this list.

Maybe some of us loser bloggers will even break through the cool ceiling and end up on thhheeiiirrr blogrolls one day, or, or, or even win a Bloggie. gasp! What ever would I wear?

As a side note, I nominated Shelley, like, a half zillion times (yah, I figured Shelley would say now, don't do that I'm not all for those lame award things, but I did it anyhow because she inspires me), and I nominated a whole LOT of you folks in the initial voting. Poopers. I think I'm bad luck.

Ah well. All's well that ends.

May the Powers that Be Repeat Twain's War Prayer as They Close Their Eyes Tonight

George has a great post which begs the question, "How do they sleep at night?" His post details a war oposition manuscript that was apprently written by Mark Twain but never published. It has a pretty heavy ring for the bell that tolls for us all right now, with words like this:

..."help us to wring the hearts of their unoffending widows with unavailing grief; help us to turn them out roofless with little children to wander unfriended the wastes of their desolated land in rags and hunger and thirst, sports of the sun flames of summer and the icy winds of winter, broken in spirit, worn with travail, imploring Thee for the refuge of the grave and denied it..."

I dug a little deeper and came up with more info on when and why Twain couldn't publish his 'War Prayer'. The page is pretty pop-up intensive, so here's what it says:


Mark Twain wrote "The War Prayer" during the Philippine-American War. It was submitted for publication, but on March 22, 1905, Harper's Bazaar rejected it as "not quite suited to a woman's magazine." Eight days later, Twain wrote to his friend Dan Beard, to whom he had read the story, "I don't think the prayer will be published in my time. None but the dead are permitted to tell the truth." His editor was "responsible to his Company," he explained, "and should not permit laughs which could injure its business." In his private notebook, Twain expanded his thoughts about the rejection of the story into a series of maxims about freedom of speech:

None but the dead have free speech.

None but the dead are permitted to speak truth.

In America -- as elsewhere -- free speech is confined to the dead.

The minority is always in the right.

When the country is drifting toward Philippine robber-raid henroost raid, do not shirk your duty, do not fail of loyalty, lest you win and deserve the reproach of being a "patriot."

The majority is always in the wrong.

Whenever you find that you are on the side of the majority, it is time to reform.(1)

Because he had an exclusive contract with Harper & Brothers, Mark Twain could not publish "The War Prayer" elsewhere and it remained unpublished until 1923 when his literary executor, Albert Bigelow Paine, included it in Europe and Elsewhere. A decade earlier, Paine published long excerpts from the story in Mark Twain: A Biography.


For the whole War Prayer, hop over to george's place.

a southern belle enjoys the snow.

who knew our digital camera took movies?

Jenna Waves

okay, it's a first try. gimme time.

proving once again, it's not the quantity, it's the quality

halleys world

I've been on the fence about Halley's alpha male writing of late. The writing is great, don't get me wrong, but the alpha male categorizing seemed somehow hollow to me. I know if a male blogger came out with lessons on how to win a girly-girl, he'd be publicly spanked (and probably like it).

But Halley's post today put it all in perspective for me. It's beautiful writing with an undeniable ring of truth. It's sensitive and insightful. You go, girl.

nothing to say

Swamped with work, jenna sick, me sick, nothing to do but plod along. And I don't seem to have anything to say.

Stay warm Atlanta bloggers. It's Rochester cold down here. Jenna's school's been closed for two days, and one day last week for MLK day, and the Friday before that for non-existent snow. I told her how we used to have to go to school in the deep snow when I was a kid in Rochester, and sometimes the snow was so high we kids would have to form a human chain to walk to school, holding hands as we made our way down Somershire Drive, walking in a rut between banks of snow twice our size so that no one got lost in a drift along the way.

She said, "Well, our snow's not that high here, so I don't have to wear a hat, right?"

I guess she got the point.

January 23, 2003

Blogging from the hip, err, the bed

There's something about the freedom the href="http://www.danger.com">hiptop gives me that is very special.
Yeah, the camera ia fun, and talking into a handheld turned telephone
gives you a kind of james bondesque look, but the keyboard is what makes
this thing a blogomatic.

I'm here in bed with the covers pulled tight against a particularly cold
Atlanta night, and I'm blogging myself to sleep. That is to say, I'm
writing myself to sleep. Lights off, these keys glow with a light I can
only describe as moon against snow.

I watch my words wirelessly fill up this tiny screen, and I'm lulled
into slumber by the magic of this world we've built and are building.

And I'm free. Free from cords and bulk and wires and my couch-office.
Free to bring you with me.

For a good read tonight on voice, stop over at href="http://weblog.burningbird.net">Shelley's place.


January 22, 2003

categorize me, please?

like a dog with a bone?

sit ooboo, sit?

fashion accessories and a whole lot more?

This blog needs a tagline. I was reminded of this in looking at the Bloggies, noticing a whole category was devoted to such. NO I'm not interested in one so I can weasle my way in to an award next year. Insted, I've been observing that, as blogs have multiplied, so too have creative names and taglines. Just check out the finalists. Cool fricking names. Cool fricking mastheads. Cool fricking taglines.

I got nada.

When I started this ole place, I didn't think much about the name at all. I had no rhyme or reason to choose it, except that I had already started Gonzo Engaged and had some cronies over there I felt kindred to. I also thought an "A" name might be good for getting listed near the top in blogrolls that alphabetize. Okay? I admit that.

The problem for me in saying what this blog is about is that it's still pretty fluid. In progress. Moving target. Me jumping through life's strings. So I never have been able to think up a good descriptor for this blog.

That's where you come in. Need your help. It's open forum, folks.... who's gonna give this blog a tagline? Who can tell me what the heck this place is all about?

new blogroll material

Go here for a list of also rans for the 2003 Bloggies. Only a few in each category made it to the final round voting now taking place.

Okay, I was in on the first round voting. A whopping NONE of my nominees, many of whom live in my blogroll over there on the left, made it to the finals, or are even listed in the bigger list. So there. I'm sorry all of you whom I read. I tried.

On the upswing, I do think the full list of choices Brian posted gives us some great blogs to check out--I haven't heard of many of them. I plan to investigate in the next couple days.

I did happily trip upon little yellow different. Don't vote for LYD in the GLBT category, because, says Ernie, he's just not gay enough. (Fortunately Ernie is American enough, Humorous enough, and Best-of-the-Year enough to be listed in three other categories too.)

Off to explore these cool new-to-me blogs now. If nothing else (since the prizes are pretty lame), maybe the Bloggies will enlarge and speed the intersection of the thousands of circles of bloggers out there simply by lending us a window into blogs we might not otherwise have come across.

Right Ernie?

just tired and in a bad mood

that happens sometimes, right? when you question everything because everything gives you reason to question. That, and, I'm facing a week-long spree of hell getting a big proposal done. Really hell and really big.

And you know what happens next, right? Well, mothers know. You do, right? I went to pick Jenna up from pre-K this afternoon, and what did the teacher tell me? Sure, mothers know. She's been complaining of a sore throat and ear ache all day, a headache, she's coughing. Oh, and of course, "One's already been diagnosed with strep this week."

Already defeated. Making the best of it. Will blog as time and energy allow.

get down, get incensed in imaginary pastures

All work freely licensed, except for my words - my scent is jasmine.

January 21, 2003

raaaaaaaw raaaaaaaaw raaaaaaaaw!

This is the sound of Jenna chasing Hunter the kitten through the house.


That's what our five-year-old Jenna cries as she carries the kitty in one arm to no particular location, while using the other to strong arm the big young dog Bando, feeds the old dog Diva a treat, topping it all off by now crying on the couch after chasing the cat upstairs to his bathroom offering to put "some sauce" on his food--what kind of sauce? we still don't know.

"STOP!" We yell in unison. Don't put anything on the cat's food.

This results in a meltdown. We've hurt her feelings. She had an idea. To put sauce from the fridge on the cat's food. The cat eats Iams (dry), not sauce. We know this. She doesn't know or care.

Cut to scene two, right now as I blog in the living room--or try to--while the cat is grabbing my DSL cord and Jenna stops the household short with this phrase: "OH NO! DIVA HAS A FLEA ON HER--AN ORANGE FLEA! IT'S HUGE!"

Against my better judgment I investigate. An orange flea has me worried.

Where? I ask.

"RIGHT THERE!" she points.

And the orange crayola crayon wrapper falls to the carpet.

Not a flea, a crayon wrapper.

And now as Jenna drops to her knees to follow the cat and the old dog around the house on her knees, she tells me, "Your whole family's coming mama!"

Just another day at the zoo.