I have suggested to Chuck that we podcast at least half a dozen times over the last two months.
I have suggested to Chuck that we podcast at least half a dozen times over the last two months.
I absolutely hate the new edition of WordPress that we’re now using.
We will now continue with our regularly scheduled lack of entries.
Don’t look. I dare you.
Is there a web frontier we haven’t crossed?????
I am the proud owner of a g-mail account. I have been once since the early days when our man in Israel sent me an invite. (Rumor has it, it’s no longer invitation only, but I couldn’t swear to it).
Anyway, periodically on my g-mail page there is a notice of “New Features”. And since I’m all about new and exciting I click to see what sort of technology I can now have at my fingertips.
The latest addition is the G00gle tool bar. This handy dandy tool bar has some groovy things, but by far the grooviest of them all is the spell checker. This spell checker is so fabulous that it allows you to spell check any screen you have open. Leaving a comment in someones blog? You can spell check it. How fabulous is that? But the thing that is most fabulous about it is that I can now spell check my blog entries.
I know that WordPress has some sort of plug in that does this for you, but hell if I can figure it out. So often my entries go up with typos. And I hate typos. If I’m writing a really long entry I’ll often write it in Word and spell check there and copy it over to here, but what a pain in the ass that is.
Now, with the fabulous new spell check feature of my G00gle tool bar that’s no longer necessary. Does it get any better?
To say that I attended BlogHer last weekend wouldn’t be exactly accurate.
A more accurate description would be that I crashed the BlogHer closing cocktail party; scored some swag, free drinks and hors d’ouevres; and chatted with some interesting (and some not so interesting) women; but mostly I just needed to get away and wanted to see GraceDavis and needed only the flimsiest of excuses to avail myself of her more than gracious hospitality and attend her post-BlogHer brunch.
Brunch was lovely and attended by lots of interesting women…but…
Isn’t there always a but?
OK, I know that the point of the whole brunch was a post-mortem on BlogHer. And yes I know that GraceDavis’ home is a palace to wifi connectivity. And yes, I know brunch attendees were encouraged to bring their laptops and blog to their hearts content. But….
I’ve had the opportunity to meet a number of people who have an on-line presence in the nearly 10 years I’ve been writing online. The thing about getting together and meeting people who have an online presence is to take the opportunity to talk to them. Get to know them as an actual person. Not to sit and watch each other type things on our laptops (btw: I left mine home).
There were several times over the course of the day when a bunch of women would be sitting there, next to each other, busily typing away and uploading. The they would surf over to read what had just been uploaded by the person sitting next to them, and perhaps leave a comment. To me, it would have been far more interesting to actually chat with the person perched next to me.
Meeting a fellow blogger gives you the rare opportunity to see if the voice you hear in your head when you read someones words on the screen match them. It’s a chance to actually get to know someone as an actual real live flesh and blood human being. To have discourse. Interchange. Dialogue.
In the way it was when I met Grace and her peeps for the very first time. And when we met for the first time there was some discussion of blogs, but it was mostly just talking. About stuff.
I don’t mean this to sound bitter and like I didn’t enjoy myself, because I did — enormously. But over the last week I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about my visit and why I maybe sometimes felt like the odd woman out.
I missed the bonding, Kumbaya experience of BlogHer so that may have something to do with it. But I think the bigger reason I feel like something was sort of off is that I’ve realized a couple of things:
1. I don’t actually blog.
2. I’ve been at this for a long time so it’s not all new, shiny, novel, and exciting.
Let me clarify those points.
As for the first, to me a blog is a compendium of links to interesting sites and information. While I sometimes offer links, and maybe a short throw away entry here or there, mostly what I do is chronicle my life. In essay form. This is what the first online journals were. That’s what this is.
I used to have to use special software (Dreamweaver if you care) that resided on my hard drive. Entries had to be uploaded. It wasn’t something you could do from any pc anywhere in the world where you had an internet connection. And now that blogging is all the rage I avail myself of all the modern conveniences this rage has afforded — so maybe this is just an online journal in blog format?
But the biggest difference is perhaps the fact that with online journals there were no comments. Sure, you could have an e-mail link on your journal (which I did). And people would often write to me to comment on something that I had written. But there was no interchange between readers as there are with blogs.
You wrote what you wanted. You uploaded it. It was out there. End of story.
When I spoke about this with some of the women at Grace’s brunch and explained the no comments aspect, on more than a few occasions I was met with a completely blank stare, or was questioned as to why I would want to put something out there if I couldn’t get comments on it. It was almost like comments are some kind of validation that what you’re writing is worthwhile.
Then there’s the whole I’ve been at this for a long time thing. Yeah, for like seven years or something. And while seven years is not a long time in the big scheme of things, to have been doing this online for seven years, pretty much non-stop, makes me an old timer. So the newness and excitingness of seeing my words, thoughts, dreams, and foibles on the www is not all that thrilling anymore.
I don’t feel the need to put something out there several times a day, once a day, or sometimes even once a week. I write when I want about what I want.
I guess it boils down to the fact that I choose to actually live my life. Not just blog it.
There’s that old expression, when life serves you lemons, make lemonade.
As is true with all old expressions, it’s often easier said than done. And while it’s do-able, I guess what separates us from the animals (besides our ability to accessorize) and from each other, is that some of us do it with style and grace. Or maybe I should say Grace.
Because that is exactly what the birthday vixen, GraceDavis has done.
Last holiday season GraceDavis got some hate mail. In response to the hate mail on two separate occasions, for each and every comment Grace got in her blog, she donated her own personal money to the Matthew Shepard Foundation and Planned Parenthood.
Well once again GraceDavis is being plagued by asshats. And what do you suppose GraceDavis, on the eve of her 50th birthday, is doing about this?
Well once again GraceDavis is reaching deep into her own personal pockets and donating money in exchange for comments. Why do I tell you this?
For two reasons.
1. Because I think it is one of the most selfless things I’ve seen anyone do in a very long time.
2. Because this time in exchange for every comment Grace receives in response to this entry, posted before midnight on Friday, she will be donating $1 (and this is on top of her already extremely generous personal donation) to my upcoming participation in the Avon Breast Cancer Marathon.
I was so deeply touched by this that when I read about it this morning I cried.
All this to say three things:
1. Happy 50th Grace dearest.
2. Thank you.
3. If you haven’t already done so, go go go, quick like a bunny and read her blog. Comment if you like, but mostly go read her blog.
It seems that whatever Chuck has, it’s vaguely contagious. He spent untold hours working on his new format. I will take a moment to point out that Chuck actually grasps the concept of html coding. Me, not so much.
He got so fancy with his blog that I decided I needed to tart things up a bit over here. I added my Avon link, a created my (ok somewhat pathetic, but I did it myself so I’m proud of it) logo.
The Avon link involved basic coding. Something I don’t really know–beyond knowing kind of what needs to go where to make stuff happen. But I do know how to cut and paste and I guess I understand just enough to be really really dangerous which has enormous potential to muck things up royally.
Then, as if the mucking up isn’t bad enough, the result of mucking is grovelling as I now have to beg my husband to fix my boo boos. OK, it’s more whining than grovelling, but in either case, it’s unpleasant.
Apparently at about 11:30 last night (when I was already really tired) I decided that what would make my page perfect would be if my Spanglemonkey Award was actually a link back to Jo’s page. I mean really, why I didn’t think of that sooner is beyond me. But I decided at 11:30 last night that this was positively brilliant.
So I went about coding. OK, not really coding, but copying and pasting. I worked on it for at least an hour–one stupid link on one stupid picture. And for the life of me I could not get it to work.
I put a different link that required the same kind of coding directly above it so I could compare key strokes. No luck.
I managed to completely delete my Spanglemonkey award. I managed to link to it somewhere (but I’m not sure where frankly). I practically managed to turn it upside down. But I could not get it to link.
By this time I’m enormously frustrated because I WANT TO DO IT MYSELF!
Finally I decided to leave the extra coding where it was since, though it didn’t actually work, it didn’t seem to be harming anything, and go to bed. I’d look at it today with fresh eyes–and hopefully I’d think of it before 11:30.
When I got home from work (at 3:30, thank you very much–have I said how much I LOVE my new job lately?????) I decided to have another go at it. I was fresh and somewhat lucid.
So I copied some other code and pasted it directly over the code that was not working. Once again I decided I would go keystroke by keystroke and see what was wrong.
Well, it did not take long. The code should read ” < a href..." (ignore the quotes and spaces, I know they don't go there but without them my page does not show up. Ha! What I had was " < a < href…” Duhhhhhhhhhh. So it took me about 2 seconds to fix.
How I could miss that 47 times last night I still don’t quite get.
And now it’s 11:22, close enough to the danger coding hour, so I will step away the the computer and go to bed.
Good night all.