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Friday, July 18, 2003

A blog is a blog is a blog.
I dunno. I have had a headache since last evening and I’m right jolly sick of it. It might be because of the dust cloud (they claim it’s “twice the size of Texas” which is a mighty large cloud of anything) that’s sitting over me. Maybe it’s just a headache. Or maybe it’s that I can’t go five minutes without someone or something pestering me. If it’s not the kids, it’s the animals. If it’s not them, it’s the phone, or the dryer buzzing. I just want to complete a thought without having to acknowledge, answer, pet, or feed something. I’m getting tired of putting on Mrs. Nicey Nice when all I want to do it GROWL! If I didn’t know better, I’d say it was PMS. Guess that makes me just a plain ol’ bitch, with no hormones to blame. So sue me.

On another note (well, actually, this is a little bit of a whine, too, but this part at least has some element of humor), I sent an email to a publishing house that had a dead link to their submission guidelines. I wanted to know if there was some place else to view them online or if they could be sent via email, otherwise, I would send a SASE to their physical address. It only took four days, but I got a response from the Big Guy himself. The “Joe Bloggs” of “Joe Bloggs Publishing”, if you will. The email was completely devoid of punctuation and had three sentences which basically said “we are putting them online and by then they’ll be online.” No, it didn’t make sense to me either. Guess I can cross them off the list of potential publishers to work with. I was sorely tempted to offer my services, for it’s apparent they need some serious help, but resisted. “We can’t rely on one (wo)man to save the world!” (a quote I overheard India repeating to Pekoe from Justice League), even if it is SuperMe.

Thursday, July 17, 2003

First, a comment on the comments:
It looks like the Pro-Changers are taking an early lead. Could be because some people have taken the phrase “vote early and often” to heart. (Does this look like some kinda mob thing to you???) Or, it could be, as The Lovely and Very Talented Kira suggests, all the Anti-Changers are woozy. Will they come out of it in time to make their opinions known? Will I be sued for hypnotizing people? Does anybody really know what time it is? For the answers to these and more, oh so pressing questions, stay tuned!

And now for the main event – or the real blog, if you will.

It comes to my attention that there are bad writers out there (I would certainly not be insinuating that any of my loyal and faithful readers are amongst them, of course!), and that there is a contest for really bad writing. But, if it’s the best of the bad writing, doesn’t that make it no longer the worst? So, maybe there’s bad writing and then there’s bad writing with style. I read the winning entry, and I thought it was brilliant parody. I laughed out loud. I “got it”. Unlike times when I’ve been reading a book to one of the kids and couldn’t stand it so much that I “accidentally” lost it soon thereafter. There truly is a lot of junk out there, and I’m not just talking about stuff that’s published with spelling, grammar and punctuation errors (sometimes all on the same page), but just really stupid stories that set my teeth on edge. The ones that remind me of the Snuggle ® fabric softener bear. Makes me wonder what I’m worried about when submitting stuff that MUST be better.

And then there’s the poor fellow who tried to get relief from a “heat wave” (I say “heat wave” instead of heat wave, because it was a piddling 86 degrees F.) by sleeping on his roof. The poor bastard fell 70 feet to his death. I wonder if he was having one of those dreams where you’re falling, falling, falling, and instead of waking up at the last minute, he didn’t. And, can someone please tell me why, if a person is trying to keep cool, he would be sleeping in a sleeping bag??? You! Outta the gene pool!

And just one more for today. Farmers in Delaware have “accidentally” produced a four legged chicken. This might be good news for KFC (remember when it used to be Kentucky FRIED Chicken? That was back when the cereal was called “Sugar Smacks”…those were the days – before even food was PC, but I digress, again) but personally I’m holding out for the double-breasted version.

Wednesday, July 16, 2003

Although I’m not generally one to bow to the opinions of others, it has been pointed out to me that some people really don’t like reading my blog with the changing colors in the background. So, even though *I* like it (or I wouldn’t have picked, no?), if my loyal and faithful readers find it disturbing, I can’t argue. So, here’s your chance (the last one, I’m afraid, for I’m loathe to revisit the topic) to change my template. I will only consider votes left in my comment box, so don’t bother with your bribery boxes of chocolate or enormous vases (that’s pronounced “vahzes”, btw) of blossoms. Nay, I’m afraid even trying to sway me to your opinion with dinner and dancing will not be of any use. (And if you believe that…) So, you have until midnight Tuesday the 22nd of July to have your say. Is it “Keep the groovay color-changing thang” or “I can’t stand to read this inane blog anymore with those annoying colors changing like that” ? You decide. It’s kinda like American Idol. We’ll call it “American Blog”. May the best template win.


I was at Blockbuster the other day and they have this summer program wherein you donate $2 to the Boys and Girls Club and then you can choose (from a list, VHS only) a different video every day for the whole summer. Or you can keep The Land Before Time VIII, The Big Freeze until even the cats can recite “I didn’t know the sparkly ground stars would make all the food go away!” and they weren’t even paying attention. (Do cats ever pay attention? I think not. But I digress.) Or you can keep it for a week, whichever comes second. Betcha can’t guess….
So, today was the day to return The Land Before Time VIII, The Big Freeze, so I took Shannon in to trade it for something else. I don’t know if it’s just Shannon or if all 4 year olds are incapable of actually *looking* for something to rent. Anyway, I found a Barbie in The Nutcracker, after spending 10 minutes following her around and around and around the three aisles of kid vids, and suggested she might like that. She said, “I’m a little interested in Barbie, but maybe I want Justice League, instead.” So, I put the two side by side and my little baby girl chose Justice League. Woe is I. Not that I really wanted her to pick Barbie. But, well, I was just looking forward to girly stuff and it ain’t happenin’. …sigh…

Tuesday, July 15, 2003

This just in!

My pets are famous! I sent them in to Odd Todd and he put them on his website. He wrote some clever comments, too! There are three. The first one is India and Pekoe. Then there is Jack and Earl and, finally, one of just Jack. Whatever you do, don't get sucked into looking at ALL the pet pics. You'll be there all night.
There are days when no amount of tea revs my brain. Maybe I just feel so sleepy because of all the rain. We are being “brushed” with the swirling arms of Hurricane Claudette today. I’m thinking I should have paid more attention to how many kubits long an ark should be. It seems sort of criminal to be so irreverent about rain, after spending 2 ½ years in drought-stricken Colorado. I’m sure there’s enough here to share, but how to get it there?…hmm…
Speaking of rain, please take a moment to think of poor Lani who is leaving Alaska today to attend the RWA conference in New York. The reason we feel sorry for Lani (in case you were wondering) is that she doesn’t like to fly, so the plane trip in itself is torture. Of course, the folks at Continental think that Houston is “on the way” from AK to NY, so she’s routed through the middle of Hurricane Claudette! Well, ok, not the *middle* middle, but you have to admit it sounds better that way. I’m sure the majority of it will have passed by the time she is scheduled to land, anyway.
The beauty of this is that on her way back, she gets a 15 hour layover and she’s coming to my house! For this, I am thrilled. So, apparently was Pekoe. So thrilled, in fact, that he decided the middle of the spare bed that I had just prepared so nicely in anticipation of our fine company would be THE best place to spew three times his body weight. Yeeeuuucchhhh! I love doing spew laundry. Really.
Of course, when pets spew, it’s usually because they’ve eaten something that they shouldn’t have. In his case, foam bath letters, apparently. All I can say is “Why?”


And now a brief thought for fans of The National Pastime (that would be the Officially Sanctioned pastime, not that other one…):
I read this morning that The Mariners’ own Bret Boone has been named American League MVP for the first half of the season. The irony, folks, is that he totally tanked in the home run derby last night, which, in itself isn’t news. But he also swung and missed! That’s right, the big WHIFF! Maybe Ol’ Bud put a curse on him. Shake it off, Boonie. Go M’s!

Monday, July 14, 2003

Well, not being one to be left out completely, I took Dave Barry’s advice and put a poem up on PoetryScam’s website. The requirements were to use an assumed name starting with Freemont and to include the phrase “the dog ate mother’s toes.” Unfortunately, I can’t seem to find it now. Lucky for you I had the foresight to save it in Word before I submitted it. So here, in all its glory is Tommy’s Birthday.

Tommy’s Birthday

The sun rose early on a September morn,
Back in '53

It was on that day that my brother was born,
Name of Tommy Lee

Well, it wasn't too long before I knew
Something was amiss

My mama fell down the outhouse hole
a tryin' for to piss.

We pulled her up and laid her out
and covered her with roses

But afore a soul could do a thing
The dog ate mother's toes -es.

Sunday, July 13, 2003

I’ve been reading some interesting stuff about blogs lately. On the one hand, Weblog Central compares the “blogging craze” to the popularity of CB Radios some 25 years ago, or so. I don’t believe it for a minute. It’s not true, at least for me, that I blog just to be on some bandwagon, or because it’s the “in” thing. I’ve never really been inclined to follow fashion like that. Instead, I blog because it gets me writing, gets me some (albeit, very little, lately – hint, hint) feedback, and it’s a medium I am comfortable with. There is a certain anonymity, but that’s not so much it as there are no guidelines, save those I subject myself to. I don’t write things I wouldn’t want my children to read (and they do read the blog from time to time), and I don’t write things just for the sake of reaction. I don’t think there’s much point in a blog being no more than a list of links to other websites, although, I do like to share when I find something interesting “out there.”

I also read on the MomWriters list and also in Dear Abby that there is some hoo-haw regarding the ability of bloggers to retain anonymity. In the first case, I think it’s more a case of a writer who has a “day job” wherein she finds fodder for her writing. This is terrific, IMHO, and not just because she’s a great writer. It is sometimes difficult to think of things to blog about, but she has a ready supply of real events to make word magic with.
In the second, Dear Abby, case, though, it gets a little trickier. I think if a person wants to keep an online diary, which is there for public viewing (or why post it at all?) then one has a responsibility to make sure the words aren’t used in ways that can hurt people. Sure, we all need to vent or rant now and then, and that’s exactly what makes the reading of blogs so addictive. If we can relate to what we are reading, we’ll keep coming back for more. But a blog is not a place to point fingers, use thinly-veiled threats or make snide remarks about people we know IRL. And, frankly, I don’t think people really want to be party to that kind of whiny bitching.

On a lighter note, Slate reports on the newest trend. It’s something called a “blog map” and it’s an answer to those who claim communication via the internet is, at best, antisocial. Then again, maybe it creates a case of “too much information” since we don’t really want to know what all our neighbors are thinking, now do we? Sometimes ignorance truly is bliss.