Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Facebook and the Death of Blogging

Wow. So my dear brother Sam has shamed me into posting something here, and good for him for doing so. It's been nearly a year since my last post. I could come up with all kinds of excuses (and no doubt will in the near future), but suffice it to say that two kids is a whole lot more than one more than one kid (that sentence does not contain a typo). I've even let my blogging slack off considerably at my other home. Does this mean I'll pick up the slack now? I could promise that, but it would only make me feel slightly bad when I fail to live up to it.

Anywho, it occurred to me that there might be another culprit for my lack of blogging (and others' lacks, as well) (others' lacks? Really?). Let's face it, this past year has been rife with topics for ample discussion, almost more so than the previous year, what with a Democratic congress and the anti-Christ in the Oval Office and all. And yet getting the motivation to post something here or elsewhere has been my major bar to blog-worthy productivity. But then it struck me: I joined Facebook this year.

For those of you who don't use it (good for you!), Facebook allows one to post "status messages" that are visible to a select group of people, typically one's "Facebook friends". For those that actively participate in Facebooking, these status messages represent, for many, the lifeblood of the activity. Many people simply use the status updates to give a short, trite explanation of what they're doing or how they're feeling at that exact moment: So-and-so is baking his shoes. Who's-her-face is integrating Bessel functions. Joe Somebody has a case of the Mondays. And so on, ad nauseam.

Others, however, like to be a bit more declarative and informative in their status updates. For example, this morning, I posted the following status update:

And there we have the problem. From that one post, which was politically relevant, but both pithy and snarky, I received 20 comments in one afternoon. In short, I received all the adulation (such as it is) that blogging garners me, without having to write an in-depth, well-thought-out blog post, and I know it was viewed by many of my "friends", which I can't guarantee in the blog world since such posts would be in the wild-and-woolly blogosphere rather than the nice, contained format of Facebook status updates.

And this is a bad thing, I think.

See, before Facebook, an idea would pop in my head: a witty observation, a clever turn of phrase, a silly remark, etc. With no immediate outlet, that idea would marinate in my brain for awhile, accreting to itself more heft, until the idea turned into an itch. This itch would make itself known to my fingers, who would then go and type it up on the blog. But in the Facebook era, the glimmer itself has the outlet of the status update: and thus, my ideas never get the chance to mature into full posts, remaining in their larval stage.

What is the resolution to this conundrum? I'm not sure. I think I might be verging toward New Year's Resolution territory here. Perhaps I will self-impose a ban on putting anything meaningful in my status updates, to force myself to blog more. Perhaps I'll allow myself to update my status, but only AFTER a blog about the topic. Maybe I should pimp my blog more on my facebook page. But after it's all said and done, I should probably commit something into print so as to be held accountable for my productivity, so: I hereby solemnly swear that I shall put forth some amount of effort into considering the possibility of attempting to reverse the precipitous decline in my blogging output in some manner consistent with my own personal principles, notwithstanding any foreseen or unforeseen circumstances which may or may not hinder said effort. And that's a promise you can take to the bank!


Extreme Shepherding

At a former job, my boss was a Kiwi of Irish ancestry. He and I were discussing international stereotypes, and I asked him what type of American jokes they told. One of the two most common stereotypes was as John Wayne type cowboys, which I absolutely can live with even though I understand the sentiment to be action without thought. The other stereotype was sort of a Las Vegas, lavish excess lifestyle, which I can understand and agree with.

He then asked me what type of jokes we might tell about Kiwis. I told him that since most of us think New Zealand and Australia are basically the same place, and both places are just part of the British Empire, most of the jokes involved sheep. He humorously told me that he does not judge my orientation, and it is baaaaaad that I judge his.

If this video is for real: Extreme Shepherding, I have an entirely new respect for shepherds of the Empire.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

The Last Straw

I have not written in almost a year, but this really pisses me off. I heard it first from Brother Glenn at Fox. In a nut shell, Obama been Lyin' held a press conference last week to announce that he would be holding a prime time press conference, scheduled for tonight, to reveal and explain (justify) his overdue plan for Afghanistan. That is fine and dandy even though he will not tell any truths while he talks, but he is preempting A Charlie Brown Christmas.

This is a beloved classic as we all know, but more importantly, it presents the Gospel, even quoting Scripture, in popular culture. It is the one time each year the Good News does a Navy SEAL infiltration into the houses and brains of the masses. For all of the children of parents who shield them from the Truth, this may be their only chance to have a question planted into their not yet jaded little minds that compels them to ask the right person, "Who was born in the City of David, and what was so special about Him?"

To quote a fraternity brother of mine (he was there way before I was), "You're a mean one, Mister Grinch." I realize that I am not anywhere near the first to tie those two cartoons together on this, but it really fits.