Happy Birthday Holly!

I seem to recall,  many many moons ago when I got my first computer,  someone explained to me that computers are binary– that they convert everything to ones and zeroes and then do the arithmetic really fast.   It is a fleeting memory and was honestly of rather little help to me in trying to decipher just one of the items on my friend Holly’s scavenger hunt list.

I’ve long known that I am very much an odd duck.   I am probably the only person you know who does not own a cell phone  (and doesn’t Want to;  though I am hoping to buy an Android tablet this month).   And not having a phone,   I’m also one of the only people I know who doesn’t regularly take pictures.  (The fact that I’m really not good at it seems to matter rather more to me than it does to most folks who lack skills photographic.)   While I suppose I could spend a bit of this post fussing at Holly for her very un-writerly emphasis on pictures,   I decided instead to try to address every item on her list over the course of  three blog posts,  this being the last of those three.

I keep odd hours,  and my personal   “first thing in the morning”  is liable to be at most any hour on the clock.    I truly love being retired.   I go to bed when I feel tired.   I wake up when I wake up.   And in between I pretty much only do what I feel like doing,  when I feel like doing it.  But even if I got up at a regular time each morning,  I don’t think I would be willing to share with you a picture of what I look like at that hour.   Holly on the other hand,  is I believe a morning person.   I picture Holly first thing in the morning like Lily Tomlin in the movie 9 to 5:   in the sequence where they fantasize about killing the boss and Tomlin’s character sees it as a very Disney like affair,  in a colorful costume surrounded by legions of animated animals.     My favorite song is Billy Joel’s  Say Goodbye To Hollywood.   The lyric  “you say a word out of line,  and find that the friends you had are gone forever”  is very, very true in my experience.

So happy birthday, Holly.   While I did not exactly follow any of the instructions  err rules,  I believe over these three blog posts I have addressed every item on your list.   And finally,  I am at heart a New Orleans boy,  even though I haven’t lived in that city for many years now.   And even the poorest New Orleanians know that the cake for any birthday is a half lemon, half chocolate doberge cake.    Now that Beaulah Ledner has passed away,  most folks in New Orleans buy their birthday doberge from Gambino’s Bakery,  which bought out Mrs. Ledner’s recipe and continues to make and sell these wonderful cakes.   If you can’t get to New Orleans for your birthday,  click on the picture to order one from the Ambrosia Bakery.

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Approach Every Day As An Experiment

Some posts just are not meant to be written.   A few days ago I got an idea for a post,  wrote the title you see above and  downloaded the image at left,  though honestly I’ve forgotten what the image has to do with the title.   I’ve never been twitterpated about memes,  although I have occasionally come up with some clever ones.    My friend Holly,  who will be turning twenty-two on Saturday has a Scavenger hunt contest up on her blog this week.

Honestly,  I want to participate,  although I am finding it quite a challenge.   While I have become known for pictures of pie and other food porn that appear in the background images on this site,  the fact is that I can’t shoot a decent photo to save myself.   (And for a woman who primarily identifies herself as a writer,  Holly is certainly looking for a lot of original photos in this hunt.)     I’m not especially frightened of most bugs and wouldn’t mind all that much having my picture taken with say a doodlebug  (or even a zyzzyva).   But Ron is working intently on the story he is writing and I don’t even know where Joel’s old camera is.  (And it didn’t seem to work properly the last time I tried to use it anyway.)

The link in that last sentence is in fact to a picture of a plate of food I prepared,  albeit a horrible photo.  (The crawfish etouffee was quite delicious.)   I don’t know any guys named Simon,  so I’ve honestly no clue at all what “Simon says…”.   I certainly am not going to do an entire post of Vogonic poetry*  although once I did almost,  kind of, sort of write about National poetry month.   I’ve never made a physical scrapbook,  although I have enjoyed pinning lots and lots of photos on my Pinterest boards.  Honestly,  I’m pretty darned sure that I’m not going to win the $25 Amazon gift certificate that Holly is offering,  nor even the prize I really covet– a one month ad on her blog.    But I am hoping that I will get at least a few points for creativity with this entry.

Alan Jobe is the author of Walking Down The Avenue and consults with #indie writers and entrepreneurs about social networking and self-publishing.

*this is a reference to Douglas Adam’s  The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy– the Vogons were a blobby race of people who were known for composing Extremely bad poetry

And an aside to Elza– that is a vegan brownie in the background picture today.

U+2159 OR 241543903

one sixth  pie chartI’ve come to believe that switching my focus to this personal blog is one of the smartest decisions I’ve made in my blogging career.   For the most part it is a joy to write about whatever is on my mind each day and I am genuinely floored at all of the comments my posts have attracted.   While I would not recommend it to anyone who has lots of other commitments  I’m also finding that my resolution to post to this blog every calendar day is a good thing for me.    I note that with yesterday’s post,  I am fully one sixth of the way through my goal,  and I’m proud to say I haven’t missed a day as yet.

Not every post becomes popular, of course.   There are days when I don’t link to any of my active blogger friends  (like Holly,  who wants me to stick my head in the freezer),  where I don’t do an Empire Avenue mission to draw visitors, shares and comments as well as days when I just don’t bother visiting other blogs to leave a trail of breadcrumbs (err comment back links) and very few people read the post or comment on it.    Yet I have been just blown away at some of my posts that have attracted hundreds of readers and dozens and dozens of comments.

And the really wonderful thing is that I am developing a circle of friends and acquaintances who visit regularly and chat with me in the comments section.   What social media rock stars never quite seem to grasp is that that social media is all about talking With other real people,  whether on their blogs or on Twitter or Facebook or some other web site.   I really am proud of myself for sticking with this commitment.  And I am genuinely grateful to each and every one of you who reads this.