Category Archives: Blogging

Adios

Adios

I’ve been an avid blogger, in fact it is inane
the hours I devote to it. I fear I am insane.
I only slept three hours last night for I was agonizing
about the state the world is in, never realizing
that hours I could have spent in sleep I spent in speculation
of how giant guns in hands of fools leads to eradication
of larger numbers of the human race we’re meant to love,
but instead of arms embracing, we use arms to push and shove.
There’s such incentive now I fear for these fools to abuse them.
Why spend so much on weapons if we’re never going to use them?
It’s thoughts like this progressively that fill most of my thinking.
I cannot help believing that our ship of state is sinking,
bringing the whole world with it. In fact, I am obsessive.
With so much to be thankful for, I have become depressive.
I know I must pull out of it for what life we have left
should be enjoyed for soon enough it may be we’re bereft.
These are the thoughts that constantly roil within my mind.
I fear for breath, I fear for life.  I fear for all mankind.
The more I write about it, the more morose I grow,
and so I think I might quit blogging for a month or so
and see if I can concentrate on things a bit more cheery,
for I’m growing so reclusive that my friends are no doubt leery.
I could fade from sight before the big guns do it for me,
so my resolution on this day is that I must restore me
back to the hum of daily life, throwing down my pen
to try to remember how my life was way back when
I suffered from a writer’s block that kept my words inside,
milling about disorganized until they up and died.
And since I do not think much ’til I see what I have written,
I’ll grab the serpent by the tail before I have been bitten.
So adios for now, my friends, you’ll hear no more from me.
I need a small vacation where I can simply be.

The prompt today is avid.   I really didn’t know where this poem was going when I set out, but after a sleepless night spent having to deflect another asthma attack–or at least fearing one–and unable to find my oxygen machine, I think maybe I really do need to stop thinking for awhile and just live.  Perhaps this will be a time to get a book together or to finish the 71 bracelets I designed and compiled at the beach that I need to find a way to finish off.  Or perhaps I’ll just swing in the hammock and read upbeat books.  Any suggestions?  My friend Jane arrives in a few days and that will help. It’s true we should all be concerned with the state of our world, but when it blinds us to its joys and beauties, it is time to affect some changes.  With a week to go on NaPoWriMo, I may delay for a week, and may change my mind tomorrow, but for now I need to deflect my thoughts elsewhere.  If you still desire a daily dose, I’ve posted 3,042 blogs over the past four years, so please go back and perhaps start at the beginning, or pick a topic  to search by and read random blogs from the past.  It has taken awhile to grow a readership so I’m sure there are many blog entries very few of you have ever read.  And, I’d still love to hear your comments. Doubt that I’ll be able to resist checking now and then.  Or daily.  But hopefully not hourly.

They Do Not Like Me in Mongolia


I just noticed that they’ve reinstated the stats page that shows readership of blogs country-by-country.  I always enjoyed it and so I was very happy to see it back again.  Then I started to notice little blank spots that indicated countries where no one has ever read my blog, and of course my obsessive side took over. The result is this poem. This happened once years ago with Greenland and eventually they caved in and someone viewed my blog and even commented.  Of course, it was a Filipino who had moved to Greenland, so I am aware of the fact that native Greenlanders still resist my charms, but it took care of that big gap on the map, so I’m happy.  But!  What about all those stans?  Does no one read English there? Is their taste too impeccable to give me even a chance?  Clearly, something needs to be done, so if you know any stans that you can toss into my blog begging cup, please help. Have I been at this too long?  Is it time to stop and find a less public obsession?  Well, we will see.  At any rate, here’s my plea, in rhyme, as usual:

They Do Not Like Me In Mongolia

They do not like me in Mongolia. My blog they are not reading.
The advice I give that they might need, I fear they are not heeding.
The Russians do not snub me, nor do the Turkestanis,
But I see that I have zero stats for Turkmenistanis.
They enjoy me in Samoa and endure me in St. Kitts.
The folks in Montenegro just love me all to bits.
But why won’t they read me in Uzbekistan, I wonder?
I’ve never once insulted them. I’d not make such a blunder.

Tajikistan might like me if they’d give me a chance.
Just ask my faithful readers in Great Britain and in France.
It’s true my knowledge of where Kyrgyzstan lies is most hairy,
and I can only spell it if I use a dictionary;
but still, why won’t they read me? They could have a look and rate me.
And if they noted what my blog is lacking, educate me.
For a year there were no stats that showed us views country by country,
and so I didn’t suffer from the shame and the effrontery

that there were countries missing from my readership
who are surely suffering from lack of leadership
in how to train a Scottie with fifty percent success.
and how best to deal with the chaos and the mess.
How to avoid chocolate, at least one day in ten.
How to post too many pictures of everywhere I’ve been.
I’m expert in so many things that, really, they should know,
so if you know folks in these countries, please be sure to tell them so!

Note: Let’s see if the Eastern block countries will have a little compassion and cave to our pleas.
And since stats are surely a measurement of readership, this post works for the Daily Prompt as well!

Crossings

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Crossings

A river between us, each high on a ridge.
If we’re ever to meet, we must build a bridge.
But it’s hard to accomplish unless we take hand
to collect the cement, the gravel and sand.

So those of us tired of  manual labors—
not given to chitchatting much with our neighbors—
can go on our blogs to find our own kind,
constructing bridges purely of mind.

Blogging is great to bring folks together
on separate continents, in any weather.
We can be lazy, me here and you there,
building our bridges with ease, through the air.

Not over yet! Now click on this URL:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9_8KpR49bFI

The prompt today was “bridge.”

Murder, Migraine and La Manzanilla

Murder, Migraine and La Manzanilla

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Feet up at the Tequila Sunset Bar!

Murder, Migraine and La Manzanilla

When I was asked what my three most successful blog postings have been, I hadn’t the foggiest idea how to find out for sure. I knew it had something to do with the stats page, but I didn’t know how to go about finding out the total of views for each post over the years. I accepted the challenge, however, and found that the three topics that have created the most views over the two years plus that I’ve been blogging all start with the letter “M!”

First of all, as my title so clearly states, anything having to do with La Manzanilla, Mexico, where I spend two months of my year, garners immediate views. This is probably because most of my postings about La Manzanilla have been linked to their incredibly popular message board which has a loyal following. If you need something in La Manz from a ride to the airport three towns away to the loan of a charger for your camera to information about your computer, your house or your life—go to the La Manzanilla message board. And, for sure, if you took pictures all along the beach of different campfires and parties on New Years Eve and posted them on your blog, mention it on the La Manzanilla message board.

The third most views I garnered for any one post was a piece I wrote about the murder of two friends, and as the investigation into their murder continued, the international interest in my blog continued. I think the dearth of other information (since the murder occurred in Mexico whereas their families and lifelong friends were in Canada) contributed to people picking up on my blog from Google and Facebook. This is a sad way to earn views and of course that was far from the reason why I continued to write about this most tragic occurrence, but for some reason I wound up as a liaison between Mexican and Canadian friends of the couple, local police and higher up government officials and one local woman who relentlessly pursued the ones she knew were responsible. In the end, one of the men  was caught and sentenced, but I keep hoping that one day I’ll surpass the day’s total for views for one of the days I wrote about their deaths, as every time I see that number in my “top three,” I am reminded of the sad topic of that post.

Also high in the ratings over the past two years was a blog I wrote about migraine headaches. I remember my friend, proof-reader and fellow blog administrator Skyping me that I’d had hundreds of views from Great Britain in the last few minutes and upon investigation, I decided that this must have been due to a web crawler picking up on the work “migraine” and distributing the URL for my blog to its participants. I hope in writing this that I’m interpreting correctly how and why a web crawler works. I can only say that it is exciting to see the numbers mounting, but I don’t delude myself that it was anything but a fluke.

In summary, I guess what I’ve learned from surveying my stats is that what is most important in attracting views is to write about a timely topic you have personal knowledge of—especially if no one else is writing about it. Or, to choose a topic of particular and clearly-defined interest and to find some way to get news of your posting to the particular group that has an interest in it. This might be through your choice of tags, where else you establish a link to your blog or the luck of being picked up by some service that disseminates information to its subscribers.

Ironically, this is something I rarely do and which in all of these cases happened more or less by accident. I think if I were to make these concerns my main consideration in blogging that all of the fun would go out of it. I love the more hit-or-miss option of writing about the Daily Prompt and posting pictures on the daily or weekly prompts given by a handful of prompt sites. If you look at my blog, you will clearly see which ones they are and I furnish links to all of them at the bottom of my posts. It is wonderful to be widely-read but I’d rather have the freedom of writing about what I want to write about and in the style I want to write. In my case, I think the label of my blog could best be described as eclectic. That’s how I like my life and that’s how I like my writing and photos.

The starlings come back to La Manzanilla. (Perhaps they’ve been here all along, but a lack of a stunning sunset in the west last night brought our attention to the southeast, where a lot more was going on thanks to the clouds and the murmuration of thousands of starlings, which I took for bats until Daniel straightened out my thinking by saying they were birds. Meanwhile, he took a break from smoking his cigar to smoke his cigarette.  More about this in a later post!

(Click on first picture to see enlarged photos.)

 

A generous friend with time on his hands sent me links to my top eight most-viewed blog postings.  These are the links he sent:

#1  https://judydykstrabrown.com/2015/10/24/la-manzanilla-after-hurricane-patricia/
#2  https://judydykstrabrown.com/2015/01/01/sand-in-my-sangria-happy-new-year-2015/
#3  https://judydykstrabrown.com/2014/02/11/upon-the-violent-death-of-a-friend/
#4  https://judydykstrabrown.com/2015/10/25/two-more-videos-of-hurricane-patricia-in-la-manzanilla-mexico/
#5  https://judydykstrabrown.com/2014/02/13/nina-discombe-and-edward-kulars-deaths/
#6  https://judydykstrabrown.com/2015/11/29/internet-infraction-bogged-down-in-blog/
#7 https://judydykstrabrown.com/2015/08/13/dizzy-representative/
#8 https://judydykstrabrown.com/2015/03/19/post-migraine-depression/

 

The Prompt: Go to your stats page and find your three most successful posts.  What do they have in common? https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/the-stat-connection/

Ritual

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No “cauldron boil and cauldron bubble” for me.  I’m too busy with a different sort of ritual.

Ritual

Up at eight, feed the dogs.
Back to bed to write some blogs.

Around noon, finally rise.
Open drapes, survey the skies.

It’s really time that I got uppa,
donned some clothes and had a cuppa.

Pull on Levis and a blouse,
Make my sojourn through my house.

Blend a smoothie, drink it down.
Get in my car and drive to town.

Do some shopping, have some lunch
or meet up with my writing bunch.

Go back home to meet my fate–
three dogs barking at my gate!

Throw Morrie’s ball, pat other dogs.
Go back inside and write more blogs.

Post more photos, read the Reader,
then to the garden to be a weeder.

Take some pictures of some blooms.
(Cee’s daily flower posting looms.)

Post the picture, read blogs of others:
Serendipity’s and Mother’s.

Go out to dinner or to dance,
then home to have another chance

to catch up on the blogs I’ve missed––
To see if I’ve been “liked “ or dissed.

By now you’re probably all agog
at how my ritual’s mostly blog!!

 

The Prompt: Just Another Day–Our days our organized around numerous small actions we repeat over and over. What’s your favorite daily ritual?

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/just-another-day/

Blog-out

 

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Blog-out

Dark genius sits there pondering and staring at the screen.
His features in reflected light glow a sickly green.
He works his cyber screwdriver slightly to the right.
His only tool––the keyboard––is his weapon in this fight
…………………………………………………………as every blog on WordPress skews slightly all at once.
He’ll show his third grade teacher for calling him a dunce!

He tugs a little here and there, adjusting cyber screws.
And just for fun, he adds a few zeroes to my views.
He knows that I am watching and he senses my excitement.
He chuckles that my false success has been at his incitement.
Then he shuts down the internet––Facebook, WordPress, Twitter.
and my seconds of great happiness turn just as quickly bitter.

Bloggers the world over are turned back onto themselves.
Photos trapped in media files or stacking up on shelves.
No place to reach out for a friend for shut-ins who, once freed
to roam a universe of blogs now sit in dire need
of someone just to talk to. To realize they are there.
They sit staring at their screens, though all of them are bare.

Week after week we wait for our deliverance from this blight.
We miss the internet all day, and even more at night.
I’m thinking about former friends, now lost across the miles,
tripping over poetry surrounding me in piles,
thirsting after comments about every brand new thought.
Having no fast outlet, my brain feels like it’s caught.

Bound up in old creations that have no place to go,
with no easy outlet, the thoughts are coming slow.
Jammed up creativity is worse than constipation,
for writing with no readers is just mental masturbation.
It’s true that I have friends to call and writers’ groups as well.
But they have not the patience to hear all I have to tell.

A blog gives me an avenue to fill out a whole world
with thoughts that for a lifetime, I’ve kept inside, tightly furled.
For those of us who always have felt slightly alone,
the Interweb has seemed a placed created to atone.
In the darkened hours when others are asleep,
we live that midnight life we’ve kept within us, buried deep.

History moves ever onward despite glacier, war or flood.
We see it trailed behind us in footprints etched in blood.
So we’ll survive the cyber war when it comes to pass
by spending more time with our friends, calmly smoking grass
or sharing drinks at Starbucks, devoid of texts or apps,
but we’ll miss our midnight family filling in the gaps.

 

The prompt: Life after Blogs– Your life without a computer: what does it look like?
https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/life-after-blogs/

Okay, I must add a comment here, where everyone can see it.  See that fifth line in the first stanza, where the line is skewed over to the right?  WordPress doesn’t let you do that.  Every time I put spaces in to make that happen, they erased them.  So, as usual, I prevailed upon my tech expert/volunteer co-blog-administrator okcforgottenman to find a solution.  As you can see above, he found one and I’m not surprised.  What I am surprised about is his solution, that was nothing short of genius!  His solution was to put in a line of periods in front of the line until it was out where I wanted it and then to CHANGE THE COLOR OF JUST THOSE PERIODS TO WHITE!!!!  Tell me that isn’t genius.

Excuses, Excuses

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Excuses, excuses

Posts that wander here and yon
and just go on and on and on
telling why they haven’t “writ?”
Just grab the theme and write of it!
I’m sure that you have much to say,
I look for it day after day.
But please desist your bitch and moan
lest you wind up here alone!
Daily excuses make us yawn.
If you don’t stop, we’ll all be gone!!!

I must admit that I’ve been that blogger who complains about the Daily Prompt.  I’m not talking about the occasional healthy complaint here, but the very few bloggers I’ve found (of course, not you) who seem to have established a blog mainly as a grounds of complaint about why they can’t write!.

The Prompt: Yawn! What bores you? https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/yawn/