Jan 022015
 

I happened to buy some comics for my nephew, my niece, and two of her friends. I did this during a recent family outing as a way to help them pass the time while we waited for our food. To my delighted surprise, they loved them. That, along with my sister informing me that one my niece’s friends keeps reading her comic over and over again while she’s riding in the car caused me to think (to hope, at least) that this is more than a passing fancy for these kids. All of this got me to searching for a site that could be a good resource for parents looking to find all age comics. Ms. Dallen’s YouTube vlog (video blog) fits the bill perfectly. I hope it’s both enjoyable and informative. Happy New Year!

Dec 142014
 

Today’s Daily Prompt wants us to post an Anti-Bucket List. As in, stuff we would never do, say, watch, make, etc.  Sure, I’m game.  So, here we go…

  • Vote for Sarah Palin – I doubt she’ll ever run for office again, the money’s too good to just comment on stuff, but if she did, I wouldn’t.  The Apocalypse is on its way without my help, thank you very much.
  • Watch a “Mama June” sex tape – Speaking of the Apocalypse, someone has offered “Mama June” of “Honey Boo Boo” fame to make a sex tape for $1 million.  Be afraid, be very afraid.
  • Be content – I will never be satisfied.  I will always be looking at the horizon and wondering if there’s something better or more exciting around the corner.  If I do explore, I will yearn for home.  I hope this changes, but as I get older, I find it harder to  lie to myself.  The odds are overwhelmingly in favor of my being restless.
  • Stop being a wiseass.  I know that it has held me back in my personal and professional life, but  I can’t help it.  Mockery is my way of coping; life can be shitty under the best of circumstances.  Making a joke is a good way to make things a little less shitty.  We all cope in our own way.  That, or I’m just a bit of a prick.
  • Stop obsessing over pop culture ephemera from my youth – I’m a Gen-Xer.  Fetishizing the trivial bits of entertainment from our youth is what we do.  With that in mind, here’s a clip from one of the greatest shows of the 90s – Mr. Show:

Oct 042014
 

Yup, I did it.  I took the big leap and have moved over to a self-hosted wordpress.org site from wordpress.com.  The training wheels have been removed!  Now just sit back as I make my way in what will no doubt be a rather wobbly manner, at least at first.  This is fine as long is doesn’t wind up looking like something like this:

Chaos! courtesy of National Lampoon

But somehow I doubt the good folks at WordPress will let it come to that.

 

 

Jun 212014
 

Today’s Daily Prompt asks how we in the Northern Hemisphere plan on taking advantage of today, the longest day of the year.

My plan is to keep nursing this damned hangover.  Naproxen, electrolytes, and moving slowly are the ‘cures’ I will be employing.  Ok, the last one isn’t so much a cure as an acknowledgement of reality, but you get the point.  With any luck that will get better by this evening and I will be able to take a nice stroll along Riverfront Park here in Harrisburg, for example.

As for the sunlight, who doesn’t like long summer days?  Vampires, maybe, but that’s about it.  I don’t miss the winter and its short days one bitty bit.

Apr 242014
 

Day Ten (I originally wrote ‘Nine’; I gotta learn how to count!) of Zero to Hero has us playing dress-up with our sidebars.  Don’t worry, it’s not as dirty as it sounds.  For my experiment, I added a media gallery sidebar.  I will be taking it down shortly, however.  The reason for this is because I am worried about making my site too cluttered.  I know almost nothing about design, but I do know that simplicity is a hallmark of it done right.

This video is nearly a decade old, but I think it makes my point for me very well:

Apr 232014
 

In the spirit of my About page and a gentle nudge from Zero to Hero, let’s answer these good and important questions:

What are the top three things you’d like to learn, or ways you’d like to grow, from blogging? The top three people you’d like to connect with?

OK, let’s start with the first question.  The three things I’d like to learn (for starters) from blogging are:

  1. How to amuse myself.  If I can write something that entertains me and/or makes me laugh, I will have done well for myself.  I need to have fun, and I want this blog to be that.  (If this turns into a chore, then what’s point?  I already have one job, know what I mean?)
  2. I want to become more technically proficient.  I plan on learning enough to be able to migrate this site to WordPress.org.  That would push me to learn how to manage web traffic (well, the traffic that I hope for) and an actual website.  I also know the basics of HTML, Java Script, and CSS.  (Thanks, Codecademy!)  Ideally, this site will help me to build on what I’ve already learned.
  3. I hope to become more connected to the Harrisburg area.  I’ve lived here in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania for a little over six years and still don’t feel as connected to it as I’d like to be.  My hope is that this blog can help me to network and socialize more than I have in the past, if only a little.

And now, i answer the second question.  Just who are the top three people I hope to connect with through this blog?

  1. Harrisburgers (Harrisburgians?).  Again, I’m hoping to come out of my shell a little bit and am hopeful this blog can be a means to that end.
  2. Smart, experienced bloggers.  With any luck, I will be able to connect with those who have good technical expertise, experience with growing one’s audience and improving one’s ‘brand’ (I think I’m starting to hate that word, btw.), and maybe even those who know something about best practices for website design.   Here’s hoping!
  3. I’m a Virgo with a moon in Pisces.  I like good coffee, good conversation, and long walks on the beach.  If you are celestially compatible and looking for someone who has taken ‘the road less traveled’, then shoot me a message and we can see what happens after that.  (My ex-girlfriend need not apply.)

Yinz satisfied now?

Apr 202014
 

Today’s Zero to Hero assignment is to publish a post for our ‘dream’ reader.  Preferably, this will include the use of a ‘new-to-you’ type of post.  So, with that in mind, let me just say  that my dream reader would appreciate, enjoy, and stand in awe of the sublime snark of P.J. O’Rourke’s classic How To Drive Fast While On Drugs While Getting Your Wing-Wang Squeezed And Not Spill Your Drink.”

He/She would marvel at a piece of prose like this:

When it comes to taking chances, some people like to play poker or shoot dice; other people prefer to parachute-jump, go rhino hunting, or climb ice floes, while still others engage in crime or marriage. But I like to get drunk and drive like a fool. Name me, if you can, a better feeling than the one you get when you’re half a bottle of Chivas in the bag with a gram of coke up your nose and a teenage lovely pulling off her tube top in the next seat over while you’re going a hundred miles an hour down a suburban side street. You’d have to watch the entire Mexican air force crash-land in a liquid petroleum gas storage facility to match this kind of thrill. If you ever have much more fun than that, you’ll die of pure sensory overload, I’m here to tell you.

Go read the rest of it for yourself, and see what makes it so special.  I just pray that I’ll write something half as witty and entertaining some day.  And I pray that others will appreciate it if and when I do.

Apr 182014
 

Today’s Zero to Hero assignment is to “write that post that was on your mind when you decided to start a blog.”

What I had in mind was a post that would fit the title of my blog.  It was going to be a short introduction similar to the one I just wrote.

That was in 2012.

I hemmed, hawed, and promised myself that I’d get back to it, and soon.  That was two years ago.  But then I finally took the plunge a few weeks ago and wrote down what was on my mind.  Or rather, I wrote down as close an approximation to what was on mind that I could muster.

The result eventually became my introductory post.

The lesson that I learned was not to make the perfect the enemy of the good (enough).  You just gotta start writing and not sweat the fact that it won’t be perfect.  This is all a bit cliché’, I know.  But like any cliché’, there’s a strong element of truth to it, knowhatImsayin’?

Apr 172014
 

First, let me thank the kind folks at the Daily Post for getting this song stuck in my head. Nice going, people. 😛

Today’s Zero to Hero assignment is to edit my title and tag line. Ok, fair enough. Except, I like both just fine, so Yinz’ll have to settle for an explanation instead.

I was originally going to go with just “Making It Up As I Go Along” for a title, but then I noticed that there are many, many, many other blogs with the same title. Since making oneself distinct enough to stand out in a crowd, or at least be distinct enough to show up near the top of a search engine’s results, is a must, I had to make a change. To do this, I amended the title to “Making It Up As I Go Along – Trying To Think It Through.” In terms of substance, it reflects my approach to blogging. I’m new to this, and while I’ve read that having a distinct ‘voice’ (‘brand?’) is key to building a large following, I can’t do that just yet. I can’t do that because I don’t know what my ‘voice’ is and will have to figure it out as I keep learning and posting, hence the title. I’m curious about everything and want to learn a little about a lot, and then learn to focus on a few things that hold me interest. (It’s no accident that I always want to play a Bard when I play D&D.)

As for the tagline, well, it speaks for itself. It could be seen as something of a cop-out, but I don’t see the need to over-explain the title. Besides, I’m all out of bon mots.