more thoughts on blogging

Many of us have at some point resisted putting words down on paper for school and then many of those same people (maybe that very day!) come home and blow a couple of hours posting and reading others' blogs.

Yes. I speak of the ubiquitous essay.

We've all been there. Faced with: Compare and Contrast leaves and grass in two hundred words or more, we moan and groan, "What does this have to do with anything!!" and put it off until we are forced by our own procrastination to write some hapless, stiff composition stumbling over the finer points of backyard vegetation. Reaching the two hundred words: impossible.

Yes, the teacher thinks the topic is awful too, and yes, the teacher is bitter enough to enjoy assigning it. Like I enjoy hosting a cosutme party.

"Do I have to wear a costume?"

"Well, it's only a fucking costume party but no, you don't have to wear one. Free fucking country. But you'd better bring beer to bribe your way in the door."

Speaking of procrastination and costumes:
Tonight is Boo-cchanalia.

My costume: check. Kinda embarrassing when you possess in your very own closet all the trappings of early 80s Madonna. I didn't think I was so hopelessly out of style, but if I am, will one of my kind friends stage an intervention at the mall??

The man's costume: semi-check. I've got everything but we have to do the hair and sew in the beads. Jack Sparrow hair shouldn't prove as time-consuming as Legolas hair.

Food: er... well, I'll go to Target today.

Beer: ditto, liquor store. Besides, many folks aren't wearing costumes so they'll bring beer.

I do love that. Tells a lot about somebody. So do costumes, though, which is why so many resist it. I love Halloween because you learn a little about what folks are like. What they think, political beliefs, how far they'll push the limits. Some people don't even want to wear a costume, but will just to fit in. Ha! That says it all.

My favorite all-time costume was this neighbor/friend of ours that lives down the street. The guy works in a conservative industry, and he's soft spoken himself. Not your typical Jamaican. (tee hee - that ought to raise some hackles!!)

Anyway, they threw this party for another friend who was turning 40 and everyone did the 60s look and this guy put on a huge fro and high-water skin-tight bell bottoms and a shirt open to his navel and gold chains and it was like he was a different person. It wasn't only that it was funny, but it was eye-opening to learn another facet of someone in so simple a way.

Jesus, where did this rant begin? Can you tell I've only had one cup of tea?

Oh yeah, essays. I would suggest that the same student assigned the grass essay will go home that very night and write a brilliant, moving diatribe about the stupidity of said essay (Compare and contrast the essay topic and the teacher who assigned the essay - Which is stupider, and why? Thousand words or more.) and never realize how that road could go both ways.

But there's a difference, you think. It's on a blog. No rules. (Ha! See below.)

What is the difference, really? Read many blogs and study why you like some and why you don't like others. I'd suggest that many of the better blogs consist of well-written essays (albeit in first draft form) with a premise and supporting arguments and a conclusion (which is well known to be the most difficult part of the essay to write) about some subject with which we, the royal reader, have little affinity.

Why do we read? The author sucks us in with pure thematic skill.

It frustrates teachers no end when they know kids have it but they won't use it. Rather like my frustration when people don't wear costumes to a freakin' costume party. The same guy who won't wear a costume tonight will this very morn don a bright yellow shirt marked over with neon advertisements, skin-tight nylon (on the bottom half, no less- yuuuk. You got to ride a lot of miles to make that look good) and ride their bike all over town just as relaxed as can be. They'll even step in for coffee, the only person dressed like that in the whole shop, and won't think twice about it (though people are thinking- "Save it for the costume party, bubba.")

So I stand by my original conclusions. There should be rules for blogs. I mean, do what you want, of course, but if you want to be read you might check out conventional essay writing 101. At least know the rules when you're breaking them.

And wear a costume to the freakin' party, all right??

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