Do people still write? British study says not so much

You might be a dinosaur if ... you still write things down on paper. (Photo by Eric Pulsifer)

When was the last time you scratched a note out in longhand? I mean take a pen, pencil or pocketknife and wrote something on paper, your hand or a bathroom wall.

If some of the pundits are to be believed, handwriting is a lost art. Another casualty of the digital age. According to an article on the Daily Mail (yeah, British press), the average adult hasn’t handwritten anything in more than 40 days. Anything. And if you take away what used to be the day-to-day jottings of adults — I’m thinking of those notes to yourself, grocery lists, phone numbers on a matchbook cover — only a third of adults actually sat down to write something in the past six months.

Now there’s scuttlebutt that the schools may at some point stop teaching young people how to write. Well, it’d been a while since they stopped teaching youngsters how to think … (Eric, just shut up; you’re going to get in trouble again!)

As I recall it in grade school (and my folks would be glad to fill in any gaps in my memory), my handwriting was beyond horrible. I seemed to lack the coordination (or the interest) to form my letters well, and things did not improve much when we learned the Palmer method of handwriting in third grade. By sixth grade I largely abandoned the Palmer teachings and reverted back to printing, which by then was a lot more readable. To this day I employ a half-printed, half-cursive hand, readable in most instances and instinctive enough that I can take notes without looking at the paper and still be able to understand it later. My penmanship (another wonderfully descriptive word that no one hears any more) is far from elegant, but it’s functional.

As far as my legal signature, forget it. You can’t read it. I got that honestly; Dad’s signature looks a lot like mine, like a Volkswagen that had been hit by a train. But you’re not supposed to read it. Years ago I knew this guy from the Middle East; he spoke fluent English without an accent, was thoroughly westernized. But he signed his checks in Arabic, starting in the middle and working outward. You don’t see anyone trying to forge that, he told me.

But now, there’s little call to write anything down. Pens and pencils may soon go the way of clocks with hands and landline telephones — cool to have, but some training may be required.

Think about it. We haven’t had to write long things out if there was a computer (or before that, a typewriter) handy.

Now we have smartphones. Just tap your note on that, save it to something like Evernote. Don’t need any pen. Or paper. Or pockets, for that matter.

Don’t even need to do much scribbling when you’re dealing with a bank or signing a contract any more. An e-signature takes care of the latter (just type your name), and nearly all bank transactions are electronic these days. The only check I write each month is to my landlord, and that’s only because he’s a Luddite.

I find I’m more of an anomaly these days because I do some of my writing in longhand. Notes are taken on index cards. First drafts go on yellow lined paper. Journal entries go in a leather-bound book, written with a fountain pen.

But more and more, the tech bug creeps into my life and I’m going more to the digital tools. Can’t remember when I last wrote a real letter, and I used to write some great ones. But everything’s by email now. If it wasn’t for my rent check and a few publishers who prefer hard copy when I’m pitching a story, I wouldn’t use the postal service at all.

I can’t rightly say I keep a paperless office, though I’m moving more that direction. A blessing, considering how I am with clutter. But the stacks of index cards and 5×8 legal-pad sheets lying around my desk bear proof that I still use paper and pen.

Reckon if you still write, you just might be a dinosaur.

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Some other tidbits, from a study by Docmail, a British stationer. Read ’em and weep:

 

  • Four in ten Brits rely on predictive text and increasingly rely on it for their spelling, with one in four regularly using abbreviations or ‘text talk.’
  • LOL (laugh out loud), U (you) and FYI (for your information) are the most regularly used abbreviations.
  • Today, creating a shopping list, taking notes in a meeting or even wishing someone a happy birthday are more often done via electronic means.
  • One third said when they do write something down, they often struggle to read their own writing when coming back to it later on.
  • And nearly half (44 per cent) said that their scribing is neither nice nor easy to read.
  • One sixth of Brits don’t even think handwriting should still be taught in schools.
  • One in three Brits describe handwriting as ‘nice’ but not something they would want to do every day.

Do tell. When was the last time you wrote something out? Let me know in the comments.

 

Elsewhere: New creativity blog taking shape

I’d started this after thinking about it for a while, and the project is already starting to look like something.

The most recent entry in my blog circus is “Actively Creative,” directed toward the writer or musician or artist who wants to start doing it instead of just talking about it.

Or something.

While The Column is, quite frankly, a not-terribly-organized blog covering everything under the sun (although I’m taking more of a baby-boomer angle to it lately), Actively Creative is a bit more strategic in its construction.

Every week I’m having a longer “pillar post” where I do the usual stuff: Free associate, tell stories, dispense a bit of skewed wisdom and bad jokes. I’ve been trying to schedule those for every Friday.

But the main feature is the regular “3 graffs” piece where I touch on a subject in, well, three paragraphs. I’ve been posting those daily since starting this project, only pausing when I was on the road (which is the subject of next Friday’s long post).

I’m having fun with the shorter posts. A little shoot-’em-up encouragement here, a little shoot-from the lip there. The whole idea behind the 3-graffs posts (for now) is, if you are a creative type, don’t just talk about it. Park your butt in front of your computer or easel or piano or blueprints or telephone and do something with it.

I’m told we’re all creative. I’ve seen it lately in the durnedest places. What’s interesting is, not everyone realizes it. And those who do, try to deny it or bury it if they want to live a “normal” life.

OK, most of us think of creativity as something reserved for artists, writers, musicians. But what about the guy who starts a company from scratch? The person who builds a computer program with nothing but an idea and the ability to code? The chef who experiments in the kitchen and is willing to eat the results? The construction worker who has to think his way around a problem on his job? Even the sales person who has to present the same old wine in a brand new wineskin?

If you think, if you dream, if you get strange ideas, Actively Creative may be right up your alley. Check it out.

Go to http://creativity.ericpulsifer.com to check the site out, or subscribe in an RSS reader by clicking on this blue linky thing here. Or go to the site and subscribe by email. And don’t forget to comment.

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Late add: The name ‘Actively Creative’ didn’t quite ring my bells, so I kicked it around some more. The new name, ‘creative and dangerous’ (all lower case) does so much better for me.

So what’s the dangerous part? Check out the new About page for all the details.

— Eric

 

 

Elsewhere: Creativity starts with your butt in the chair

One of these days I’m gonna stick all these blogs under one cover. But in the meantime, I’ve launched a new one, Actively Creative.

Not much to it … yet … but that will change as my overly active imagination kicks in.

For this week: “Creativity starts with your butt in the chair.” An excerpt:

“… finally parked my butt in the chair and did some writing. And it was horrible. It looked like it was put together by someone who hadn’t written in a decade. Like it was written by a Martian. But still a victory …”

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Blog comment shows how online writing went wrong

It's enough to make a writer want to quit and herd sheep instead.

Ordinarily I wouldn’t have even bothered running it. Blog comments of this type are usually deleted as soon as they come to my attention, and they’re marked with a spam tag to block the sender. I don’t fool around.

This comment had all the please-delete-me earmarks to it. It had absolutely nothing to do with the blog post’s subject matter. There was no indication the commentor actually read my post. It carried a link to a site that I cannot endorse. It insulted the professional writer in me.

But I kept it because it indicates exactly what is going on in the writing world. It shows where online writing went so terribly wrong. It begged for a snarkier-than-thou response, and I was only too happy to oblige.

To a short post about technical matters, I received a comment. OK. I love comments. Please, bring ’em on (keeping in mind the caveats outlined in the second graf). I prefer dialogue to monologue, so fire at will.

In this case the commentor asked if I needed any help in producing the blog, and offered a solution. Through his website he advertised a stable of third-world writers, all willing to string words together for $1 per hour. With the SEO treatment, meaning my Web content would be structured to goose the search engines, direct more eyeballs to my sites, point fingers toward the cool advertising I have, and make me a pantload of money.

Or something.

It wasn’t too long ago that the gold standard for freelance writing was better than $1 per word, and even hire-out work started at around $20 or $30 per hour. That is and always has been an on-paper number, though. We writers — in fact artists in general — are a funny lot, cognizant that “getting your foot in the door” is the common practice.

I’m doubly blessed in the creativity department, or maybe doubly cursed. Not only am I a writer, but I’m also a musician. I’ve done both for money for at least a couple of decades. While I’m not near this so-called “big time,” I have enough of a reputation in both fields that folks know I mean business. But writing and music — and probably the other arts — a practitioner has more opportunities to work for free than any of the so-called “legitimate” professions.

Let’s say you’re a car mechanic. Sure, you may do an apprenticeship or spend time tuning brake drums at a community college, but you’re not going to work for free. You don’t work for exposure. You don’t work for love. You work for that stuff that makes your checking account giggle. If you’re a doctor, you’re not going to rip out some guy’s appendix for free. Sure, the money may come from someone else’s wallet — the taxpayers instead of the patient — but you’ll still get paid. In cash, or a reasonable facsimile thereof.

OK. Part of an auto mechanic’s rates, and certainly a piece of a doctor’s fee, helps to make up for that apprenticeship/schooling time. This makes sense. But a musician spends many hours mastering his instrument, breaking guitar strings, buying CDs so he can learn some technique. A writer buys books, computer software, maybe some space in a few writer’s conferences, and if he’s an old guy like me has probably burned through many typewriter ribbons and reams of paper. The apprenticeship is done in low-paying gigs to hone the chops, some pro-bono work, and — yes, working for exposure.

That’s the background. Here’s the deal: While the buck-an-hour markets are still there, a distressing amount of work falls far below that. A well-known online phenomenon among us writers is the thing called the “content farm.” There are many of these: eHow, Demand Media Studios (which owns eHow), Break Studios, Textbroker, Examiner, and a handful of others. Some, like Demand, will pay a writer as soon as a piece is published. Others, like Examiner, do what is called “revenue share,” which is a nice way of saying they won’t pay you, but if they make money (through advertising), the writer makes money too.

Of the content farms, Demand Media Studios is probably the best I’ve seen. And I’ve written for them. There’s no great trick in burping out 400-500 words for between $15 and $18; do enough of those per week and you’ll make a decent wage. For a spell I made it my main means of support, and financially didn’t do too badly. But there’s something wrong with the equation here.

A typical $15 eHow piece, checking in at 500 words, will get you three cents a word. A 400-word piece at $18 per article in one of Demand’s better content channels, still comes down to less than a nickel a word. Which, last I looked, isn’t even close to a dollar per word.

There’s more. Check out some of the job ads in writer’s online publications and job boards, and you’ll see even more depressing rates. I’ve seen prices as low as $1 for a 500-word article, and the customer wants these articles in mass quantities. Now, there are people in third-world countries that may find these great wages, and easy to pull off if you write in your native tongue and run it through a translator. All the keywords Google recognizes may be there, so the search engines (which don’t read) love ’em. Readability, though, that’s a whole ‘nother deal.

This drives down the price of words in all forums, and it gives the customer the idea that writing is nothing more than typing real fast. Not so. There’s brain work involved, and brain work does not come cheap.

Anyway, here’s the original blog comment, with the website name altered only slightly:

John says:

Admin – could you use help with your website? Through our site you can find Outsourced Workers starting at $1/hour. They speak English, work flexible hours, and pride themselves on doing a quality job. There are Article Writers, Web Designers, Virtual Assistants, Email Response Handling, SEO Workers, & more. If interested we invite you to check out wescrewwritersgood.com . Thanks :)

And here is my response. Boy, did I have fun writing it. I felt all kinds of better after hitting the SEND button:

Eric Pulsifer says:

John — No, I’m not interested. The only reason I didn’t spam/delete your comment (or charge you for advertising space, as is my other option) was because I felt the need to reply. It is “services” like this that drive the price of freelance writing down to never-before-seen levels, and I will not be a party to that.

I guess there will be a market for wescrewwritersgood.com, though. There are plenty of folks who need cheap copy, maybe with lots of SEO to game the search engines, and really don’t care whether the copy gets read by human beings. Don’t count me among them, though.

Probably not good practice to encourage idiots like this, but it needed to be said, and it was wonderful catharsis.

Working for peanuts, or even for free is all right if you know about it beforehand. I’ll do pro-bono work in writing or music for a nonprofit that I would donate to anyway. I’d consider it for a literacy organization, animal rescue or something in mental health advocacy, for example. But don’t expect me to do free work for something like the American Civil Liberties Union. If the ACLU was crazy enough to call me up with some work I’d have to gut them. I’m talking about hourly rates that would scare a trial lawyer.

It’s true I’m working cheap when it comes to this blog. I don’t make anything off it. But I own every word I write (in contrast to the content farms where the writer signs off on all rights if he’s paid by the article). The Web domain, likewise mine, bought and paid for (thank you Mom and Dad, that Christmas gift check paid for it). I’m building a platform with this work, getting exposure on my own terms, creating an online portfolio. Any advertising revenue helps offset my miniscule expenses. Job offers have come from my blogging. And if I should choose to repackage some of my better blog entries in an ebook format to sell, all I need is the author’s permission and he’s easy.

This blog may be little more than a content farm at this juncture, but it’s my content farm. But I don’t need any dollar-an-hour help.

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New word o’the day

Ineptocracy (in-ep-toc’-ra-cy) A system of government where the least capable to lead are elected by the least capable of producing, and where the members of society least likely to sustain themselves or succeed, are rewarded with goods and services paid for by the confiscated wealth of a diminishing number of producers.

(Thanks to Rick for sending this along.)

The book scene: Tribes may drive your market

As many old-school authors will tell you, publishing a book isn’t nearly the same as it used to be. The Internet changes the whole publishing industry on several different fronts.

I heard an interesting interview between Leo Babauta and Seth Godin, two of the heavyweights in the Brave New World of the Internet. Both published ebooks, more or less forsaking the conventional channels of writing a book. Both are in agreement that the traditional publishing routine — write a book, get an agent, wait for someone to notice you — is on the way out.

Godin says the ability to work a so-called tribe is key for the author in the new world. If a writer has a string of followers — the more loyal the better — they will snap up anything he has to say. The tribe is the new audience.

Tribal dynamics

It’s not a new concept. In his book “Tribes,” Godin cites the phenomenon of the Grateful Dead. If your only barometer is album sales, they were a third-rate band. Shoot, they even allowed folks to tape their concerts; why waste your money and buy an album anyway? But the following they had was incredible. How increible? Once I made the mistake of trying to get a motel room in Vegas during a Dead concert in 1993, and rooms were almost nonexistent because of all the Deadheads in town. I think I ended up paying top dollar for a room I really can’t recommend and considered myself lucky to get it. The Dead knew how to work a tribe.

I saw some numbers recently about how ebooks are starting to outsell bound books on Amazon. This is a shock, probably because I still favor the feel of the paper, the heft of the book, and the smell of the ink. But consider me a dinosaur, OK?

Godin uncovered a nugget that we wordsmiths — especially those of the dinosaur variety — have long suspected but are living in denial over: People don’t read.

“Six dollars (for an ebook) is too much for a lot of people to take a flyer on because already tons of people hate reading,” he said. “They view their reading as the price of the book, not what they paid for it.”

But free still sells.

Godin’s big on free. Several of his ebooks are free to download, and there’s value there. His blog reaches many more people than his books, and that’s also free to view. Between the two he gets his name out faster, builds his brand, and adds to his tribe.

Babuata also has some free ebooks out, and his blog is likewise free. Not just that, but you won’t find advertising on his blog unless it’s for his own products. Again, he’s getting known that way.

Free content: Race to the bottom?

Godin’s social website, Squidoo, provides a space for writers to post their work. There is some high-quality stuff on there, too. The writers don’t get paid anything for writing, though they get a piece of any ad revenue generated.

“One of the things we’re doing is training people to think content should be free,” Godin says. “Others say they don’t blog or put out content for free, and that’s gonna cost you.”

But there’s a trade-off. Squidoo’s business model, which is used by several other revenue-share writing sites and electronic sweatshops, gets its share of blame for the depressed freelance writers’ market. Other Web venues such as eHow (run by Demand Media) pay around $15 for a 500-word article. This three-cents-a-word rate is a far cry from the old industry-standard $1 per word, and it shows in the quality of the work. Web content is basically in a race to the bottom.

Everyone’s a publisher

If the price of copy has softened in these free-and-easy unregulated anything-goes times, the publishing opportunities have increased. Considerably. Now it’s no great trick to write your own book, format it, package it as an ebook, and sell it through a Web site without a middle man in sight. And with writers getting acclimated to the work-now-get-paid-later model, ebooks are the next big thing.

Godin estimates 150,000 books will be published this year, and that number will likely jump to possibly a million books next year. But there’s yet another trade-off.

“Anyone can publish a book, which is where we are now, and anyone will publish a book,” he said. “A vast majority of them will be junk.”

Godin expects the always-strong market for cookbooks and how-to books to dry up, because again, you can find the same stuff on the Internet for nothing. Genre fiction will do well, though at 99 cents to $1.99 per download. Again, it’s in what sort of tribe the writer has developed and how well he works it.

I’m not sure I like the new face of publishing. A writer will have to get out and do more actual selling, or hire someone to do it — essentially creating his own publishing company in the process. He has to build up his tribe and his brand. He’ll have to parlay his writing into something else, and decide whether he wants to make his living from his books or from some subsidiary deal such as seminars or the lecture circuit.

The pluses, as I see them, are that the writer stands to make a greater percentage off the price of the book — the royalty for traditional book sales has historically been between seven and 12 percent of the cover price. And the writer gets more control of the final product.

For many writers and other creative types, control is a big issue. You hear stories about how your favorite jazz musician had to choose between starving or sucking up to the folks who produce albums.  A writer publishing his novel through a mainstream publishing house likewise abdicates a lot of artistic control. For a long time, the author didn’t even have much say in what the title of his book would be.

I like how Babauta put it: “I’ve been frustrated by other people screwing up my work.”

(Babauta’s take on the interview, plus a link to download the actual mp3 file, can be found in his blog Zen Habits. I know, it sounds extremely oo-ee-oo, but there’s some real value in that site.)

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What’s in your personal package?

A person could waste years of his life not knowing where his strengths are. Or more likely, he could waste that time trying to improve on a gift he doesn’t have instead of building on the ones he has.

Like I’ve known for years, I’m not so good with adding numbers in my head, but am good at words and people skills. So if I’m working at, say, a lumber yard, putting me on the customer service line would be a much better use of my skills than at the back shop, cutting planks to order. If I was placed in the back shop, the boss man might wonder why all those planks are going to waste.

We’re all born with a specific set of skills and traits hardwired into us. OK, call ’em gifts and you’ll have it right. And folks have made a science out of digging them out so at least you know what’s in your package.

Recently I took the Clifton StrengthFinders assessment, and was quite impressed by what I saw. The assessment uses a list of 34 criteria to determine your makeup.

My top five list:

  1. Strategic
  2. Learning
  3. Ideation
  4. Self Assurance
  5. Input

An interesting skill set, and no real surprises. OK, I lied. One real surprise. What is this self-assurance thing doing in my profile?

If anything, I’m often plagued by self doubts. I tend to doubt my own abilities, and this sometimes gets in the way. But that’s self-confidence, which StrengthFinders says is only part of the criterion.

When you consider the rest of the items in the self-assurance basket, though, it starts to make sense. According to StrengthFinders, self-assurance includes tenacity, stubbornness, the conviction I’m right all the time, and a brass pair of ‘nads. My best friends and worst enemies will probably tell you I have enough of those traits, probably more than is absolutely necessary.

The other traits, well, they fit me: Strategic (which includes the ability to find workarounds to various problems), learning (which means exactly what it says), ideation (a boatload of ideas), and input (the mind of a pack rat). Which means I see the long view most of the time, got a million ideas up my sleeve, and have a bad case of monkey mind but am real stubborn about all of it.

The book, StrengthFinders 2.0 by Tom Rath, explains all 34 of these talents and gives you ideas on how to develop them and best use them. Don’t worry so much about what you’re not so good at, the text emphasizes (and that is probably the biggest take-home). Instead, join forces with someone who has those skills you may lack. “Partner with someone with strong Activator talent,” is one piece of advice to strategic-thinking types such as myself. “With this person’s need for action and your need for anticipation, you can forge a powerful partnership.”

Sorry, folks. The only way to find out your package via StrengthsFinder is to a) buy the book, b) go to the website, c) use the access code that comes with the book, and d) take the assessment quiz. But it’s worth it.

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With the time change, confusion reigns

On Sunday morning, mass confusion entered my household, a neat trick given I’m the only human living there. But I literally did not know what time it was.

At 6 a.m. — my normal weekend wake-up time — the clock radio indicated it was 5 a.m. At that hour my brain is usually too squishy to tell the difference, but I checked my cell phone on the night stand anyway. The cell phone had the correct time; 6 a.m.

Merely a prelude to Daylight Savings Time, when most folks in the United States get to play with the hands on their clocks again. Unless your high-tech toys do it for you.

My clock radio is one of those high-tech toys. Twice a year it automatically changes over. The rub is that it makes the fall-back move on the last Sunday in October, when the change used to occur. Used to. Same thing with my desktop computer, which is not connected to the Internet.

Real helpful. Kind of like the federal government.

OK, so there’s no real easy way to adjust the time on that particular model of clock radio unless you have an engineering degree, and it’s only a week until the actual time change. I’ll live. Reckon I’ll just dim the display, adjust the alarm set time (which is much easier), and leave the time be. Everything will be fine next week.

This wasn’t my only run-in with the time change. When I moved from Arizona from California, I dutifully changed over to Mountain Standard Time from Pacific. But what I didn’t realize — no one told me and I didn’t ask — was that Arizona doesn’t do daylight savings and it was on the same time standard as California for the moment. I spent the whole weekend living on the wrong time frame.

Daylight Savings Timec confuses me enough as it is. When I finally adjust, six months have elapsed and it’s time to change everything over again.

Oh, don’t forget to change your clocks this weekend, and prepare to join me in the confusion.

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Blogging: Everyone’s doin’ it doin’ it

This blogging is a very cool thing, and it’s too bad I’ve been so slack at it.
What’s so great about blogging is that you can make anything you want of it.
Many folks use blogging tools to keep a personal journal, to tell all the things they’ve been doing all day. Others use it to unload some screed about a particular subject matter — in my case I’ll use this space to slap around some politician or give my take on the news. If you’re interested in anything at all, that’s a reason to blog.
I’m an ardent journal keeper. Have been for years. If I’m wrestling with a personal decision or just plain bothered about something, I’ll write about it. But I’m old school; my first preference for a journal is an actual bound book, written in ink. It worked for all the great writers, so who am I to buck that trend?
My pen-and-ink journal is a thing of beauty. Some of it is neatly done, with all words carefully measured. Other times the entries are scrawled, with an odd disconnectedness about what is written. Sometimes there’s a lot of free association involved with journaling, and it’s like, well, like I just hurled all over the page (why do you think they call it catharsis?). I’m also a list-keeper, an outliner and a mind-mapper, so my bound journal has all of these things.
But there’s a lot to be said for blogging. Unlike a private journal, this stuff is public. Maybe I need to air an idea for feedback. Maybe I need to start discussion. Or maybe I just feel like being controversial. That’s OK, too.
Right now I have several blogs, and all have a specific purpose. My regular blog (The Column Reloaded) is sort of a catch-all, with a bit of everything. I also have The Jam Session Reloaded, which has my musical musings, and a tech blog called The Workbench Reloaded. In truth I haven’t done much with these lately; I wrote the last Workbench entry Feb. 1, and have been slack about writing for the others.
In addition I have another political blog through The Examiner, another I haven’t done anything with. I’m undecided whether I want to continue with it. I also have my HubPages site, which is where I keep some of my better writing. Of the lot, I probably have the most fun with HubPages.
If you want to consider blogging forms, you’d have to add Twitter. I tweet a few times a day, and I find it rather addictive. I can tweet directly from my cell phone, and I can post fast thoughts from anywhere. Twitter’s interesting; there is a horrendous signal-to-noise ratio and you need some industrial-strength third-party tools to sift through the chaotic mess that is Twitter.
And yeah, there’s a lot of mundane in Twitter. Like the one from a friend:
“Breakfast blend too tame to crank engine; need me some emeril big easy xtra bold or jet fuel.”
OK, being a coffee junkie myself (just a pinch between your cheek and gum) I can relate to this, but many people can’t. But I contribute my share of the mundane to Twitter:
“Thought about calling in dead @ work, but it’s payday. Dead men cash no checks.”
Which may be important to me, but in the final analysis, who really gives a rip? I tell you what, the Internet is the world’s biggest garbage dump.
I mention all this because my older brother, Rick, got bitten by the blog bug. He’ll be a natural at this — like everyone else in my family he has a wide range of interests and opinions aplenty about all these interests.
He just published his first post; his 19-year-old son Michael had a horrific car wreck and stepped out of his crushed Crown Vic.
Off Rick’s description of the accident it’s amazing Michael came out with little more than a few scratches. I’d seen my share of car wrecks, and I can tell you that hitting a utility pole at even 40 mph (and Michael was probably driving twice that speed) is the kind of collision that usually leaves no survivors. Rick is pretty unabashed here; he credits Michael’s survival to divine intervention and seat belts. Knowing a little something about the power of both, he’ll get no argument from me. It’s now a question of whether Michael “gets it” after such a close call, but time will tell.
Rick promises his blog won’t be that dramatic most of the time (which is a good thing because no father needs that much drama in his life) but he’ll have — like this blog here — a little bit of everything. In other words, the stuff of a good blog.
Take a look, if you haven’t already. And if you like it, subscribe. Feel free to comment.Link to it. He won’t mind.
Welcome to blogland, Rick. We were expecting you.
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