Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Thank You, South Africa!

The dude, he does abide.
There are a million blogs in the naked city…. Um the naked internet… whatever. Truth is, I never read blogs much until I wrote one. Honestly, people would announce their new posts on Facebook and I would barely even notice it. Once I started posting my own updates, I somehow magically started noticing theirs!

And, you know what? There are about a hundred kinds of blogs out there. Scratch that – make it a thousand. Or maybe a million. There are “diary entry” types, blogs directed centered around photography, faith, politics, travel, fashion, self-help/motivation, parenting, pop culture, and etc., and etc. That’s just the (very) short list.

As I mentioned before, I’m supposed to be helping Jon Acuff launch his book. If you don’t know who HE is, well… he’s a blogger. He’s got TWO blogs. I can barely keep up with one. Anyway, the “launch group” is still in its getting-to-know-you phase, and everybody’s posting their twitter@ and their blog url. Until I read all of those urls and their descriptions, I somehow failed to realize just how many people were doing this. No wonder I can’t get more readers! There’s just too many blogs!

So, do me a favor – if you’re writing a blog. Stop it right now. Just kidding. You are most likely doing a much better job than I am… I don’t begrudge you your success at all. But I do kind of wonder what makes some blogs successful and others just sort of flounder.

My husband and I recently watched a fantastic movie called Searching for Sugar Man, about a musician from the early seventies called Sixto Rodriguez. See, Rodriguez put out some pretty bangin’ albums back then, but somehow … well, he just slipped through the fame and fortune cracks, quit making music and lived out his life as a laborer in Detroit. Somehow, though, a copy of his album, Cold Fact, made it to South Africa, where it exploded and filled out the record collections of nearly every middle class house, along with 70s standards like Simon and Garfunkel and the Rolling Stones. And even though Rodriguez has been until now, relatively unknown by most of the world, his music inspired and fueled the early stages of the anti-Apartheid movement! 

Anyway I guess that means that you guys… YOU are my South Africa. The only people in the entire world that are buying MY Cold Fact. Why didn’t Rodriguez reach a wider audience? I’m not sure. Why don’t I? Again, not sure. Maybe it’s a quality issue. In my case that’s not unlikely. Maybe it’s just that my blog is sort of all over the place. It’s actually got a bit of each of the things mentioned above: photography, faith, politics, travel, fashion, self-help, parenting, pop culture…

I sometimes wonder if I should focus it more… I imagine myself doing one of those fashion blogs where you take a photo of your outfit and talk about where you got each item. (Shirt: oversized men’s Guinness logo striped rugby shirt in burgundy and white, gift; leggings (black) from kmart, old; socks, hanes from Target, old; shoes, clompy black platform ankle boots from Urban Outfitters, on sale for $29.99.)

Maybe I'll cook through this tome...
Or maybe I could do one of those cooking blogs where you cook through a whole cookbook. Like in that movie Julie and Julia. Although I’d like to use some arcane book like The Williamsburg Art of Cookery or, Accompish'd Gentlewoman's Companion, by Helen Bullock. I could spend my evenings whipping up Robert E. Lake cake, Chicken Pye, Pork Cake, or Milk-Punch. Yum!

Yeah – I could do all those things, but that’s not really me. Not the whole me anyway. I like to cover a variety of topics. I mean, I’m nothing if not multifaceted. So instead of thinking I should be more focused, I prefer to decline to limit myself. If I had to describe my blog in a few words… Well, I’m not sure I could. But … maybe it would be something like… a crazy woman’s ramblings on faith, life and pop culture… Who wouldn’t want to read that?! I’m not kidding, Sometimes I read over past entries and think, “Who is this fantastic gal? She’s got it going on!”

Not really, but I have to at least like what I write, otherwise why would I bother putting it up? That would just be pointless and embarrassing: “Here’s a post about some stuff I don’t find interesting, not written all that well… but I’m putting it out there anyway just because blogging is where it’s at!” Well, that’s not me either. I find this stuff completely interesting, and want to use words – which I also love – to bring you in on it. Is that so wrong? Okay, maybe it is a bit egotistical...! Which is weird, considering how low my self-esteem can drag sometimes…

I love Evangeline by Matthew Sweet.
I'm pretty sure it's about me.
I have no idea as to why I’m writing this particular entry. “Rambling” was the right word for me to use, right? “Navel gazing” would be another one. I may not have a point this time, but in general I do, and I’m not embarrassed to say it’s mostly evangelical. And by that I mean, my goal is the spread of the gospel of God’s love. I have mellowed over time – mostly due to exhaustion, I guess. In the past, I could have been called an Evangelical (which, if I understand correctly, is not as tight-assed as a Fundamentalist, but not as relaxed as your average mainstream church-goer.)

Now, hilariously, Evangelical me would have hesitated at the word, “tight-assed.” I wouldn’t have minded, but I would have noticed it… But the me who is now telling you the gospel of God … well, I just said it… without batting an eye. So… this blog is not exactly Evangelical, but it IS evangelical. I hope. I’m trying anyway. 

So… lest anyone think that my blog lacks focus – well, I beg to differ. I mean, a post may be about fashion, music, food, politics, or anything... but we all know what it’s really about. That’s right. The big JC. The Dude. (Yes, He does abide.) ‘Cos that’s really all I’ve got. And whether the whole world is reading my ramblings – or just South Africa – I’m going to keep saying Him. And maybe we'll start a little revolution too!

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