Monday, July 10, 2006

Bloggery, etc.

(In the picture, that's my son Alex in the background, doing his own blog-thing on another computer.)

Talk about your irks and delights. I was all fired up for this post earlier, then I went to a 90 minute yoga class and came back all mellow. (After more than four years, I'm finally taking advantage of Renard having me on his health club membership.) Then the air conditioning here at The Mom's House ceased to deliver the cold air to which we've become accustomed dependent. It's 92°F in the warmest part of the house right now, even though it's around 80°F outside. Thankfully, it's about 87°F in the bedrooms (which have roaring ceiling fans), and the humidity is a bearable 68% right now. Unfortunately, I could flip this laptop over and cook bacon on it. So, the heat inclines me to defer the post I initially intended in favor of a shorter one about bloggery.

I started this blog almost 2 years ago (July 24th) without any expectations. I figured it would prompt me to write a little more often and it would give me the opportunity to document little pieces of my self and my life for my kids to read one day (I keep copies of everything), and it would be an easier way to keep friends and loved ones updated on what was going on in our lives. It's served all these purposes and more, as I never really considered the possibility that friendships would develop through this thing. But they have. You can see them in the sidebar, under Deeply Beautiful Bloggers. Sadly, there are some missing from the list who have abandoned their blogs. One such is Lasciate, a blogger we met in person during the first few days of our evacuation. Aside from him and David Oliver (AKA Zaytuni, a name which he no longer uses but I keep because it reminds me of something funny), a New Orleans ex-pat and my friend since the early 1990s, I've never met any of the others in person. But whether I've met them or not, they all feel like family and I care deeply about them, just as I do about my other friends who I know in the *real* world and who drop in and comment here from time to time. I don't know how I would have gotten through these last 10+ months and kept my sanity without their love and care. Like I said, Deeply Beautiful.

And now there is a new and growing group of sidebar blog-friends who are My Fellow New Orleanians. I can't overstate the importance of this group to me. In these blogs I've found many kindred spirits who often express things that I feel but for some reason repress in these posts. They've provided lots of important information about things going on here at home and they've done it at times with utter seriousness, but more often seasoned with that sharp acerbic wit that makes the unpalatable truths go down a little easier. (The ugliness of politics and life here will still make you sick to your stomach, though.) One of the most important things that they've offered is their personal stories, perspectives, and experiences --all of which have given me the comfort of knowing that I'm not alone in what I'm going through and I'm not afflicted with madness either, as life here might make you believe. (If we're all afflicted, then it's the norm and we're not insane, right?) Thanks, y'all!

So, in closing, I salute two of the best of the New Orleans bloggers, both of whom just reached the benchmark of 100,000 hits. Congratulations to Schroeder at People Get Ready and Oyster at Your Right Hand Thief. Go check 'em out and you'll see why these guys hit the mark in a little over a year, compared to the likes of me with my measly 20% of that in 2 years. Excellent work, guys. You've really earned it.

Blog on!


Anonymous adrastos said...

Excellent post, Lisa. I feel the same way about the other bloggers. The ones I've met, I really like: Oyster, Ashley, Kim (Dangerblond) and Maitri. I think you and Brian are at the top of my must meet list. Rising Tide should take care of that.

11:31 AM  
Blogger Schroeder said...

It was sweet of you to think of oyster and I in your post.

Wow -- sorry about the A/C. Need someone to look at that? I know a guy who works very reasonably Mr. Ly. He put in a new condensing unit for me for about $900. Everyone else was charging twice as much. He's clean, straight, honest. Let me know.

I just noticed the Charlie Varley link. I talked to him for a while at one of those Chris Rose book signings. Nice guy -- and he has an interesting story to tell about being in New Orleans during Katrina.

Thanks as well for getting me to go to Michael Homan's blog -- what a fantastic writer!

So you're a Mac girl I see ...

5:09 PM  
Blogger oyster said...

Thanks for the kind words, Lisa.

(Though it did take YRHT over two years, actually.)

5:47 PM  
Blogger LisaPal said...

Thanks, Adrastos. And I suspect we will indeed meet before too long. I met Oyster and Humid Haney at the last meeting and expect more of us will be at the next one.

Schroeder, you guys definitely deserve more than a mention. And as Mike Homan'ssite goes, it amazes me that I could introduce you to any new NOLA blog. I have never seen a more comprehensive set of links to all people, photos and things New Orleans and Katrina than what you have at PGR. It makes any new thing I find seem like a major accomplishment.

Oh, and to say I'm simply Mac Girl would be laughable, as I am more of a raging Mac evangelist. As I put it in a comment to Adrastos, Uppity Mac User since 1989.

Oyster, for some reason I thought I saw 2005 on your profile, not 2004. I stand corrected. An admirable accomplishment, nonetheless.

9:24 PM  
Anonymous Adrastos said...

I'm going to try to make this week's meeting. I'm just going to have to play a support role: I'm helping to organize two neighborhood/District B events right now so my plate is overflowing.

Btw, I'm a more venerable Mac user than you, Lisa. 1988 for me. I had a Mac plus. My cell phone has 40 times more memory...

10:40 PM  
Blogger LisaPal said...

Oh, the Mac Plus. It was my first. It had an blazing 8 MHz processor, 1 MB of RAM, an 800 K floppy drive and no hard drive. But it served me well. The external 20MB drive I bought for it seemed enormous to me at that time.) And Apple's lovely sprocket-loaded dot matrix printer sat beside it and allowed me to abandon the woe-filled sessions at the typewriter. I had all kinds of fun playing around with Hypercard and felt sorry for all the people I knew who had no clue of the fun and I was having with my tiny machine. For the most part, no one I knew had DOS-based PCs at home then, much less a Mac. Eventually, I donated it to my son's classroom at Audubon Montessori and they kept it around until a few years ago. But if I close my eyes, I can still hear the distinctive clickity click of its processor and it makes me feel all gushy and nostalgic inside.

Since that machine, I've had... oh..gotta count 'em...

Mac LC III (AKA Performa 450)

iMac 233 MHz Rev. A - the very first release, purchased on the day it went on sale.

iBook- 466 MHz Special Edition (lime green clamshell)

Power Mac G4 Quicksilver-867 Mhz

1 GHz Powerbook (R.I.P., beloved machine)

Dual 1.8 GHz G5 Power Mac (problem child)

1.67 GHz Powerbook- this one. The Last Powerbook, as I've officially named it. I bought it earlier this year because the previous Powerbook died in the Post-K evacuation. I would have gotten an Intel MacBook Pro, but I can't afford all the new software. And if the old software runs slower on it via Rosetta, what's the point?

Okay. See what happens when you bring up Macs around me? It's like asking me about my children. I had to edit this because I had something written about each machine.

Oy veh!

Schroeder, might I infer from your observation that you're a Mac user, too? (It takes one to know one...)

Adrastos, barring unforseen circumstances, I'll see you at the meeting on Friday. Oh, and who is Brian? (Am I supposed to know?)

Schroeder, are you planning to get involved in this thing?

1:40 AM  
Blogger Schroeder said...

Friday's are typically pretty bad for me because I typically have a Saturday morning deadline to make (more on that another time). I'll try to make the Friday thing -- if I can get my work done on Thursday, I could make it.

I *was* a Mac user back in the Mac Classic days and into the mid-90's until I started working in Geographic Information Systems. Yeah, when I was in high school, I learned how to type on an IBM Selectric typewriter. My first computer class required us to get a cassette tape to store our programs on. Then 5.25 floppies came along, and suddenly, there was the Macintosh. A total revolution. And now ... younger generations really have no idea what they have with the proliferation of processor-driven electronics.

GIS software runs almost exclusively on Intel Windows-based machines I'm afraid. Now, when I go back to Macs, I find myself completely aggravated by the level of complication built into the OS, and the hyper-interactivity of windows -- it's the same reaction I have to the way Microsoft designs XP and Office software to anticipate the user's desires, burying the options in hard-to-find menus and control panels.

8:12 AM  
Anonymous ashley said...

Come on Schroeder, you can run that crappy ESRI viewer that is totally java based on a mac.

And then cut your wrists for doing it.

I'm in the same boat as Schroeder, but fortunately, with remote desktop, I can let work manage that nasty PC, but I can still run the thing from here. Not quite as fast, and I still have to use the damn PC for hi-res GIS graphics, but I'm much more of a happy camper.

Boy, do I hate Virtual PC.

I made the switch 4 years ago, when over a long weekend I: a) tried to install XP, and then b) tried to install red hat linux. My frustration level got so bad, I went out and bought a top-o-the-line TiBook.

I am such a happy camper.

Now, I'm just holding off until August, when the next MacBookPros come out with the Merom processor. That will tide me over for the next 3 years.

And if it doesn't, the wife will get that, and I'll get the new one.

Although right now, she's got the nice new shiny bought-when-we-were-living-in-a-hotel-on-September-3 iBook, that's faster than mine with more memory.

And I can't wait to meet you, Lisa. Oyster and Schroeder are fine, but after Adrastos and Dangerblond, it will be nice to encounter sanity.

Big ;^)

9:53 AM  
Anonymous adrastos said...

Who you callin' crazy? Dangerblond is around the bend nuts but I'm sane; at least as sane as you are, Ashley. I'm not the one who was going on about ether either...

11:26 AM  
Blogger Schroeder said...

(Bleeding) thanks for the tip Ashley!

12:33 PM  
Blogger LisaPal said... willbe nice to encounter sanity...

Oh, I'll bet some folks who know me are belly-laughing at that! I can fake it pretty well, though. ;-D

12:50 PM  
Blogger LisaPal said...

Ahhh... nothing pleases me more than comments that elicit audible chuckles from me...

12:52 PM  
Anonymous adrastos said...

A faker, eh, Lisa. All bloggers are fakers and then there's dangeblond. She's the real deal as you shall learn. Heh, heh, heh.

1:45 PM  
Anonymous ashley said...

Did I tell ya?

11:27 PM  
Blogger LisaPal said...

Heheheheh... Yep.

4:06 AM  

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