Monday, August 25, 2008

On Not Wanting To Lose The Pen of Jen and Double Nickel Farm

For those of you who do not know it, two of my favorite blogs, Pen of Jen and Double Nickel Farm are about to go down, as explained here, if they have not already. No it is not that they have violated any Internet code, but rather that the wonderful lady who writes them has suddenly and without explanation decided to give up blogging. She does not owe us an explanation as to why she has chosen to do so; but those of us who read her stuff with a passion are concerned for her since it seems an abrupt, if not out of character, decision for her to have made. If her final decision is to discontinue blogging, so be it, and we will miss her; it is Jen's choice. Yet, I am not about to let her leave the Blogosphere all that easily, at least not without making a try at keeping her blogging, and at hopefully getting you to her site to leave similar comments in that you think she should stay with us. She has told me in the past that my replies to her blogs have made her think, so here is something else for Jen to think about:

Dear Jen,

Recently, in your blogs, The Pen of Jen and Double Nickel Farm, you asked us why we blogged. I gave a short, funny, but somewhat telling answer. I said it was because I am a blabber mouth and because I guess that means I am also a 'blabber keyboard'.

While that was my short answer, here is another more well thought out answer:

Besides being a ‘blabber keyboard’ I blog because doing so helps me accomplish many things. First of all I am able to share my knowledge about certain of my interests with others who have like interests. In addition I can often bring newcomers into those fields of interest; for example: new shooters, new hunters, new herp keepers, new voters.

I am also able to learn by way of my blog because sometimes I get very interesting and informative replies to what I have written, or I discover links to new and interesting blogs. Not only do I expand my own horizons by this learning experience, but I have also made many acquaintances because of my blogging, and because of my finding then linking to other blogs. I came across some of the folks, fellow bloggers, quite by happenstance as their interests would normally not have been sought out by me; yet somehow we were drawn together through our blogs when they stumbled across mine and left a comment, or I across theirs and I left a comment. With some of these folks, I believe I have made a bond of friendship even though I have, and likely, will never meet them in the flesh.

I blog too because it is a link to the world and to anyone who has access to a computer and the Internet. This is not so much to showboat myself, though it is partly that I suppose, but sort of to explore places that I will never visit, never get a chance to see. You see I can communicate with the people of the world through my blog. I am often amazed at some of the locations where I have regular readers. It makes me feel good to realize that folks around the world read my stuff, but it also humbles me to think there are so many bloggers out there of which I amount to a mere pixel floating in a huge computer screen.

I also blog because it is a fun hobby, a decent way to pass some time when I am not working, when I am not mending around the house, when I am not out with family. It is some down time by myself during which I am able to express myself as I have never been able before, in front of an audience of like minded individuals, or people who could not disagree with me more, or critics, curiosity seekers and other people who become friends. Surprisingly enough about that last batch, we certainly agree on many things; yet, it is strange how often we find ourselves in almost total disagreement, but we disagree knowing it will not force a wedge between us but only make our bond stronger as we discuss the issues.

So when a blogger friend of mine tells me, and the rest of the world, that she will no longer be blogging; and when she tells us that in a two sentence entry to her blog, almost completely out of the blue, it comes as a shock. It makes me, and all of your other readers, sad to hear you will no longer be keeping in touch with us on the issues as you have been doing. It is with a dismal portending sense of fatalistic realization that we conclude that you have taken, or are about to take, a turn down a road better left un-traveled. We fear that something bad in your life has taken place or is about to happen, no not just something bad, but something drastically so. If not, then why on earth under the heavens would you be giving up something through which you do so much good as your blogs.

Perhaps you have never realized how wonderful are your blogs and the good they do for the rest of us (and probably for you too). Through your words you have spread hope, joy, love of family and friends, spirituality, the word of God for those who choose to believe. You have also given advice, told us recipes, showed us the advantage of a good hard days labor, explained in detail beyond compare the value of love and all it can accomplish despite hardships (you, your husband and family the prime examples).

Furthermore you made a lot of us smile and laugh. There is a witty side of you despite the hardships and toil to survive that you and yours have faced. Not only do we see a sense of humor in your weekly caption contest, but also in things you have written, and in pics of your children. It was nice of you share that with us.

You have made us think - heck you know at least that has been true with me. We have had some pretty intense discussion of issues. If you made us think, that means you made yourself think too. Thinking about oneself, and one’s interests and beliefs, often makes one question herself. You always came up with the same answer on core issues; they were: God, family, country, right over wrong, work hard and live well. You shared that with us.

Furthermore more, throughout it all you have given us something to which we can look forward just about each and every day of your blogging. You see we look forward to seeing the penned words of our friend Jen. We look forward to reading about life, love, family, spirituality, politics, God, hard work, friendship when written by the pen of Jen. We look forward to your wonderful blogs The Pen of Jen and Double Nickel Farm.

Yes as I said in above, I am shocked to learn of your decision to quit blogging. If it is what you choose to do, then so be it, it is your decision to make. Yet as usual I can disagree with you. No matter what your reason for wanting to cease blogging, I have mentioned above many why you should not. I can only hope that in some small way, I am making you think about your decision to leave blogging behind, to reconsider it, to change it because you see when you leave it behind, you leave all of us behind too. That will truly be a sad day for us all.

For some reason, and maybe it is just intuition, I get the feeling that you think blogging conflicts with something else in your life. I have to wonder if you think it makes you less of a mom, less of a wife, less of a good person to share your ups and downs, your strengths and weaknesses, your likes and dislikes, your passion for life, your pondering the great questions of life, your questioning of the rest of us, your questioning of your own beliefs, your rock solid determination to be a good person, your rock solid faith in God and goodness with the rest of us. I think that you may believe that blogging in some way has been a detriment to your faith or to your family. I hope that is not what you think because while blogging may not be the answer to your prayers, and while it may not have accomplished whatever you thought you had set out to accomplish when you started, it has accomplished something greater than you probably ever expected. It has given the rest of us a view of the world, of life, of family, of toil, of wit, of charity, of goodness, of strength of character, of faith, of God through your eyes. For that we are grateful, and for that
we beg more of you. Please don't leave us.

Your friend,
Glenn B

If any of my readers agree with the above, please go here, and ask her not to give up blogging.

All the best,
Glenn B

Not 5 Minutes Ago My Son Walked Out The Door...

...on his way to his first day of college. I gave him the speech, a short one at that, about paying attention in his studies, about asking the professors questions about what they expect and how they run their classes. I also asked him if he had paper and pens. Of course he did. I also shook his hand, and congratulated him on being a college man. Man I am getting old. Yet for Brendan, who is still young, the world awaits him. Now it is up to him what he will make of the world by way of what he makes of himself.

All the best,
Glenn B