On this, the occasion of my 500th post, I pause to reflect upon this incredible journey we call blogging.
Ah, my fellow travelers! I salute you all and shower you with gratitude for all you mean to me.
We'll get to your candy later.
First, though, just like your mustached Great-Aunt who has had one too many glasses of wine at a wedding, I feel the need to spout off and say things I will probably later regret.
#1: It’s Not You. It’s Me.
If you look around Betty’s blog, you’ll notice it’s fairly boring in the margins. While other blogs have jumpy happy, logos, buttons and awards, Betty’s margins sit unadorned for the most part.
Pity me not, for it is of my own devising.
About a year ago when I got my first award I was so excited and happy. It was a warm fuzzy award from someone I liked very much. Cool! I copied the little picture and prepared to place it on my blog and then I read the instructions. I had to answer fifteen questions, post the answers, and then pass it on to fifteen other people.
I stepped back and waited a day and then some OTHER nice person gave me another award with more questions that required me to post more answers and I was to pass it on to ten other people. I waited two days and then, well, you guessed it, somebody tagged me with an award and I was supposed to tag five other people.
Let us now consider rabbits.
I like rabbits. Rabbits are fun; they are furry and cute. They can be cuddly and when presented with one I am likely to squeal with delight, but please don’t leave me with the rabbit.
No! Come back!
I didn’t ask for the rabbit!
Wait, I have to take care of the rabbit? I have to pass the rabbit’s offspring on to others who may not even want a rabbit nor the responsibility that comes with the rabbit? Soon I have rabbits and I don’t even know where they came from or to whom they should go. Soon, I start looking at all rabbits with suspicion and some dread. NO!!! Not the rabbit!!!
I think you get the idea.
(Don’t you ever read posts in which people are passing on awards and it’s as though they have a bag full of the damned rabbits and they are hoisting them over the side of their blog on to other people with a huge sigh of relief?)
Now, before you take offense and want to break up with Betty let me repeat: it’s not you. It’s me.
No, no. It REALLY IS.
I believe I may lack a social gene.
People invite me to Tupperware parties. I don’t go. People invite me to candle parties, jewelry parties, kitchenware parties, and Cabi clothes parties. I don’t go. Believe me. One person made it clear I had hurt her feelings by declining to go to a candle party she was throwing. She said. “It’s just a way of getting friends together. You don’t have to buy anything. “ I felt bad. I went, but I could see rabbits crawling up on the laps of people the whole night. Everyone went home with expensive rabbit droppings--including me.
Other people love awards and the people who give them are sweet, kind and good people. Heck, even I like seeing my blog mentioned in other people’s blogs. However, be warned: If you want the bunny to live and hop on to spread sunshine to other blogs, don’t give me the bunny because it will die in my care. I just can’t handle the responsibility. If you want to bring the bunny by for a visit with no care or feeding required, well then, I’d love a bunny and I’d be crazy about you too.
#2. Betty is slow.
Even though this is my 500th post, I still don’t understand the blog world.
What exactly is a meme?
A McLinky scares me.
Tweeting. I don’t get it.
I don’t grab buttons. I don’t even have a button. Question: If someone takes your button, are you supposed to grab that person’s button? What if you don’t? Is that considered rude? Is it a mini-rabbit situation?
I didn’t really enjoy tag in grade school. It implies poking followed by obligation and possible physical exertion. People tag me in their blogs and I feel a sense of alarm.
Friday/Tuesday/Anyday Follows confuse me. I see people leaving comments that have nothing to do with the content of the blog, just an announcement that they are doing a Follow. Am I missing out on something? Is the purpose of a follow just to get followers? (Duh?) Is it like speed dating for blogs? Do people read the blogs they tag on a follow or is it just a mad dash around to touch on as many blogs as they can? Is this not like a hideous, frenzied party at Chuck E. Cheese? Wouldn’t it be better to have a dinner party with just a few close friends?
#3. Betty is picky.
The other day a blogger I really like suggested a blog to visit. I went there and the header was of a person, scowling, middle finger extended, flipping me the bird. I clicked away immediately. Living near Los Angeles, I can get this any day of the week out there on the freeway. Why would I want to visit the blog of a person who considers this an acceptable greeting? Why would anyone? Am I just getting old and uptight?
Well, perhaps. Read on.
There is a very popular blogger who I think is a great writer and I used to like to visit and see what was going on with this person, but I found I had to wade through about fifteen F words and about ten other assorted profanities to get through the post. Soon, I stopped going back. It was just too much. Have I mentioned I teach 18 and 19 year olds? Just crossing campus I hear the F word used as a noun, and verb, a direct object, and adjective, and adverb and that’s just in one trip to my classroom. It gets tiresome and obnoxious and, well, boring.
If I really like you (and you know who you bloggers are) I will stick around for your post even if you use a few obscenities to make a point. If I am not in the mood, I’ll just silently back away from your blog.
Oh, and don’t cuss in the comments you leave for me. My mama sometimes reads my blog and it’s just not nice.
#4. Betty is a work in progress.
Who knows? Maybe someday I will be a rabbit-wrangler extraordinaire. Maybe someday I will be a joiner, a socially acceptable gal who plays along and is accepted at all the lunch tables. Perhaps I’ll even tweet. Maybe someday I’ll start throwing expletives in my sentences. Maybe I’ll join the Follow folks in the ball pit. Maybe someday I’ll have jazzy, button/badge-filled margins. I’m not ruling any of these things out and I certainly hope my readers will be patient with me if I do try these things and love me even if I don't.
For right now though my goal is for my blog to be the equivalent of one of your favorite restaurants--the place where you come, sit in your usual booth and enjoy what’s on the ever-changing menu. It may not be the jazziest blog, nor the most exciting, but I promise to always try and serve up honest, and hopefully, uplifting fare.
OK, time to load the drunken aunt in the car and take her home now, but before you walk me into the house and lock the door, let me collapse into a slobbery, sentimental mess and say:
#5. Betty LOVES her followers.
What can I say? I appreciate all of you so much and I think about you throughout my day. Truly, many of you have become a part of my life and I look forward to my daily interaction with you. I worry about you. I laugh with you. I check to make sure your missing cat has come back home. I anticipate your posts. I pray for you. I want to come and kick you into action. I admire you. I emulate you. I support you, even in difficult decisions. I thank you for all your support as well. My boy Evan said the other day, “Mom, you may not have a bunch of followers, but you’ve got really, really good ones."
I totally agree with him.
Post 501 coming tomorrow.
The restaurant opens at 4:00am.
Your usual table will be ready.
You can even eat pie for breakfast and I won't tell anyone.