I will soon be celebrating a birthday or two or three, I’m not sure exactly how old I am. The previous statement isn’t entirely true. I do know how old I am, but I’m not sure which date I should use to celebrate my arrival on the blog scene, nor do I know how I should refer to the auspicious occasion. Should I call it a blogaversary or a blogirthday? While I like the sound of blogirthday (it sounds like a Muppet word) I’m leaning towards blogaversary because blogirthday makes me think of girth which makes me think I should be doing something more active than typing.
On June 26, 2011, I posted my very first post but not on WordPress. I posted it somewhere else. I posted a couple more posts somewhere else which happened to be the same somewhere else that my first post appeared before creating my WordPress blog on July 4th, 2011. My first WordPress posts were the posts I posted somewhere else because I thought all of my posts should stay together like some weird cult family that moves to a remote location and grows their own food and walks around naked but only if it’s not too cold because that would be uncomfortable if it was too cold.
So as my first blogaversary hovers on the periphery waiting for me to decide which date to use and then more waiting until the actual date arrives, I thought I would impart some words of blog writing wisdom because I’ve been writing this blog for about a year and I have learned much though I have also forgotten much but between the learning and forgetting there is a word or two that I like to think of as wise because wise is one of the words I like to think about.
People often say to write about what you know and I think this is excellent advice unless you don’t know anything and then the advice is the opposite of excellent. Of course, you can pretend to know what you are writing about and use many multisyllabic words and punctuate correctly and people will read it and say, “Wow! I never thought about it that way.” Or, they think, “She doesn’t know what she’s talking about.” Or sometimes they just scratch their heads and wander off wondering what kind of Kool Aid I’ve been drinking because isn’t that what weird cult families end up doing? I like to think I fall into the Wow! category but I also like to think that dark chocolate has no calories so I’m probably in the Kool Aid category and I prefer grape especially if it is mixed with vodka.
Or you can realize that you are over thinking the write what you know admonition and just write about the stuff that goes on in your life no matter how small or mundane because that’s what people who still read crave in their boring, mundane cubicle lives – more mundanity. I’m not sure mundanity is even a word and if it is a word if it means what I presume it does mean by how I used it in a sentence, but if I hadn’t included this sentence expressing my doubts about the etymology of mundanity, you most likely would have assumed I knew what I was writing about. The first sentence of this paragraph was a terrific example of pretending to know what you’re writing about.
However, the thesis of the previous paragraph was the alternative option of writing about the mundane aspects of your life. For example, I know lots of relatively useless information. I say relatively, because it is possible I may one day need to get out of a life and death crisis by answering a trivia question. Granted that scenario is highly unlikely outside of outlandish screenplays, but it could happen. For example, I know the answers to several Trivial Pursuit (for those born after 1990, that used to be a popular board game) questions, and not only do I know them, when the tidbit of information arises in a conversation I feel compelled to point out that the tidbit is an answer to a Trivial Pursuit question.
As yet another example of my for example for example scenario in the previous paragraph, when I was younger which could have been anytime prior to this moment in time, but which occurred in my late 20s which occurred during the 80s, I attended an office party. Towards the end of the party a small group that had been playing Trivial Pursuit was sitting around just reading the questions and people were calling out the answers. I wandered over to that group and began to answer all of the questions. And then I got the game changer, at least it would have been the game changer if we had been playing a game, but we were just answering questions without earning pieces of the pie.
Person asking questions: What was Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey’s largest animal attraction?
Me: Jumbo the Elephant.
Person asking questions: She’s right. Again.
Heidi (wife of the office manager): How do you know that?
Me: Everyone knows Jumbo the Elephant.
Well, apparently not everyone knows Jumbo the Elephant. In fact, Heidi Ho did not know that. (Just so you know, several of us liked to refer to Heidi as Heidi Ho, thought I’m not really sure why we did that and we never did it in front of the office manager or in front of Heidi Ho but that was easy because she didn’t work there.) The reason I knew Jumbo the Elephant is that a year prior to the answering Trivial Pursuit questions at a party day, I had attended the Renaissance Festival at the Ringling Museum in Sarasota. The price of admission included admission to the art museum (one of the largest collections of Rubens’ paintings) and the circus museum and Ca d’zan (the house the family lived in on Sarasota Bay which was used in the movie about Great Expectations that Ethan Hawke was in with some actress whose name I cannot recall because I have forgotten much). Since it was included, we walked through the circus museum and on the wall was a poster for Jumbo the Elephant which proclaimed that Jumbo the Elephant was the largest elephant in the world and since elephants are the largest land animals and Jumbo was the largest of the largest, it follows that Jumbo the Elephant would be the largest animal attraction of the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus. All that (except the movie set part because the movie hadn’t arrived in the theaters yet) flashed through my brain in the space of a nanosecond for the scientifically minded among you when I heard the question which culminated in my very certain answer of Jumbo the Elephant.
Now, many people who may have known the answer to be Jumbo the Elephant probably would have said Dumbo the Elephant because they have been Disneyfied which I think means they know how to stand in orderly lines. I have seen Dumbo but all I remember is that he could fly because he had big ears which means he was an African elephant and not an Asian elephant because the easiest way to tell the difference is by the size of their ears and African elephants have bigger ears than Asian elephants.
Knowing the difference between Asian and African elephants could save your life if you ever encounter a 12th century person guarding the Bridge of Death you need to cross and they ask you about laden swallows or elephants, you’ll know to reply African or European if you get the swallow question or African or Asian if you get the elephant question or Jumbo if you get the Trivial Pursuit question which seems unlikely as there was no Trivial Pursuit in the 12th century which is too bad because if there had been Trivial Pursuit in the 12th century more people would have made it across the Bridge of Death.
I think I have demonstrated how easy it is to take a mundane topic like blog writing tips and turn it in to a whole post by pretending to know how to write about the even more mundane topic of knowing the answer of Jumbo the Elephant when the question which asked the question which required the answer of Jumbo the Elephant was asked. I think these writing tips could be a whole series of posts about me pretending to know nothing at all. There have been successful TV shows about much less although I’m not sure it is possible to have much less than nothing at all but that could be one of those metaphysical questions that will now haunt my existence as I ponder the possibility of much less than nothing at all, but that, too, is a post for another day or night depending upon what time of day or night I write that post. Until I find the time to do that, I’ll leave you with a picture of how to decorate urinals that have lost their purpose because I’m pretty sure it is an activity weird cult families would engage in right before they drink the Kool Aid, or possibly after, depending upon what they mix it with.