My sister and I write friendly letters to each other by email, every other month or so. She wrote to me this spring that she lately read Dale Carnegie’s “How to Win Friends and Influence People.” She said the book impacted her interpersonal interactions at work.
Yesterday morning I opened my content curation tools on the internet, and to my surprise, the app appeared completely redone. I had little idea of where to start. If I’d never taken the notes that I did, I would have been at a disadvantage given that I needed to start over.
I work in a mostly volunteer capacity at a cemetery off the beaten track. We operate a graveyard. I put in duties as an SMM in order to reach the outside world. http://www.maplelawncemetery.org
What the app revamp did was to require me to get honest about what I am interested in doing. The reality of whether the more fringe areas of my research were or weren’t going to fly in the face of other people squarely confronted me. Some of my ideas just weren’t going to work, I saw.
Our Facebook page is small, only sixty-five or seventy people, but those people aren’t going to be swayed, I now believe, by where I was putting my nose if I am being transparent.
There is an idea in business that employees don’t work for the boss, that in fact, the boss works for the employees, and it is true with our page. I am an SMM, but I work for the people who like the page. I don’t have the freedom to indulge every avenue I want to if I don’t want the people I speak to laughing at me, and it is probably true that new people I might interest will have similar sensibilities to those who are already involved.
If I’m not confident in my ability to bring my interests to the attention of those I work for, the people who like our Facebook page, I realize now that I can’t expect any newcomers to have any different opinion than those with who I already have a connection.
This is how the spring ruling for the content curation tools instantly makes me a better person.
I am lucky. While the reworking of the content curation tools is for relevancy’s sake, and while my hands are tied as to how to go forward from here, facing a truth that I wasn’t formerly comfortable with facing is now a solution. I hadn’t been aware this was a problem, and without my input a solution presented itself.
I had envisioned that I would find a strategy to make this work when the time came, and the time came yesterday. With fresh eyes, I began to see how to use the tools going forward. In the process, I became, in a small way, a more honest person, at least more honest about what I am doing on Facebook and on Twitter.
As the Buddhist maxim states, “Never lie, cheat, or steal.” I got a little more spiritual, yesterday, you might say. It was unexpected all the same.
My content curation tools are provided by DrumUp, an app found on the world wide web at https://drumup.io (a shoutout). The DrumUp starter plan is inexpensive and it offers a lot of use for someone with a business model utilizing Facebook, Twitter, and/or LinkedIn.
You’re welcome to “like” this post, to follow the blog, or to comment. Have a great spring.
I’m a groundskeeper by trade. At the end of last year, I ambitiously subscribed to the email newsletter Publishous. Each issue is a collection of articles on Medium, with subjects such as productivity, and also Christianity, and including those untold here, a nice mix.
Publishous also spotlights writers and offers insight into how writers can create on par with the writers on Medium. Medium is great because you respond to articles that move you with claps, as many of which as you want to applaud the article. With your Medium membership, you can also follow specific contributors whose work you want to know about right away.
I enjoy the odd book bringing up self-management. I look at ideas of that kind on Publishous. I was pleased to see Publishous’ newsletter today, published yesterday, highlighting the spring season now that March is here.
I don’t think Publishous is aware of me, other than that I subscribe, as there are several thousand subscribers.
Publishous readers are evaluating what they are doing in the month of March. For my cemetery job, we will tend to the grounds soon, by collecting fallen tree limbs and wrapping up the majority of our activities inside the church, which is where we make our efforts in winter.
Eventually, the grass will grow, and we’ll start to take care of getting that cut. We usually work once a week on the cemetery grounds.
I’m not aiming to write for Medium, but I like the specific design of the Publishous newsletter. I am turning forty-two this month, and I am thinking about Lent and Catholic worship. Years ago, in the 2000s, I read the first book by the American writer and pop psychologist, the Women are from Mars, Men are from Venus author John Gray.
Gray’s first book is What You Feel, You Can Heal. It says turning forty-two graduates an individual from being a caretaker to being part of a community. I’d direct you to that specific book if you are interested in the idea.
It is, in Gray’s estimation, a sequence of the seven years of one’s life, between the ages of forty-two and forty-nine, that one sees in his life the influence of community upon him.
I don’t think there are many guarantees in life, but we have, as the next seven years begin, the outlook of keeping organized a little cemetery.
The work I do, the most distinctive work I do, is to help a small cemetery and to do odd jobs around the church that is on the property. I am also an SMM–I do a blog which I connect now and then to the work I carry out on the cemetery grounds. This is the site you’re on.
Our website with specifics about the cemetery is www.maplelawncemetery.org and the menu of pages you can choose from when visiting this is to the right.
I am also curious about the group of bloggers which who explore “tea parties” that assemble participants into thinking about what the hostess of the tea parties has suggested for the month of March. You can find the tea party hostess’ site at https://www.thelittlemermaid.site/
You’re welcome to like, comment, and/or follow, if you are interested in what’s going on.
We’re on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/LouthUnited and posts include photos and links to articles which could be of interest. It is a small page, but the people are good. The tone of the feedback I receive from people following the page helps me decide what will be well-received and what won’t (what to avoid). All of this I practice as a skill set.
By video research, I mean watching video content to gain information about a topic. To render the inscrutable meaningful, I am trying to re-envision specific ideas I have about video research. To try to make this fun, I am re-envisioning 15 ways that the progress I try to make utilizing video research actually makes an impact (for me).
This will include examples of why it is I am conjecturing the phrase video research isn’t dropped onto the page constantly.
The first thing that I am focusing on is when I actively became aware of the possibility of video research. You might say the stars aligned (nearly) and I think it was when I was compelled by my younger friend B. pointing out that I could listen to youths crying out with the Internet. This is so sensitive. In my defense, I both saw I could get into hard-to-tackle specifics with a computer, and also I discarded the idea to pursue B.’s style of research, which is a misnomer, as it wasn’t video being researched, it was more like gamer hack-and-slash. In B.’s defense, he became a teacher for a living. [I hope he is still doing that. He dropped off Facebook a long time ago (without an explanation).]
With an awareness like that, it has to be tempered with the recognition that humans require respect. Interesting uses of Internet video express things which are unfathomable and also perhaps too sensitive to extrapolate. The very most interesting experiences with the Internet, I think, and when outside elements of the world beyond the Internet enter and, I suppose, reflect the viewer experiencing the video, which is hard to concisely explain. If there is a simple explanation for this, perhaps from lecture halls or elsewhere, and you know of such a thing, forgive me. Leave me a comment if you like. On the simplest level, people can leave user comments for a creator who responds. I am pretty sure I have a few variations of that straightforward element of the Internet.
I think in 2018 WordPress turned 15 years old, didn’t it? A technique for growing your blog readership, if you’re on WordPress, is to leave user comments on other bloggers’ work. The point is that if you do this respectfully and consistently, eventually sympathetic or otherwise interested bloggers who you have contacted will reciprocate by interacting with you. Now you may ask me, and I am prepared for this in the eventuality it happens, “How do you know that? You don’t seem to have much readership of note.” “Yes,” I will reply, not impudently, “but I simply have not devoted the focus to constantly read blogs and interact with them. My blog, as yet, is an amateur effort.” At that point, I hope you do not disappear abruptly, although if this is the case, that is fine, as I hope to better strategize in 2019 than I have in the past.
I hope to pursue this as long as it is a possibility. What I’ve observed is that WordPress techniques are not the same as those on a more characteristically “social” platform. I would argue that during what I’ve learned, I’ve enjoyed the process. I am tempted to leave this point there and then, but even with confirmation bias indicating that if I am predisposed to a set of beliefs that highly values an “art for art’s sake” attitude, the argument I want to make is that this specific confirmation bias is perfectly fine and I want to run with it in 2019. How then, what can you, you might ask, do to make your blog more readable? Well, you can take it on Facebook and ask people you’ve met to read it. That’s a tactic that can help you start a blog and potentially get results that are interesting for you.
We’re beginning to talk about video research, but the first thing I think of trying to approach something that’s sensitive is some obvious problems coming up right away. These fifteen points are geared to getting your attention away from what you should do with the video you watch, and what you are already doing with your blog, or how it is you could start a blog. The conclusion that can be drawn, and it’s not science, but a method, is that you can draw on video research to formulate something that you’d like people to read and you can put it on WordPress.
I had quite a bit to say just to introduce this, so I am ending this post shortly below and picking up in the next blog post.
This first part of the 15 ways has been about a few generalities that have worked for me and a few tips that could apply to what you are doing.
These first five points are trying to get to the point, saying you can take video, turn it into blog content, get a running start with your blog, and go from there. I am going to return with what shall be two more posts, aiming to illustrate ten more ways that you can do something more with video than just watch it.
Thanks for reading.
When I last asked my niece to let me have a photo, she was in high gear to play a frivolous game of Candy Land. She suggested I show her in the midst of unpacking the enduring board game. My niece is in the third grade.
Charmingly, The Little Mermaid is an enduring animated Disney feature, but also a WordPress blogger who the last few months hosted “tea parties.” Each month for the entire duration of the month a theme goes into play on her site which gets bloggers interacting with each other having had written along the same lines. This month’s theme, October’s, is happiness.
I’ve joined the last couple of months, and this is my third go-round as a participant in the tea parties. I decided today would be the day I would finish up my post for the challenge.
This may seem counterintuitive, but many lifestyles that were stigmatized in previous decades have experienced the joy of stigma lifting.
However, I experience depression, I guess–but I have lots of happy hours, too, so I don’t completely know what to think about that.
Although attitudes change, I know my father loathes the thought that I would speak of such a thing as depression. In fact, that I publish something like this might bother him. That being said, I am trying to be honest with some enthusiasm about a delicate subject of conversation.
It bothers many people. Troubles of that kind can strike virtually anyone. I would suspect it conceals innate unhappiness and is often a response to external troubles.
I don’t perceive there is a terrible stigma around depression. However, it is not the best idea to make small talk about the problem. Complaining rarely works much of a beneficial result.
Channeling your energy into a positive outlet can be the experience that reverses the more difficult symptoms of a common malaise, depression. Everyone knows that happiness is much preferable.
As I explained, The Little Mermaid is an established blogger who this month thought the theme of happiness would fit her tea party series. Her posts invite networking for the love of blogging. Happiness, I think, for me, is satisfaction.
I believe people ought to be happy. That’s what I reflect upon when I’m thinking of such a matter.
Happiness is a mellow joy, I would extrapolate. The decisions opted in the course of one’s day help the individual experience what’s happy for that individual. Youtuber Jenna Marbles has thought about it. My Dogs Try On Halloween Costumes
A guilty pleasure.
I might think of happiness being connected to straight-up artistic endeavors. There are numerous hobbies that spark happiness, like loyalty to a pastime, such as to baseball, to hockey, or to the NFL.
Friends and family are other enriching aspects of happiness. Sometimes, though, you have to sit on the sidelines, waiting for another opportunity to step up to bat.
In this hemisphere, we’ve seen the summer come and go again and now, where I live that is, the temperatures will get colder and colder. We have Halloween to look forward to, which for a lot of people is literally a “scream”. I suppose that’s a pun.
Wednesday this week I asked how winter time is for a volunteer where I work. He told me in turn how little pleasure he gets from the severity of the winter season. I said a little to try to cheer him up, but his feelings about the season were steadfastly downbeat.
It helps, I would venture to say, that if you can narrow down your interests to just a few to focus on, I believe, you may get a better outcome. That way, you are more invested emotionally in what you pursue. Therefore the rewards spent in delving into your passions are rewards that you have generated in your life and reflect sincerity.
You don’t necessarily want to just trade your time for money, which is a basic approach to your work that might not be completely serving you best. I realize you probably have the responsibilities of being part of a family that necessitates and requires you to work at making some kind of living. It is just that if you can do something radical and retain everything you need, and I know that’s not easy, but if you can, I believe it is more fulfilling than if you don’t.
You shouldn’t look back at what you have accomplished and feel there is nothing more you should do. You need to keep growing every year of your life, I believe.
I write this blog because written content continues to have value in 2018. So does video content and audio, as you probably know, probably more so. I wish I had more opportunities to expand what I can do where content is concerned that is assembled myself and published.
Blogging’s one of my favorite hobbies. My efforts are almost entirely done for free and yet I don’t wish to cease them.
I wish I had clearer intentions about what I am doing. Maybe I can explore how to get to a more promising level of achievement without sacrificing the parts of the tasks that I enjoy the most.
One last thing: I was speaking to a young man and admired his research ability for searching the Internet. He told me he was sure it seemed special to me but he clarified in that conversation this month that everyone similar to him, his age, is equal to him in terms of the ability he has to research. I suppose that is true, but I hadn’t been aware of that.
I think one of my draws is that I can do research, but perhaps I need to stop and think that my niece in Grade 3 may now be similarly competent at doing research to my own ability. It’s incredible.
While the preceding example is an exaggeration, I remember that when I wanted a sales job years and years ago, I was asked to take a pen-and-paper test to demonstrate my competence as a computer user. Given my weak results writing the test paper, the office showed me the door. I didn’t get the job because I couldn’t prove that day, all that time ago, that I was adept with a computer.
I may not have been much good then, but I hope that by now, much later in life, I am better outfitted to better qualify for any kind of work that needs me to prove I am tech-savvy.
By the way, this month, October, is Inktober. I don’t have tattoos, but an interesting interpretation is to apply the month’s emphasis on “ink” to how it applies to old-school tabletop roleplaying. An ink-drawn map is often part of a tabletop RPG.
The game I am most interested in is Pathfinder, so occasionally this month I am returning to Pathfinder game materials to read rules of the game with the idea in mind that the game is usually played with ink-drawn maps. I’ve never played the game properly, but even reading some of the rules sometimes helps put me in a state of mind I enjoy.
Thank you for visiting my post. Of course, you’re welcome to “like,” comment, and/or “follow.”
December 2017 my brother and his wife and kids gave me an unusual gift for Christmas, a puzzle game celebrating The Beatles’ music The White Album. It is unusual mainly for the fact that the cover of The White Album is entirely the color white, which makes the puzzle an exercise in assembling puzzle pieces all the color white. It is as if the wrong end of a game of chess game came down on you.
I think of The Beatles being a radical success in music history, given the enormity of their popularity, even decades later.However, how does that view of The Beatles relate to contemporary ideas about success, and how it is won?
I have ten reasons I’m suggesting that success like what The Beatles enjoyed is actually a weak link in terms of what it means for the individual to pursue preconceived notions of success and how it is misleading. The first four were presented in a previous blog post. The remaining six are presented here.
Netflix is the leader of the pack, I believer, for video streaming. They devote an enormous budget to original content and their selection of existing content is good. That being said, Disney is entering the streaming video service market soon, as is AT&T, I understand. Netflix in my region is compatible with my TiVo, as is another video streaming service, the free video streaming site Tubi. The selection on Tubi is big, but they don’t offer original video. Both Netflix and Tubi are compatible with my TiVo, but the selection of videos on Netflix is good and for Tubi, not so much. I want to step out of the chain of logic to ask if that implies that Tubi is a weak link. Netflix is a completely enjoyable experience if you watch video and Tubi is an extra addition to the TiVo I watch TV with. It isn’t too hard to say which could be better assessed to be a radical success in the future. That being said, while Netflix needs to make a lot of important decisions before the day is done to remain ahead of the curve, Tubi is probably under far less pressure. Does Tubi’s relative weak link status mean that it isn’t a success? It is free.
Going forward with the theory that radical success means enormous difficulty, consider the contender that could grab much of Netflix’ market share, Disney. Disney is certain, given its weight as an entertainment brand, to include great films and shows, being known for its films, television, toys and theme parks.
Which of the two, Netflix or Disney, will be more of the radical success–that a good streaming service can be? Or will they both amount to great success? Disney has built in family-appeal given its products for both adults and kids alike; Netflix has been building that kind of appeal from scratch. Will either Netflix or Disney be a weak link? It seems important to me that entertainment be good when it is accessed or experienced.
It would be a shame, I think, for the bottom to fall out of Netflix if it were to become a weak link given competition. Netflix has a reputation for spending extravagant amounts of money on shows and films while not necessarily having a concrete plan in place to recoup its expenditures. As I said, Disney already has an enormous built-in capacity for success in the future, in addition to plans for its new streaming service
3. I started this post by saying there is a fiftieth-anniversary release of The White Album coming 11/9. From what I understand about music streaming services, Spotify has a great conversion rate bringing customers from free use of Spotify to the premium version. I would ask if taken to task whether Spotify will be a “weak link.”
From what I can tell, the selection of music with Spotify is wonderful. I’ve never actually searched for The Beatles, but I am sure they are there. The selection is good. I have fewer specifics on hand, but I wouldn’t appreciate seeing Spotify become relegated to “weak link” status, as it seems to be an awesome service.
It is understood that The Beatles essentially recorded The White Album live to 8-track tape, and for everything they’d done in the name of their music they were in fact recording music that would be a bit of a farewell to their fans. If less scrutiny was being given to the music emerging on The White Album, would The Beatles have lasted longer and recorded songs for longer than they did? I think it is possible, for when something is intended to be “perfect,” it is often a departure the way a pinnacle climbed must then be descended.
4. If you are following this argument, you can guess that the weak link I’m referring to is the President of the United States. I don’t like to posit criticism of the United States or its politics, but an example of someone about who there is much to decry that could be a weak link is the President.
As he is someone who was a TV star, I think it is worth mentioning here the radical success that he is known for enjoying and how at the same time the President has mounting problems that he is both a radical success, being wealthy and commanding power, but also a “weak link” in that he could bring down the whole show if he is not effective. President Trump has a knack for appearing with ferocious emphasis again and again in the news, and yet he faces so much criticism and real-life repercussions and consequences that I think he makes a great example of a “weak link” who is at the same time a radical success.
The President brings to mind so many components and elements of radical success gone wrong that it is becoming clearer all the time that the President of the United States is an extremely divisive man. Donald Trump Says China Remix
Motivated to Entrepreneurship
5. The ninth reason I want to assert that a weak link can be very much undermining is the idea that if you begin to succeed as an entrepreneur you can find yourself under more pressure than you ever anticipated facing. Making money is many people’s idea of success, but you have to put in years of work to make dreams come true. And in this scenario, ironically, you yourself could be the weakest link if you don’t meet obstacles well.
Unless you keep improving, day in and day out, you could end up being the weak link in your organization simply owing to the fact that your luck could change. If you have found a strategy that makes you King Midas, turning everything you touch to gold, if all of a sudden your luck changes, you may now be suddenly in a seat of weakness. The Secret to Self-Motivation | Gary Vaynerchuk’s GREATEST Motivational Speech Ever!
You need to keep improving and being good. Everything that took you somewhere is behind you; you have to continue to make great decisions. I suspect you’ll see for yourself if you falter.
6. The final reason I want to take back to Geeks + Gamers. If you have someone, like Jeremy, who has more than one channel on YouTube, who is comfortable discussing games, films, and sports, a very articulate individual, who sees success coming from YouTube, from a Facebook group, from Twitch I suppose, who challenges who is at the top, as with The Last Jedi remaining a highly successful film, however vocal its detractors, I think it is a philosophical note to say that if you are at that pinnacle I referenced above, there is any number of reasons your descent will be hastened by those who come after you. You have to reach that pinnacle in excellent form; and you have to leave it in such a way that it endures, that there could be a fifty-anniversary, that there could be another billion-dollar blockbuster, that there could be a second term. This is all vital, from a philosophical standpoint, what must be done if radical success, like the kind that spreads all around the globe, is to be achieved and then preserved. CLICKBAIT : A YOUTUBE STORY
I was amused by the Christmas gift last year of The White Album puzzle game I got from my brother and his family. If you have read this, please feel free to “like,” “follow,” and/or comment.
Too much stress, “bad” stress, can weaken you, deplete your resources and waste scarce time if you are not dealing with your lifestyle well. Everybody endures stress.
Getting older, I believe that lifestyles of Generation Z are significantly common, but I am from a small town. It is important to obey the Biblical commandment, to honor thy mother and father. As the father did before you, if you are of a certain age, you too need to heed that you are following appropriately in his steps.
That being said, there is lightness. I think with a touch of envy of the comparative ease of the generation of young people often collectively referred to as Generation Z. That doesn’t mean that I can compete with the energy of the young and of the attitudes which characterize them, different than for someone my age.
Someone like me, I feel, is part of a culture that values stress, that putting a great deal of work into a lifetime is a necessity. There’s nothing wrong with that.
However, it means fulltime people endure an enormous amount of stress. The more hours of work we take on, to make ends meet, the more stress we cope with.
I believe stress can easily bend one to its will rather than the other way round. It is all very hard to manage.
In the film sequence preceding the climax of the 1978 feature film Superman, Lex Luthor conquers Superman with a chain of Kryptonite, until Superman makes a personal promise to Luthor’s beautiful assistant in order that she remove the powerful amulet–but a promise that puts at risk the woman who has his heart, Lois Lane. All in all, it is an excellent film.
What I did, in my life, is an irregular passage through the years. In 2008 when my employer closed its doors, I went on to work a part-time job while reflecting on what to do with my future Then I went full time on government disability, as it was felt that I’d been “compromised” enough to give up on making a living through the avenue of work.
I had been reading some books on self-management and I didn’t think the stress of a new workplace was going to benefit me enough to do it.
A few years later, my father, perhaps frustrated by my reluctance, had an idea. He was retiring from many years with a municipal cemetery, where he’d helped manage it from its offices.
A small cemetery in our town was searching for new operators. It attracted him, and the trustees of that property were pleased to turn it over to him, so that he could direct it, pleased to have a focus in his retirement.
To my surprise, my dad invited me to help handle the operation of the cemetery. We commenced in 2011. The church at the cemetery, formerly of the United Church of Canada, had disbanded in 2006.
We maintain the property ourselves, and work in the interior of the church in dire weather, setting our sights on attending to the cemetery once a week. We made a not-for-profit out of it. While I am junior, and there is no certainty how matters will proceed, in the seven years or so, lucky seven, that we’ve handled the cemetery, it has been a luxury of time and experience for me and an opportunity to enjoy the company of my father in his golden years.
We have had outside help from brothers of my father, my uncles. On a few brief occasions we have talked about growth, but I don’t know if I can turn this venture into something in which I can continue in the long-term. This post is intended to be expository writing, but working for a not-for-profit, when financial gains are generally hard-won, can lead to burnout, and to a minor degree that is what I am experiencing.
You see, I contribute several hours a week of work to the cemetery, and as my dad has spoken reassuringly of the flexibility to set our own hours, I have lately started to reduce my workload to a four-day week rather than a five-day.
I can’t help, for example, but want to relax on Saturday. I think the decision to work less on Fridays is somewhat deleterious in that if you want to get ahead, you should probably be hustling with the same energy on a Friday that you do on a Monday.
I couldn’t help, in the past several weeks, to admit that the stress of putting nonprofit work at the center of my life, was making me feel a touch sick, by which I mean I was experiencing burnout. I am sure this is common.
Whether this transition, to four days of focus on the cemetery rather than on each and every business day, will contribute to a soul-searching decision by my dad to relieve me of my work, I don’t know. I think what will determine my chances of staying on are the quality of work I can produce in the time I devote to the not-for-profit.
How this has me feeling, perhaps, “sick,” is that I do care about working and I do feel some prestige enjoying the privilege of doing work that is shaped by our own efforts. This is in contrast to working for a firm that is structured in predictable ways, with employee equity and positions and demands which could easily contribute to a high-stress load.
I am taking this risk because I believe I can do better work if I make strategies to cope with the burnout before there are related consequences. I am counting on my own experience and abilities to do the same quality of work in a four-day structure than I would be getting done by committing the entirety of the work week to headway and progress.
I am sick to think of losing what I have worked for, and I am sick to think of bringing shame onto my father if the quality of my work does suffer because I am having trouble being afield of all that we do. I feel like I should write something about feeling troubled by what I have to do to manage my role as operator, and maybe even think on how I could express an appropriate apology for how I am feeling.
Writing is the act of discovery. – Natalie Goldberg
If my father does finally decide, which I know he won’t do lightly, that I should be dismissed, it will be a sad day and for that, I will pay a price, of having the failure on my shoulders. If that scenario comes to pass I will take time to mend. It may be a self-centered attitude, but the best that can be done in the face of failure is to learn from what happened.
Everyone has experienced failure, and usually many, many times, sometimes with adverse consequences.
If you have never failed, you have stayed well inside your comfort zone. Life needs to change and grow.
If my role in the not-for-profit does end in failure, I will at least have work experience. I think I can draw on the time spent at this to draw conclusions that will inform my life in the future. The situation that I think could result, however, is not going to be completely ideal.
It will be back to being “sick,” resorting to making ends meet with the help of a pension for disability, and with the support of my mom and dad. Ain’t no one got time for that. I will have then have the opportunity to look for a job if I feel I can weather the stress, or return to freelancing and try to find my niche doing that.
Many members of Generation Z work as freelancers in the digital economy, and I would be competing with all of those people, which is daunting. That being said, there are a few paths ahead for me to take and I will have to ask for guidance from fate and the intentions of The Lord. I know I shouldn’t emphasize feeling sick about all this and I know I shouldn’t take on a job post that gives me more additional stress than I can handle.
For now, I will bide my time–for as much clarity as I can muster.
You are welcome to like, follow, and/or comment if you have feedback. Lately, the blog has been fairly quiet, in terms of visits it receives, but you never know when some I’ve published here will pique the interest of a reader.
I appreciate the time of those who are visitors. I have been tying my blog to the not-for-profit, and also trying to be jovial as I know it is as yet an amateur effort. I feel blogging will continue to play a role in the time I have to write, as it is a splendid little spot of fun that has a pragmatic purpose.
A blogger on WordPress had a great idea for a splendid blog post and I want to indulge it–WordPress blogger The Little Mermaid is having her second-ever “tea party.”
The Little Mermaid, on one hand, is a Disney film character, who you have probably seen in the animated feature if you have an interest in Disney. My own family has the videotape of the film because I have a younger sister. In Disney’s The Little Mermaid, Ariel, seeks her escape from the sea, but, furthermore, The Little Mermaid is the name of a blogger who has had a delightful idea, that being to host WordPress “tea parties.”
The Little Mermaid writes that her first tea party, last month, was open-ended in terms of what content she wanted to read, but for August, The Little Mermaid has invited participants to post about books they enjoy, about which I thought I could circuitously add something to the conversation.
I am late in any case, but I’ve joined in by enjoying some of the tea party guests’ blog responses and by weblogging the August invite to the tea party and tweeting it.
As to what books I might read, most often I enjoy nonfiction, on such a subject as the business behind Google, for example, or of the blockchain. Another kind of book I enjoy is the type that references techniques and strategies for personal change and success. I like both physical volumes and books on my Kindle.
As I’m sure you’re aware, the accessibility of books in 2018 is completely staggering. If you are a full-ahead author on the Internet I think you know that Twitter has seen a gold rush of self-published titles.
The last book I got to read is not of this kind, however, not an eBook. It is, in fact, a book that is near-academic, but interesting all the same. The title is DIGITAL GOLD, written by Nathaniel Popper. It is the story of the development of Blockchain and Bitcoin.
The blockchain is, I understand, a mega-trend. I wanted to come to an understanding of what blockchain is about. The blockchain is the process of cryptocurrency mining that could dramatically affect the long-term value of data currencies like bitcoin.
All about bitcoin’s origins and its eventual emergence and success, Popper’s book interested me quite a bit. I found it very satisfactory.
Reflecting in a different light, my favorite book isn’t nonfiction; it’s instead a famous novel. Its appeal is legendary. I have read it a couple of times, the perennial favorite The Stranger by the late Albert Camus.
This novel of Camus’ is an existential novel, in terms of its thematic elements, with the plot about a man who grieves his late mother in a markedly strange way, which you might characterize as embittered and perhaps confused, too.
Existentialist fiction usually tackles questions of the meaning of life, such as in The Stranger, looking at why the main character’s grief is necessary and how it is that it’s enacted in the character’s specific manner after his mother’s death.
Reflecting again more on what makes a good novel, I think I’d argue that the most overrated book I ever read is Casino Royale, by the late Brit Ian Fleming. Casino Royale, Fleming’s first novel about MI6 agent James Bond, 007, is the spy appearing in the film adaptation of the Fleming novel starring Daniel Craig as 007. While Casino Royale is certainly an agreeable read, to think that with its publication one of the most successful film franchises ever would result, including film roles by several actors playing the character James Bond, leads me to characterize Casino Royale as perhaps indeed overrated.
Casino Royale is about the spy 007 targeting an enemy’s gambling habits in order to complicate the enemy’s financial resources at the casino tables, thus rendering him less effective an enemy. That Ian Fleming wrote the enemy as a Russian, I believe, is prescient of today’s turbulent world scene.
Fleming was drawing inspiration from the historical Cold War, and that is why the sign is there, that Le Chiffre, the name of the villain who 007 challenges at the card tables in Casino Royale, is Russian. Even the other day, August 21, the Trump administration’s Paul Manafort was demolished for his thieving and his conspiring with Russian political agents.
What You Feel, You Can Heal
To go on, The Little Mermaid tactfully asks in her August tea party blog post the question of which book most distinctly impacted your life. It is of a personal nature, to name a book that positively impacted you, but I think of What You Feel, You Can Heal, John Gray’s first book, published in the nineteen-nineties. When I was a twenty-something I sat in at a conference to hear a speaker give his thoughts on wellbeing. The gentleman gave advice on dealing with personal difficulties–he recommended John Gray.
Gray’s best-known book (and there are a series of them) is Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus, a book about relationships. You know the speaker at the conference referred to social relationships suggesting something like that. It isn’t Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus that interested me, although I subsequently read that one a couple of times. Gray’s first book, What You Feel, You Can Heal, is about goalsetting through one’s lifetime and other matters of positive productivity, impacting me much more substantially than Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus.
John Gray, though young when he wrote What You Feel, You Can Heal, is recounting what he learned before emerging as an author. He fleshes out his view of several stages of life that Gray observes in many other people, all at once in What You Feel, You Can Heal, bringing these ideas together to form this book.
The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy
One last note: although it may seem juvenile, while not expressly for young adults, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, by the late Douglas Adams, and the four novels Adams wrote to follow his success, are the books I would most earnestly recommend to someone new. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy is funny and strange, a blend of science fiction and humor.
Both in the novel and in the film adaptation, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy is the story of hapless Brit Arthur Dent, who hitchhikes to the stars the day that the Vogons, who are dimwitted, horrible monsters, demolish the Earth. From there it is up to Arthur to get by in travels through the skies.
“The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” is a resource Arthur has to comprehend his troubles: the Guide is an encyclopedia describing everything in the universe. It is as if Douglas Adams, though writing for comic purposes, foresaw the development of the world wide web.
I have enjoyed The Little Mermaid’s tea party and I wish her well, as I do everybody else who thought to join in. I appreciate every opportunity I have to contribute, and when there is some response to something I have written, I am always flattered. You are welcome to “like,” follow, and/or comment as you see fit. See you in September!