Tuesday, August 21, 2007

General Nonsense

Well, I sat down to pound out another article on the weekend's events, but can't quite decide on what angle to take on it yet so as I begin this post, I have absolutely no clue what this entry will be about. I could go with the first thing that pops into my head, but the only thing that immediately registers is something I saw a little while ago at the grocery store. For some reason, I glanced over at an older gentleman in the line next to me when I saw his face contort into a pained grimace as he reached into his back pocket and pulled out a handkerchief. Getting the piece of cloth to his nose just in time, he then let out a violently explosive sneeze into it then set about examining the piece of fabric for what I judged to be an inordinately long amount of time.
Granted there are not a lot of things in the supermarket check-out line to keep a person occupied, but there have got to be better ways to amuse oneself than studying nasal discharge as if you are going to be tested on it once you reach the cashier. I could not help but wonder what he was looking for so intently but in the end I decided that it must have been brain tissue. Judging from the man's appearance and the ease with which he entertained himself I could see how losing gray matter through his nostrils might have been a real concern, especially if it had happened before. If I once recovered from a particularly vicious sneeze to find that I had lost my ability to do arithmetic, I guess I would be checking the house for stray synapses as well.
As I put a bit more thought into this, I can't help but think of what men of my generation do in similar situations. We do not carry handerkerchiefs anymore so when we feel a sneeze coming on, how do we handle it? Trying to recollect my last great sneeze in a public place, I have to say that I put my bare hand over my nose, being careful that my palm was not exposed to my nostrils' line of fire, pointed my head away from any person that looked as if they had a short temper and a debilitating right hook and fired away. I guess if I had the time I would look for an amusing target that I could outrun in case anything actually escaped but there usually is not a lot of advance notice when this type of opportunity arises.
Great. I sit down to do a train-of-thought writing exercise and just managed to write 437 words on snot. This is exactly the type of thing that convinces me that I will never write professionally. I really need to work on subject matter discipline.
What is encouraging however, is that The JEP Report seems to be generating a bit of renewed interest of late. The visit count is up and I can see that people visiting are reading, and reading quite a bit at that. In the blogging world, the number of people who visit your site and the amount of comments you receive is kind of like currency and it may be a bit narcissistic, but that is what motivates bloggers to write. We are definately not in it for the money.
And speaking about that, I am also pleased to report that The JEP Report store actually made a profit this quarter. It did not make enough for Cafepress to send me a check, but you still get a sense of accomplishment for having someone attach enough worth to something you've created to actually pay money for it. Anyway, I added a couple of products to it to celebrate if you want to check it out. The link is to your right.
Speaking of the right, I learned some basic html today and created a couple of other link categories. Beneath the link to The JEP Report store, I have added a "Reader Sites" catagory. In the past I was reluctant to do this for two reasons. First, blogs have a tendency to disappear just as quickly as they are created so my links would be obsolete from the moment they were posted. Second, the subject matter is usually much different than what is found here. Still, people who read this stuff invest a lot of time doing so (thanks to me being very long winded), so I wanted them to get something in return.
Inflammable Hamster is a blog that, as far as I can tell is documenting Alan The Great's attempts to blow himself up using commercial fireworks. He's kind of disturbed. He dispenses some good blogging advice though and I will take this opportunity to dispense some advice right back to him: It's not funny if you actually blow yourself to smithereens...unless you make the Darwin Awards.
RightMichigan is a political blog that I have found rather interesting. Granted, The JEP Report enjoys a very international audience base so I do not know how much appeal its regional focus will have here, but I would reccomend checking it out if you are inclined that way. It had a recent article using a muppet character to point out the governor's recent trip to Sweden so it has promise.
And then there is the "Great Writing" section for the word nerds. Where the Hell Was I? is currently on hiatus but with 1200 posts, there is plenty to read. If you like The JEP Report, you'll definately like Charlie Hatton's site. Until this month, the guy was completely immune from writer's block.
And finally, I have to point out the MySpace page for the Mighty Josephine, Sacto Ritch's band in California. I actually stumbled across this by accident since Ritch never mentioned anything to me about it and quite frankly, they are awesome! I have taken to listening to "Southern Cross" on a regular basis and think it has great potential as an internet indie rock sensation. Solo, if you're out there and still posting music clips, you're going to have to check this one out.
Well, that should do it. It's ten o'clock and work comes early. Adieu.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

The new version of blogger is faster loading, and includes an automatic links bar / other sidebar nonsense generator. Stops the annoying text overlap.

Thanks for the nod, may I mention that these are also highly illegal fireworks in Canada. Guns are fine, but bottle rockets are just plain dangerous. Oddly enough, though, bottle rockets are perfectly okay if they're launched out of a tube. Which basically makes them guns.

8:14 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for the plug James! We just got back to Sacto. I had a great time and my kid wants to know where uncle Jim is. I never even refered to you as "uncle" He also wants me to do the potato thing over and over. Oh well, at least he hasn't asked me to give him some... in a crowded restaurant yet. The "photos" will be sent your way soon.


9:56 AM  
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2:14 PM  

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