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Archive for the ‘Blogging on bloggers’ Category

Well, it’s bound to be. Or else, it’s not dangerous per se (annoying phrase and possibly miss-spelled but I’m too tired to think of another one) but ‘studies’ somewhere, at some point, will show that too much of it (breathing), or doing it in a manner other than a technique prescribed by experts and approved of by the government, is not only life-threatening but dangerous to others — especially unborn babies.  This threat will have a name which begins with the word ‘passive’. If you continue to get your breathing wrong and fail to take advice  you will then be a social pariah and a child-killer, just because you didn’t listen to the experts  — whose livelihoods largely depend on them drawing our attention to how everything will kill us and how we are (passively) killing everyone else.

They’re on about ‘environmentally-friendly’ lightbulbs now and how they may be a threat to health. Of course. I’m sorry to gloat but I’m glad it’s something that was previously on the ‘approved’ list (in fact, I’m almost certain that ‘they’ — raving environmentalists — were getting ready to force us to use these type of lightbulbs to the exclusion of all others).  Zealots can never admit they were wrong, though, so they’ll probably issue some statements saying that any damning study was flawed (but all studies which support their views are, of course, totally spot-on and cannot be questioned).

I tried to get a carrier bag to carry home my shopping this week and had to face an interrogation by a supermarket cashier, who wasn’t even impressed by my defense that I had brought my own bag but couldn’t fit everything in, as I’d bought some products which were on a special two-for-one offer (in an attempt to keep myself and loved-ones out of the poorhouse). I pleaded my case as best I could but she didn’t care that I would have to struggle home on public transport with bananas sticking out my coat pocket or that my half-price bloomer would be flattened to the size of a pancake by the time I got through my front door. She was a member of the bag-police and had right on her side. My only consolation was that she had horribly misshapen rabbit teeth. As she lectured me and gave me the evil eye, all I could think was: rabbit, rabbit, rabbit; orthodontist, orthodontist, orthodontist… The tooth thing had probably warped her mind and ruined her life — I might have been doing her a favour if I had punched her teeth out right there and then (only joking, Word Police).

You can read more about all the lightbulb business over at The World’s Gone Mad. I love that blog. Sometimes I get so mad about things that I can hardly speak about them, let alone write about them. And sometimes I get so annoyed that I’m beside myself and we look at each other and don’t know what to think. It’s then that I head over to the ‘Gone Mad’ blog to find out what Billy Seggars has to say about things. Billy usually has a nicely controlled rant but manages to stay witty and coherent throughout.

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Miss Doxie doesn’t write on her blog that often these days but posts like Cookie and the Geese make the wait so worthwhile.

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I blog a lot about fashion and I sometimes wonder if that makes me a superficial and shallow person (though, what I really worry about is the possibilty of breaking a nail whilst typing my little style-related pieces).

Anyway, I’ve been blogging about it over here at the oppostion (blogger). I’m not that relaxed over there yet but it’s a new blog and I’ll get used to it in time.

By the way — don’t you just love The I.T. Crowd on Channel 4?

Yes, I know that — like me — you hardly get a second to watch television — especially on a Friday night — but if you did just happen to ‘catch’ it — don’t you think it’s heading to be a bit of a comedy classic?

But I do have a liking for geek-type men. There’s a kind of an innocence about them that I find oddly appealling. I have to say that — I’m dependent on at least two of them to keep me on-track with all this computer stuff. And I keep them in line with regard to not leaving home looking like they’ve slept in their clothes for a week.

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I’ve just been through the Hell-on-Earth that is the (all round pain in the arse) procedure required to put a post on Blogger. I know everyone and their cat can do it with ease but we’re talking about me here. I’ve probably already mentioned my missing computer gene at some point in the past year – and it is true that it did take me about two months to work out how to put an image on WordPress and then at least a further three months to work out how Categories are meant to work (I still haven’t got that right) but WordPress is a piece of cake compared to Blogger.

I read somewhere that — in terms of being user-friendly — Blogger is better for newbies, but I just don’t get it. My big problem is the positioning of images, especially trying to re-position them or even cut them out altogether. I just don’t find Blogger idiot-proof and it needs to be (because of my missing gene).

rustlers.jpg   The reason I’m trying out Blogger is that WordPress.com frowns on anything of a commercial nature and I can’t really write about anything business-related here. I do have a WordPress.org blog but that is supposed to be reserved for business purposes only and I’d like to have a blog where I can mix a bit of both, if that makes sense. Why is my life so complicated? And why are Rustlers Flame Grilled Quarter Pounder with Cheese becoming so hard to come by in Sainsburys? Almost definitely due to that Gillian McKeith woman or those of her ilk.

Anyway – the new blog is Larkin & Catcher’s Very Best Things – not much there to read yet, but there will be a veritable deluge soon enough.
 

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A relatively new blog but I like this man’s style – and it’s good to have yet another blogger drawing attention to the growing power of the Health Fascists and Thought Police.

Billy Seggars — The World’s Gone Mad

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I’d forgotten about my Best Blogs category and to be quite honest I think I’m reluctant to single out blogs here, as I have so very many favourites. So if you’re mentioned here consider yourself honoured and very special. I have to write this post fairly quickly, as I want to get everything done before the start of Big Brother 8.
Oh, don’t start – you know you’ll be watching it sooner of later and you might as well get in at the beginning.

The housemates are bound to be nervous this year, though. It’s got to be Walking On Eggshells time, after what happened with the last Celebrity Big Brother — that really was too uncomfortable to watch. But I hope they’re not going to be excessively nice to each other this time — not that I’m hoping for any real vindictiveness and bile but it’s just not the same without a good dose of bitching, bickering and backstabbing. Unfortunately, it’s on at the same time as The Apprentice, so I’m going to set-up two televisions side by side, so I can watch both. What a good idea, you are thinking. That is what you are thinking?

Anyway, back to Best Blogs. I’m posting two today (to catch-up on my backlog) and the first is Dad Gone Mad. I’ve only just found that one and nearly missed it, as the title almost put me off – I tend to avoid blogs with the words Mum or Dad in the title, for some reason. The ‘Mad Dad’ is Danny Evans and — although he writes with a bit too much enthusiasm on his nose-picking habit for my liking – he’s definitely going to be a permanent feature on my favourites list. Danny is laugh-out-loud funny, for a start, and I love bloggers who make me laugh. His writing is intelligent and honest and he just comes across as a likeable, genuine person (even if he does write about sport now and again – but I’m letting him off on that, as he’s an ex-sports writer). And he complains a lot too, which I love. I’ll have to complain more here; I’m too easy-going. Just wait until I start – there’ll be no stopping me.

The other Best Blog is Miss Doxie. I’ve been reading Miss Doxie’s blog for ages but it wasn’t until I saw her mentioned on Danny’s site that I remembered to put her in my Best Blogs category. Actually, I’m quite proud of the fact that I’m including Miss Doxie on my list, because it shows that I’m not eaten up and bitter with envy about someone who clearly has bucketloads of talent and who is sickeningly photogenic. But one of the very best things about Miss Doxie is that she doesn’t take herself too seriously and seems to have had a vanity by-pass, so it’s easy to forgive the fact that the Gods have bestowed their bounty on her with such generosity (whilst giving certain other people a body-swerve).

Miss Doxie is an attorney by day and a super-witty blogger in her spare time. She’s also an artist and has recently opened a shop (which I write about here) to sell her artwork. Go buy some of her stuff and have a look at mine while you’re at it – I’ll really have to start plugging Larkin & Catcher a lot more. I’ve been way too reluctant when it comes to self-promotion but ecommerce is a jungle and I need to be a bit more pushy if I want to put a dent in the machine.

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You’ve just got to get over to Go Fug Yourself and have a look at their Freaky Fug Friday: The Pussycat Dolls post. Totally spot-on — especially their Babybel cheese observation. Those Fugly girls just get better and better.

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It’s true, Stitchy McYarnpants from The Museum of Kitschy Stitches has been nominated for a Webby. Remember her Christmas Craptacular? You must, because I wrote about it here ages ago and I know you hang on to my every word.

I’ve just voted for her on the People’s Voice  site AND I left a comment on Stitchy’s site. I don’t know what’s come over me, but I getting brave and losing my shyness. Those Webby people have put Stitchy in the ‘Weird’ section, though.  Bloody cheek — Stitchy is as normal as you or I.

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I’ve been so busy trying to set up my new damn router that I missed the fact that this blog has been around a whole year now. Which is no big deal to anybody but me.  In fact, when I think about it, it’s no big deal to me either. But I enjoy writing here, so I think I’ll be hanging around for a good while yet.

When I first started out here, I was checking my stats incessantly and then some. I’m still stat-checking way too much but a lot less than in the early days. But I do think I’ve got something not too far off Obsessive Compulsive Disorder when it comes to the whole ‘checking’ business. It’s not just 2planets but also my other websites, my emails, the forums I visit and (especially) the Google Adwords account I use for a commercial site. Most of this checking seems to be done without very much conscious attention and sometimes I realise I’ve not even registered what the stats actually are.

I did a quick Google search and it wasn’t too much of a surprise to find out that I’m not alone when it comes to excessive stat-checking. Some people are totally obsessed with their stats and can check them dozens of times a day. Made me feel a lot better – but then I noticed some of the stats they were quoting: ‘around a 1000 a day’, ‘usually 500-700 a day – but I’ve only been going about 3 weeks…’, ‘up to 4000 uniques’.

Stroll on – the one and only day I hit 200 visitors (a fluke) I thought I’d died and gone to heaven. Well, not really, but it did give me a little boost. So I started reading about some of the strategies people suggest for increasing blog visitors (other than having interesting/topical content and good writing skills) and I realised I’m a total novice when it comes to blog promotion — I’ve done nothing, other than add this blog to a handful of blog directories.

I’m not sure yet if I will be employing any of the strategies I’ve been reading about. I’ve got mixed feelings about the whole business of ‘promoting’ a blog and why visitor numbers should be that important in the first place. I think I’d be a lot less relaxed about writing here if I knew it was going to be read by a large number of people and I’d feel pressured to keep up some (admittedly, non-existent) standard when it comes to what I write. I wonder if the writers of hugely popular blogs enjoy their blogging as much as they did in the days when they were just starting off and if they now feel more pressured to ‘produce the goods’.

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I’ve just remembered I’m supposed to be writing about shoes this week.  Here are a couple of pairs that I actually like — both from the Eley Kishimoto spring/summer 2007 collection.

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The top pair have a kind of retro 1970’s look about them, I feel, and the shape and styling of the second pair might be reminiscent of the 1940’s era. The Eley Kishimoto website doesn’t have an online shopping facility yet, but you can buy the strappy pair at ASOS for £160. It might mean not eating for a month but, if you can still stand, you’re feet will love you for it.

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I’m supposed to be going out in about two seconds but I’m dropping (practically) everything to point you to the Hat’s Off post by Mark Freeland at DrWhose. It has been said (by me) that I’m obsessed by DrWhose and I’m not even denying it.

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