Sheengazing Awards 2014 – thank you, and you could vote

A hearty thank you to whomever nominated me for a Sheengazing award. When I got the e-mail I was puzzled, because my first thought was “Martin Sheen? I can’t even remember what movie it was . . .”   Oops.  That would be: Bishop Fulton.  If you happen to think that of all the under-appreciated blogs on the roster, mine is the best, feel free to vote for me.

The nice thing about being nominated to the UAB category, is that no matter where you end up in the final tally, you’re affirmed in your status as an under-appreciated person.  Am I the most under-appreciated?  The least appreciated of the under-appreciated?  Something in between?  We’ll know 9pm Monday.

Google Share Drama, Episode 3: Twitter

Ha.  Using my special idiot powers, I, um, forgot about Twitter.  Made myself a new twitter account JenFitz_Reads devoted to just tweeting links to stuff I’ve read and liked.  Put a feed in my sidebar, and of course those desperate to know what I’m reading can subscribe directly. [Update, if you already subscribe to my regular twitter compendium, I just set up the reading list to flow into that one.  So don’t follow both.]

A little clunkier than the old share button, but it works, and it double-works for things I find not in Reader.  (Or Bloglines, which I experimented with).  For the moment I’m using the Diigolet share button for things that don’t have a tweet button of their own.  Maybe there is an easier way?

We’ll see how it goes.

And yes.  OCD.  Must. promote. good. writing.  Quarter break ends soon.  The internet will be happier I’m sure.

Google-Share Drama, Episode 2

Here’s a link to the very helpful info Entropy recommended at Melissa Wiley’s site.  Some good ideas (in addition to what Julie & Sarah mentioned bleg combox.)  Hey and wow, another great blog to read while I’m at it.  Yay.


What’s the big deal about the Google change?  Here’s what I wrote in Melissa’s combox when I thanked her for the info:

Thank you for posting this!  I’m feeling the pain of not being able to share posts anymore.  I don’t like to do my topic-sharing on the social networks, because most of what I read and write about on the internet is politics and religion, two topics that don’t mesh well with my very diverse real-life set of friends. So I keep FB and the like purely cocktail-party talk, and if people want to know more about what I think, they can click on my website link.

I don’t have a double life on the internet anymore than I do in real life.  But I do try (no seriously, I do try) not to be a jerk and a bore.  My real-life friends are very kind, considerate people who make a point of not ramming some topic down my throat that I don’t care to debate.  I try to return the favor.  My friends on Facebook are real people I know in real life, people I respect and whose company I enjoy.   The link to this blog is on my facebook profile — if anyone wants to know what I think about death or taxes, they can click.  But they don’t have to.  I like it that way.

I debated whether maybe Google+ should be more like this blog and less like Facebook, and therefore, hey, yeah, fill it with links about politics and religion, why not?  But I don’t like that solution, for the same reason I don’t like (and therefore don’t do) flooding FB with Fr. L and Darwin and all the team.

And don’t tell me that Google+ promises to keep all my circles separate blah blah blah. I’ll believe it when I see it.  The general rule on the internet is that even when I try not to bore people by linking stuff in places it doesn’t belong, some clever inventor decides to combine it all anyway.  Also, I’m not looking for a new hobby.  So building up a thousand separate “circles” isn’t on my list.  If I do Google+ (and I suppose I probably will), you’ll all be in one very large circle.  Feels like a giant Girl Scout Camp ice-breaker activity.

mysterious new format problems?

A reader tells me that my new blog format is annoying.  From the description, it sure sounds annoying.  But here’s my trouble:

a) I didn’t change my blog format.


b) When I look at the blog, it looks exactly like it always has.

But apparently all of wordpress has fallen into the evil spell.  And when I look at another of the reportedly-affected blogs, it looks the same as always to me.

Help?  Anyone?


Brought home a couple lousy books . . .

. . . wanted to let you know about it, because it does happen.  One was a medieval history by a reputable historian incapable of documenting his bizarre conjecture and innuendo.   Very weird.  The other was a local history booklet that was 98% Town Yearbook 1945, with all the editorial biases of the genre.  I was okay with it, actually, but I have a school-spirit deficiency, so it wasn’t a good match.

All that complaining to prove this: There are actually books I do not like.

I was beginning to feel a tad self-conscious, because I keep finding books that I do like.  As if I were a yearbook editor, just cheerin’ on everything that passes my desk.  Kind of refreshing to read 1.15 horrible books in the row.

So there you go.  I don’t need my books to be perfect.  I’ll give a ‘recommend’ rating to a book that has weaknesses, as long as it does what it sets out to do.  Assumes of course it sets out to do something worthwhile.  I guess maybe my standard is this: When I’m done with the book, am I glad I spent my time on it?

(And my secret review program technique for avoiding the obligation to write bad reviews — which I hate to do — is to try to pick books I already know are going to be good.  Sometimes they turn out better than expected, sometimes not quite as good as hoped.  But I do try to rig the system that way.  Not such an altruist that I’ll intentionally obligate myself to read a dubious book.  Which makes me super super glad that horrid to-remain-nameless medieval history was not on a review program choice list.  That would been very many pages of pain.  And I would have totally fallen for it.)

Time for Silence

(From this morning’s first reading).  That time is upon us again.   Hands have gone AWOL, and typing is right out.  My review of The Salvation Controversy is written and awaiting a final edit with hyperlinks, so I will get that up when I can.  (Update: It’s up!) Otherwise, we’re on blog silence.

Update 10/14/10 – hands are 98% better, so long as I take it easy on them.  Yay.  But not typing much these days, still need to limit that.  Foot, btw, is still doing its wonky thing.  See doc again Tues for new ideas.  Meanwhile, school has never been better.  No really.  Turns it out homeschooling works better if you both stay *home*, and do *school*.  Go figure.

Possible to Attach a File?

Anyone happen to know if you can attach an excel spreadsheet somewhere on a wordpress blog?  You know, so we can do some exciting accounting? Actually because we were putting up the timeline in the hallway today, and I thought some of my readers might find it useful to borrow.

Speak up if you have the secret knowledge.



PS: Foot is doing way better.  I got my neighbor to mow my lawn, and within hours of him finishing, I was miraculously cured!  Well, not quite.  But I can walk on it normally (not limping!) for short distances.  Like inside-my-house short distances, not “2 miles” or “around the block” or anything crazy like that.

I will add in my defense: What I asked was, “May I borrow your riding lawnmower?”  What he said is “No way I am letting someone with your mechanical skills touch my beloved machine, I will do it myself.”  (Only he said it much more tactfully.)