Secret Mojo Dumbs It Down for You

October 26, 2006

Firefly, with gentle hand, amazes

Filed under: Love,wordpress gems,writing — secretmojo @ 3:55 am

Wow. Just. Wow.

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August 17, 2006

The trouble with love

Filed under: Love,wordpress gems,writing — secretmojo @ 4:21 am

Si entiendes español: Mi Pura Vida escrite sobre la cena y la mentira que la aplastan.

She also has many english posts that are just as heartfelt and engaging. And yes, she knits.

August 16, 2006

Pinging sends me to the hot seat

Filed under: blogging,wordpress gems — secretmojo @ 3:15 am

To my dismay, I cast myself as editor, with zero qualifications.

A couple weeks ago, I tossed up a post I called “WordPress Gem Collection,” not only as a personal challenge to concisely describe something, but to find diamonds in the rough—those moments when a typical blogger of 300,000 finds herself in the zone, rolling out a small piece that, if not soon snatched up and filed, may be lost forever.

My standards? Whim. Consciously, I limited myself to WordPress blogs so I could play with their new tags page. Subconsciously, I wanted blogs I hadn’t visited before, a post with a fresh angle I’d never considered. Spelling mistakes, writing snafus, and so on were less important to me than voyeuristically sneaking up on a genuine moment of inspiration and putting it in a jar.

I considered it activism, in my heroically charged moments of delusion. Empower the small guy, give him a chance to overcome the intimidating popularity of well-known sites. By pinging and linking these gem posts, I felt I was offering an anonymous pat on the back: “good stuff, man.” I had a chance to not just be a fan, but to legitimately strengthen a blogger who impressed me.

Yet. Dismay.

Honestly, I didn’t expect my pinging to bring the authors to my site to comment, and I sure didn’t expect anyone to blogroll me because of it. I just wanted more people to see a good post. I’m a softy for comments, and this served as a pleasant surprise.

But entering a more public arena always seems to complicate ethics. Here I am now, worrying that I’d left someone out, that I hadn’t judged quality properly, that I may be “going for the ping.” I feared I listed too many, that readers would think “holy crap, this guy can’t judge good stuff at all.”

Then I toiled over the sentences themselves: did one advertise a link better than the other? Will I offend the author? Did I get the tone right, the order right, or indeed the facts right?

I seriously considered not pinging the authors of my selected posts. Even though it would deprive me of the comments I love so much—and deprive the authors of a chance to respond—it would at least make the act more intrinsically generous. It would also relieve the awkward pressure to add a blog to my blogroll that I’d rather not. I never considered my blogroll as currency. Now, I’m not so sure.

All of a sudden, in my mind I became an editor, with all the suck of it included. Gems weren’t just a personal set of bookmarks, but a statement to the world. A statement on, er… something. The power of calling them gems, and the fact I did it more than once (yet not all the time), promoted me to a personally ordained hot seat.

Maybe the most genuine way to get the hell over my self-centered angst is to continue as I’ve been doing. Find stuff I like, and link to it. Simple idea, really. Done all around the networld.

But what if I link to someone who might freak out at my political posts, get me all wrong, or not want the attention to begin with? What if this, what if that…

I exaggerate my own importance all the time. Six billion people in the world and limitless stars in the sky, yet here I am, egomaniac, thinking I’m the duke of some section of the planet.

I’m not mighty; I’m mini. And in that comfort—if I can sustain it long enough—I shall continue to plow on, pinging away, like a child running through a minefield…

August 13, 2006

WordPress Gems: Love and War

Filed under: blogging,Blogroll,Love,war,wordpress gems,writing — secretmojo @ 4:01 am

I loitered around the “war” and “love” WordPress tags again, continuing in a weekly enjoyment of mine: finding gems. It’s like prowling the beach with a metal detector—except I always return richer. And less candy-apple red.

Much more war talk than love talk out there in blogland. Probably because war is always an encompassing crisis, demanding attention; while love is a singular blessing, constantly diverting (ahem) attention.

Also, I noticed it was easier to find interesting love posts than war posts (note to self). Love comes personal and generous; war arrives mostly abstracted and angry.

Anyway, here they are. I hope you like them as much as I did.
War

Unitedcats finds contemporary meaning from the book, Guns of August, a history of the Great War.

Raincoaster has some fun with “silly bunt” Ann Coulter, by posting a short video demonstration of her defiant ignorance on Canada re: Vietnam.

Conflicted, Leadingthenextinquisition ambles through aninternal Just War debate that scares, but intrigues me.

They split the heavens: barkowitz sets the might of an air strike to verse in “I Was There.”

Liberalwill unleashes a short rant on the passionate cruelty of war, articulating it so well I thought I’d written it myself. 🙂

Sixteen years ago, Iraqi troops stormed into Kuwait. Some don’t remember, but afroz, as a 12-year-old who woke up to the invasion, does.

Flawedplan offers you blog snippets of a “wry, literate” soldier in Iraq, REV Wayfarer, who always had one foot in the grave.

Love

Witness the sorry state of love triangle dynamics, anonymously laid out by “Tom” in an open letter to “Albert,” who failed to sweep Tom’s “June” away.

I’ve never gotten a post-coital “txt msg” before.

Monisha mourns her beloved father who, after dying of kidney complications, left holes all over.

From eros to philos to agape? Ysabol Ladyhawke designs a shirt for “couple-surfers” who renounce hand-holding and “jack in” to their rather geeky relationship.

Hastydevil details the moment a gay romance started with a handshake.

Sisterly devotion gushes from Melissa when she thanks miss Anna, her angel, for sharing all those rough times (with pictures).

Emmbie, telling the troubles of her friend Lucy, cautions what sex can lead to for a Hmong woman. (link modified to respect Lucy’s privacy)
Richiethepoet longs for more guilt-free, vulgar love with that bitch, Lissa.

Have fun, people.

August 6, 2006

More WordPress gems

Filed under: blogging,Blogroll,wordpress gems,writing — secretmojo @ 8:35 pm

Note to self: clicking the “next blog” arrow is an excruciating way to find gems. Not only am I prejudiced by the latest post, the response time on click is unbearable, and I see many blogs in languages I can’t read. However, avoiding the “tags” page dealt me some surprises:

That’s all, folks.

I might start grouping these by tags. Sound like a decent idea?

WordPress Gem Collection II

Filed under: blogging,Blogroll,wordpress gems,writing — secretmojo @ 4:14 am

Empowered by the wordpress.com tags page, I went bobbing for gems again:

Mother Sonael creates a cute, heartwarming post after she discovers the upside of poo. (Please explore her blog—chock-full of beautifully unadorned snippets of life)

lindyann writes an ode, of sorts, to the beating of her heart.

Road rage, or a new sport?

A curt e-mail lights an old flame and sparks a feisty response from breathingroom.

It’s a love and amazement fest! jcoftw gushes over there at “Now that I’m older.”

In war-zone Israel, Julia meets a stranger who anchors her wandering self.

Take a disturbingly gruesome journey with TBOB on The Road of Broken Evil.

Agentsmith952 poo-poos butterflies and shares the beauty of moths.

bargainprofessor uses a picture of a mooning gnome as an avatar on a trucker site, and is told it isn’t very truckerlike. Well, he’s got something to say about that, pipsqueak.

Little bastards keep flying around leahey.

Bein has “faces in his mind” that trace themselves through command of his fingers.

Ms. Clio recklessly picks up a hitchhiker, a chancy act of kindness in a dangerous, cruel world.

Bubbler breaks his promise to himself, and buys a stinkin’ car.

Hmm, smells like another meme is brewing.

Perhaps more tomorrow; 290,000 blogs are quite a bit…

August 3, 2006

Curtis gives good blather

Filed under: Blogroll,wordpress gems,writing — secretmojo @ 6:01 am

Curtis of Empty Rhetoric talks Colorado rain, catching snakes, the piercing stank of asphalt, MacBook religion, iPod envy, and—since he’s got some extra change left—offers a quick review of Lady in the Water and laughs at his inability to keep his money to himself whenever he gets near a Borders. All of it without a misplaced breath. Go read.

July 30, 2006

WordPress gem collection

Filed under: blogging,Blogroll,wordpress gems,writing — secretmojo @ 6:49 pm

I dunked my head into the WordPress tags page, bobbing for gems. Here’s a sample of the tasty stuff I found:

Jennifer goes to a concert and explains how Rain King Adam Duritz (Counting Crows) seems powerfully inspired by misery.

Gaurav Mishra continues a fascination with auto-rickshaws by seeking out movies and culture that give them some limelight.

In deep nostalgia of the long-gone nineties (huh?) Walker Evans gobbles up and collects YouTube music videos starring his favorite 90’s bands.

Hina pens some tasty sentences while writing a guide to Sonic Grieving.

That girl. That seashore. That party. Rod invites you to a memory with a Ray Charles soundtrack.

Wonderful World of Disney music, the kind you can crack skulls to.

Getting Shrunk… a battered wife seeks out a shrink to curb the outbursts that get her punched (fiction).

Insomnia delivers tales to K0rs0, who discovers more of himself than he’d like in an episode of scale shock.

Mahalo takes a Red Bull- and burrito-fueled trip in the shittiest truck on the planet from Denver to San Antonio, which basically added up to a suck day, but gave me something fun to read. Thanks, Mahalo! Too bad for you.

What a random freak-out looks like.

Dionada asks, what fun is Monopoly if dirty rotten cheaters are disadvantaged?

Autumn grows suspicious, and delivers a fiery Internet jealousy rant her husband may never get around to reading…

katy2484 gives proud ignoramuses a hardcore smackdown.

The sticky heat and opressive humidity in Barcelona inspires Barcelonesa to laugh at the uselessness of fans. (in spanish)

There’s more, of course, but time is the prison we all must endure… Go read fencer if you’re still hungry for the good stuff.

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