All posts filed under: Writing

WordPress.com – Upsetting the Balance

As of the end of this month (and 2,000 Daily Prompts, 380 Photo Challenges, 260 Community Pools, and 100 First Fridays later), we will no longer publish new posts, prompts, or challenges on this site. – Ben Huberman, WordPress.com The Daily Post – As you can see from the announcement above, WordPress Prompts and Photo Challenges will soon be a thing of the past. It isn’t the first time that WordPress has suddenly discontinued a feature that many bloggers faithfully use and enjoy. I’ve been submitting photos to the Photo Challenges for almost 8 years. Polite words can’t express my disappointment that they have decided to terminate access to our community of photographers. As a replacement, WordPress suggests that bloggers try this: post a photo (any topic you feel like) and tag it with ‘photo challenge’. Then, open your WordPress Reader and type ‘photo challenge’ in the search bar…  Really – you think that makes it a challenge? Nope –  it’s just a bunch of posts with photos. WordPress, you remind me of this rock …

The Quippery

‘It Takes One to Know One’ Department

Do you read the comments that come after Internet news articles? Some commenters (usually anonymous) are extremely mean and abusive! Their attacks seem like the online version of a school yard bully. Here  are a few comments I read at the end of just one Canadian news story this morning: …You are a fool. …Hope you idiots are pleased with yourselves. …You don’t have a clue yourself. …BS… espoused by utter MORONS …And we still have an idiot at the helm. …One by one the poor saps who were taken in …greasy, sleazy, slimy selfie king …Nuth’n finer than a far left nutter sputtering …another leftwing(confused) doofus of questionable mental acuity …The big, stammering idiot with the dumb expression When we were kids, we would respond to a verbal bully by saying, “Sticks and stones will break our bones, but names will never hurt us.” (But the names still hurt…) Or we would taunt back, “It takes one to know one!” These responses have no effect on the cyberbully. They carry a shield of anonymity:  …

The Unofficial WordPress Undiscovered Club

Maybe you remember “The Never Been Freshly Pressed” Club (NBFP). I started it in 2013 because there were so many of us WordPress.com  bloggers who had never been ‘pressed‘. (‘Freshly Pressed’ was a WordPress magazine, of sorts, that featured the writings of every day bloggers.) ‘Freshly Pressed’ has been allowed to die. It has been replaced by Discover – a slick, modern online magazine. The editors select content from about  53 million posts per month, so the chances of your post being chosen are still quite slim, but if you do get selected, you get to put a badge on your sidebar! After almost seven years of blogging, I believe I have demonstrated an inability to be slick or modern – therefore I am, by extension, Undiscoverable. For that reason, I think I can safely form the Undiscovered Club, and proclaim myself  President of the Canadian chapter. Should he accept, Al at thecvillean is my choice for President of the American chapter. (He is current President of NBFP.) If you would like to join our …

Common Blogging Mistakes – To Fix or Not to Fix

I am the poster child for bloggers who have long since passed their best before date, if in fact I ever had one. I have a boatload of fake followers with names like ‘fbrxy3579’ but very few of them are actual readers. Most of the people I call ‘near and dear’ give me a glassy stare, and mutter something like “I haven’t checked the internet in the past 8 months” when I ask them if they read my last post. I don’t blame them – I’ve been blogging longer than most guinea pigs live, and my content is a ‘how to of what not’ to write about. I also have made many ‘blogging mistakes‘. Sure, I’ve fixed most of those, but I perversely hold onto others. You probably have made some of these ‘mistakes’ too, and maybe, like me, you just can’t be bothered to take the whole ‘What Not To Do‘ thing any more seriously than the ‘What Not to Wear’ thing.  If you are, however, curious – here is my list of what …

orange pink clouds Alberta

Transition – Beep Beep Boop is Gone?

The dawn of a new day. If there are clouds, then a sunrise can be a remarkably beautiful transition from dark to light. Perhaps our blogging hosts, WordPress.com, were thinking of dawn when they recently unveiled the New High Speed Editor. I certainly thought they had made a few improvements since they first introduced the ‘New Editor’. It loads so fast that the ever so unpopular, wait while I’m working, ‘Beep Boop Boop’ screen is gone! Another plus – images can be dragged and dropped from your desktop right into your post. Unfortunately, the new editor is still in transition – the search feature for creating links to my old posts is missing. How long will it take before this transitional editor is finished? Or will it ever be? Will we still have access to the good old editor that many or us prefer, or will it eventually disappear? It is like asking, ‘Will there be a beautiful sunrise tomorrow morning’. No one really knows. Light precedes every transition. Whether at the end of a …

thinking hat

More Puns – What These Words Can Also Mean!

Can you look deep inside a word and find another meaning? ABASEMENT: Where the furnace is located. ABDICATE: to give up all hope of ever having a flat stomach. AFTERMATH: Relaxation after algebra class. ALARMS: What an octopus is. ARBITRATOR: A cook that leaves Arby’s to work at McDonalds AVOIDABLE: What the bullfighter tried to do. BALDERDASH: A rapidly receding hairline. BARIUM: What the undertaker usually does. BAROQUE: When I spend more than I make. BERNADETTE: The act of torching a mortgage. BUCCANEER: The price of a cob of corn. BURGLARIZE: What a crook sees with. CANTALOUPE: When you can’t run off and get married. CARNATION: Place where every citizen owns an automobile. CATALOGS: Material used to build cow fences. CAUTERIZE: Made eye contact with a woman. COFFEE: The person you coughed on. COLANDER: Someone who arrives on the same plane as you did. COUNTERFEITERS: Workers who put together kitchen countertops. CYTOLOGY: The study of real estate. DIPLOMA: Da’ man who fixes da’ pipes DOCKYARD: A physician’s garden. ECLIPSE: What a barber does. FLATULENCE: Emergency …

The Rise and Fall of RivetPics

In a land not so far away, in a time not so long ago, there was a very large kingdom called The Whorled. In the very middle of the kingdom was a huge castle where King Sharpmann lived with his family, friends, crusaders  and 70 million Minions. Outside the castle was a huge town where most of The Makers lived. The Makers created all sorts of beautiful things, wrote interesting stories and took wondrous photos. They captured them all and put them into big books which they would bring to the big town square every day. They would spread their books out on long tables so that everyone could look, talk about, and buy what they were seeing. The Castle Minions enjoyed looking at the books, but were sad that they didn’t have a way to save and share the contents of The Maker’s books.  The King, who wanted happy Minions, invented a Copy Wand which he mass produced and distributed to all. The Minions only had to shake the wand  and utter the magic …

Tricky Questions – Thinking Outside the Box

How carefully do you read? Do you think ‘outside of the box’? Here are some questions to test your mental mettle! *********************** A clerk at a butcher shop stands five feet ten inches tall and wears size 13 sneakers. What does he weigh? Answer: Meat *********************** A doctor give you 3 pills and tells you to take one every half hour. How long will it be until all the pills are taken? Answer: An hour, assuming you take the first pill at the beginning of the hour, the second pill half way through the hour, and the third pill at the end of the hour. *********************** A farmer has 10 cows. Lightning kills all but 2 of the cows. How many are still alive? Answer: Two cows are still alive. *********************** A 10 foot rope ladder hangs over the side of a boat with the bottom rung on the surface of the water. The rungs are one foot apart, and the tide goes up at the rate of 6 inches per hour. How long will …

https://gogreygirl.wordpress.com/

It took a while……… but I’ve finally arrived.

Originally posted on The Cvillean:
“Most men lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them.” – Henry David Thoreau “Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them.” – William Shakespeare  “Twelfth Night” “Great men need great events.” – unknown author (although it might have been me) Before this month, I fell squarely in the first quote category. Now I am honored to say I am one of those who has had greatness thrust upon him. For those who do not know, I am a member of a club which was founded by a fascinating blogger, Margie, at As iAge. The club is aptly named “Never Been Freshly Pressed” and membership is very exclusive. There are only around 400,000 potential members. Margie was not only the founder, but self-appointed President as well. Earlier this month, Margie found herself in the embarrassing position of having been Freshly Pressed. According to the club’s by-laws (which exist only in verbal form), this immediately disqualified her as a member, not to mention her…

My Freshly Pressed Natural Disaster

Michelle, a well meaning WordPress Story Wrangler, chose my post ‘Hidden Valley – A Community Lost’  for the honour of being Freshly Pressed. Michelle had been following the story of  the flooding of our community, and she thought it deserved a wider audience. Unfortunately, most of the Freshly Pressed readers didn’t agree. They weren’t as drawn to a story that was tagged ‘Natural Disaster’ as they were to – well – just about every other post that day… or week… or month probably. So much for my expectations of Freshly Pressed fame! I don’t, of course, blame WordPress for my somewhat dismal showing. All my long time, loyal readers (and you know who you six are!) will want to know about the meteorical rise in Viewer Stats that comes with being Freshly Pressed. I’m going to satisfy your curiosity by inserting a clip from my stats page. On the far left you will see a very, very short bar, which is my usual readership. The next three bars are what happened to my readership when …

The Unofficial WordPress ‘Never Been Freshly Pressed’ Club

So You’ve Never Been Freshly Pressed! Then it is your lucky day, because you qualify for membership in the NBFP Club.  Yes, there are other bloggers just like you who have chosen WordPress.com but WordPress.com hasn’t chosen you… or them… By my estimation, (and by virtue of my self appointed rank of President of NBFP I am authorized to do estimates) 99.9986% of WordPress bloggers have not, and never will be Freshly Pressed. Don’t ask me how I came to that conclusion. It is advanced math and like WordPress, I am not at liberty to tell you how and why I do what I do. Rest assured, however, that no matter how many of your fellow bloggers get Freshly Pressed and no matter how many of your fellow Bloggers are Freshly Pressed on numerous occasions, they still are a very small minority. There are, you see,  nearly 40 million new posts each and every month for WordPress to choose from! I’m sure you are as excited about the NBFP Club as I am. You already …

bandaid

Press Release from The Never Been Freshly Pressed Club

I was just putting the finishing touches on a post about all my blogging friends who have never been ‘Freshly Pressed‘. I was thinking it would be appropriate to form a group of ‘Never Been Freshly Pressed’ (NBFP) bloggers, perhaps design our own badge to put in a widget on our sidebar – celebrate our status as the underdogs. I think everyone roots for the underdog. – Johnny Knoxville I was going to link to some of my fellow underdogs and the first on my list was Steve at The Brown Road Chronicles. He recently wrote about how he has skirted around accusations that he has used the banned substance called ‘Freshlypresstosterone’ in an attempt to achieve Freshly Pressed fame. I guess the drug finally worked –  yesterday Steve was Freshly Pressed. Congratulations Steve – but as self proclaimed President of the NBFP, I’m going to have to kick you out of our club. It breaks my heart to have to do it, but rules are rules. (Note to the Club Secretary – please get …

thinking hat

Testing – A Post About Nothing

The test is to recognize the mistake, admit it and correct it. To have tried to do something and failed is vastly better than to have tried to do nothing and succeeded. – Dale E. Turner – Nothing else to say, really.  I didn’t mean to publish this post. I was just testing something. Before I could get it fixed, three of you had left comments. So, who knows – maybe a post about nothing will get more comments than anything else I’ve posted here…

Responsive to Change – My Cat and WordPress Themes

It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change. – Charles Darwin – This is Mooch. He is a very large cat (see story The Cat Compendium) that may not be the brightest bulb in the box, but he certainly was extremely responsive to change. It took him about a nanosecond to accept that he no longer lived at our house and had been adopted by the people next door. But Mooch isn’t what this story is really about. This is about my blog, and your blog, and how everyone reads our blogs. Surveys suggest that nearly half of web users expect a site to load in 2 seconds or less, and they tend to abandon a site that isn’t loaded within 3 seconds. But there is more: people no longer just use their desk top or laptop computers to read our blogs. More and more people are using their phones or digital tablets to view our ever so entertaining stories. And did …

How to Insert Bold Quotation Marks

There are three ways, at least, for adding quotation marks to a Blockquote. The first is the easiest – you just type them where you want them to go. The second and third ways are achieved by writing CSS rules for Styling a Blockquote. If you have a WordPress.com theme, you will have to purchase the CSS upgrade before you can make these changes permanent. This option gives you many style upgrades, even if you never touch the CSS Stylesheet Editor. You write the CSS in the Stylesheet Editor. Go to your Dashboard and click on Appearance – Customize – CSS. Technique 1: Using the before selector to automatically add quotation marks to a blockquote. The theme used a before selector that contained content: ‘\0201C’; I added the CSS  (in italics below) to do three things: I added the border with the blockquote { selector. I moved the blockquote right and changed the background color with the .site-content .entry-content blockquote { selector. I moved the existing blockquotes built into the theme to the left with …

I’m Blue – WordPress Sometimes Sucks the Joy Out of Blogging

Actually, the Photo Challenge this week was simply the word Blue, but I’m feeling Blue so that is what today’s post will be about. It has been one of those weeks. Nothing bad happened, but a series of little things coincided with a shift in the ‘feel fine’ chemical brew that keeps me on an even keel. The result is, and always has been, several days of living with a black cloud hanging right over my head. Not an awesomely beautiful black cloud like the ones I sometimes see in the blue morning sky over the hay field. No, a dismal, dull black cloud that wants to suck the life out of everything.  (If you are into Harry Potter, think dementors, only not quite as evil as that.) But bad enough that a small feast of chocolate does nothing to lift me out of morose. (And it didn’t help my mood at all to watch the season finale of NCIS last night, either. It looks like Ducky has met his demise. Trust television to make …