Friday, December 23, 2005

Reading List

If you happened to peruse my Bloglines list -- the list of all the blogs I follow on a regular basis (on good days), whenever I can get around to them (on busy days), and, despite my best intentions, so so often (on ordinary run, run as fast as you can days) -- you'd have a hard time pinning down my online whims.

Take, for instance, my love of the ugly. My two favorite ugly blogs are Go Fug Yourself, which mocks with great mockitude that well-known oxymoron, celebrity fashion. The second blog, You Knit What? may be a bit more subject specific, but remember: just as you don't have to own a paintbrush to appreciate Van Gogh, you don't have to be a knitter to love the ug. And believe me, there is a lot of ug to love.

Now, lest you think my heart is full of unwashed socks and gunk, I subscribe to several websites that provide a Yin to my Yang; a Fung to my Shui; a Wang to my Chung. Cute Overload is one such place: a site so overwhelmingly and utterly cute that even the most hardened webbie would have an instantaneous and irreversible seizure after suffering from acute cute. Be still my evil Diva Soprano heart. It's awesome!!

A whole bunch of my blogs had to have their URLs updated following a huge kerfluffle with AOL a month ago. If you aren't familiar with the AOL debacle, DO NOT bring this up with any present or former AOL journalists, because they'll curl up in the fetal position and start wailing loudly. The problems started when AOL in a rather SURPRISE! fashion pasted gaudy, blinky ads at the headers of individual journals. Yep, the ads were ugly. Yep, it seemed the journalists had no say what the ad content would be, and yep, they paid GOOD MONEY for AOL's fantabulous service and jaunty e-mail alerts, and now...NOW look what AOL did to them??? It was an enormous mess and many people up and left in protest.

As a sidebar, I have to wonder how much fun they had canceling AOL's service? It's not like the cancel information is anywhere on the page, and the one time I had to cancel AOL, I had to make up several lies -- including a genius claim about becoming Amish and having no more electricity -- to shut up the pathetically nosy AOL PLEASE DON'T LEAVE OUR COMPANY phone guy.

In response to AOL's decision to do whatever the hell they want with their own site and if you don't like it, you can lump it, many AOLers joined Blogger and other free online blogging services. I'm hoping they will come to learn to love the banner ads. Heck, I put mine back in after Blogger made banner ads voluntary. I love trying to manipulate the ad content by writing about specific topics in my blog. My current ads include two pirate sites (because didn't I tell you? Pirates bring the funny), a Lemony Snicket site and an audio book site. Even better? On Blogger, nothing blinks.

I follow daily cartoon blogs, and blogs written by cartoons. Last week I stumbled across RSS feeds for all NPR programs, thus ensuring I'll never get anything done ever again. I read blogs written by pundits and essayists that discuss the current political and social landscape, and yet I feel a real kinship with those writers who dissect the everyday drama that is life. Although I've never met most of them, I cannot help but feel a little privaledged to be allowed to share in the story of their life.

So, Wide, Wide, Wonderful World of Blogs, I thank you. If the pen is indeed mightier than the sword, we are one well-armed, if not well-versed army.

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