mystery tour of blogland  

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Today I'm taking a Mystery Tour of Blogland. For me this entails typing a phrase into Google Blog Search, going to the first blog entry that occurs, then taking a phrase from the first blog entry to go to a new place, and so on.

I decided to start with the word "library" because I'm in the middle of reorganizing my library. Yes, I'm a geek, but not nearly as much of a geek as you might think.

And I was directed to ajaxian, a website for, well, they didn't actually say on the blog, but I'm assuming it's a blog dedicated to a web development technique (Asynchronous JavaScript and XML) for creating interactive web applications. I've heard of Ajax, but thankfully wikipedia clued me in on how little I knew. At least I'm learning something right off the bat from this little excursion.

The ajaxian article that the search referenced was Cruisers Behavior Library. I'm almost embarrassed to leave a comment as everyone here is so serious. But, you know, by going to this page I've committed to this tour, so I leave a weak hello.

Most of the page was programming terms and I didn't want to get stuck on only blogs dedicated to programming, so I picked a generic word - decorating.

And lo and behold there was Create My, a blog dedicated to "event planning ideas, trends, and resources," with an article titled Easter Egg Decorating Party. I'm not much of a party planner and I don't think anyone I know would enjoy this kind of thing, but it does remind me of something from childhood.

When I was in first grade we had a contest to make blown Easter eggs and bring them in to class to be judged. My sister poked holes in a dozen eggs and blew out the insides so that I could decorate them. I remember he asking me at one point if I needed so many, but I assured her I did. One I decorated with a hand drawn chick breaking out of an egg with colored pencils. I thought it was really good at the time, but I'm a horrible artist, so it can't have been very good. Maybe my sister drew it and that's why I remember it looking good.

At school the next day one of the girls threw the egg down on the ground, breaking it. I don't remember why, but I was pretty upset. Anyway, the teacher let me decorate a new egg. I remember making a face with little paper hearts, or something like that. It's almost so fuzzy that I'm wondering if this was a dream. But anyway, I won the contest and at the time even I knew it was because the teacher felt bad for me.

It's not the best memory.

I chose "Saturday night" for my next search phrase. And I went to the My Relax Place, which looks like some kind of celebrity photo and video site. I really wish these sites would post some kind of About section. The article was John Travolta’s Saturday Night Fever Dance Stances - Now and Then. Of course! I didn't learn much from this article either, but only because the first video (of the comparison) on the page was no longer available. Otherwise I'd be a John-Travolta-dancing-expert!

I chose "Ricky Gervais" as my next phrase. What could be bad about Ricky Gervais?

TV Squad didn't let me down with an article about Ricky's appearance in New York City this spring - Ricky Gervais makes his American stand-up debut in New York in May. The included You Tube clip is one of the best Creationist videos I've seen. Go check it out and come back.

So I chose "Creationism" as my next phrase/word, which took me to Red State Rabble. Red State looks to be mostly a science over fundamentalism type of blog. The article was Canada: Creeping Creationism with a link to the Toronto Star.

It's an interesting article and I do hope that teachers aren't feeling intimidated about teaching science.

From there I selected "small town America" and searched over to Best of the Blogs. Again there was nothing to explain what the blog was about, which made me think about my own blog description. "Just because you're paranoid doesn't mean they aren't really out to get you" is the tag line and I get the sense it's a political blog.

The article, Turning to Dust is about the death of small-town America. I read this article earlier today, so I feel like I'm in familiar ground. But there's something that I didn't like about the article when I read it that still strikes a sour note.

Living in a rural area is considered a sign that the person must be backwards. It isn't a new trend. Certainly there are ignorant people in rural areas, but that doesn't mean that those people are stupid, or any less people. I get a lot of flak for living in Kansas because of the political climate here. It irritates me because most of the time it comes from people who don't live here, often from people who have never visited here.

I don't live in a rural area. It's a suburb of a decent-sized city. I spent my early childhood in a small town - one elementary school, no high school, very few paved roads. The town is now almost a suburb of Chicago. I'm sure it's changed a lot. I think about visiting because I'm curious what's happened to it. But I was young. Most of my memories are hazy. It never really was my home in my memories.

I don't know that small towns are going to die out. In some places maybe. But cities are expanding out, swallowing them up too. With telecommuting becoming more commonplace people are willing to live further away. Housing prices have driven people to live further away. I think the small towns will change. We big town folks may make our way out there eventually, but people aren't going to abandon rural areas for the cities in droves until we have large areas completely devoid of residents. That's my take anyway.

From that blog I choose "Humans always have choices" and I got Positive Vibe Sanctuary, which I take is a personal blog about Alice, the blogger. Sort of like me, she writes about whatever she feels about writing. The article was Law of Attraction: If I Create My Reality: Why am I Getting This?! Part 1, a ramble something like what I would expect from The Secret.

It was difficult to read it all because I felt like screaming every once in a while. I think positive thinking is great. People can change their moods by putting things into perspective or being positive even when bad things happen. I get that. I can agree with that. But I don't think that we cause positive vibrations that attract good things and draw other people with positive vibrations to us. That's bullshit mumbo-jumbo woo, in my opinion.

Poor people, sick people, and people with great misfortune in their lives don't draw those things to them through vibrations. They can't get what they want through wishful thinking. If that were the case every child in America would have this figured out by now.

Hoping to skip my way out of supernatural magic-land I selected "neuro-psychology" as my next term and surfed to Mind Hacks. The article was titled Neuropsychology of hypnosis: referring to a recent Seed article. I didn't read much in the way of results of research, mostly notes that "more research" is necessary, but I'd be interested in hearing more. Hypnotism is one of those things that I believe is not real. I think there are people that can fall under the power of suggestion, but mostly I think people just play along with what they think they're supposed to do. Hopefully the studies will shed some light on what's happening in the brain.

And that ended my tour. I hope you guys enjoyed it as much as I did.

Mystery Tour of Blogland borrowed from YesBut

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3 comments: to “ mystery tour of blogland

  • PBS
    Wednesday, April 4, 2007 at 12:48:00 AM CDT  

    Wow, what as interesting tour! I must try that very soon. When I lived in the country, I was surrounded by people who had grown up in the city but moved out to the country. There seemed to be quite a difference in attitude, as they took their big-city attitudes with them, at least in my area.

  • glomgold
    Wednesday, April 4, 2007 at 10:56:00 AM CDT  

    I placed as 'highly-nerdy'. Uh oh.
    I don't understand why that girl threw your egg on the ground and smashed it, but that's pretty lousy.
    When I get time I think I'll try your blogtouring thing again, but I've had such crappy results the times I've tried I'm a little scared...

  • ordinarygirl
    Wednesday, April 4, 2007 at 11:03:00 AM CDT  

    I was kind of nervous of taking the tour too, but eventually I think I got in a groove. So much so that I forgot to leave comments at the last couple of places I visited.


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