Call Me English

A little corner of the world where I talk about what I want.

Posts Tagged ‘blogging

Laundry list items

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Not a lot of time for le bloggage tonight because of the curse of the laundry and other fun distractions like the Stanley Cup Playoffs, but I wanted to talk about the future. Again. I mentioned the FLICS posts right before putting up a list of conversation starters yesterday, but allow me to throw out a preview of other regular kinds of posts I look forward to sharing with you. Obviously, more ideas are welcome!

  • Detailed discussion of my political positions by topic. I like to consider myself politically active and engaged and am prepared to talk about where I stand and why.
  • Recipes and restaurant reviews. I love to cook and dine out, and I would love to share that passion with you all here.
  • Thoughts on language. I named this blog Call Me English because I’m a language man. I love words and am in awe of the power they wield. It was comedy legend George Carlin who said that “the quality of our thoughts and ideas can only be as good as the quality of our language,” so I will talk about the finer points of language that we should all be aware of and use more effectively.
  • Life in New York. I am lucky enough to live in one of the most exciting and influential cities in the world, and I look forward to sharing some of the positives and negatives of life here.

Written by Dave

May 17, 2016 at 23:59

FLICS #3: Back from the Dead Edition

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There are so many ideas for posts in my head and such an annoyingly svelte amount of time to devote to writing about them all. And some topics are just too big to put into one of these rapid fire bullet lists. I’ll get to them, of course; I just have to give them the thought and respect they deserve.

Other conversation starters, though, are perfect for quick delivery. Here are five:

  • Why is there still buffering of media in 2016? Do we not have the technology/telecommunications infrastructure in place yet in the developed world to understand how people will consume content? I want to click something, perhaps wait a second for it to start, and then watch it from start to finish. No stopping.
  • “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off” came out THIRTY years ago, on June 11, 1986. I grew up with that movie, so it hurts a bit to think it came out that long ago. More and more things like this are starting to make me feel freakin’ old, and it’s not funny.
  • Do we really need dating websites for specific groups of people? Christian Mingle. JDate. Farmers Only. Black People Meet. And whatever that site is called where people are over fifty, and the handsome white haired guy talks about how quickly he got laid using it. Seriously? Why can’t everyone just use the sites meant for everyone? What’s next,
  • Fruit and meat are starting to get disturbingly large. And I’m not even talking about genetically modified or otherwise altered food. I had some blackberries today that were each almost bigger than my thumb. Yes, they were tasty, but I was a bit put off by the fact that it felt like I was eating something from space. And then there are these megaton chicken breasts. They look like they fell out of a plastic surgery catalogue.
  • Does anyone get anything real delivered by mail (i.e. in your mailbox, not in the form of parcels) anymore? All bills are managed electronically, and the vast majority of communication with friends and family happens in email or text or over the phone. The only things I really have to look forward to finding in the mailbox are greeting cards from my grandmother. Everything else is garbage. And it’s not like it can just be ignored… the amount of paper garbage is mountainous.

Written by Dave

May 16, 2016 at 23:53

Good habits to get into

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18-cockpit-avion-boeing-787As I went through this blog’s past and spent the last few days thinking about what I wanted this thing to be, it dawned on me that I had already put some good things in place here when I began… For instance, I really like the idea of throwing multiple topics out in brief bullets in the same post, something I referred to in the early days as FLICS, “Five Little Internet Conversation Starters.” Topics often come into my mind in waves, so I thought I’d share them almost as quickly as they spring up.

I also like when posts are fully tagged and easy to find. This will be important here because I intend to cover lots of ground: life, politics, sports, culture, sexuality and relationships, language, and more. I’m hoping to make the comments sections open and interactive and encourage different views and emotions to be shared using my posts as a jumping off point.

All it will take is some practice. WordPress, even these several years later, remains a cockpit to me, a place where an awful lot happens but where I don’t necessarily know what everything does. All I know is I want to press every single button I can.

Written by Dave

May 15, 2016 at 22:57

Posted in Administrative, General

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So why will this time be different?

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One of the worst things about blogs is that people create them all the time and then quickly forget about them. People get bored; they get boring; they get busy. Life intervenes. Sometimes the blogs themselves look nice, like they might have promise, like friends and family and even random voyagers on the internet might want to read what they say.

Well, as you can see, I have not managed to avoid this trap. Even just two posts down from here, back in November of 2012, was the last time I had to apologize for disappearing off the face of the planet. And that was really just to set up a crazy venting session about the presidential election of that year.

It’s not that I don’t have things to say; I most definitely have a lot I want to share here. The trick is to find the time and the motivation to share and to feed my love of writing. I have this forum that I created for myself some time ago, and I see absolutely no reason not to use it.

I hope those who may have subscribed to this blog years ago when I swore up and down that I was going to write in it more often do not receive a bunch of nuisance emails now as I figure out what I want this thing to be, as I fine tune it. Please let me know right away if you get bombed with emails and need me to make them stop.

So I love to write, and I was recently inspired to get back to it, to make the time for myself every day to put my thoughts out there. Hopefully I can keep myself honest and not let years go by between attempts.

Written by Dave

May 14, 2016 at 22:27

Posted in Administrative, General

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Where we’ve been all these years

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I sent out an email to an undisclosed number of people advertising that I had started this blog… restarted it, really.  And one message I got in reply said, “How nice. What brought this about?”

Well, mainly a feeling like I needed to make up for lost time. When I was a student, and even for a couple of years afterwards, I had a blog on LiveJournal where I posted a whole lot of different content: song lyrics, cryptic mood icons, political quizzes, and these ridiculous “shout outs” that viewers sent to the cable music provider I worked at briefly.  It was fun; my friends commented; I enjoyed writing and feeling like I had a place to be social, especially with people I had left behind in another city and country.  Then, I started working more and observing less, and I got to a certain point where I felt like I couldn’t keep up with the blog anymore because I (mistakenly) thought I didn’t have anything to say.

At some point along the way, Facebook emerged as a catch-all method of staying in touch with people from the past in the way I had intended my blog would. When Facebook first came out, I remember it feeling very much like a thing that only students were supposed to use. You got in touch with other people at your own institution, and that was the extent of it. After I graduated from McGill, it was obvious that Facebook was becoming not only a way to be friends with other people at other schools but also with people of all ages.  Also with your parents…  I can remember feeling a little dirty-old-mannish using Facebook after graduating, like it was something for kids; I had my chance to use it, and that was it.  When it was obvious that Facebook was no longer a students-only service, I used it as a tool to remind people that I was still here — in the form of a status update that I would post at some random time each morning.

People seem to like the statuses. Some people seem to like them too much. As in, “I start every day with you!” Creepster.  They are observational, topical, and occasionally emotional… but sometimes they’re hard to come up with. And maybe they have seen their time come and go. People just expect them now. People who don’t use Facebook want me to simulcast on Twitter.  (I do.) Maybe my statuses jumped the shark when the former director of admissions at my high school said she wanted to add me as a friend on Facebook because she’d heard about my wit.

So that’s what brought the idea of the blog back to the front burner – I needed a place to be myself (and my wordier self than I would be in just a status) with a closer group than my Facebook friends.  Awkward questions from long-lost Chilean relatives won’t have a place here. But you will.

Written by Dave

June 20, 2012 at 22:35

Posted in Background

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