Shucks, I missed entry 16

Note: In 2021, I’m writing one blog post per week. This entry is a placeholder for Week 16 (approx Apr 19 – Apr 25), the first and only time this year so far that I’ve missed my self-imposed weekly deadline.

The image shows Marvin the Martian from Loony Tunes sitting down, babylike, and crying.
My favorite Looney Tunes character crying

The time committment of my day job has required me to implement a fairly strict schedule for each day, which has been both good and bad. Last week, I decided to break the regimen and visit with a friend in person, since in several months I hadn’t seen offline friends much. That choice, combined with staying up late the Friday night before to research for fiction (another need: creativity), threw a wrench into things, contributing to me not getting a blog post done. But, life happens. I’ll pump out a new entry here within a few hours from now.

Readers have been telling me that they’d like shorter posts, explaining that they don’t usually have time to read lengthy writings. I’ll try to write more compact entries to accommodate people. Besides, it’s the fiction I’m writing longhand (set in 2036 and, at least initially, in northeastern Oregon), and the nonfiction I’m writing longhand (about hacktivism), that’s meant to be distinctive and polished. I’d like my blog posts to be faster and perhaps more timely; creating such texts is a meritorious skill in and of itself. It requires planning ahead. For instance, this morning, while out running, I outlined this week’s (forthcoming) post in my mind. I recalled something I discovered a few years ago, when I ghostwrote a zillion content marketing posts in a hurry for cybersecurity and retail technology firms. Decide on all the subheads first. That prevents the piece from sprawling, and even when tired, I can put together paragraphs below each subhead to get the work done in a jiffy.

After my day job assignment concludes on May 20, I’ll be able to put more thought into my blog. I have three multi-part posts — one about Biden, another about happiness, and a third with book reviews of education texts — that I’ll finish up, including my reviews of the books You Failed Us and Pedagogy of the Oppressed. And I’d like to dig around in the tech plumbing of this website enough to figure out two additions: ensuring commenters optionally get an email notifying them when their comments have been approved, and ensuring commenters optionally get email updates when others pitch in with comments too.

Thanks for your patience and for sticking around my blog! With all the focus nowadays on youtube videos, I feel like a fossil from 2010 writing blog posts every week, but hey, some of us are simply untimely no matter what we do. Yet people are reading. :)

Just for fun, I’ll leave you with two songs I’ve lately been listening to on repeat. The first is “Stranded” by the French heavy metal band Gojira, originally released in 2016, but in the youtube clip below, performed live in their home country in 2019. If you’re not in the mood for something probably stress-inducing, consider skipping “Stranded”; for a lot of people, the purpose of music is to calm them down after a stressful day at work, but for those who don’t rule out tension and anger, and maybe even integrate those scary and admittedly over-emphasized states into their whole being, well, go to Gojira. The second song I just discovered last night. It’s “Gajumaru” by Seattle-based band Yaima. “Gajumaru” was originally released in 2014. The song came across my radar by chance. It’s common in rock music for a bass guitar to pedal out tonic notes over and over, filling up whole measures with the same note again and again, but when the algorithms threw the unfamiliar “Gajumaru” at me, I was taken by surprise to hear a singer do something similar: with interesting lyrics, she often hits the same note multiple times per measure, with lots of staccato. I found the effect, that seems to mix chant and rock techniques, really addictive, plus her nice voice. “Gajumaru” is about as opposite of “Stranded” as you could get.

“Stranded” by Gojira, released ’16, performed ’19 in France. It’s the chorus that really gets me, and that weird grasshopper guitar effect ahead of the verses
The soothing and serene “Gajumaru” by Seattle-based Yaima, released in 2014

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