The action’s elsewhere …

Posted on May 27, 2012. Filed under: Uncategorized |

Long time no see. πŸ™‚

That’s because I’m a lot more active onΒ my horse blog and my author site.

Seeya over there. πŸ™‚

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Agents of change

Posted on December 5, 2008. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , |

I voted for Obama, so why do I get so discombobulated when WordPress changes our dashboard?

And what do you mean, it’s time to dig the heavy sweaters out? I just put them away. Or did I? Where are they now anyway?

Whaddya mean, it’s Christmastime again? Are we having it twice a year now?

There was a time when I needed change to wash my clothes.

We add change, make change, keep the change (what’s that all about? how can you “keep” change??) change our minds, change our clothes and change our tires. Except for those of us with AAA on SpeedDial.

I think I’ll change back into me now after this brief stint of attempting to write like Steven Wright.

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When Opportunity Knocks …

Posted on August 4, 2008. Filed under: Uncategorized |

… I try to answer the door, even if I’m already busy and wearing a bathrobe.

Last week, I realized I could take advantage of a coaching program by a blogging mentor that I had developed an admiration for. Although the program’s name of Blog Mastermind gives me a little pause, that’s about as hypey as Yaro Starak seems to get.

He gives a lot away for free, including his Blog Profits Blueprint ebook, his library of articles and his involvement in the Become a Blogger website. Our first week’s lesson with BMM was about setting up our blogs and developing good work habits, including nurturing what he calls “a giving mindset.”

Yes, there’s a lot of homework.As part of the first week’s lessons, I set up The Horsey Set .

I hadn’t planned to set it up until sometime in the fall. But part of the homework for our first lesson was to set up a blog. Since I don’t intend to “monetize” this blog you’re reading, I launched the horse blog in a limited fashion. It’s up right now, in sort of a beta form.

But it’s there, hovering quietly in cyberspace while I slowly add to it. And you are the first to see it.

Thanks for all your encouragement. BTW, I’ll keep posting here. Having a blog that’s tied less to a niche subject is nice.

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Fadtastic Blog Renovations

Posted on July 28, 2008. Filed under: blogs, Uncategorized, writing |

Yes, I’ve re-decorated the blog.

Actually, I’m trying out this WordPress theme. It’s called Fadtastic, and it’s one of the free themes. Once I get my horse blog up, I plan to use this theme until I can afford some blog-designing artiste to wave the magic mouse and transform it into a unique virtual place.

Until then, I like this one. I like the cheerful colors and the clean lines.

I didn’t forget about the horses. Nyuh uh. Got me a domain name, some hosting, picked me out a free theme (this one), been planning content. I intend to launch it this fall. When it’s up, there’ll be a link right here, if you’re interested. Stay tuned …

But, first, I want to play with this theme for a while. Get a feel for how it works. Already, I see that I need to write an “About” page. So, this blog is a great place to practice.

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Good Kitty Sam – Update III

Posted on July 22, 2008. Filed under: cats, Uncategorized |

Max (r) horns in on Sam's (l) space

Max (r) horns in on Sam's (l) space

Sam’s heart murmur now has a diagnosis. It’s the same as his pal Max’s – cardiomyopathy, which is a disease of the heart muscle. Both cases were diagnosed via echocardiograms. The pictures shows slight thickening of cardio tissue.

Fortunately, they both have mild cases of it because we caught it early. Each cat gets half a tiny pill of atenolol every night. Max, who just turned 5, has been taking it for a year. The atenolol has slowed his heart rate so that the vet can no longer hear his murmur, but none of it slows down Max. He still plays and romps and pesters Sam. (see above.)

Sam is 10. He still plays and begs relentlessly for treats, which are a part of pill time. And he’s not nuts about the pilling process. But he’s now first in the line for treats. Of course, he hasn’t figured out that there’s a perk to this.

And, BTW, we have three cats. She’s 11. So far, so good with her, but I know that it’s only a matter of time.

Vets, like other doctors, don’t sugarcoat news. Our doc told us that Sam and Max are prime examples of the benefits of routine annual exams. But he added, we were basically buying them time.

So, we’ll keep giving them their pills, annoying them with vet visits and enjoying each day of their lives for the gifts that they are.

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Dr. Horrible: DH’s Favorite Musical

Posted on July 18, 2008. Filed under: Dr. Horrible, Joss Whedon, Uncategorized | Tags: , |

(See post below for image.)

Up until this week, my husband’s all-time favorite movie musical was “Joe’s Apartment” with its singing and dancing New York City cockroaches. He does like “The Producers,” too, but only watched it because of its great reviews and Mel Brooks’s cred.

As usual, he was dubious about “Dr. Horrible’s Sing Along Blog.” But he clicked on Act I anyway, thanks to producer Joss Whedon’s cred and the fact that I stood over him to make sure he watched.

After that, he couldn’t wait to put Act II up on our flat screen TV hooked to our stereo system. After we watched it twice in big screen, digital glory, he declared it “the best musical he’d ever seen.” And he can’t wait for the upcoming DVD, complete with extras.

Sorry, Joe.

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Part of a Entertainment Distribution Revolution?

Posted on July 14, 2008. Filed under: SF TV, Uncategorized, writing | Tags: , , |

Courtesy Mutant Enemy Productions

Courtesy Mutant Enemy Productions

As part of the fallout from the Writers Guild of America strike, some entertainment content producers are using the Internet to reach their viewers directly.

Among them is producer/writer Joss Whedon (of TV’s Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Firefly). His upcoming mini-series “Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog” will be releasing in installments over the Internet. For free.

How are folks getting paid? The freebie installments from July 15-20 are intended to build excitement for downloads and an eventual DVD. Which won’t be for free. But we want artists making a living, right?

All, and then some, is revealed in the “Master Plan” page available at the Dr. Horrible website. Mr. Whedon was so kind to offer desktop resources, like the image above, for us to spread the word in Net-appropriate viral fashion.

(BTW, I wish more content producers would do that, offer us buttons and banners and desktops.)

You’ll see recognizable faces in that poster at the top. Neil Patrick Harris (“How I Met Your Mother”) plays the title character “Dr. Horrible” while Nathan Fillion (“Desperate Housewives,” “Firefly”) plays the-less-than-super super-hero out to stop him.

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More tips from the seminar

Posted on July 8, 2008. Filed under: Uncategorized |

The Good Bye Sign isn’t the only concept I learned at the communications seminar I attended several Saturdays ago. I learned several other tips, as well, about subtext in conversations and precision in the use of language.

One thing the seminar leader told us is that “but” cancels out the words that precede it. Think about it:

“My homework would be here, Miss Flora, but my dog ate it.”

Do we remember anything about that homework, except that the dog ate it?

Also, here’s a revolutionary concept – there’s no such thing as “hope.” That “hope” doesn’t matter.

What?! you say. No such thing as hope!?! We were sputtering, too. He certainly had our attention. Then he explained.

It’s all in the context. Making statements like “I hope I get my first draft finished by Labor Day” doesn’t give us the energy to accomplish goals.

Although he didn’t say so, I thought of Yoda telling Luke Skywalker: “Do. Or do not. There is no ‘try.’ “

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Good Kitty Sam – Another update

Posted on July 3, 2008. Filed under: cats, Uncategorized |

Good news! Sam’s lab results are in, and everything is within normal parameters. Not bad for a 10-year-old cat.

However, he still has the heart murmur. We’re setting him up for a kitty echocardiogram soon. Not sure when. The vet will call back to schedule it. And, because he’s a house call vet, he’ll come pick up Sam in the early morning to take him to the clinic. Sammy will be back home around mid-morning.

That should be an interesting day for He Who Hasn’t Left the House for years.

Anyway, thank you, everyone, for your interest in Sam. Good luck and good wishes to all your beloved beings in your households — no matter how many legs they happen to have.

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The Good Bye Sign

Posted on June 25, 2008. Filed under: Uncategorized |

I spent a gorgeous New England Saturday in in the basement of a suburban hotel for a motivational/communications seminar. My husband’s company had offered it free to family members of employees who had taken the course already.

DH had told me highlights of his three days, so I had wondered what we would do in our single day version. As I had expected, we did The Good Bye Sign exercise. What I hadn’t expected was my reaction.

The purpose of the GBS is to show how listening affects a speaker. We each had to write “Good Bye” on a piece of paper to hold in our lap. Then we faced a partner. The seminar leader told one of us expound for two minutes on a beloved topic. The listener, once his or her mind wandered — whether it was to decide how to respond or to wonder what’s for lunch — was expected to hold up the Good Bye sign in front of her own face.

I was supposed to talk first. But I couldn’t bring myself to expound about any of my favorite subjects, partly because I already knew the point of the exercise and didn’t feel up to any feeling resembling rejection. So I said, “I’m a former journalist and I just can’t monologue. I want to know more about you.” So, for two minutes, I interviewed her.

With all the questions I asked, I probably had her talking more than I did. I asked her about her college sweatshirt, her hometown and then her sports teams. Soon, I faced the Good Bye Sign.

I scrambled to recover to something she might enjoy more. As I lost the energy for the patter of the questions, she raised the sign at least twice more. Then, it was time to switch jobs.

Whether it was my training as a journalist or my upbringing as a polite southern girl, I could not put that GBS in front of my face. No matter what. She even launched into a topic that makes my eyes glaze over.

I’ve had that happen as a reporter, too, when an interview subject bores me. Or, worse, when the story is about a topic that I normally find boring. But my job has been to steer the interview back on topic, to be interested enough in writing the story to ask the questions to tell that story and to keep the subject talking.

So, I fell back onto training. Whether it was from j-school classes or “Mother’s kitchen table,” I could not put that good-bye sign in front of my face.

After the seminar leader called “time’s up,” I apologized to my partner for not giving her the full effect of the exercise. Seeing that good bye sign go up — for whatever the reason — is jarring. I think, on some level, I simply did not want to do it to her.

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