Friday, February 5, 2010

The Blog of the State

Not sure why, but I think for the last three years I have been in California the night of Michigan's state of the state speech by Governor Granholm. This tradition held true this year and the best option available was to skim through the excerpts and analysis the following morning. As much as I love Michigan, and I do love Michigan quite a bit, there is almost nothing worse than the state of the state speeches. Does this make me a bad state supporter? It's not that the care about the subject matter isn't there, but regardless of one's political affiliation, it is borderline impossible to believe that anything that any governor has to say has any relevance on the direction of the state. At heart, I believe that governors of all beliefs mean well and genuinely believe that they have the capacity to do anything about anything through their leadership. However, it is somewhat depressing that these speeches are nothing more than a reminder that governors exist at times beyond a month before and after the state budget is due. It would have been honestly refreshing if Granholm stood up and said "holy god this last year sucked hard. I'm not sure how we made it out alive with unemployment beneath 20% and with absolutely zero non-Michigan State sports-related riots, but we're here and fortunate that things aren't worse." That kind of statement doesn't go far toward solving problems, but it would help me to believe that the state executive isn't coming from a place of baseless optimism and is in clear touch with reality. With that, it is time for my first and likely last annual state of the blog review. I know that I suck, so you can trust the assessment.

I use the words "I" and "me" far too much. Despite great and focused efforts, it is too much of a struggle to express thoughts without saying I. I finish a thought (like this one), read it back, and wonder how anybody can knock out an entire narrative from the third person. This problem has plagued me since second grade and early book reports. "My brother Joe Hardy and I talked to my dad, Fenton, and then we found the submarine." I want to apologize for this, but I can't do so without saying "I" 'm sorry. How do people do it?

BurgerFest-O-Rama is not dead, but it is on accidental hiatus. This remains my greatest and saddest failure to date. You can chalk this one up to "too much ambition". Now that Steve is gone, this may be a good place to reinvest some of my available energy and time. The bummer is that Steve was either my #1 or #2 burger companion either ahead or behind Maureen. The concept of this adventure was also darkened when Fiddleheads closed the day after we had our burgers there. It was too sad to bear and nearly broke my spirit.

People like simple computer shortcuts and tips. For example, don't spill Coke on your keyboard.

I regularly struggle with what people want to read about, because no one ever indicates any subject matter interest whatsoever. It's kind of like feeding a pet - I buy you the nice dog food, but you're just about as happy eating some other dog's vomit. What do people care about? Since it's so hard to tell, the focus remains on things that this writer finds awesome or less than awesome, with a bigger emphasis the last few months on unawesome things. It's a bit of a crapshoot, leaning toward crap.

I was able to pick up a few regular valued readers this past year, but aside from BurgerFest hiatus, my inability to gain any sort of broader interest is my biggest life failure. Seriously. Some guy friends told me that they thought the focus on me, TV, and food might reduce the overall appeal to the fairer sex. Glass Ceiling, Panties, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sex and the City, Shoes, Vampires, ERA, Empowerment. Love me ladies!

Thank you again to everyone who has ever commented, told a friend, come back, or at least didn't say something negative directly to me.

Baby Louis remains painfully cute and a great dancer. I'm so glad Gail and Jeff had him, and this finally convinced me that people don't have babies just to satisfy their parents' desire to be grandparents. It just might be worth the work.

Despite some of the occasional jaded feelings and great quantities of wasted writing time, my hope remains that I can convince you to love, enjoy, and speak up on behalf of Michigan. The weather is sometimes better in other parts of the world, right now jobs are hard to find, and property values aren't doing so hot, but Michigan, its resources, and its people made us who we are. There's got to be something great about a place that can produce someone who has stuck with this self-indulgence to this point.

1 comment:

Dan Anderson said...

good to know the state things are in. though you made it seem a little bleak.

i havent been to new burger places, just keep going to shamrock

the first louis thing was a red x for my browser.

as far as what people don't give them anything to want. you obviously blog about anything, did form the start; so people don't come here for a reason other than to read your blog. my guess is if you made a hard push to blog about pretzals and only pretzals, then over time the number of people coming from the pretzal community would be greater than the people that read your blog now

so i come here because i think, "what did ken write today?" not because im looking for anything in particular; as im sure is the case w/ most people.