#AtoZChallenge: J is Justification for the Blog Life


stormtrooper egg shell.jpg

It’s past midnight.

JI’ve crammed to the edges an entire day with Chick-fil-a chicken minis and meetings that flew over my head. I included lunch with a co-worker and a roast beef sandwich that got some looks as I walked with it on a plate. It ended with Rogue One and an episode of Hawaii 5-0.

And now, when normal men would check sports scores (Nuggets and Rockies win!) or gawking at their favorite Weather Channel meteorologist (Hi, Kelly Cass), I’m starting a post for the letter J in the A to Z Challenge, hours after Australian bloggers have put their posts to bed for the day.

Trying not to jinx myself, but I’m not that sleepy. I’m jumping right into this post, hoping to hit the jackpot for what I want to say. Today’s J-word is justification for the blogging life, and my 12:52 a.m. start time for this post ought to be exhibit A.

Here are seven reasons if someone you love blogs, you ought to just count your blessings.

1. Connects us to other kooks

Misery loves company. So too those of us who can tap out a thousand words on a daily challenge and forget to brush our teeth or finish our taxes. Oh shit. Oh wait, I did. See? You really want that kind of rudderless meandering on the highway with you?

2. Shows us another perspective

Without blogging, how could I ever know a dishwasher could be possessed? Lines from posts I read years ago resonate and inspire new posts and open lines of thinking I might not have thunk. Then we can put a twist on it and who knows how far it goes?

3. Provides a community

I’ve come to work and not talked to a soul all day. Yet, on any day, I can shoot the shit with dozens of talented and troubled folk just like me (or reasonably close, or not at all like me, but who have a blog to update, dammit.)

4. Creates an identity

So long as your blogger doesn’t insist on being called the name of their blog, or refer you to a contact me page when you ask for a favor, you’re good. A reasonably well-adjusted blogger will let the lift they get from their blogging persona give them a pep in real life.

5. Keeps us off the streets

Bloggers tend to be creative. That’s a fact, and also a friendly way of saying they have few other life skills. Blogging at least keeps us close to a keyboard when we let personal hygiene and reasonable nutrition go out like yesterday’s Twitter feed.

6. It opens our worlds

A frog at the bottom of a well has a view of the sky limited to what is visible through the opening. What happens if he escapes? His view of the sky changes exponentially. A frog or blogger (or even a frogger) gains that perspective through both reading and writing.

7. It can preserve our stories

I hope my girls will read these posts long after I’m gone.

(By then, maybe they’ll be able to think a post into being.) Barring a meltdown at WordPress, my words will also stick around for others, too. Rather than an ego boost, it’s a spot of humility, to consider your words outlasting your body.

Blogging’s a blast. Whether it’s at 1:18 a.m. or when you should be working or when you’ve finished your roast beef sandwich at lunch, it gives some of us an anchor that keeps us moored just where we belong in this vast ocean of humanity.

Kelly Crass probably doesn’t root for the Rockies, anyway.


[This post by Janine Huldie of Confessions of a Mommyaholic inspired this post.]


The rest of the A to Z to this point:

A is for Addiction to Devices

B is for Burgers (3 Lessons I learned During a Month Without Them) Plus 3 Random Smartphone Pics

C is for Interview with a Cat

D is for Do What I Do and Eat What I Eat

E is for Eight Things I’ve Left Behind

F is for  Foods That Bring Me Comfort

G is for #GirlsRock: An Interview Mental Health Care Advocate Kitt O’Malley

H is for Halfway There

I is for Ice Cream

blogging quote

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69 Replies to “#AtoZChallenge: J is Justification for the Blog Life”

    1. I could have probably done 7 x 70 justifications, Karine. Confucius said we learn not by our own words, but by others and ours, and what happens between them. Isn’t that blogging’s essence? I’m also still blown away by the fact that right now, it’s Thursday where you are and you’re on to K.

  1. Just like you can schedule your posts to publish in the future, you can set your post to publish in the past. I’ve done it accidently several times. I hit publish and then can’t find my post because it was published 8 days ago. So to bypass the 52 minute lateness just have it set to publish the day before at 11:59 🙂

  2. Keeps us off the streets and connects us with other kooks – brilliant, and right you are. Lol
    I love the top pic with the egg. I’m not even going to pretend I know which Star Wars character that is (so clueless when it comes to that ish, teach me your ways my dear..).

    Have a lovely day my friend. 🙂

    1. Thanks, Lindsay, and you know it’s true. I found that pic on a site called Pixabay, that offers free photos.

      Obviously that character is Jabba the Hutt! (Don’t believe me.) Stay close and I’ll teach you the ways of the force, young padawan.

  3. I do agreed with you on all these points, but when you think about, it’s really more about self then the readers, we blog first then comes the readers, if we don’t none of the other things – i.e., community,- could exist, just saying

    have a lovely day.

  4. I love connecting with out kooks! ha
    I started blogging to have something to look back at when my son is older. My reasons to blog now are described in your post.
    I want to be a better writer/blogger. I know I have a long way to go but reading blogs like yours really gives me inspiration.

    1. I’d be lost without our kooks, Kim! I would have forgotten some of the stories that are in these posts had I not written them, about my girls.

      It’s an evolution from that, isn’t it? You’re a remarkable writer as it is, and will only get better. I’m honored to give a little inspiration here, knowing you do the same at your place.

  5. Love, love, LOVE this post! Especially when you said you want your girls to read this long after you’re gone – I totally relate. I think of my blog as kind of my scrapbook of life and I love the idea of my son reading my posts someday and laughing over the things he did or said!

    1. Deb! How are you? You should do this next year. At least the name fit, right? I have a license plate for my car the kids got me that says Coach Daddy. I didn’t want to put it on the car and ruin it!

  6. I love these letter challenge thingies you participate in 🙂 They’re always fun to read.

    And you know what’s weird? I never really thought about blogging in that way–that I’m leaving a virtual footprint that people can read after I’m gone.

    I always think back on things I’ve read in blog posts and feel a new surge of inspiration… and I love that there are so many wonderful voices out there who can brighten my spirits when I’m having an off day. Blogging really is the best kind of community, and there are amazing resources out there now that didn’t exist when I first started. I love that you are here, and that you sit with us, Eli. Roast beef sandwich or no 🙂 PS: That reminds me of the time I brought kimchi pancakes to the office and became a leper in the eyes of my coworkers, lol. THEY WERE DELICIOUS.

    1. Thanks, Charlotte – you should do the challenge next year! They’re a blast to write, even if I stay up way too late.

      A blog is part of your legacy, if you want it to be. The Peaceful Posse has been an incredible collection, too, and has inspired me.

      Thanks for letting me sit with you. More kimchi for you, right?

  7. Soooo…. Number 7. (laugh) I cannot speak for anyone else but if my thoughts were to go directly into the blogosphere it would likely land me in the psych wing. Almost every post would have the sentence, or exclamation.. “Moneky Monkey, Taco Shell” in it and, all of them would have sound effects writen in (EEk EEk, Crunch)… just not a good plan.

    I like the idea of my kids reading this though.

    1. Yeah? I don’t know – I’ve seen some stuff on some blogs. If you can figure out how to put sound effects in blogs, you could make a killing.

      Your kids will love it, monkeys or not!

  8. yes, i so agree and my family and friends are always asking- “Is this for the blog?” or “This is a blog isn’t it?”. they are always on high alert these days )

  9. When I first started blogging (LiveJournal), I wasn’t really convinced – why would someone want to post random bits of their life up in public for random people to comment on? I’d started in fandom with mailing lists, which were much more subject specific, usually fic related for me, and a journal was a whole new idea. Then I started commenting on other people’s blogs – mainly fandom ones, talking about their fiction, and I loved talking to people who commented on my stories on my blog, and, as they say, the rest is history 🙂

    Blogging rocks!
    Sophie
    Sophie’s Thoughts & Fumbles – Dragon Diaries

    1. It’s a crazy concept, isn’t it Sophie? Look how blogging has evolved. The conversation gets it started, and suddenly you’re in a tribe that developed not of our own making, but out of our words.

      It does rock, doesn’t it?

  10. I blame a friend of mine on starting a blog. She has been blogging for about 2 years longer than I have. I was struggling with trying to write and she suggested it. So.. it’s her fault! LOL! I like to write and it sounded like a good idea. I still have a hard time putting what I write out there because it makes me vulnerable to criticism. I have met some incredible and awesome friends in the blogosphere and I am truly grateful for that. I think it is different than social media because we put out hearts and souls out there and it feels more authentic to me than Facebook. You see the good, the bad and the ugly in blog posts and the outpouring of prayers, support and commitment are more genuine. Thanks for this post… you rock!~

    1. Have you yet exacted revenge on this friend, Courtney? The repetition in writing makes such a huge difference.

      I see this when I look back on some of my first posts. I wasn’t comfortable in my voice.

      I also can detect times of experimentation, and how that turned out. Yes, it feels more authentic than Facebook, maybe a better look into our souls, not just funny videos and political rants.

      You rock, too, my friend. So glad to be in your tribe.

  11. Damn you for calling me out on this one, E!
    I blog because sometimes there are so many words swimming around my head they have to come out or I feel like I’ll explode. I blog because I sometimes feel lonely and reaching out is better than reaching in. I blog because it connects me to wonderful people online (and sometimes we connect offline too). I blog because I know I’m not the only one who is going through a particular thing at a given time and people shouldn’t have to navigate hard things alone. And I blog to show I don’t have it all together, that I’m one good trip and fall from a hot mess and people IRL don’t know that about me. If they don’t read my blog, they don’t get to know that side.

    1. We’re sick, Court. Word-letting is certainly a benefit. The words put on a page, unlike those in a journal, expose the writer to themselves and the world. There exists a community for just about any mode of thought, and we often find that in blogs.

      Even more, we find ideas that are starkly or just slightly different than ours, and that’s where the discussion starts, the understanding, the bonding, and ultimately the learning.

      1. I don’t know about sick, but we’re a different breed. I keep a paper journal too, for the things the internet doesn’t need to record.

        The community thing is key for me though, when I didn’t have a strong one IRL? It’s when my blogging community was at it’s most excellent. What has been most interesting perhaps is to see how much my internet community has stuck around and become part of my life.

  12. Hi Eli – so well said – thankfully I do my blogging usually in the morning, so can collops at night! Last two days I’ve been catching up – not much late nighting still though …

    It’s an amazing ‘life’ not understood until someone starts a blog and realises the benefits – yes work, and a lot of time – no time for sleep, but early mornings are good … two friends who don’t blog but are professionals have recently said – you do good on your blog – the reach out happens sometimes! But I love the learning (especially this I do … and to receive the comments I get amazes me … it’s a positive gig to be doing. Your frog analogy rings so true …

    Cheers Hilary

    http://positiveletters.blogspot.co.uk/2017/04/l-is-for-legendary-beasts-of-britain.html

    1. That’s a good idea! On weekends, I try that, but wind up mixing up pancake batter instead! It’s a blessing to hear good things about our work from non-bloggers, too.

      There’s a lot of learning to do by reading your blog. Glad we’ve found each other.

  13. I agree with ALL your reasons.

    Sometimes, however, I make blogging to be bigger than it needs to be. I worry about the “right” post or if anyone will care. And then blogging becomes a chore that I choose to ignore – which leads to an inconsistent schedule.

    I should post the reasons you list in a prominent place to help me remember the JOY of blogging and reduce some of the self-imposed stress.

    1. Hey, Molly. I have known that self-induced stress, too. Once, I told my child to wait for my attention, because it was hugely important that I finish a post – about making time for your kids, ironically.

      If it feels like a chore, it’s a great time to reassess, right? I’ve been there. You just to adjust. To make something as joyful as blogging would be like making something as blissful as birthday cake mundane.

  14. Agree with all of this – but especially love #2, #6 and #7. Re: #2, I often hear a former journalism prof in my head telling me we have a responsibility to understand other perspectives. Blogging at its best helps achieve that aim (and apparently educate about dishwasher possession).

    1. Those are favorites of mine, Louise. I so wish those tenants of journalistic integrity could apply today, not only to media, but all of us of the written (or typed) word.

      Dishwasher possession education is just the start!

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