Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Happy Blogiversary to Me!

Today, January 10, 2007, is the one year anniversary of the first post I made to this blog. Being a male, sticking with anything for an entire year is fairly impressive, so I am going to take the day to bask in the warm glow of my own accomplishment. As my brother-in-law said, the most common Hebert family position is arm akimbo, patting oneself on the back, saying "Damn, I sure am a good person!". So get ready, this is one long patting-myself-on-the-back post. Because damn, I sure am a good person!

Looking back over the archives and the year that's passed, I'm very happy with the decision to start this blog. I've written more words in this past year than I did in the decade before it, and I've rediscovered my love for the art form (can you call writing about peeing "art"?). That was my main, number one goal, to write something every day (or close to it anyway), to see if I still loved it as much as I remembered from the past.

I've never kept a journal of any sort before, and I'm surprised at how much it can deepen your understanding of and appreciation for the everyday events that happen to you. I'm more aware now, I take more notice of the people and things around me. That's been a nice bonus.

I think the blog was funnier when it first started. I suspect in part that's because I had a ready treasure trove of good stories saved up from the past ten years (like Mo75), which I could whip out when I didn't have anything new. After the first six months or so I'd used those all up, slowing the posting pace.

Then, of course, I decided to start talking about religion and politics. I think that was a good decision from a personal standpoint ... Being more real is a good thing, over all, and one of my psychowhatever problems has long been avoidance. So from that perspective, I'm glad I did it. However, I do think there was a price to pay in terms of how funny and relevant to the topic of "A Nerd Living in the Country" the blog is, and that after all is what made me start the whole thing. I'm not quite sure what to do about that. I'll probably try to increase the ratio of fun to serious posts, but not abandon the deeper subjects completely.

I think the most honest post I've made so far was in talking about my dad's death. That's probably the best "real" writing I've done so far, and it still makes me think when I read it.

In terms of humor, my favorite posts are the aforementioned "Mo75", and the more recent "Turkey Pickling" episode. If it still makes me laugh reading it, months later, then I feel pretty good about it.

However, I still think the best, most creative piece I've written so far is the "Oatmeal Festival" travelogue. My favorite bit from that whole slideshow is "No, really. They dive-bombed us with oatmeal. I am not making this up." I'm laughing right now, re-reading it -- how's THAT for hubris!

I thank all of you who have been so supportive over the past year, reading and commenting on this blog. My family, especially my brother Johnny and sister Denise, have been unstinting in their support, and I really appreciate that. My cousin Jill and my Aunt Sharon have also been frequent visitors -- thank you both.

And of course there's Annie, my amazing wife who has taught me more about living, making your dreams a reality, and engaging in the world around you with your whole heart than anyone I've ever known before. I love you, Annie, thank you for believing in me. I don't think either HeroMachine or this blog would have ever happened without you.

Finally, thanks to everyone who's come by to visit, from those whom I've never met like Rob in Indiana to Allen to that hawk guy from Croatia, through to my nephews, nieces, and other brothers and sisters and cousins and aunts and uncles and in-laws. I appreciate your support, and hope you've had fun reading this Nerd's Country Journal throughout the last twelve months.

I look forward to keeping up the pace of the postings in 2007, and hopefully finding more humor and relevance in every day. Thanks for visiting, and I hope to be engaging enough to keep you around for a while longer.


Allen said...


Your blog as always been a pleasure to read.

I had been journaling in one form or another for most of my life so when blogs came along, it was a natural extension of what I had already been doing. The difference with blogs, of course, is that people other than the author can read them any time. That fact alone has put a damper on some of the things I've chosen to write about... but perhaps not as much of a damper as would be appropriate. (I've actually deleted some posts when a cooler disposition prevailed.)

But HEY... this isn't about me. This is about you and your one year anniversary in the blogosphere. Congratulations! Writing well is difficult -- it's a skill. Writing often is difficult because there are only so many hours in a day. Writing well and often is a feat exponentially more difficult than one or the other tasks alone. I think most readers here would agree you've accomplished a great deal here.

[cyber pat on the back]

(a nerd who recently moved to a small town)

Anonymous said...

Not only are your posts fresh each and every time, you cover a variety of topics, from religion to feeling quite comfortable in a ladies latrine. You are intelligent, articulate with the keyboard, humorous, downright funny, honest, opinionated and a wonderful friend and brother. I look forward to the silver anniversary of the blog! -- Denise

Geopoet said...

Congrats. If the mark of a good blog is the ability to be intelligent, brutally honest, imaginative and still manage to have a sense of humor (at least that's my definition!) then you definitely should take pride in that. Keep it up.

snakey lady said...

You introduced us to BLOGS. And I visit others....

But this is the ONLY one, I can't miss, I cannot avoid. Whether I am tired or sad, frustrated, happy, content, mellow or miserable - I must read your "versions" of life. Never knowing what the subject will be is probably the most alluring part.

I have laughed til I lost weight and cried til it hurt. That's high praise for written words.

A genuine Thanks. (Keep it up, you heathen! There's not much else from Burnet county to read)

The Cow Whisperer said...

What? No love for the cow whisperer? You have truly forgotten us, the little people, in your speech from the Academy Awards...

Congrats on a full year! Now if we can just get you potty trained!

Jeff Hebert said...

I can't believe I forgot the Cow Whisperer! And JimmyMac, my very very funny brother in law. Definitely thanks to both of you.

And thanks to everyone leaving comments, too, I'm very touched.