Due to my neglect of this blog in 2013, it has been a long, long time since I’ve done a Spotlight post. If you are new to the blog, I used to have a monthly post where I’d hand out Spotlight Awards to blogs I thought were cool and might be of interest to others.
For today’s blog post, I’ve picked up my inspiration from the Two Cents Tuesday challenge posted on Across the Bored. It is more than likely a new challenge will be posted today, but I subscribe to the “better late than never” philosophy and feel compelled to participate in the challenged that is now expiring.
This time last year, I was feeling a bit burned out from maintaining this blog. I do enjoy maintaining a presence on WordPress, but more and more I have found it difficult to blog regularly. Last December, I vowed to make December the most awesome month of blogging on NMNPHX for my readers. You know, give my audience a December to Remember. Continue reading
Just when I was ready to throw in the towel and leave this blog untouched for the rest of the week, Across the Bored posted a challenge I could easily fulfill. This week’s topic selected for Two Cents Tuesday is Toys. Even though daylight stretches on a bit longer these days, I seem to have less time for certain endeavors (such as writing and blogging) as I’ve rediscovered a favorite toy of mine from my high school years.
I received this back in 1997. My grandfather bought it for $30 from a buddy of his that used to play it in a mariachi band. Even though the rosette around the sound hole was already chipping away and the case had seen better days, I was so ecstatic to own a guitar. I signed up for 2 semesters of guitar class my senior year of high school and happily strummed along as my guitar instructor taught us chords for tunes from the 50′s and 60′s, from groups such as the Beatles, Doors, Beach Boys and Kingston Trio to name a few.
My grandfather lived long enough to see me learn these songs. To celebrate our year of learning guitar, my guitar instructor held a guitar concert on Cinco de Mayo. The entire guitar class stood on stage and played many of the songs we’d perfected in class for all our friends and family in attendance. I’ll never forget how my grandfather stood proudly as we took our bow and clapped as loud as he could.
After high school, life happened. Faced with adulthood and the reality of juggling work and school, many hobbies I enjoyed as a teen took a backseat. About two months ago, I looked over at this guitar sitting in the back of my closet and wondered why in the world I am just letting this thing collect dust.
I dug out my old guitar instruction books and have been sitting down each evening working through lessons as well as practicing some of the songs I already knew from high school. I never felt disciplined enough to really sit and work through all the lessons in the books when I was younger.
Revisiting this years later, I find that I’m comprehending the information much easier these days. I also feel my coordination and dexterity has improved compared to my teenage years.
I know this because suddenly I’ve become picky about, well, picks. I’ve moved beyond mere chords to single note playing, riffs and 12 bar blues progressions. Picks can’t magically make one’s playing sound better, but the right pick can make the musical journey that much more enjoyable for the player.
The clear pick sitting in the pick holder is satisfactory, but I definitely prefer the stiffness of the Dunlop Tortex picks (the green picks pictured lower right). However, I just discovered the rough grip of the Dunlop Max Grip Jazz III Carbon Fiber picks (pictured below left). Though smaller, the grip is steady and I’ve yet to accidentally drop it in the guitar. This pick could very well rival the Dunlop Tortex as my favorite pick.
Well, what else can I say? These are the toys I rush home to play with these days.
Apparently my blog inspires people to goof off at work.
Greetings from Ohio! I’m bored to death at work so I decided to browse your website on my iphone during lunch break. I really like the info you provide here and can’t wait to take a look when I get home. I’m amazed at how fast your blog loaded on my cell phone…I’m not even using WIFI, just 3G…Anyways, superb blog!
Well hey there whoever you are! Thanks for checking out the blog on your iPhone. I get bored to work at death sometimes as well but instead of browsing the web on a mobile device I just sneak out and catch a movie at the movie theater across the street. You should try it sometime! In my neck of the woods, it’s only $5 to watch a movie before 6pm. Of course, this only works if you actually work near a movie theater. If not, I suggest you quit your job (since you are bored anyways) and find a workplace near a movie theater. See – problem solved. But do continue to increase page views on my blog when you get home.
NMNPHX – Solving the problems of spammers since 2012.
I came across this item today while perusing the news. The PBS affiliate WNET came up with a rather clever campaign to drum up support for their station by developing posters for fake reality shows…and then making fun of these shows.
In all, 5 posters were developed featuring non-existent reality shows. Avert your eyes to the right, and you are greeted with the tagline “The fact that you thought this was a real show says a lot about the state of TV”.
After taking a look at all 5 posters, my favorite of the bunch was Knitting Wars, with the tagline “It’s Sew On”. I know WNET developed these as a dig at some of the less than stellar shows on TV, but I could see some of these fake shows as upcoming movie plots as well. I am willing to be some movie exec has a script sitting in a pile on their desk with similar concepts.
Take a quick break and give yourself a laugh by checking out all 5 posters:
I’ve been hanging on to this gem for a few months. It is a lengthy comment that made it past the spam queue and into my comment moderation queue. Sneaky spammers! Normally I will type out the message of the spam comment, but this one was so long I just did not have the desire to retype the message. Click on the image below and you will be able to read the contents of the comment.
Where do I even begin with this one? Anita Jolly – it almost sounds like a name Bart Simpson would use to call and prank Moe the Bartender.
Midway through this mess of a drama, Anita Jolly switches to Laura Johnson, who has some other mess of problems. Both stories are advertising some “love spell” from a charlatan by the name of Dr. Ozanga.
Hey there fellow bloggers! By now you have noticed that I have been MIA from this blog.
Happy New Year! I never did get around to posting a January Spotlight award, so I’ve just decided to skip ahead and start fresh with February.
For those of you new to the party, I spotlight 3-5 blogs at the beginning of each month that I think are deserving of some recognition. I’ve created a page on my blog that contains the award logo and purpose of the award. Check it out, especially if you’ve been spotlighted.
Below are the guidelines about the award.
1. If I pass on the Spotlight Award to you, congratulations! It means I thought your blog was awesome enough to mention on my blog complete with a short description to my readers about why your blog is awesome.
2. Unlike other blog awards floating around the internet, YOU DO NOT HAVE TO DO ANYTHING TO ACCEPT THE AWARD.
3. If you want to paste the logo on your blog and let your readers know you’ve been spotlighted, that’s cool. If you think my award is bunk and you don’t want to mention it to anyone, well that is your choice. But just know that you have been recognized and you don’t need to do anything else besides bask in the glory of your victory.
Before I head into a new list of awards, don’t forget to visit the blogs of December’s winners:
3. Beyond Print
Without further ado, here are my picks for February 2013:
Tagline: Presumptions and postulations with a twist
Blog Summary: Blogger Ideflex provides almost daily posts which range from amazing photos to contemplation on specific topics. Forget the Daily Post challenges – Across the Bored finds the more interesting writing and photo challenges that bloggers come up with and participates in these challenges. Across the Bored features a weekly “this year in history” post every Thursday which summarizes the highlights and low-lights of selected years, starting with 1960 and moving in chronological order with each subsequent post.
Excerpt: While 1962 continued the trend in global politics towards civil war, skirmishes and upheaval, it also marked a time where vassal nations were achieving their independence. America felt the world getting just a little bit smaller with the start of the Cuban Missile Crisis yet still managed to look to the stars with their nascent space programme and the launch of the first commercial communications satellite able to transmit a Trans-Atlantic television signal.
Youth were also starting to expand their horizons with Andy Warhol exhibiting the now infamous Campbell’s Soup Can, 007 getting a hit film with Dr. No and the Beatles recording Love Me Do – 3 convicts figured they could ride the tide of firsts and successfully escaped from Alcatraz. Many of the ideas and trends put forward in that year have become embedded in our reservoir of cultural consciousness – 50 years later, Booker T. & the M.G.’s crossover hit single shows us exactly how relevant they still are…
One more thing: Tuesdays are reserved for an original Across the Bored challenge – Two Cents Tuesday. This challenge gives bloggers a chance to interpret a topic however they wish and share it on their blog.
2. Jillian Levi
Tagline: Hello Greece! You ready for adventures?
Blog Summary: The tagline describes Jillian’s year teaching in Greece. She shares some of those experiences on her blog, but continues to forge new adventures for herself now that she is back home in the U.S. Jillian’s posts on life are always packed with humor and authenticity.
Driving a stick, Day 2
My dad drove us out to a little town nearby. (And when I say ‘little’ I mean population 1,000.)
Lots of back roads, no people. The perfect place to practice.
Needless to say as I got behind the wheel I was petrified.
“There might actually be someone else on the road! What do I do if someone else is driving on the road too?!”
My dad just patiently looked at me.
Oh right. I know how to drive, just not the mechanics of the stick shift yet…
I pushed in the clutch, and started the car.
And everything about day 2 went better!
One more thing: Jillian proudly features a Not Featured on Freshly Pressed badge, but with her wit and humor, I would not be surprised if she has to remove that badge one day.
3. Darla Writes
Tagline: A Blog for New Writers
Blog Summary: Blogger Darla McDavid put together Darla Writes to grow as a writer as well as provide guidance and resources for writers. In Darla’s own words, her posts can be categorized as follows:
- to inspire writers to follow their dreams of being published
- to present resources that will help them write better
- to explain technology that can promote their work
The weather today was perfect for gardening. Warm rays through patchy fog offered a setting of beauty and a good temperature for sprucing up my neglected vegetable patch.
Especially at noon: Straight-up sunshine over a soggy lawn.
I went outside to the garden that kept me in tomatoes, lettuce, carrots, and peppers throughout the summer. I turned to other things once fall arrived. And so I came upon a sad sight of yellows and browns that had once been spring green. Two of the three tomato plants survived, but a family of crabgrass moved up and in through the newspaper layer of the raised bed.
The soil was moist, so it was an easy win as I wrestled with the weeds. Except for one rogue clump. It refused me. I yanked and dug through most of the bed, but the weed was strong.
I scratched through the dirt and touched the worms.
I disturbed ant homes and admired their scurry.
I stepped in spoiled fruit and fresh cat litter.
I noticed the rose and remembered the thorns.
And when I found the root, I worked at it until a tug ended the war.
After, I sat in the soil and thought about how those few minutes in the garden characterized this past year.
It took a while, but I managed to make room in my life — and my soul — for my writing desires. There was a lot to dig up, put aside, rearrange, sacrifice, before I could move along. And entwined through it all was that stubborn weed called Fear.
I pulled it up and out. And tossed it away.
Ah, did someone just learn how to type? Listen, there is actual typing software you can buy that can give you coherent sentences to type.