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Location: Cheshire, Connecticut, United States

devilishly handsome, screamingly funny, overly modest

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

12-05-2005

The TV had "Holiday Inn" on just before I started this- as if I didn't feel maudlin and overly sentimental enough from my topic alone. What I want to talk about is the way I feel about our blogging class, the people in it, and the fact that something really special is coming to a close.

I knew nothing about blogging before this class, I barely knew the word. Moreover, as you have discovered, I'm generationally challenged about anything involved with the technology of the computer world. To my surprise, however, I found that I was not alone in being intimadated by the concept of blogging. All of us had difficulty, in some way or another, in adapting to the world of the blogosphere. Some were nervous about the lack of privacy, and concerned about reader interaction. Some wrote stilted, formal blogs at first, worried about expressing private thoughts in a public medium. Some, like me, struggled with the mechanics of the damn thing.

The interesting thing is not that we managed to learn a great deal about blogging, but that in the process we somehow became a close-knit unit. I found that, through reading each other's blogs, talking to one another in class and privately, and, most of all, learning about each other through the unique experience of interpersonal blog commentary, we somehow arrived at a position of mutual respect and surprising closeness. I wound up feeling grateful to have had the opportunity to share the phenomenon of these last few months with my classmates and I'm very sad to have it end.

There are several unforgettable memories that I will take from these Thursday nights. Elin gesturing passionately to make a point. Dave methodically arguing his position by the numbers. Erin breaking through her personal shyness with some brilliant blog comments. Brie, combining youth, beauty, and talent- who of us wouldn't want her future? Joe, always effective with emotionally charged remarks, and Eric refuting them deadpan. Jen, my seat neighbor, focused to a fault on her life's goals, but absolutely brilliant in flexible thought in her blog. John, always helpful (to me particularly) and cogent in his blog critique. Jeff, my musical buddy lightening up the procedings. Matt, in denial of the personal revelations of his blog writing. Patti, with her angst in toward the blogging process. Holly, lighting up the room with her enthusiasm and optimism. Joal, the future marine, he'll never know 'til he gets there.Chris, a brilliant mind in the process of self-discovery. And me, how can I be expected to stick to one topic when there's such a lot to explore?

And , of course, there's Brett. As you can see, it takes a whole new paragraph to describe his effect on the class. He was the first of us to realize the cathartic nature of the blogging medium, and by far the best in exploiting it. He took us down the personal odyssey of his (dating) life, leaving images most of us won't forget. I'm not sure whether Brett was made for the blogosphere or vice-versa, but they are a perfect and inevitable fit.

I was going to link each name mentioned to the appropriate blogsite, but I realized that some privacy issues were involved in naming the authors of some blogs. Nuts, and I wanted to show off my new-found linking skill.

Before I leave this blog, I need to point out that none of this experience would have been possible without the deft hand of Colin guiding our path. This was a new, previously untried teaching medium with a lot of serious groundbreaking required. I, personally, am very grateful for having the luck to be part of this brave new world, and I think we all thank Colin for making it a huge success., Yes,guys, I probably am sucking up, but that doesn't mean I don't mean it.

No one will be surprised that I could go on forever about how I feel toward my classmates. I've been blown over by the talent , intelligence, empathy, and all-round good will that I found. I know that because most of us are Master's candidates in English we will probably meet again in other classes, and I hope we all keep blogging and stay in touch thatway, but I can't shake the feeling that after Thursday night something will be gone from our lives that is irreplaceable.I hope not.

Later.

7 Comments:

Blogger Holly said...

Bill,

What a nice tribute to the class... for my part, I thank you. You've lit up the room yourself with your good humor and wit... and with your wonderful way of putting words together. Keep writing - you're better than you think.

6:26 PM  
Blogger shante said...

Dear Bill,
I truly hope that you will be making repeat appearances in the Bistro even after this class comes to its close. I'm going to miss your article show and tells and book advice. You're a magnetic man who have kept a lot of us on our toes with your eloquent words.
Sincerely,
Brie

9:02 PM  
Blogger Pangiuseppe said...

Bill,

Little did you know you weren't the biggest blogtech dinosaur among us. Your last post inspired me to, among other things, finally figure out this freakin' mystery called 'linking'.

So, I'm proud to show you the successfully executed link below, which is threaded into a comment to a post today from our beloved class "shit-disturber". The subject & story itself is something you might be interested in, and are likely familiar with.

************************

Pangiuseppe said...
Worse has happened, and been perpetrated by such MSM paragons as the NY Times and Washington Post. See (or be reminded of) this story about Gary Webb, the reporter from the San Jose Mercury News who broke the story of CIA/Contra crack trafficking in L.A. Both the New York Times and Washington Post repeated and amplified a smear campaign against Webb. When the facts caught up, and supported Webb, never an apology and barely a retraction. These ‘papers of record’ just quietly withdrew their character assassination of Webb, whose career was ruined (and who eventually committed suicide) as a result.

Certainly, the 'sphere will contain more mistakes, but it makes less pretense of pure 'objectivity'.

7:07 PM


Pangiuseppe said...
Thanks to Bill, I'm inspired to keep trying to figure out this mysterious technology called "linking"... here's the story I tried (and failed) to link to above FAIR

7:38 PM  
Blogger JP said...

Bill,
This class would not have been the same without you. I couldn't have asked for a better seat neighbor. You never fail to make me laugh and your constant encouragement was very kind. I hope we run into each other in another class some day!
Best wishes-
Jen

8:47 PM  
Blogger John said...

Bill, you have left your mark and then some. You haven't given an inch to all those young "baby" bloggers and you've helped inspire me -- the other old guy -- to speak up. I know your goal is to write, a lot more. So, please, I can't wait for your blithering memoirs. All the best, my friend.
John

2:53 PM  
Anonymous colleen said...

Hi Bill,
I'm visiting via Loose Leaf. I made some changes to the post where I mention your class and wanted to see if the link to you worked.

I'm glad I can comment here now. It will make following your writing more fun.

Looking forward to your next post.

10:33 AM  
Blogger Nile said...

Can you see my hand gestures now? I'll miss your compliments as much as your witty repartee.

6:16 PM  

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