January 13, 2005

Three to Read

Three of my favorite bloggers have been quite prolific as of late.

Skippy is back from his blog hiatus. Oh how we missed him. I would introduce this paragraph with an ad hominem attack, but we have already established that poor Smallholder, like Moses, will be forever looking at the promised land of the "What People Are Saying About Skippy" sidebar from the outside, barred from entrance into the promise land of my dreams. Anyhoo, Skippy left his loyal readers hanging for some time but is now back with a vengeance. I would link to specific articles, but heck, they are all good (except where he takes that stupid "what are you worth quiz"). Go check mi'boy Skipper out.

Kilgore is also flaming back into the frequent posting (but seems to have lost steam lately). I particularly liked the mayonnaise saga. Kilgore also offers more evidence supporting my contention that the Star Wars movies collectively blow.

Kilgore's story of losing his camera and having it returned is bizarre enough to make anyone but the Analphilosopher believe in the existence of a benevolent God. Many years ago, the Maximum Leader and his Minister of Agriculture took a whitewater rafting trip. Somewhere along the rapids, my watch slipped off my wrist. Since it was an engagement present from Mrs. Smallholder, I was rather distraught. Our guide commiserated with me, but I could tell that the attractive young lady was having the same thought that was running through my mind: "Smallholder, you are an idiot. Who wears a treasured possession while whitewater rafting?" Much later, I got a call from the young woman. She was leading another party and one of the rafts capsized. When one of the people stood up, they stepped on my watch, which had been submersed all that time. The inscription just said "To Mark from Sally - heart, mind, soul." No last name. So the guide pockets the watch, goes back to the center, and pages back through customer records until she finds my last name, looks up my phone number, and tells me she found it.

At the risk of offending the star-student-of-geometry-class-proof precision of Bill's Comments, I have to conclude: The odds of someone capsizing right where my watch was, being barefoot so they could feel that they had stepped on something, being part of a trip under the direction of the same guide, said guide remembering me out of thousands of customers, said guide further going to all the trouble to find me and return it? The Universe's constants MUST be designed by a benevolent supreme being. Just call me Dr. Pangloss.

Finally, we have the inestimable Ally. Belying her own wisdom that happiness makes for poor blogging, Ally had given us several good posts in recent days. Alternatively, she may prove the rule so well illustrated by the perpetually and preternaturally angst ridden Big Hominid, Skippy, Kilgore and Celibate.

I often wonder whether my own optimism and joy makes me a poor blogger. Then I realize that couldn't possibly be true. The runaway popularity of my "We need more farmers like..." posts is proof enough, no? When Smallholder is happy and links to cool farmers, everyone is happy. And if they're not? Well, don't think that the Maximum Leader is the only one who has a list of people who are "first against the wall."

Ally's posts like "The Problem With Unions" will keep her out of the firing line, even if she occasionally takes a paddle to yours truly. I'll wait while you click through...

Quoth The Minister of Agriculture whilst rubbing his tuckus, "You enjoyed that, didn't you, you sick little monkeys?" (And a little voice, burbling up from the misshapen, orange-tufted loon, downstage left, replies "Ohhhh, yesssss, me likey the Smallholder spanky spanky!")

I would still maintain that our own egos often preclude us from objectively looking at the relative merits of various collegiate paths, but Ally has been down several paths and has a rational basis for comparison. She has gotten' me to thinkin' that my perception of the jump between levels (Longwood to William and Mary) t'ain't neccessarilee tee-pical*. After all, I can't fairly compare the two institutions because perhaps the excellent peers I had in the graduate program at William and Mary were not representative of the undergraduate student body. I don't think Ally will sway me on this one, but I will have to ruminate on the fact that her experience is perhaps more telling than mine.

* Jess 'cuz I haven dem fancy sheepskins don't mean I t'ain't still an inbred agrarian. Now get off me porch 'for I rocksalt yer mangy hide.


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