I was nominated for a Liebster Award.by BionicOldGuy, who is doing a great job of “Aging Gracefully by Staying Active”. I appreciate his blog because it manages to both educate and entertain me. It also gives me a bit of inspiration as I try to become better on the bike. Please take a look at it if you have time.
I was going to pass on this, as my success rate in getting other people to respond is pretty abysmal. However, I appreciate his blog too much to merely dismiss it. Also, he did a fantastic job of taking down the “grammar police” for me in one of my blogs that I think I owe him one. Since I don’t think I’ll ever have the chance to let him draft behind me, this will have to do.
Like all of these awards, there are some questions. Since I am sitting here on a Sunday night drinking a Guinness, it seems like something I can get done.
- What motivated you to start a blog?
It came down to two things. The first was that I want to write. I want to write novels, short stories, comic books, screenplays, commercials, ESL textbooks….basically anything. I spouted that a lot without actually writing. I knew that writing was hard work. People just didn’t write a novel in a couple of days. Just writing a short story took days to write the first draft and then the editing took…well it took longer than I put into it obviously.
So, blogging became a kind of practice. You’ve got to exercise those writing muscles. Currently, I hope that in each blog post I write there is at least one good phrase or sentence, or even paragraph that is good. Oddly enough, a friend and I were discussing it over tacos the other day and he said that he felt there were many good phrases and ideas. I was so happy I bought him a beer.
I hope he wasn’t just saying that to get a free beer.
The thing was that I got the sense that people were making money from blogging. That sounded awesome. I certainly hoped to get paid to write novels or anything from the list above, so blogging fit that category. It hasn’t turned out that way, but I am still hopeful that I will get to do some free biking trips or adventure trips as a result of this blog. If you know anybody with this kind of marketing pull, please send them my way.
- What is the number one piece of advice or motivation you’d like people to take away from your blog?
Your day can be hard, or crappy. You can hurt. You can feel like you are alone and that nobody understands or sympathizes with you. Though time will reveal this last one to be completely false, in the short term, you can find one thing every day that makes you smile. It doesn’t have to be earthshattering. It doesn’t need to be so obviously special. It just needs to give you something to smile about before you go to sleep.
Most of my Perfect Moments aren’t perfect, but rather I choose to see them that way because with a subtle shift in perspective, they are. Seeing a fellow commuter wearing what look like fuzzy slippers (but were probably high fashion sandals) makes me smile. Seeing a guy drinking two cups of coffee on the bus simultaneously makes me wonder if one is black and the other is with milk and sugar (what we call the Double Double up here north of the 49th). Sometimes the moments are profound and at other times childish. Sometimes they are introspective and at other times just a bit off the wall. The thing is, writing about them and thinking about them makes my dreary days seem much better. I hope they do that for you too.
- Who is your most inspirational figure?
I’ve got lots of these, so I had better break them down into categories. I am going to forget lots, but these should prove to be a representative list.
Historical figures: Louis Riel, Thomas a Becket, Sakamoto Ryouma, Viola Desmond, Terry Fox….
Writers: Harlan Ellison, Graham Swift, John Irving, Mordecai Richler, Kurt Vonnegut, Harper Lee….
Unsung heroes: people who wake up sleeping commuters at the last stop, people who hold open doors, people who let customers with a single item in front of them in the line…..
- What is your favourite food?
I love pizza and pizza loves me. If I had to pick a cuisine, I would have to say I love Japanese food. If I could go back to Japan for a year, I would forgo the temples in favour of eating.
- What is your favorite physical activity (PG rated, please)?
Currently, cycling is my number one thing. I look forward to it all winter long and most of my vacations (Vietnam and Cambodia) were cycling vacations. I am considering either going to Chile, Prague or Laos by bicycle later this year. I woudln’t say I am great on the bike. I need to drop about twenty pounds and take my training more seriously to be better. However, even the limited training I have done this year has yielded results. This gives me great hope.
- What do your do for stress relief?
Blogging is stress relief. Cycling is stress relief. Doing stupid childish things with the girlfriend–like racing up the stairs from the subway to see who is first–is stress relief. Sadly, eating junk food is also stress relief. Hopefully I do more of the former and less of the latter going forward.
One of the great things about these awards is that they help gain an audience for the bloggers. The award asks me to recommend five of them. What I would like to do is expose you, my readers, to some bloggers who don’t have nearly as much traffic as they deserve. Please take a look at their blogs
Retro Dee’s Guide to the Best Era Ever. This is a blog about living in the 1950’s in the 20th Century. I could make it clearer, but you get the idea.
The Intrepid Arkansawyer. Changing your life to look after your mother is no easy task. Moving from LA to Arkansas, well, that is something else.
Yakkablog. When someone else is riding around beautiful places and taking great pictures, you should let everyone know about it.
The Grin Girls. They seem to be on an amazing trip. The photos are amazing and the story is great. Every time I read a post, I want to pack my bags.
An Old Man in Lycra. There are so many great cycling blogs out there. I just think a lot of people will enjoy this one.
And while I was only suppose to include 5, I wanted to throw in a bonus one as Rootchopper is taking his annual cross country cycling trip. You should take it with him.
Should any of them want to answer the questions (and if you want to, let me know and I will link your blog to this one) here they are. I don’t know if these are great questions, but if I put too much heart into them (as I have done countless times) and nobody answers, I am just devastated. If they are fluff, so be it.
- What is your favourite blogging moment?
- Who is your favourite author?/Which novel can you read multiple times?
- What song always makes you smile or sing out loud when it is played on the radio?
- What is something that makes you grumpy/frustrated/angry but doesn’t affect anyone else in your circle?
- What phone App do you rely on most?