Had a chance to Skype with the kid, he was on the Kibbutz, drinking Turkish coffee, hanging out with this cousins. Seems that he’s fitting right in.
Someone from the Communications department at Michigan Tech reached out to him over the summer, it seems that they have asked him to write a blog while he’s in Israel. His initial response was no way because “I’ll have nothing to write about” and “no one’s going to want read my ramblings” and finally “who has time to sit around and write crap?”
Um hmmm. . Well being that I’ve been sitting around writing crap that no one wants to read even though I have had nothing to write about for the last 10 years, I offered my assistance.
Step one, what’s the point he asked. That is a tough question and one that I can’t readily answer. I’m still trying to figure out why I do it.. at least in his case there probably are people in the academic community at Tech who would want to read about what he’s working on in Israel. So I offered this pearl of wisdom; “The point is for the Michigan Tech communications department to have something to put in their newsletter.” And if that’s not noble enough, “you’ll have a nice record of your stay and when you’re interviewing for jobs one day, you can point them to your blog, shows you’re well rounded.”
“Couldn’t I just make a ceramic vase or something?” Hmmm he’s logical that one.
“What do I write about?”
Another great question. Write about what it’s like to live in Israel. What sorts experiences are you having, what’s’ different from Houghton, well maybe not that, this is a blog not a dissertation. “How much detail?” Well, somewhere between chronicling each bite of a meal and your typical report outs on stuff. This is the kid who I would answer, “it was cool” when asked how the last four years in Houghton were.
He was getting distressed about this.
“How often do they want you to blog?” I asked. Minimum is once a month.
Once a month? Jeez Louise what a whiner.
I do have some pointers-
When blogging dear boy, avoid the following words.
Amazing – is the new “awesome” it says nothing and is one of the most overused cliché in femspeak. When you use it you sound like a 16 year old high school girl from Encino. Luckily one of the girls he met in Canada was from Encino, or Redondo Beach, what’evs same thing. She used the term every third sentence so he got the joke. As he said “The salad at the student union is not amazing, it’s just good.” Well said.
Journey- I wasn’t a big fan of the band and I hate the gawddamned word. Another overused cliché that makes you sound lame. People who like to make their mundane lives sound more interesting like to drop the old “journey” word. You’re not a “journey” kid, you’re getting and education. Mrs. S has a particular distain for the word stemming from the old Bar Mitzvah prep days. During that process they liked to drop the “journey” word a lot. We were on a “journey” of learning or a “journey” of faith or what ever it was. Mrs. S, being stunningly practical would say that it makes it sound like she’s meandering. She is purposeful in her activities, not some wayfaring traveler.
That’s why she’s high on the Get Shit Done index.
We bloggers are typically not on that list.
Also, I’d advise him to watch the capitals. Seems that capitals are about the single most annoying little grammar issue I see. People like to capitalize everything. Goes back to the inability to determine what is and isn’t important. And very little anyone writes is so important that it requires capital letters. Looks like you’re angry all the time.
Other than that blogging is easy. Pretend you’re writing me a letter. Scratch that, pretend you’re writing your Grandmother a letter; you might be a bit more forthcoming that way.