Compelling yet repulsive

Having had a truly dismal Thursday in which I may have perfected my Moaning Myrtle impression, I know I’m definitely in need of Friday Fun.

As I have a fraught Friday ahead of me (I’m hosting a Think Tank which I’ve decided sounds way more impressive than it actually is), I’m writing this late on Thursday night, following some rather good Argentinian Malbec, therefore please excuse any errors!
There’s not a lot to say about this week’s discovery. Entitled ‘People of Walmart‘ it’s a collection of photos taken in Walmarts across America. In equal parts compelling and repulsive. To quote lovely friend who provides regular Friday amusement: “It’s so hideous, yet CAN’T…LOOK…AWAY…!”

It’s not highbrow, but it is amusing. May it bring a little light to the end of your week, whether it’s been dismal or joyous.

Literary gems

I have a few passions in life and I particularly like it when a few of them combine – it results in a lot of joy. Imagine my excitement on discovering a blog written by librarians that shares the awful books they and their colleagues have discovered.

I love blogs, books, people who organise books methodically and comedy, therefore what could I not like about Awful Library Books?

There’s a wide variety of gems. Some are simply outdated (can you imagine the misinformation within a 1987 publication on AIDS or adoption?), others probably should never have been written in the first place (‘Problems of Death’), whilst others simply suffer from being both old and comedy….

For example, ‘My Cat’s in Love: or, how to survive your feline’s sex life, pregnancy and kittening’. It comes complete with garish (and disturbing) cover art, and, having been published in 1970 is probably just a little out of date to still be in circulation. Or, how about the very wrong ‘Life Blood: A new image for menstruation’ (1988)?
My personal favourite (so far, I’ve not gone through all the archives yet!) is:
I particularly love it’s incredibly attractive cover, and I know Jo will love it too (she’s a syphillologist and thanks to her I know more about syphillis than I ever thought I would!).
But, what I love most about this site is that it’s written by actual librarians who genuinely care about whether the American public (of course it’s an American site – but I’m sure a British one would be just as, if not more hilarious) has the right information at its fingertips. Comedy and public service: a classic combination.

Blogging love

Short and sweet today – simply a collection of recent things that I want to share my love of in the blogging world…
1) Ali’s blog. Ali’s a friend who moved to Ghana to work for a construction firm a couple of years ago. Her blog tells the random tales of being a British girl living in Africa and is well-worth a read, now that it’s back from a blogging hiatus. It also has one of the best blog titles – ‘Missing Bacon Butties’ – I’ve come across and makes me hungry whenever I see it.
2) Jo’s new baby blog. The blog is new, it’s about babies and crafts and there will be a new baby shortly. It’s cute and lovely and who doesn’t like crafts and babies?? (Boys? No, I’m sure they like them too!)
3) Jenny’s debut single. Jenny is one of my wisest friends, she also directs the gospel choir I sing in and generally is rather awesome in a musical way – fabulous voice, great songs…she’s a pretty gorgeous individual too. Yesterday saw the launch of of her very first single, which you can download for free via the above link, or watch the video:
PS – had to find a new blog template last night as it was driving me up the wall that YouTube videos didn’t fit across the column width anymore. Need to do some more work on it, but hopefully this will be enough for now!

Dull blogs

Whilst this blog may occasionally vie for the title of ‘dullest blog in the world’, it actually isn’t…

Whilst its author may have entitled it ‘the dullest blog in the world’, it’s in fact quite the opposite. It has many of the things that this blog lacks – brevity, humour, making a point – I could go on.
Having had an absence of some years, I was pleased to discover that it’s back, and just as good. Written by Dave Walker, of Cartoon Church and the Church Times blog (and the best cartoons ever on the sometimes dry subject of the Church of England), it is quite refreshingly un-dull – as the post below shows:
I was standing at a central point in the room. The walls were all at approximately the same distance from me. I continued to stand there for a few moments.

Bitchy blogging

I read something on a blog today that genuinely shocked me. It was bitchy, divisive, ill-informed and, worst of all, pseudo anonymous. [I say ‘pseudo’ because whilst the author’s profile wasn’t visible, a quick look at the comments showed regular readers using a name and other blogs talking about it in a way that made the writer’s identity very clear.]

It was a direct attack (and the most recent of several by this author) on the organisation I work for – the church I work for in fact. The blogger, in loose terms, is also employed by the same church.
Whilst everyone is free to express views, I strongly dislike anything that goes out of its way to be bitchy and deliberately attack others. Today I read a post directly attacking the work of my colleagues and friends and it wasn’t a pleasant experience. Some of the comments could be justified, it’s not my place to say, but is a public blog really the place to air them?
Even worse, it creates divisions within the church, from right inside it. Not a way to encourage growth or long-term survival. And how does that look to those on the outside?
Usually I read blogs that are amusing/interesting/geeky or make me feel warm & fuzzy. The ‘faith’ blogs I read are usually inspiring or thought provoking. I do not want to read unpleasantness towards others.
As bloggers and blog-readers, shouldn’t we all take responsibility for what we write and read and not allow space for bitchiness? Or maybe I’m simply having a moment of being simple and naive?