It has been a while since I last posted, sorry about that. Not that anyone cares except my guilt and ego. Anyway, it will be a short post because I don’t have a lot to say. Actually, that’s a lie, I have so much to say but nothing that applies to the theme of my blog. I simply want to check in with the blogging muscles, like doing yoga after a long time without. My muscles might be tight, my breath shallow and unsteady, but we’ll work it out. The reason I haven’t been blogging, well, there are a few. One is that I am doing so much writing in other genres (yay!) This is good. Working in the evenings gives me all day to write in the solitude of my one room apartment or read in the sun at the park.
There are plagues in blogging. The plagues of meaningless jargon, exaggeration, cliches, and lazy writing. It’s contaminated the blogging world so deeply that we don’t even notice it anymore. If anything, we are convinced it’s the proper way to blog. In a world obsessed with numbers, the most viewed articles are often the ones in list form, easy to skim, with pictures that distract from the lazy writing. The entire point of the article is in the title or subtitle, followed by nothing but fluff. Ill thought out and unsupported opinion articles are offensive, choking journalistic integrity. After reading these articles I have changed in no way, learned nothing, and if anything I feel momentarily dejected and angry at the pervasive shallowness in the blogging world. It’s easy to write these articles, which means it’s easier for more people to blog – people who don’t care about writing as a craft, but who know how to formulate a blog post to get views.
Three summers ago I was on my first solo backpacking trip in Vermont. It was my second night, the sun was setting and I walked down to the stream to filter water. I was tired, out of hiking shape, and feeling a little unsure about the whole trip.Towards the end of the hill, I froze at the sound of an explosive rustle nearby, a sound too big to be a squirrel. My eyes flew in the direction of the noise, and staring at me from across the stream was a coyote. He was young, white, and fluffy, watching me as I watched him. A moment passed and I decided to step back. The second I moved, another coyote jumped from a few feet away – where he stealthily hid – and ran across the stream to his friend. I watched the coyotes play on the other side of the stream, where a third coyote joined. My breath had grown shallow, and I squatted down to watch the three play, unfazed by my presence.
I recently moved to Portland. It’s almost a cliché with all the buzz about Portland being a hip, environmentally conscious, artistic haven, best-place-for-any-lifestyle place. The city breeds the best bands you’ve never heard of, over 300 miles of bike lanes, Bernie Sanders fans, breweries, juice shops, and coffee bistros on every corner that serve local ingredients. It’s less expensive than San Francisco and Seattle, and home to many clean, green parks. There’s also no sales tax, legal marijuana, and a person to pump your gas for you.
“Yeah, Portland sounds pretty great.”
And it is a great city, but when everyone knows about it and decides to move there, especially young twenty-somethings like me, the transition into the hippest city in America is not so stress-free. Continue reading
Does someone in your life have the travel bug? Are they always moving around? Does it seem like they’re running away? If your friend or family member has the travel bug, you may feel confused. Maybe you miss them, or maybe you are worried about the path they have chosen in life. Maybe you’ve suggested they settle down, but they just won’t listen. Continue reading