Ridding the internet of ugly blogs one blog at a time!

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

NEW BLOG ALERT.

Sometimes you have to just love PURE arrogance. A case in point:

Johan Bach

The name of his blog you ask?

SoFreakinHot

Somehow you just have to respect a guy who is both (aparently) "So Freakin Hot" and humorous. I am sure the girls are swooning all over him... although I am not sure he can see it. It's hard to notice these things when you are arrogant and in love with yourself.

Needless to say, I am interested in seeing how this blog develops. Believe me... I think we are in for a ride.

Saturday, June 25, 2005

Comma, Comma, Comma, Comma, Chamelion

I have mentioned The Phantom Prof on this site before, but if you haven't been over to her site let me tell you - it is a must read.

Not only does she have great college tales that no one else has dared to tell, she also gives great advice.

Recently I emailed her after reading one of her posts. I mentioned in that email that I have no idea when to use a comma and that oft times I use the comma splice like Emeril uses seasonings. I just throw them in willy nilly - bam - a comma, here, bam, a comma there - bam, bam, bam. You get the idea.

Elaine a.ka. The Phantom Prof was nice enough to respond with an email that has some really great tips. Please pardon her lack of capitalization, in the emails she always types everything lowercase and she had no idea that I was going to share this information with the rest of the internet.


commas are simple. they represent a pause. they break up items in a list. they serve as separators between nouns and sometimes between adjectives. the main rules are just a few.

in direct address, as in "Eddo, you need to use a comma," you need a comma after the name of the person you're addressing.(this is one NO ONE seems to do correctly
anymore.)

you need commas when you use month, date and year: He was
born January 7, 2005, in Dallas. (note the commas before AND after the
year)

ditto when you mention city AND state within a
sentence: Eddo traveled to Honolulu, Hawaii, on his recent
vacation.

put commas and most other marks INSIDE punctuation marks.
as in: "Eddo, we'll eat at five," said Martha.

in a list of adjectives, you use commas to separate them only if you could substitute the word AND instead of the comma. for example, you'd use them here: He wore a yellow, red, white and blue bandanna on his head.

But you wouldn't need the commas if you said, "His head was covered by a ragged red cotton bandanna." Because you'd never say "ragged and red and cotton
bandanna."

does that make sense? really, it's easy. pause. list.
dates. city/state. adjectives/AND.
I hope that all of this is helpful.

Blog on my blogging brothas and sistas!

contributed by: eddo of posted note

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Be Perry Mason, in five simple steps.

The ability to effectively construct an argument is essential to many different tasks. A writer or speaker must know how to construct a sound argument in order to be successful. Customer service, teaching, sales, or even waiting on tables can all benefit from the skills of argumentation.

I was taught five steps to an effective argument. These have nothing to do with the actual delivery of an argument, such as speaking or writing the argument. These steps take the audience of your argument from one position, either support or opposition, to the opposing position. In some ways, you can effectively argue a subject before an audience that knows little of the subject matter and convince them, through your preparation and systematic approach, to support your point of view.

Houston, we have a problem.
The first step in any argument is conflict. Tastes great or less filling. Peanuts or plain. Mounds or almond joy. Conflicting ideas are essential to creating an argument. Otherwise, everyone would agree and there would be no need to argue. What fun would that be?

You should first establish that a problem exists. This is the point of your argument where definitions are presented. Let there be no ambiguity about the meaning of terms or variables. Define the terms in a manner that is supportive of your final position. Use statistics sparingly. Use the rule of three: Three facts in support of each point. Statistics should be, at most, one of the three facts to support your point.

I just cleaned up this place!
It is not enough to establish the existence of your problem. The next step of your argument is to prove that the problem will continue unabated. Who cares if there are too many unemployed computer programmers? Will it continue, or more importantly, will this problem get worse? Why would anyone be spurred to action if a problem won’t continue? Any opposition to your position will attack this portion of your argument with the tenacity of a cockroach.

I always over prepared myself with statistics and facts for this part of my argument. I would rarely use more than one or two in the initial presentation of my position. I found joy in tearing my opponent apart with fact after fact after fact when they had the gall to pick on this portion of my argument.

Of course, I have a plan. I always have a plan.
Once you have firmly established the existence of your problem and the continuity of the problem, you must now present a solution. This is the longest and most detailed part of any argument.

Each part of your plan is referred to as a plank. Think of a plank as a board in a deck. You have to have a complete plan, else there would be holes in the floor and your argument wouldn’t hold any weight. Each plank has to be supported by documentation, either examples or statistics. Remember, anybody can come up with statistics to back their argument. In fact, 67% of all statistics are made up on the spot.

Yeah, but can we get dental with that?
Here’s where you point out all of the benefits of your argument. Whether it’s decreasing global warming or reducing the number of mismatched socks, everyone needs a little bright spot in their lives. Never underestimate your argument’s contribution to society. Pick a particular plank of your plan an exhaust the possibilities of how that plank can improve the problem.

I once heard an argument that by decreasing the number of people who smoke tobacco, war could be averted. The argument followed a simple logic that went something like this: smoking causes diseases, which increase medical costs, which increases insurance costs, which increases the cost of living, which increases poverty, which increases the deficit spending, which leads to war. Avoiding war is a great reason to decrease the number of smokers. After all, who really wants war?

A similar advertisement campaign was launched after 9/11, which compared buying drugs to supporting terrorists. I believe the ad was aimed less at drug users than to convince people to inform on drug users.

Because you weren’t really paying attention . . .
The last part of any argument is the summary. Here’s were you get your chance to play a highlight reel of your best points. They’ve heard it all before, so you can skip being really detailed. If you use an outline, this would be the opportunity to reiterate your main points, without restating the supporting documentation.

When I worked for customer service, we lived by the credo of “tell them what you’re going to do, tell them what you’re doing, and tell them what you did.” Politicians call this “staying on message.” Go back to the Presidential debates in both 2000 and 2004. Count the number of times Al Gore said “risky tax scheme.” Or count the number of times in 2004 where George Bush accused John Kerry of saying, “wrong war a the wrong time.” That was the message they wanted people to hear. This is your opportunity to have people hear your message. Use it.

Make it work for you.
So there you have it, a simple look at a sound argument style. You can make this work for you in writing persuasive papers, putting together a compelling speech, or even just winning an argument with your spouse. Well, maybe it won’t work on your spouse.
Now go pick a fight,

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

You HAVE got to be kidding me folks.

Are you kidding me? I can't believe all the uproar in the blogoshpere about "The Blog Patrol." Can any of you not see the humor in all of this?? Here are a couple of people that have gotten together to have a little fun. Not to insult anyone... but to encourage people... at least after my first entry and then we (as some have said, "the elite" of the blog patrol) had a discussion to ensure that there were ground rules because our goal was not to offend others but to have a little fun. I made the mistake of handing out a citation that was interpreted as mean spirited and I felt bad. I appologized to the guy and explained that that was not my intent. Notice to the right of us that not one blog is listed under the "Craters" probably because we are being over cautious on offending others. Again, this is not our intent. It IS a website that has some useful tips that WILL improve your blog if you follow them. If you don't then, well, you may continue to have an ordinary blog in our "humble" opinion. We are just a group of friends... some in real life, some on the web... that are trying to help others improve. If you label me as "elite" come read my blog and you will soon find out that I get (on average) about 9 comments per post... not stellar by any length of the means. People are upset because we have an opinion? Give me a break... isn't that what all blogs are about... sharing your opinions... right or wrong, we are entitled to an opinion. Lighten up folks... or the "elite will hunt you down." (In case you missed it... that was sarcasm.)

Have a great day everybody... Blog on my friends!

Ben of MiM

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

A promising entry into the world of blogs...

Every now and then, there is the birth of a new blog that makes people turn their head and say, "Wow. That blog has potential." Such is the case of a new blog that recently happened into the neighborhood. With a smooth creative style of writing and a slightly fun and twisted perspective on life, impatientchicken is just such a blog. While it is only her second day of writing, she has captured my loyalties and has intrigued me already. I am excited to see how this blog unfolds. Her next step is to hire blog jacket to "spruce" the place up a bit... although, with her writing style, I would come back and visit often... even without the "bells and whistles." Stop by and visit her... you won't be let down.

Monday, June 13, 2005

More than Words...

Patrolling the blogosphere today I ran across some photo blogs that I really liked. I decided to do some searches to see if I could find some really great photo blogs and these are the ones that really impressed me.

sensitivelight

jimbus

brownglasses

lowresolution

I only placed these 4 here because I know everyone is busy blogging and commenting and you don't have time to go out and look at 50 different websites. I looked at about 50 myself today and found these were my favorites.

Johan d'Anvers of Holland was on my list, however, I lost his blogspot address and I can't seem to find it no matter how I input his name into Google. Johan, if you stop by, please leave your site address so we can stop in and say hello.

If you see a great photo blog, or you know of others that are as amazing as the ones above, then please leave the addy in the comments section so we can explore them.

Next on my list to patrol - Illustration Blogs.

Happy Blogging!

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Read, Learn, Create

The Blog Patrol is, I think, about helping the blogsphere along to excellence. We point out bad blogs to encourage them to become better. It's not an ego trip nor is our endeavor mean-spirited. The Blog Patrol is akin to pointing out the spinach stuck in your teeth. It's for your own good. It's what friends do.

How exactly do you create excellence if you've never known what excellence looks like? I've always felt that I couldn't be a good writer without reading good writers. I don't want to copy or mimic anyone's style, but reading a great story often shows me the basic steps to writing my own great story. The problem becomes finding great writers.

Over on the right side of this blog is a good resource for great sites. Read those sites for great writing and content. If you don't see anything that tickles your fancy, check out their links. It's amazing what you can find by following random links in the blogsphere.

I found another great site in just such a manner: Lightning Bug's Butt. The design is plain, but the content is edgy and funny. I've come across a few things that I didn't like while reading the Lightning Bug's Butt. That's ok. Controversy is a great way to lure people from lurkers to posters.

So go out there and see what you can find. You never know how it will make you a better blogger.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

One Blog, Two Blog, Red Blog, Blue Blog

I've decided to actually contribute to the BP. I wasn't sure what to rights and responsibilities came with membership to the BP. Being a guy, i.e. never reading/getting directions, I charged full steam ahead into Blog Patrolling. I was hoping to find a blog of note and a bad blog. Let's face it. Finding a bad blog is like finding a hair on a dog. There are so many to choose.
I found this link by using the random blog button on my site. I read the first few posts and browsed some of the older posts. Overall, this blog is well written and entertaining. Punctuation and spelling were within tolerable limits. So stop by and check it out. Those of us with children, or spouses who act like children, will appreciate the content of "Big A little a."
I'm not sure what citation to give this guy. I decided to load this guy up with as many as possible. Good grief, what a travesty.

"Albert, you are being issued three citations for your blog. You are being issued a BoreBlog citation for lack of interesting content. You are being issued a TypoBlog citation for lack of spelling and grammatical prowess. Lastly, you are being issued a NarcissBlog citation for making yourself more important than you really are. You have 21 days to respond. Should you fail to respond within the allotted time, we will come after you. Thank you for your cooperation. Please, Blog safely."

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

New Blog Patrol Member

It is with great pleasure, nay, extreme delight, no that is not good either...

It is with great pleasure, extreme delight, and with honor that I bring to you the newest member of The Blog Patrol - Tempermental Blender - Chad Smith

Why did I invite him to join? Because I really enjoy his poetic writing style, his blog is simple and clean and... and he paid me to add him - Just Kidding!

I am delighted that the Blog Patrol contines to grow and with new growth and diversity we will be able to reach more people, more blogs, and the blogging world will be a better place!

Welcome aboard Chad!

Viva La Blog!

Monday, June 06, 2005

That "Blog Star" Look

What constitutes a Blog Star? The question has been posed on numerous occasions and today I am going to answer it.

1. Great writing style. I love to read a well-written blog - who doesn't? Vivid descriptions, nice use of metaphors and simile's, and well written anecdotes are all things that the Blog Patrol looks for when assigning Blog Star status.

2. Design. If you are forced to use a standard template, no big deal, but try to infuse the design with some of your own creativity. See http://thesquareslant.blogspot.com for example. And if you can get a custom template, then by all means - do.

3. Consistency. I like to go to a blog that is updated frequently. There is nothing more irritating to me than going to a favorite blog only to find that they haven't updated in two weeks and they haven't given a reason for not updating. Unless you are dead, you need to update - consistently.

Those are the core ingredients to a Super Star blog. If your blog hasn't been nominated for super star status then perhaps it is time you took a look at your blog, get out the turtle wax, shine it up a bit, and then bring it to our attention - we might just give you the very coveted Blog Star Award.



Thursday, June 02, 2005

Nomination for a Super Star

We have a new Super Star amongst us. Miz Peg of "A Senior Moment" is our newest Star.
She has been nominated because not only does she have to keep her daughters, Square Slant and The Staff Sergeant's Wife , in line as they fight about "who mom loves most", she is also my (our) favorite 67 year old blogger. Taking a risk and joining the world of "youngsters" she can hold her own.

The only thing that would make her blog better is LL Cool J singing in the back ground... "I'm gonna knock you out... Mamma said knock you out..."

Stop by and congratulate her... (you won't be disappointed.) Don't forget to tell her the blog patrol sent you!

Miz Peg-

Feel free to use one of our buttons on your site to "tell the world" that You are a Blog Patrol "Blog Star." Congrats once again!

Aloha from the Blog Patrol

While in Hawaii I wasn't able to do as much patrolling as I would have liked. What I have noticed, however, is that there have been more people patrolling the BP. That is the thing about being in a position of power, everyone is watching to see if you will fall. We are not silly like Martha Stewart doing insider trading, nor are we like Donald Trump over-leveraging our assets and almost going bankrupt.

Fortunately, the Blog Patrol is like a cat and when we fall - we always land on our feet.

I am thinking about getting some Blog Patrol T-Shirts and even having some Blog Patrol contests that involve actual prizes. However, the Blog Patrol is very busy patrolling and so we have very little time implement many of our wonderful ideas.

On a side note: Has anyone seen any great blogs lately? Perhaps one that you would like to nominate as a "Blog Star"? If so, please drop us a line in the comments section of this post.

Just Blog it!