Just to get this conversation off to a good start, let’s go to the soundtrack of one of my favorite songs ever. (Click through to youtube, then click back)
Okay, I admit I have been the world’s lamest blogger lately – but it’s mainly because I got a few paid writing jobs and for two weeks, I’ve been thinking about nothing but periodontal disease, locally applied antibiotics, and interdisciplinary studies in higher education. (So aren’t you glad I didn’t write??) And then I got on a big spring cleaning binge, which was deeply satisfying but not exactly something that I felt needed to be shared. Cleanliness is next to Betty-ness just about sums it up.
To be honest, I’m having a bit of a dilemma about what I should be writing about. I still have my passionate attachment to good causes but if I’m not giving money away, it doesn’t have quite the same compulsion. Plus, after 365 straight days, it’s a bit of been there, done that.
What I’m tempted to write is a Consumer Terrorist blog – encouraging people to be the kind of maniac I am when it comes to getting the best possible prices on all the stuff we buy.
I’m perennially outraged that corporations apparently feel that we’re all so stupid and powerless they can basically charge whatever they like. (Yeah, I’m talking about you Comcastic Masters of the Universe). And let’s face it: we’re all so exhausted from having to work so hard to make money to pay the suckers, we are too exhausted to even attempt to decipher their craftily unreadable bills. (Yeah, I’m talking about you, Verizon.) But I’ve got energy to spare when it comes to taking on the behemoths of bloat. Trust me on this.
So, I may go off on a bender about that – or maybe just go karmic and do a One Beautiful Thing blog for awhile – but Larry says if I do another daily blog, he’ll divorce me. And then, how would I be able to pay my Comcastically-inflated bills??
Stay tuned for more updates as I figure this out. And by all means, send me your opinions – at the risk of sounding totally pathetic (like that would be bad), what do YOU think I should write about next??
So happy to be writing again… thanks for waiting!
What I loved most about your blogs was the hopefulness it made me feel, the stir it brought to the creative juices and gratefulness for all we have in life. So I would like to read more of what you find in your criss cross of life that sparks those sentiments.
Congratulations on those paid writing jobs, Betty. I hope you didn’t have to fork all of the money over to your periodontist.
As far as writing, it’s pretty unanimous here: whatever you do will be refreshing, creative, and motivating. My only advice would be to avoid anything too restricting, because after what you did last year, a narrow focus will leave you claustrophobic and frustrated. And my only request would be to grant yourself permission to make wisecracks whenever appropriate. The Betty Londergan wit is a big part of what we’ve missed.
I love this advice, BB, and I’m taking it! As for the money for writing (I hope I’m not going to make you too envious here) I was writing advertising TO periodontists. My gums are actually in splendid shape, thank heavens. And just so you know, because you write about so many things so wonderfully (and so hilariously), you’ve been an inspiration to me to just write about whatever moves me. So THANKS!
I agree with various others – just write what grabs your attention each week, we’ll read it and learn.
Obviously, we all love your writing, Betty, as well as the spirit that informs it!
If I may, and with consummate respect for those who have offered the idea about lauding corporate giving…I must offer my countering perspective on that. Corporations constantly toot their own full brass section about what they “give.” Such free advertising is a large reason that corporations “donate” money, and I really don’t want to hear more about the largess of the wealthiest. The increasing gulf between wealthy and poor makes necessary the work of most of the organizations you shared with us last year.
Okay. Leaping off my soapbox now.
Hi Betty! Ditto what Catherine, Meredith, Chris B., Indigo, Judy C. and Laurie (“mad, sad or glad” it’s all good from you!) and I like Kristen’s idea about “40 weeks to corporate giving” every other week sounds good. Many people say negative things about “corporate america” but what are they doing to help change the way “corporate america” does things? Talk is cheap but rolling up your sleeves sometimes takes sacrifice and are they willing to be part of the solution or just adding to the problem? “We the People” have the power to help bring about change (example: The Pepsi Refresh Project). Thank You So Much for giving us a wonderful 2010 with WhatGives365 and looking forward to even more of your awesome writing this year! Hugs to you from SoCal!
Hey Betty, I missed you but I understand. Why not write about whatever gets you going on a particular day be it mad, sad, or glad. You’re very passionate and informative about the topics you choose, so I’m good with that.
How about volunteering at a bunch of places in Atlanta and tell us about your adventures—maybe one place a monthy. The Carter Center, teaching literacy at a woman’s jail, you got the idea.
Great idea, Amy— I am always looking for places to put my energy. .. and I love to share what I’ve found, but I also am so concerned about global issues,
I have to do that, too …
I enjoy your take on life and how you take on life so vibrantly; it’s contagious. i’d love to see a weekly email if that isn’t too demanding, with your take on whatever is going on; I really enjoy the responses from people, wakes up my thought processes which tend to start rusting too easily. I like being tipped out of my comfy chair into different seats of view 🙂
I love your metaphors, Meredith — thanks for the nice words of wisdom and I look forward to tipping you soon! ha!!! b
As Boz says, “Talk to me, girl!” (one of my all-time favorites, also)
AMEN, Judy — you know it!
Love your blog.
Am seriously overpaying for cable I rarely watch.
Check out onesight.org. A good friend of mine travels the world to give the gift of sight.
Thanks for lifting my spirits in all u do and write!
I am so happy you are back. There’s so much going on in the world right now, you should really have alot to pick from to write about. Some good and some bad, sad and just can’t listen to the news for awhile. Seems like everyone has gone nutty! LOL. You know what I ‘d write about if it were me? I’d write about all these animals we would called pets, are freezing out in the cold because we have people making money on selling them, they’re isn’t a law to spay or neuter! I get real depress seeing all these animals being bred over and over and fur farms in China, I’m really running out of tears because I’m limited in getting out their and fighting for change and animals rights to be loved not fightdogs, tortured and skinned alive for clothing, on and on. Betty, there is alot to right about.
Debra ( sorry about ranting to you)
What I loved about your 365 blog was that not only did you write about problems, you wrote about people working hard to change them. I don’t think I could read more than my already depressing daily dose of bad news i get from the mainstream media. Whatever you write (and I do love your style!), make sure it doesn’t just address what is wrong, but leaves us with hope, inspiration or a way to act on our indignation. My 2 cents, Ms. B.
Chris’s perspective echoes mine. You are a wonderfully persuasive and witty ranter, Betty, but we need you to be more. Chris Mathews is difficult to top, intellectually and factually. You have a knack for finding inspired and intrepid souls who persevere, and drawing your readers into their lives. We your readers need to tip you off on special folk, you need to be the great listener with a twinkle in her eye. Somehow, you must keep urging the world also to listen and to give money, not just empathy.
Whatever you do….. it will be fabulous!~!!!
How about finding peace and being present in the moment in a world that is sofinacially violent in instead choose to focus our enery on seeing the beuty in life, rather than fighting life. That touches all the this you brought up. And it brings the soul to peace.
how about Loser of the Day? ( or A-Hole if you prefer). You’ve spent a year blogging on the wonderfulness of people, after all — wouldn’t it be fun to focus on the chronic bad behavior that invades our news space?
ooooh, i like this suggestion, Lori — and because you know me, you know how easily i could slip into that rant! although i am perennially hoping to move to higher ground … ha!
I came on board late. How do I get to read all the ones you did before I found your blog?
I wish you could continue to write of the good things people are doing. Even if you do not donate, some of the people reading may want a good place to give their money.
A lot of folks (Jodee, for example) are using the calendar on my blog — and reading last year’s blogs, one by one, on the exact day. It’s kinda fun, and their comments
make me remember every one of my inspiring causes … it’s really FUN! (and yes, i will be suggesting new causes, too — so thanks for reading!!) B
Betty – Welcome back! I’ve missed you in my In Box. I like your justified anger and impatience with hypocrisy but the appreciation for beauty too. Must you choose one or the other? Give us your thoughts and let it ride!
Judy, you are so right — why can’t i do both?? In the immortal words of the trollop/savant Cher: “It’s my life and I get to do anything I want with it.” Thanks for the words of encouragement — and for reading so faithfully!
You can write ANYTHING.
Just keep writing, please.
Oh, Laurie, you had me at ANYTHING. xooxxo b
Well, Betty, after reading the latest on the NZ earthquake and a multitude of other minor, but equally horrific, disasters this am, my vote is for “One Beautiful Thing.” Write as often or as infrequently as necessary (no need to court divorce and financial ruin for the blogosphere, after all), but please keep writing. Any one of us can rant against bills, greedy corporations, or clueless politicians. Whether or not you are giving away money, you have a gift for mining the beautiful, the noble, and even the transcendent from everyday rubble.
Nice to see you are still eager to write!
Socially just causes can be a wide category, that includes the corruption and manipulation of large companies, to the importance of small, wonderful socially/ environmentally/ spiritually positive groups. Perhaps a balance is needed? The disgusting misuse of people and natural elements world wide encourages industrial behemoth growth while damaging land areas and people’s lively hood all over the world (oooh, Monsanto comes to mind! that’s one I’d love to bring down!).
And.. you could still have a link so people could donate, to, say, a group supporting the farm families of India where the suicide rate, after planting Monsanto GMO seeds, is over 50%.
Just an example! But farming is near to my heart and to every single stomach on the planet 😉
Wow — I can’t believe those statistics on the farm families of India. Where did you hear that?? btw, you would totally like my blog on September 15: “Is Monsanto the Evil Empire?” Okay, I’m psyched!
After a year of educating us on the delights of researching causes and giving, I wonder if there is a need to bring more giving to corporations like Comcast and Verizon. I would feel better to know a portion of the large margin these companies take goes to a cause. Maybe “40 weeks To Corporate Giving” to get a large corporation (or a few small ones) to create a giving and employee volunteer program. Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is always needed. One post a week or every two weeks should be enough.
Hope you are able to figure it out soon.
Oh Cindy I’m right there with you! I was thrilled to see Betty in my email batch this morning. I’ve missed you Betty.
Missed YOU too, Catharine — isn’t it funny these very close & meaningful connections that we’ve struck up over the internet & writing?? i love it!!!
Betty, I’ve missed your voice and was so happy to see you in my e-inbox this morning! Your narrative voice is sheer delight, and it doesn’t hurt one bit that you have a sardonic humor that is both self-effacing at times and bull’s-eye righteous at others.
I’d love to see you take on the behemoths if you’re willing to do the research (and I can see that you are). Even a weekly dose would be grand. (Calm down, Larry…)
I’d also love to hear what your heart takes home with you after a Sunday at Lourdes.
Glad you’re back, Betty.
Cindy — thanks so much for your words of encouragement! Never fear — I’m always in the mood to write after church … and just about every other morning, too. Nice to be back in the saddle!!! b
Love reading your blog, Betty, whatever the subject. You’re worth the wait! This blog lit the fire under me to attack my spring cleaning and find a cheaper cellphone carrier since my contract with AT&T is finally expired. Any suggestions?
Hi Vicki! Well, i totally encourage you to spring clean — it’s a beautiful feeling to chuck stuff out and to sweep away the cobwebs –and it’s funny how the metaphor becomes literal, too.
I could totally write a love poem to cleaning! Anyhow — will write you personally about your cellphone contract … I have LOTS of suggestions!!! thanks for writing! b
Thanks so much, Kidist! Good to be back writing again — and oooh, la la — LOVE all these passionate comments!!!