Live Free or IKEA Hard (and some other boring shit about my life).

25 04 2014

koffininstructionWow, it’s super sad that the last time I updated this blog was a year ago when the last IKEA bus was ready to fly… I was writing for mainetoday.com for a while, and then my life just kind of rolled out of my hands like a rogue ball of yarn and I spent the last year doing “other things.” I painted a house, I wrote some short plays, I painted some terrible self portraits, and I made a lot of pies. Oh, and I watched every single episode of House M.D. Two times. In my bed.  It was a weird year.

And, here I am. I want to start writing again. But, I also want to start jogging again, and obviously that’s gone really well [so fat].

I made a new blog header, and found some less lousy social media icons… I don’t know if I like them, but whatever. Point being, I’m considering a comeback. If one can consider going from single digit to double digit page views a comeback. Or if anyone even notices when a marginally successful blogger rises from the grave…

But, enough of my ellipses and the narcissistic pontifications.

What can I do for you?

I may not have been writing, or doing other blog stuff, but I am still rockin’ the IKEA Bus if you’re interested. Shit is going down on May 31st, and you can buy tickets right here. You can even get out of town delivery if you’re so inclined (and are willing to pay a small fee). You should come. There will be snacks.

Also, if you don’t need any particle board furniture, maybe you want new summer clothes? SwapMaine is up to its old tricks again with our spring swap coming right at your face on May 17th. Come fill up yo sack with all the skinny pants that I have to discard because they’re making me feel bad.

 

 

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UPPER lower: The Wind of Change

16 02 2013

wind of changeFor the record, I always thought it was “WindS of Change”, and was a little disappointed when I found out that it wasn’t.

But, I suppose it doesn’t really matter. What does matter is that sometimes things have to change. And, usually in hindsight (my 20/20 foe), that’s a really good thing. Or at the very least, a chaotic neutral thing, which I can totally deal with.

Today, 2 big changes are happening at Broke207. The first should be obvious:

I’ve decided to capitalize like an adult.

I know this comes as a bit of a shock to all of you (or maybe you never noticed), but last week when the tampon post ended up getting 33,000+/- page views, A LOT of people said really terrible things about my grammar/puncuation/capitalization/general writing ability. And for the most part, I was ok with that. Read the rest of this entry »





weekend pickthrough- writing binge edition.

6 06 2011

i love that this hot construction worker is wearing business casual attire and FULL MAKE UP.

it’s been several weeks of minimal action, and i finally feel like i’m bobbing to the surface again. after a friday night writing date (as it turns out $.50 refills at starbucks are actually a thing) with my dear friend kate, something in my brain just sort of exploded (in a good way, not an aneurysm way). as if whatever was causing the clog finally gave way, and all the words just gushed right out.

i’ve actually had kind of a bummer weekend, but being able to write again makes me feel like the construction related traffic on the highway to normalcy might be starting to clear up. that said, while we’re waiting for the stop sign to swtich to slow… here are a couple of nice distracting links: Read the rest of this entry »





parental advisory: explicit lyrics.

1 02 2011

right now, i’m exactly like a slowly rolling katamari of blogs. every few months or so, i pick up yet another so-and-so and the ball just keeps getting bigger and bigger. this is awesome in the way that i get to write about a variety of crazy shit (this week i get to make granola bars and test drive a puffy skirt), although less awesome in the way that nobody actually pays me. well, last month, i rolled up yet another opportunity. this time, posting my prime content on the wcsh6 portland blog.

now, reposting content should require very little work on my part. SHOULD, of course being the operative word. however, ease is an experience reserved for people who use proper capitalization and aren’t quite so liberal with the f-bombs. wcsh6 might want my content, but understandably, they want it a little less colorful and a little more family friendly. pg-13 at best.

anyway, if you ever wanted to recommend my blog to your gramma, grade school english teacher, or friends from church camp, but didn’t think they could hack the racy themes and rampant overuse of commas… this is your chance! i’ve been filing the corners off all my material so that it’s safe for children, and no longer a choking hazard for the elderly.  you can see the distilled result of my most recent effort right here. or if you think that’s balls, if nothing else you can look at both posts side by side and try to spot the differences.





weekend pickthrough- scavenger *unts edition.

1 11 2010

big weekend folks. BIG WEEKEND. first and foremost, it was halloween, and i went to the single most kick ass halloween party of my life. probably of anyone’s life. huge props to my friend and party planning hero @profdiddy (and his equally awesome partner in crime mike d.) for managing to organize and seamlessly pull off a city wide scavenger hunt with 35 costumed, drunken and belligerent participants. oh, and while keeping score of the 40+ scavenger hunt items that people were rapid firing via text message to home base, they still somehow managed to put together a comprehensive slide show of the whole mess and donate the proceeds of the evening to my favorite local cause, the preble street resource center. some things i learned:

1. do not underestimate the power of a wasted chick dressed up like a crazy cat lady (even if she can’t stop screeching about her pussy while littering the streets with stuffed cats). she somehow managed to sweet talk our way into the fire station and get photographed kissing a fire fighter in the front seat of the fire truck, AND convinced 6 patrons of one of the fanciest restaurants in town to make a human pyramid in the middle of the street. at times embarrassing, inappropriate, and totally unsafe… this is the one woman that your scavenger hunt team can not do without. thanks again jolene!

2. people will do just about anything if you tell them it’s for a scavenger hunt (especially if that scavenger hunt benefits a charity). i already mentioned the human pyramid, but we wrapped strangers up in toilet paper, had them do the human wheelbarrow, got them to juggle mini pumpkins, and do full splits (while still on their waitressing shift). we even convinced an older gentleman dressed like santa clause to pretend that his giant candy cane was a giant joint. city of portland residents- YOU KICK ASS.

3. being a good scavenger is as much about being smart and ballsy as it is about being opportunistic. one of our challenges was to recreate iconic rolling stone covers with our team mates and strangers from the streets (with extra points for creative use of non-human objects). while in the fire house getting our kiss picture, we managed to wander upon rescue randy here. with some quick thinking and a willingness to roll around on the fire station floor, my friend michelle knocked the john and yoko cover pictured above out of the park. save for the guy dressed up as darth maul who actually got naked to reenact the same photo for his team- it was pretty much the hit of the evening.

4. don’t use the word “cunt” in your team name, or you won’t win the best team name contest.

for the record, we didn’t win (not even close), but it didn’t matter at all. i wish i could share all the racy and ridiculous photos with you, but you’ll just have to draw some pictures of what you think happened. i don’t think my friends would ever speak to me again if i plastered them all over my blog.

the second big thing about this weekend, is that it marks the kickoff of national novel writing month.  basically, it’s a group of people who have committed to attempting to write a 50,000 word novel from november 1-30th. just 1,667 words a day. simple, right? i’ve actually failed 3 prior challenges (the prize is the ultimate victory of having finished a novel), but i have a strong support system this year and am making one big change that i hope will increase my chance of crossing the finish line for once:  don’t ask me to hang out this month, because i’ll probably say no. i’m making deep cuts into my social life in the name of my writing, including a commitment not to go out to eat (save for one overdue birthday dinner IOU) for the entire month (perhaps this will also have a positive effect on my wallet?).  if you’re interested in reading my novel as it slowly rolls out, or you wanna jump on the writing train yourself, you can find my info here (if you’re in the writing mood, i demand you be nano friends with me).

i know, another weekend pickthrough without actually picking through anything. with election day around the corner, most of what i’m finding interesting lately has been about politics- and i don’t think this is the right venue to open that pandora’s box… (although i am happy to discuss it with anyone privately if they’re so inclined). also, i haven’t really seen anything super funny for a while. well, except maybe this.





Q: why doesn’t this blog have an f.a.q.?

1 06 2010

A: actually, i’m working on it. right now.

here’s a secret for you- during this summer/fall, i’ll be working on transforming this site from a free wordpress blog to my very own broke207.com domain. actually, i already bought it- but right now there’s just a crappy place holder page that both looks stupid and doesn’t make any sense. hopefully, with the miracle of modern technology (and my friends over at ibec creative), things will slide over all sorts of seamlessly- with a few minor upgrades that will make your life better- or at least probably not any worse. i hope that one of those upgrades will be the addition of an FAQ, but i haven’t figured out yet if there are enough unanswered questions about me and my pet blog to devote a whole section to answering them. that’s when  you arrive to clear up the confusion. if i were going to install an FAQ, what would you ask? or, do you think it’s a terrible idea?

here’s a starter question we can all try on for size:

Q: i find your use of all lowercase letters to be infuriating. are you some sort of crazy uneducated idiot? do you think you’re channeling e.e. cummings you pretentious prick? why do you torment me so?!

A: wow, those are some harsh words. why do you have to be so mean about it? actually, i have a college education (with a few extra courses on the side for emphasis), and have been capitalizing appropriately/successfully for many years. i even do so every day at my day job without complaint. i do enjoy e.e. cummings’ work very much, but my insistence on lowercase doesn’t have anything to do with him or his fantastic poetry. actually, kind of cranky reader, i do it because i have OCD (that’s obsessive compulsive disorder for those of you who missed the MTV true life– i have OCD). i am fortunate enough that my affliction is not so severe that i have to be medicated (although i have been medicated at various points), or prevents me from doing the things that i love to do, but it does creep into my life in funny ways sometimes that make me seem a little off/out there. i won’t eat a sandwich unless it’s cut diagonally (i will actually throw it away and get another one, or possibly cry, or more possibly both). i will throw away anything that i am hand writing if i make a mistake- rather than make a cross out (including post-its and informal notes to self). i am also obsessed with symmetry. i can’t even begin to calculate how much of my life i spend lining things up to make them parallel, or nudging them to make sure that they are square with the edges of the table. and that folks, is where the all lowercase happens. proper upper/lower writing is lopsided, and i find it visually displeasing. i can do it when i have to (work), but when it’s my turf (blog), i can do whatever the hell i please. i do find all uppercase writing to also be acceptable (my handwriting is all uppercase), but on the internet, people just think you’re yelling at them (thanks KANYE). thus, all lowercase it is! fun fact: my iphone auto-corrects all my improper lowercase letters, and i actually take the time to go back and undo the correction so that my symmetry is preserved. anyone know a hack for that?

so there it is… one question down. more to come? or TMI?





blogging for dollars.

24 05 2010

after the big week with the wordpress deluge and just the general positive growth of my little blog egg over the last year, a friend recently posed the question: why aren’t you monetizing? first of all, i hate the word monetize. it’s like one of those jargony crap words that everyone throws around when they’re talking about “important internet stuff”. second of all, i hate advertising cluttering up my favorite blogs. it’s ugly and distracting. on the other hand… i do like money. i do need money. as a writer of a blog with the word “broke” in the title, don’t i have a personal responsibility to scrape every penny off the sidewalk that i can?

well, when i first started this project, i promised myself that i wasn’t going to try any funny business like paying for a domain name, or advertising, or trying to make money until i had been successfully operational for at least one year. i have a bad track record with blogs (and a lot of other things)… i get so excited about things for a minute, and then someone jangles some keys in front of my face, and i’m off and running in the opposite direction. the internet is a virtual (pun intended) graveyard of my abandoned writing projects, and i wanted to make sure that this wasn’t just another one night stand before i made any big (potentially expensive) moves. well, i’m not quite at the 1 year finish line yet, but it’s looking good. in short, the patient is still alive, and it’s time to start thinking about what comes next.

but you know what, i have no fucking clue what comes next. how exactly do you take a blog to “the next level”, if you’re not ever sure what the next level is? i’m still really down on the idea of sidebar ads (primarily for aesthetic reasons) and according to copyblogger (one of the best blog resources out there), i probably wouldn’t make any money doing it anyway. so then what direction? do i try to figure out what the hell affiliate ads are (who wants to affiliate themselves with my financially inept ass)? do i try to sell ebooks where i speak in depth on the profundities of my financial ineptitude? do i try to get famous and get talking gigs where i can tell other people how they too can be profoundly financially inept? but seriously, at the end of the day, do i actually have anything worth monetizing?

whether i do or not, i feel like dream of making a living off of blogging is roughly akin to wanting to grow up to be a rockstar or an astronaut. sure, somebody gets to have that job… but the odds are less than stellar for big time success. the truth is that i love this. i don’t think i’d get so little sleep for something i was kind of meh about, and i’m scared about the possibility of losing that love in the process of trying to spin straw into gold. what happens if i try and make money and it doesn’t work? would that failure suck the joy out of the writing, and ruin the whole affair?

for now, i think i’m going to hold off with the blogging for cash schemes. although i can’t promise that there won’t be a few subtle surprise changes headed your way this summer. but if any of my seasoned blog peeps out there have some light to shed on the subject, it would be most sincerely appreciated. i have much to learn, and i’m just going to sit quietly right here until i’m well educated enough not to tear the whole system down in the process.