“I’m going to start a blog.”
This declarative conjures up as many instant visceral reactions in people as “I’m pregnant.” The most logical follow-up to both statements would be “So, what now?”
What now? I’ve given this statement a lot of thought since my position was eliminated at my previous employer early in March. (Yes, I was fired. No, I was not surprised, nor was I terribly upset. Someday, I will share with you how a “good guy” can be canned four times before he turns 46. But not today.) There are a lot of factors that go in to “what now?” One of the most prominent in my mind is financial. Whatever comes next, it should probably pay me something.
My wife Charlotte and I have a mortgage, two cars to maintain (both paid for but starting to get up there in years and miles), a sailboat that needs to be docked, and (most importantly) two sons who need three squares a day.
She runs a daycare business out of our home and has designs on being a therapist one day. I have designs on having a job again one day. In the meantime, as my sister (who is also unemployed, as is her husband) has recited, life is what happens while you are making other plans.
Starting a blog was one of the first thoughts I had when I lost my job. It should not have taken that event to get me to do it since I’ve spent a good portion of my life writing professionally. I’m like a photographer who woke up this morning and thought, “I should probably stop using film and start shooting digital pictures.” So I am late to the Big Blogging Party. My tux was at the cleaners. An old friend came in from out of town. It wasn’t my fault. But here I am.
Making money doing this would be nice, but I really just need to write. I have had people tell me they like my writing, and not just my mom and my wife. OK, they are the ones that have said it most, and their two opinions matter to me more than anyone else’s, so there you go. My writing muscles have not been exercised nearly as much as they should have been over the last 10 years. Attending five workouts a week over the last six weeks has gotten my physical self in the best condition of my life. But I feel a need for a little more intellectual stimulation than an occasional political back-and-forth on Facebook or a Twitter war with someone who disses my alma mater (Michigan).
So, I pledge to you, gentle reader, to get something coherent in this space at least twice a week (maybe three or as many as five days as events and schedule warrant). If you’ve come this far, perhaps you’re willing to go a little farther (yes, I will be dropping some movie references). Follow me on Twitter (@UMphd) if you aren’t already my friend on Facebook for update notices. (Sorry, but if I don’t know you or can’t remember you from third-grade Sunday School, I won’t accept your Facebook friend request.)
As for the name of this endeavor, "The Troubled Fish," I'll get to that another day. It just kind of came to me. Think about it and conjure up your own interpretation.
I’m starting a blog. And just as I thought when my wife informed me she was pregnant, I hope I don’t screw this up.