Monday, February 21, 2011

the blog is dead, long live the blog

And now it's all right. It's OK.
And you may look the other way.
We can try to understand
the New York Time's effect on man.

- from Staying Alive, the Bee Gees

Got a lot of little jobs done yesterday and today.  I think the boat is about ready to go.  Finished the wiring harness on the trailer using the trick of filling the wire connectors with waterproof silicone sealer. That will minimize the salt water from getting to the wires at least for a year or two.  I've had good luck with this in the past.

Cleaned and lubricated all the o-rings on Beckson deck plates.  Those o-rings are six years old now.  I carry a few spares but the originals seem to be in good shape.  I'll clean and lubricate them again before each cruise.

And I cranked up the outboard for the first time since Jim down the street rebuilt the carburetor and water pump for me.  It started up right away and ran great.  Below you can see the water stream coming out of the rebuilt pump.  Jim happened to be driving by just as I was running it.  He stopped by to make sure everything was in good shape.  Above and beyond the work he asked for he meticulously cleaned and lubricated the entire outboard.  His recommendation was at the end of a sailing day to close the fuel line and run the fuel bowl empty.  If found today that this takes just about two minutes.  And then to start it up again, with the fuel bowl empty, took just two or three pulls on the starter.  Not bad at all and it should keep the carburetor clean.  Thanks for the work and advice Jim.

So just a few odds and ends left to do, basically the little jobs I do before every day sail.

As for blogs, the New York Times had story today about the waning of blogs.   It struck me as one of those "trend" stories that, when you look at the details, isn't really a trend.  The story was based mostly on the younger crowd - ages 12 to 17 and 18 to 33 - who had switched to using facebook.  I guess early on blogs were used to communicate information that is now more easily communicated using facebook - i.e. where you are, what you are doing, etc.  The Times also threw in some contradictory facts, saying Blogger had a two percent decline in unique visitors (down to 58.6 million) "although" (this being one of those "although's" that means here's a fact that contradicts our point so ignore it) globally unique visitors were up nine percent to to 323 million.  That doesn't sound like "waning" to me.  ( I really enjoy the global aspect.  This blog has had visitors form Australia, New Zealand, the UK, South Africa, Sweden, Germany, Turkey, Finland, Poland, Malaysia, Uruguay, Denmark.....the list goes on and on.)

I'm a little skeptical on the story, but at the same time I will tell you I'm a huge fan of the NY Times, read it every day.

I'm not on facebook and don't expect to be (though I have lots of friends who enjoy it).  I have fun writing this blog and I've got a list of blogs and online journals that I always look forward to reading.  I've made some good friends over blogs and have learned a lot of valuable information.  It is the exchange of ideas that is important, the form doesn't really matter.  Blog, online journal, video, newspaper story, whatever.  It is just good to know what is going on out there.



Baydog said...

Steve: At first glance, since my eyesight is quickly going south, I thought that first picture was smoked salmon wrapped around cream cheese!

Unknown said...

Knowing how much you enjoy reading, you may want to check the 4-page reading list I've assembled--with help. While directed mostly at paddlers, there is a lot of interest for anyone who loves the water, nature, and the outdoors. It could keep you busy for many winters to come. Best wishes.

Steve said...


food to eat, that sounds good!


food for thought, thanks!


Ken said...

Thanks for the sealed connection idea, Steve! I love it.
I routinely ran the fuel out of the carburetor of my motor too before it became Dawn Patrol's motor. One fun game when the dock isn't too crowded is to try to time it so the engine dies just as you tie up. You'd be surprised how often you can get it just right. It also kind of helps me stay prepared for sudden engine failure at inopportune times because I always think it's going to cut off a few seconds too early.
Between the good writing, the good ideas, and the good photography, blogging won't be dead until you're done with it. In about 8 days you'll have one less reader in North Carolina but one more in Australia. I'll try to check your blog on my layover on the way there so you see some traffic in Fiji...

RichC said...

I take issue with the "waning of blogs" AND the NYTimes, but then the second one is just my politics. Still, I have noticed that attention span is down a bit from readers on my blog (length of time on my site) ... something that I assume stems from poor writing, photography and the lack of a decent editor. Then again I'm not "archiving" for others so it shouldn't really matter.

As for Facebook, at one time I thought it was just a young person thing but am hearing more and more middle age folks are on it. I've given it a whirl, but there is only so much that I need to know about what my college age kids and their friends are doing. For my sanity, I'll stick to Twitter and blogs ... and your blog is one of the best. Keep up the great work.