I met 2 thirds of the bloggers who inspired me to start a blog tonite. So I figured there's no time like the present to get started. I've been reading them for months. They've enriched my life. Occasionally, they've provided the break in the middle of a particularly dismal or pressure-filled day that's made the rest of my workday bearable.
In reverse order of my meeting them, Ashburnite, was as wonderful as I'd imagined her. Tonight was the monthly Hater's Happy Hour, an event where DC bloggers meet to imbibe in adult libations and kick back. I'm an occasional commenter on Ash's blog and had asked her if non-bloggers were welcome. She said yes, supplied me with the wheres and whens and assured me they were a friendly bunch.
Her blog, Neurotic in Ashburn, should be on your must read list. It details the thoughts, actions, reactions and life of a person of substance. She's funny, insightful, strong, vulnerable, self-depracating, life-affirming and inexplicable. Sometimes all in the same paragraph. She has set the bar high for this admirer. I hope this blog, over time, occasionally hits notes as true and clear as hers does regularly.
My other inspiration is an entirely different kind of writer. When White Dade announced on his blog that he'd be making a guest appearance in DC, I had to be there. You may agree with him or disagree with him, but you should be reading him regardless. He's just finishing his first year of writing on the web and his archive reads like a training manual for literary fearlessness. He skewers sacred cows, mentions the unmentionable, and generally rants his way through the ether in the way I imagine Hunter Thompson would have if the Internet had come along before the the gonzo life caught up with him.
I had a great conversation with him, was tickled to realize he really knew who I was from my comments, and I hope his team wins tomorrow.
As for Ash, my conversation with her sucked and it was entirely my fault. I was tounge-tied, awed and embarassed. We've never met, but I feel like I know her a bit from her writing. I solicited an awkward hug of greeting. She introduced me to her friend as a commenter extraordinaire and my mind went utterly, totally, irretreivably blank. I stammered out how glad I was to have a face and voice to put with her writing, told her I loved her blog, shook her friend's hand goodbye and beat a hasty retreat to suburbia.
I got home in time to see the end of the SpongeBob movie with my wife and nine-year-old (hereinafter referred to as Monkeyboy in DC). I've never felt so old in all my life.
Next time I go to a Hater's Happy Hour, I hope to have at least a month's worth of posts on this blog, and a bit more courage.
In the meantime, as my Teamster friends say "keep the rubber side down and the shiny side up."