Monday, November 11, 2013

The Harder They Fall

The front door swung open, and there was my rumpled and gangly seventh grader, tossing his backpack onto the floor.  “Guess what, Mom?”

“What?” I called from upstairs.  He tipped his head up to look at me.

“We are blogging in my Language Arts class, and I told my teacher that you are a blogger.  Check your blog, Mom.  My whole class was on it today.  All of her classes were.  You probably had a lot of hits on it.  Check your stats!”

My ego blipped as I scanned my brain for any recent online swearing I might have done, any complain-y posts about school or education or how much I hate homework, or anything that could be embarrassing for him or me.  Mostly me.

I checked the stats.  Nothing of significance had happened.  No surprise there.  

“She is going to ask you to speak to my class, Mom.  Probably all of them.  You should write her an email and tell her when you’re available.”

I looked down at my house slippers and then at the screen of the computer, which still bore the evidence of the “work” I had been doing that day in the name of blogging – examining yet another BuzzFeed article akin to the one I perused today with the headline “The Cast of Honey Boo Boo Dressed As The Kardashians.

I am always available.

“I will wait to hear from your teacher,” I responded calmly.  I didn’t want to appear eager.  Plus, my messenger was a twelve-year-old who has to be reminded to use utensils when eating.

Meanwhile, my stomach flipped.  Me?  Talk about blogging?  Well, I guess I’ve been doing this for a while.  I could be considered an expert.  I have a faithful readership, numbering in the dozens.  I personally make up only a third of my blog hits per day.  Maybe I’m not The Pioneer Woman.  Not right now, anyway.  But I could be.  I am a blogger – anything can happen, and this could be the first step.

The days wore on and I checked my email no less than ten times a day.  When would she contact me?  Was my middle-schooler playing a cruel joke?  He is so grounded.  Maybe my email address isn’t clear on the blog's home page.  Maybe I should send a note to school.  Maybe I will get business cards made and tell him to make it rain in English class.

The email came.  Mrs. Mowery, would you like to come and talk to my classes about blogging?  Why, certainly, I calmly replied.  When would be an opportune time for me to speak to the young scholars?  I prissily asked. No matter that Gmail doesn’t have a crisp British accent feature.  I am Blogging Royalty, a local celebrity asked to speak to four middle school English classes on a Friday about my expertise.  I am a super star, Young House Love with DIY Lasagna instead of DIY Whole House Plumbing Overhaul.  I am the second coming of The Bloggess, Miss Jenny Lawson. 

I. Am. The. Next. Dooce.

I spent the bulk of the next day asking for tips from my blogger friends, reading internet articles about netiquette and typing up links to websites that would help these budding bloggers produce quality online work, knowing that in the future they would think of my visit and how much my advice had helped them wade through the tangled interwebs.  I would impart priceless wisdom that they could previously only glean from expensive blogging conferences.  I typed up no less than three pages of blogging knowledge.  It was not overkill in the least. There is so much information, and I had so much to give.

The day came, and I chose my outfit carefully, packing my laptop in the computer bag I had carried for official business in graduate school nearly a hundred years ago.  I am on a new path now, I thought, as I dusted the years of disuse off the black pleather.  My son and I drove to school and I walked stoically to the classroom while mentally transforming myself into the sage advisor on all things in the blogiverse.

After we settled into class and I introduced myself to my son's lovely Language Arts teacher, I sat quietly at a desk and listened as she talked about their blogging exercise and I waited until the floor was mine.

I stood, gathered my pile of handouts to give to the students, took a deep breath, and spoke.  “Hello. I’m a blogger.”

And the lights went out, plunging the room and the entire school into darkness.

I made the rest of my speech that day, and I think the kids enjoyed it, but not as much as they enjoyed hanging out in the room with not much to do but their blogging assignments and play games on the school’s still-working laptops until the principal announced that they would be dismissed two hours after school had begun.

Fifteen minutes later my son and I returned home and I changed out of my Blogging Royalty costume into black sweatpants to do the rest of the chores that I had smugly charged my husband with as I left that morning.

We did go to Chili’s for lunch, where my son and I shared our adventure with my husband.  Their Chicken Tortilla soup is pretty awesome.  I’ll bet Ree Drummond doesn’t know that.  And OMG, did you see the photo article on BuzzFeed about Disney Princesses with beards?  Genius.

My son and me, The Queen of Blogging.

*******


40 comments:

  1. You are such a darling!!
    Educating young mines - go you!

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    1. Thank you! I was certainly everyone's darling in my own head that day. ;)

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  2. "No matter that Gmail doesn’t have a crisp British accent feature." Ha!

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    1. It doesn't need it when your emails sound as if Queen E herself stopped over to drop a few lines.

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  3. Hehe you are famous! I have not spoken at a school but I have spoken at a conference and one time last year when I commented on a blog post somewhere, the blogger replied saying THANK YOU for commenting, I saw you speak and now I have a famous blogger commenting here. So, that was my day of fame. See, now we have both been famous for a minute! xo

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    1. Oooooh, I'll give you my autograph if you give me yours. We'll be star-struck together!

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  4. This is awesome! I could not have handled it like that - maybe I can get you a guest speaking gig in my son's class as well :)
    (also, I like your writing better than Dooce's)

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    1. I will travel for speaking engagements, and thank you for the compliment. I'm pretty sure Dooce doesn't feel threatened by me in the least. Maybe she should (said in my best tough-guy voice).

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  5. "make it rain in Englush class." DYING. So funny. I'm glad you got a chance to impart your wisdom on SOME young minds...for a little while at least. I'm sure the black sweatpants are more comfy anyway. Next time insist on a skype call or something.

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    1. That would have made things easier for sure. But then they wouldn't have been able to get the full effect of my dramatic gesturing and pacing.

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  6. We bloggers all think "maybe, who knows? maybe I could be the next xo-and-so", don't we? I call it being open to the possibilities.

    I'd kind of like to know what you told them.....?

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    1. Yes! It all might start with a middle-school English class. :)

      I talked a lot about netiquette (be nice, get consent, write things that you would let your mother read, pay attention to grammar, don't be a troll) and proofreading/editing, a little about length and audience, being true to your voice. My son told me I talked too much about my own blog. :\

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  7. It is so cool that your son's teacher is introducing them to the blogging world. I wonder what that lesson plan looks like. Good for you for getting invited to go speak to them. Obviously your wonderfulness overpowered the school, blowing fuses as you passed!

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    1. My son has a really great ELA teacher - she has them doing all kinds of cool writing projects. I love this blogging unit - she gives them prompts to write about, and they get to do something online, which they are all about.

      I almost died when the lights went out, and when the teacher said that this had never happened before, I considered cosmic intervention.

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  8. Black pleather? Time to upgrade - you are a famous blogger.

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    1. I know, right? I literally had to dust it off. That bag has had many jobs, from school bag to gym bag to overnight bag to the day I almost became famous bag.

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  9. I just found your blog through Alison (above), and I'm so glad she shared this post. I love that your son told his teacher that his mom was a blogger and that he wanted you to come in. That's really fantastic.

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    1. Hi Shannon! Thank you for reading! I was surprised that he shared with his teacher about my blog, especially since he's in that tween/teen spot right now where I'm not always so cool.

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  10. Wow - you are so famous! I can say I have been reading you since you were just a "normal" blogger ;) Seriously, though, it's really cool that your son's teacher is teaching about blogging.

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    1. Ha! Yes, when I was just a normal blogger, a peasant hunched over her typewriter with only crusts of bread and words as sustenance, I drew a few loyal fans...

      Excuse me. I have to wipe this bunch of B.S. off my computer. :)

      The LA teacher is pretty great. I love this blogging idea, too,

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  11. I love it! You are famous blogging royalty. I think it is so cool that they are doing a blogging unit - I would have loved that when I was in school. Or you know, even now. :)

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    1. Right? I would have loved the blogging unit too, I think. But then again, I kind of hated the journaling exercises we had to do - I didn't want other people to read them. What is that all about?

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  12. Wow, you ARE famous! And I love your sparkly crown! Will you come talk to my daughters' classes about blogging? Hell, come talk to ME about it, because I seem to have lost my mojo. I have no idea what I'm doing. LOL!

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    1. Ha! I don't believe that for a second. I am clueless and get all my blogging info from Google and asking questions of more experienced bloggers. When that fails, I wear a crown and adopt a British accent. It works wonders for anyone's legitimacy.

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  13. How fabulous are YOU? (Nevermind. I totally already know the answer.)

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    1. I love that we both think I'm fabulous. Even if nobody else does. ;)

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  14. You crack me up. Loved the part about loyal readership in the dozens and only being one third of your daily blog hits. Bwahaha! Sounds vaguely familiar...except I, not being a famous blogger, probably have like...one dozen loyal fans. Maybe. I bow to your prowess. And your snappy British accent.

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    1. I consider having 13 loyal readers in the dozens. So you might be right there with me! Cheers!

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  15. oh Andrea "I am a blogger – anything can happen, and this could be the first step." Hahah! I love it. Love the way you poked fun at yourself the whole time. But you know...we all think it. This is perfect! And congrats on your semi-fame :) It's nice to feel special.

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    1. We are so hopeful that each day could be our big break. I like to think that someone who is actually famous reads my blog. Who knows? Beyonce could be my biggest secret fan. This is my biggest motivator, and also my most pathetic confession. ;)

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    1. That's it. I'm getting a shirt made. Thank you. :)

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  17. I bow to the Queen

    Your son is awesome. My 3 daughters barely acknowledge their dad's blogging and fact that's he's written 2 books. They'd freak out if I went to their school and talked. I'm so envious.

    I liked how you described your reactions. I wouldn't done the same stuff except had the 4 women I live with pick out my clothes.

    great piece...you have a new reader and twitter follower.

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    1. Thank you for bowing. And for reading, and following. That made my day. :)

      Wow you have a tough crowd. I can only aspire to write one blog post per day, let alone a whole book or two. Your children would wave me off faster than you can say "viral."

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  18. that's AWESOME!!! and I love that son was so proud of you when some kids that age would do anything to avoid having their mom come to school.

    also, the teacher is pretty cool herself. what a fun assignment and a great way to get kids writing!

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    1. His teacher IS cool. The kids love her, too. At least my son does - I know that for sure. He's not always proud of me, but I'll take whatever I can get from him.

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  19. Awesome read.. You done everything in a superb way. Your son is understanding indeed and cooperative is every manner. Thanks for sharing your experience.

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    1. You're welcome and Thanks!! He's pretty good - when he lets his guard down.

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  20. Ha!! This is awesome. My kids better not Google my blog in school ever.

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    1. Funny you should say that. When I was there, one of the kids had an old post up about when my daughter made a crude picture of my son, complete with man boobs and chicken feet. Probably not appropriate for school. Here's the link:

      http://www.about100percent.com/2011/04/sibling-rivalry.html

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