That’s a Wrap – 2019

 Love may be blind but marriage is a true eye-opener. If it’s end-of-year truth you came looking for, you’re definitely in the right place this week.  On the eve of launching into the fourth year of life for this blog, that morsel of tongue-in-cheek wisdom may be as good as any to hang my metaphorical hat on and reflect.

After three solid years and 147 published posts on SCENIC WRITER’S SHACK, it’s fair to say my ‘relationship’ with blogging has by now entered the marriage stage. Gone are the heady days when I believed with every cell of my double helix I was about to shape humankind’s destiny and set the blogosphere alight every time my finger hovered over the ‘publish’ button.

If I think back I’m pretty sure I may even have originally set out to create the funniest, wittiest blog site the world had ever seen. Pretty quickly that proved to be way too hard. Like, WAY too hard. In place of that what else was there to do but start serving up common banter such as what you’re reading now. Humbling to be sure but over the passage of time adjusting the scope and breadth of ones formerly lofty ambitions makes sense if you want to keep going. And I DID want to keep going. Still do.

With over 600 million free-to-access blogs in the world competing for interest, that, I can now appreciate, was always an amusingly naive, overreaching thought. But gee-whiz, the illusion and false-belief phase sure was fun while it lasted!

These days, again like a marriage, I’m fully awake to the idea I’m no longer running a 100 meter race in the blogging stakes. Now I’m chugging along more like a marathon runner with the occasional surge and one or two sprint finishes thrown in for variety. Under these road rules the challenge is trying to keep things fresh and fun along the route.

On that note, I’ve said it before and I’m not shy in saying it again – the day I start taking things too seriously around here is the day I break open the metaphorical cyanide capsule that dangles on a gold-plated chain around the slender neck of SCENIC WRITER’S SHACK and bite down. Hard. 

Over the course of the last three years I’ve seen a number of my contemporaries take their last breath. Blogs have a lifespan like all other things. When the interest that once burned magnificently like a furnace flame has dwindled to a barely breathing wet candle, and, worse still, perhaps even assumed the status of burden, there is little else for one to do but slip away quietly and make way for another, freshly setting out on their own blogging promenade.

This year saw SCENIC WRITER’S SHACK set a new comments record (60) for an individual post. My interview with junior author Georgia Bowditch in August received a very positive response. 2019 also saw me reconnect with two old ‘mates’ – John Rambo and the T-800 Terminator with the release of long-awaited new installments in those two film franchises. With friends like that who needs enemies right?

Then there was the right royal pranking of the Nigerian scam artist back in March. You had it coming Mr Badenhorst or Catherine Bessant or whatever your name was! Those antics ran for a total of three posts and kept me and a few readers along for the ride entertained in a pay-back flavored manner for the duration.

What will 2020 bring? Mystery, shenanigans and rum’n raisin icecream are all guaranteed since they’re my favorites. For assurances of anything else you’ll just have to tune in to find out. Before then however it’s time to look back on the year that was SCENIC WRITER’S SHACK style.

Capture

ARE FINGERPRINTS REALLY UNIQUE? (February)

INTO THE SNAKEPIT OF FRIENDSHIP (February)

PERSONALIZED NUMBER PLATES (February)

GIFTS FOR THE PERSON WHO HAS EVERYTHING (March)

SCAMMING THE SCAMMER – VIGILANTE STYLE (Parts 1, 2 & 3) (March/April)

LIBRARIES’ ALL-SORTS (May)

CANINE NEIGHBORHOOD NOISE COMPLAINT (May)

WORST FILMS EVER LIST (May)

Top 50 Songs List (June)

Art of the Niggle (July)

Super Computers (August)

Bruce Lee (August)

Top 50 TV Series (September)

2nd Hand Stores (October)

Brisbane – Australia’s 3rd best City (November)

Murder of Author Helen Bailey (November)

Best Book Covers of 2019 (December)

FILMS

capture

AQUAMAN  (January)

GREEN BOOK (March)

LEAVING NEVERLAND (March)

DESTROYER (March)

Rambo:Last Blood (October)

Terminator: Dark Fate (November)

BOOKS

Capture

MEMBER OF THE FAMILY by Dianne Lake (February)

THE COMEDY WRITER by Peter Farrelly (March)

A CAPTAIN’S DUTY by Richard Phillips (June)

EVENTS

capture

WORLD TRIVIA DAY (January)

RHINOPLASTY (January)

Champion Racehorse Winx Retires (April)

R.I.P

‘Knowledge advances funeral by funeral’
Capture

Australian entertainer & tv host Jimmy Hannan (January)

Actor Jan-Michael Vincent (March)

Australian musical director and tv personality Geoff Harvey  (March)

Singer & Actress Doris Day (May)

Former Australian Prime Minister Bob Hawke (May)

U.S billionaire and former Presidential candidate Ross Perot (July)

Australian cookbook author Margaret Fulton (July)

Former Australian Deputy Prime Minister Tim Fisher (August)

Author Toni Morrison (August)

Actress Valerie ‘Rhoda’ Harper (August)

Australian actor Paul Cronin (September)

Lead singer of Roxette – Gun-Marie Fredriksson (December)

BLOG SLOGANS USED THIS YEAR

capture

ROSES AND APPLES ARE RELATED

WEIRD BUT NOT NEARLY WEIRD ENOUGH

WEIRDNESS. DISTRACTION. AND SWEETMEAT GALORE!

BREAKFAST IS THE MOST IMPORTANT MEAL OF THE DAY

CREATIVITY IS THE MOST IMPORTANT MEAL OF THE DAY

THE SMASHED AVOCADO ON RYE OF THE LITERARY WORLD

THIS BLOG IS MASSIVE IN THE MARSHALL ISLANDS

THIS BLOG IS MASSIVE IN LIECHTENSTEIN (Really)

INSPIRATION POINT

PEACHY NOT PREACHY

AUTHOR INTERVIEWS

Capture

11 Year Old Georgia Bowditch (August)

COMEBACKS of 2019

Capture

Rambo: Last Blood (First Rambo movie in 11 years)

In Stereo (First new Bananarama studio album in 10 years) 

Best Read of 2019

Capture

Brooke Shields’ 2014 autobiography – THERE WAS A LITTLE GIRL: THE REAL STORY OF MY MOTHER AND ME

Capture

2019 HEADER IMAGES 

T Shirt Logo
Capture
cropped-shacket.png
cropped-capture-4-2.png

Ok, I’m out of here. See you when the adventures return in the new year. And one last thing… don’t forget to come back!

Ps. Couldn’t farewell the decade without leaving you with one very last bonus read HERE.

Pss. And finally …Wanna see an uncannily accurate picture of how I’ll be spending the New Year’s holiday period? No? Here it is anyway…

14 thoughts on “That’s a Wrap – 2019

  1. Thanks Li.
    I regard someone who goes to the effort to leave a positive, well-wishing comment on this site as akin to bestowing on me the feeling of being caressed with lavender petals and then bathed in buttermilk and sage honey.
    It really does feel that good. Actually, better – if you can believe that.
    Thank you Li and Happy New Year to you.

    And to be clear regarding the dude in this video, I wanted to get one featuring a lovely looking female (yep, fully and proudly discriminating against the male of the species there) but sadly couldn’t locate one.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. N-n-n-nervous?
    Fearing for my life more likely. (Long story for anyone else reading this).
    Young? I was 43/44 back when we ‘served’ together on Yorke Island in the Torres Straits which is hardly in the bloom of youth but I guess is 10 years younger than I am today.
    World renown? At 225 subscribers that’s a stretch but I won’t deny maybe, as they say, an ‘aspirational’ -‘Tell ‘im he’s dreamin’ – goal (how exactly I or anyone else might go about achieving that lofty status is a completely mind-foozling entertainment series of conjectures if ever there was one).

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Wishing you all the best for 2020 Glen.
    We pretty new to each other blogs but I’ve very much enjoyed your different approach to film reviews, especially the Rambo and Terminator ones. They take you on all sorts of journeys. I think I likened them to Ted Talk presentations. Always served with a nice dash of humour.
    Don’t worry about the lack of response on posts, the only people who really comment are fellow bloggers* and we all desperately trying to fit our own nonsense in the little time we have. If you read and commented on every post there’d be no point doing it. Sounds like we started around the same time. If you can, try and treat it like a fun hobby. As soon as it’s not fun any more, well there’s plenty more fun shit to do in the world 🙂
    All the best for the future dude. I’m looking forward to seeing lots of new posts in 2020.
    Mikey

    * PS you might not know but if people have adblocker on (most people) then the “like, follow, comment” buttons don’t always show up.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Thanks Mikey.
    Your ‘Ted talk’ comparison a few months back still sticks in my mind as one of the best, most thoughtful things anyone’s ever said to me on this blog about this blog.

    I will admit the lack of engagement lament from me in regard to what I would label the ‘underwhelming’ response written blog posts receive around these parts has always been a source of slight disappointment to me, although these days I think I’ve begrudgingly accepted it somewhat (no other choice!).

    Then again, it’s also always been a source of bewilderment to me how blogs with so many more subscribers than mine – sometimes up to 20 000 followers – still somehow manage to attract only one or two comments and a handful of likes.

    But you are so right, I myself don’t comment or even like every single blog post I read ’cause a lot of the time I just want to skim. One thing I do know however, I’ve stopped subscribing from a heap of blogs this year whose content, in my opinion, wasn’t fit for public consumption but rather in all fairness should have been limited to the contents of something like a personal diary that was kept under the person’s pillow.

    I think you know the type of blogs I’m referring to Mikey. They’re the ones whose content largely consists of updates about how they’re going with their latest unfortunate batch of illnesses – uneventful accounts of taking a stroll in the park or around the block – and when things are really scraping the bottom of the bread tin, home-style amateur poetry that’s ‘generously’ offered up like it’s some type of ribbon-wrapped present! Life is really too short to endure drivel from complete strangers of this variety. Not for me anymore!

    A blog post has to have some evidence of an ‘entertainment factor’ and the vibe the person has gone to some effort to put it together if I’m to be a regular reader of that blogger’s output. Your posts are a perfect example of these two elements in play. If I want shallow twaddle about what cafe a person has visited or whiney complaints about the current state of their mental health or worse still snide, cheap comments about the current political scene I can always go to Facebook for a fix of that kind of detritus.

    So much of the content on so many people’s personal blogs I feel doesn’t deserve to see the light of day for a general audience beyond maybe that of the person’s immediate circle of family and friends. And yet these drab, entrenched-in-their-own-boring-little-bubble bloggers continue to offer up holiday snaps of their latest travels and yawn-worthy anecdotes about their kids that suffices as ‘content’, comically certain in the belief that others will find their lives as somehow inspiring and interesting as they themselves do. In a lot of more, shall we say, discerning circles that’s known as ‘oversharing’. Such is the internet. Buyer… ok, better make that reader – beware!

    Geez, I may be actually starting to frighten myself a little here ’cause it appears the volcano is starting to bubble! It must be all the pent-up mouse-rage spilling forth at the end of the year in one huge, unfiltered lava load! But drudging, insipid blogs have just got me so… so… overwrought! Infact, excuse me while I go to a side window and scream at the top of my lungs ‘” I’m as mad as hell about rubbish blogs and I’m not gonna take it anymore!”

    Ahhhhhhh, that’s better. Now I’ve got that out of my system I can resume normal discussion… The ‘hobby’ mindset you refer to is definitely the way to go. I’ve always said any follower beyond your own family members (I can’t even get those! lol) should be regarded as a bonus. Thanks for the tip off regarding ad blocker. I wasn’t aware.

    Thankyou for your encouraging thoughts and best wishes for the New Year. I will be continuing to follow your blog as it ticks all my boxes as to what blogs can and should aspire to be. Reading yours is always like digesting a column or feature article in a glossy magazine. In addition to that it’s also painfully obvious how much time you spend packaging the posts together, not to mention the oodles of research. That’s definitely my idea of entertainment. In fact your blog is one of a handful I subscribe to that I consider so worthy and rewarding of my reader time, that if it wasn’t free I’d consider paying for it. Like, really!

    There!
    I think I may have just matched your ‘Ted’ compliment Mikey.
    Keep doing what you’re doing,
    I’ll keep doing what I’m doing and like you say… to hell with the likes and comments!
    Here’s to happy reading and blogging in 2020 for both of us.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. So interesting to look back and see what the blog was doing this past 12 months – there was certainly a wide variety of subjects – always very well written and entertaining – also very topical and informative – enjoyed it all Glen – congratulations and I wonder what you have in store for us in 2020.- best wishes………

    Liked by 2 people

    • 2020 is sure to bring the usual smorgasbord of challenges, insights, disappointments, insanity, joys and delights as like any other year but naturally with it’s own unique flavor.
      I’m aiming for it to be an enjoyable one for readers of SCENIC WRITER’S SHACK.

      Like

  6. Hi, Glen. I know what you mean about the bloggo-sphere, but you’re right to just not go to the ones that don’t interest you, so that’s smart! ‘Cause there is something for everyone but it’s not all for all of us. It reminds me of the “woke” stuff going on here (and elsewhere) and how even the 60+ year old song “Baby It’s Cold Outside” has come under attack and they’ve rewritten the lyrics! Some of the lyrics now say something like, “It’s your body, your choice” ! ! ! And my response to that is: don’t rewrite a 70-year-old song to please yourself. Just don’t listen to it! And in your wisdom, that’s what you do.

    I’ve enjoyed your stuff immensely. In fact, I need to get to the latest Lost In Space Fireside! But you’ve tackled a wide variety of interesting and thought-provoking subjects and I’m sure will continue in 2020 with much more. When I started my blog I think I’ve mentioned that I tried to post something every weekend but started getting stressed out, it turned into every other week, and now I just try to do it at least once a month. Like you said, when it ceases to be fun, it’s no fun at all (sic).

    Weirdly, I thought I’d read that post above concerning the AI and the “funny name for a museum” museum, but I don’t see my “like” at the bottom. Hmm…..
    Also, I noticed a while back that Lady Emily seems to have disappeared, and I wondered where she went……she always made funny, observant comments about the Fireside stuff, especially.

    Thanks for the great review of the past year!
    Onward and upward………!

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Thanks Stacey for following this blog with a passion.
    Your comments have certainly added value around these parts many times over.
    Lady Emily pulled the plug on her own blog KNIGHT OF ANGELS earlier in the year and (true to her word), to the best of my knowledge, has never resurfaced. I’d love to see her back too. I don’t believe writing talent like hers can go very long without finding some outlet for expression. My instinct told me she was a person that ‘needed’ to write.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Like anything in life, things come to an end, and the day will come when one day we also will cease either to write, or cease to live, I got about four or five blogging friends, already RIP, and yes I have seen many others just moving into other things, some of them amazingly good, but they quit, in one of your comments above you mention:

    “My instinct told me she was a person that ‘needed’ to write.”

    Yes, the reason some of us are here, but not all have that need to do so, many have other motives, and like your opening line that I love:

    ” Love may be blind but marriage is a true eye-opener.”

    Time spent, transforms into experience, not our original illusion, either we adapt, and compromise, or it ends on divorce.

    Nice to read you, I enjoyed your post. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Well Glen, I am rather late to this party. Wow, its a new year and somehow I’ve totally missed January. Life is like that sometimes. I’m desperate to get some accounting done to meet a deadline, so have been tapping away over that, and should have gone to bed half an hour ago. Who though wants to go straight to bed after hours of Quickbooks? SWS was a perfect place to hide for a brief moment, indulge in some pleasant, witty distractions, then feel somewhat ready for snooze. Thanks for all your work Glen. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the brief escapes your blogs have been for me.
    Happy New Year (and Decade?)!

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s