Saturday, January 17, 2009

2 Be...or Not?

That is the question at hand for the moment. Before you begin to think I'm about to get all heavy and Shakespearean on you I'm using the Hamlet soliloquy as a catchy little title for a post about blogging. Early (and I mean early) tomorrow morning I'll be taping a short segment at our local NBC affiliate discussing this relatively new form of journalism and telling folks what A Work of Art is all about. And before you get all like "wow Bennie's getting too famous for us" let me remind you I live in the upstate of South Carolina where flannel shirts sans the sleeves, hauling your diaper-clad kid to Walmart sporting that one article of clothing, displaying year-round exterior Christmas lights, and having upholstered furniture on your front porch are still in vogue.

Essentially I will be appearing on WYFF to help promote their new offspring website, Sound Off South! It's actually a pretty darn cool site that showcases blogs and websites within our geographical region. If you're planning on visiting our area (western North Carolina mountain, northern Georgia, and of course the upstate of South Carolina) this is definitely a place to check out. Despite my little redneck joke the Greenville area is quietly becoming a destination for folks looking for something a little different from typical vacation plans, a fact that you can read about on SOS (as we like to call it).

But over the past few days this invitation has made me think about blogging, moreso than just trying to figure out what the next blog post might be. When I started this blog in October of 2006 I honestly had no idea what I was doing. I had a somewhat of a purpose and some sense of goals to achieve but that was about it. At the time I considered myself a decent (okay maybe even good) writer. Armed with those three or four tools I set out to change the world view of exceptional kids, sell a bunch of paintings in the process, occasionally land an article in the New York Times or USA Today, and get interviewed by Oprah. Looking back now, despite not achieving a single one of those objectives, I don't think we've failed in the least bit.

Like anything created by man or God, each of those entities grow, change, and evolve. Great examples of this are occurring before my very eyes at the moment. I'm reluctantly watching Jessie change from a little girl into a mature young woman. Since his recent hospitalization I can see incredible gains in Ben's motor skills and strength. Even my art is transitioning at a level I've not experienced since college. As much as I like to link to my past, these recent events give me even more hope for the future.

But the one unexpected thing that has been the best thing about this blog is you. Each and every one of you that come here and visit with us. When we bloggers discuss social media and the impact it has had over the past decade, we cannot ignore how it has brought us all closer together. This was made so clear to our family when Ben scared the hell out of us the day after Thanksgiving. That my friends solidifies my new found hope, not just for our family but for all of us.

I know deep down inside that if Ben could actually tell me he'd say, "Thanks for starting our blog, Dad." I know he'd also extend his not-so-chubby-anymore arms across the Blogosphere and hug each and every one of you, leaving a big drooly kiss and a smile. I know he would also say to you, "Thanks for visiting me! I love you no matter your shape, color, religion, sexual orientation, political leanings, salary, gender, or whatever else makes us all different." Whatever Ben hasn't taught me all about unconditional love, blogging has filled in the rest.

11 comments:

flutter said...

this is so wonderful :)

lisabug said...

Bennie,
I came here looking for instructions on blogging, but was greeted with an article of thoughts, descriptions and welcoming. You are very gifted in the use of an extraordinary vocabulary. So impressed! I have a lot to learn from you, my friend!

Ben and Bennie said...

Christine - as always your writing blows mine out of the water!

Lisa - I think I know who you are (sort of). Thanks for visiting us!

Tom said...

Very well put! Good luck with your interview tomorrow.

Cricket said...

Best of luck with the interview tomorrow!! :)

Brian said...

And we'd give a big drooly kiss and a smile right back.

Maggie, Dammit said...

Beautiful, my friend.

Kyla said...

So true! I hope there will be online video of the interview!

Dean said...

I hope the interview goes well. I look forward to hearing all about it.

Great blog! It probably sounds silly, but there's a sense of openness here. Very open and welcoming. Thanks for letting me in. Thanks for sharing.

Ben and Bennie said...

Thanks Dean! I think that's the best compliment we've ever gotten.

Chanda (aka Bea) said...

Wow! Things are really movin' and a shakin' around your neck of the woods these days. I hope your interview went well. I have no doubt the Oprah interview is just around the corner. :)