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Blogging: I Do It for the Stuff

September 12, 2012

Often I will get asked a lot of the same questions by friends, family, readers, readers who happen to be friends and family, and people at Target.

Questions like, “Why do you write a blog?

Or, “No, really why do you write a blog?”

Or sometimes, “Why didn’t you answer my question about why you write a blog?”

Or every night, “It’s almost midnight, why are you still writing a blog?”

Or once in a while, “Excuse me, do you know where I can find the Brawny brand paper towels?”

The latter to which I answer, “No, I don’t work here.  I just like to wear red shirts with khakis when I shop.  But I think what you’re looking for is over there.”

Today I’ve decided to answer yet another frequently asked question.

Dear Angie,

Why do you write a blog?

It seems to offer you very little in the way of fame and fortune.  It takes time away from your friends and family.  It takes time away from watching the first three seasons of the Brady Bunch which you own on DVD but not the fourth or fifth seasons because the Brady men looked really bad in perms and don’t forget about Cousin Oliver.

Sincerely,

A person with a question

Easy.  I can answer that question in one simple answer.

I write a blog because of other bloggers.  I do it because of them!

Oh, wait — did you think I meant I write a blog for the friendships with other bloggers?  Oh, I guess I see why you thought that.

Nah, that’s just sappy stuff to embroider on lacy guest towels.

What I really mean is — I blog for the stuff they send me.

Yes, other bloggers like to send stuff!  Did you know that?

As it so happens, before blogging I had not received mail that wasn’t in the form of bills, fundraising appeal letters or Little Caesars coupons — since 2004.

I had considered filling my mailbox with concrete.  But then I started blogging.

And look at what started showing up in my mailbox.

I know, I know!

Most recently these arrived from Jules of the blog Go Jules Go.

Look closely and you’ll notice my blog in the background. Weird, huh? Sorta like you just stepped through the looking glass except that I’m wearing mustache glasses.

Jules also sent me two dynamite slap bracelets.  Which you might’ve seen before here.

I also received some magnificent Maine-inspired loot from blogger Darla of She’s A Maineiac.  I got this stuff after I became a Most Embarrassing Contest Winner.

For winning her story contest, I received this light-up hat from L.L. Bean that is extremely purposeful.  And a lobster lollipop.  Thank goodness.  And the best of all . . .

Here I ponder all the important things I can do with this hat. Like look under the couch for my missing Smurf book.

. . . Freakishly Tiny Pillow!

So I wasn’t sure what exactly to do with Freakishly Tiny Pillow.

True, I’m known throughout the Midwest for having a Freakishly Tiny Head.

A tiny head that would be well matched with a tiny pillow.

And although it granted me the best nap of my life, Freakishly Tiny Pillow just didn’t seem to fit with Freakishly Enormous Couch.

But you know who it did fit?

Well, Winking Strawberry Shortcake and Clothesless Raspberry Tart, that’s who!

Winking Strawberry Shortcake and Clothesless Raspberry Tart arrived in my mailbox from blogger Heather of Becoming Cliche.

Yes, these two sorry-looking tarts just showed up at my house one day — along with a 1982 Care Bears book and along with a yellowed Smurf book that has since disappeared into the night with two overdue library books.

Why did I receive this stuff?  Because Heather knew I liked stuff.  Particularly old stuff.  Particularly old stuff that serves no purpose.

But the best of all the stuff I received just might be this — this photograph of a painting of a chipmunk surfing.  Which by the way I also received from the aforementioned Jules.

I think she was sending me this photo to make me jealous of her fine art collection.  But that’s okay.  Because I went ahead and framed it.

And now who has the fine art collection, huh?  Huh?!

That’s right — me.  Take that!

Folks, it’s stuff like this that makes blogging worthwhile.

76 Comments leave one →
  1. September 12, 2012 5:57 am

    Oh, but winking Strawberry Shortcake has all KINDS of uses.She’s like an elf on a shelf. She goes each night and tells the produce manager whether you’ve been eating all of your fruits and vegetables.

    • September 14, 2012 10:28 am

      I suppose you’re right, Heather — although, I wouldn’t wholly trust the sight of a one-eyed Strawberry Shortcake.

      By the way, don’t think I’m not extremely grateful for these gifts. Especially the tarts, who like to serve as my muses while I work on my blog posts. It helps that now they have a comfortable pillow to sit on.

  2. September 12, 2012 5:57 am

    Damn. I’ve been settling for glory. Who knew I could get stuff, too!

    • September 12, 2012 7:36 am

      Stop hogging all the glory, Elyse. Send some over!

      • September 12, 2012 8:31 am

        Nope. It’s all mine. Mwwwhoohahaha. At least until someone realizes that I cannot spell that evil laugh.

      • September 14, 2012 10:31 am

        Wait, does “glory” include large banner blog ads for Wendy’s buffalo chicken sandwich? If so, I’m all stocked up on glory right now.

    • September 12, 2012 3:26 pm

      You get glory? So that’s where all mine went :)

    • September 14, 2012 10:28 am

      I, too, want to know what this “glory” business is that you speak of.

      • September 14, 2012 10:46 am

        It is the knowledge that my service to the world, through my blog, will get me through the pearly gates or at least through the golden arches.

  3. September 12, 2012 6:03 am

    It’s good to see all your Maine-related booty is being appreciated. It almost makes losing tolerable….almost.

    • September 14, 2012 10:32 am

      Tiny Pillow was custom-made for my tiny head, so perhaps this was all for the best.

  4. September 12, 2012 6:45 am

    I’m crying! “Freakishly tiny pillow.” It helped that you put on your sofa for perspective. LOL

    Those Strawberry Shortcake tarts take the, uh, cake. Though I don’t know. Picture of a surfing chipmunk? I so totally NEED one of those. And how come you haven’t gobbled up the lobster-pop yet? Because it tastes like lobstah?

    Thanks for morning happiness jolt! Angie, Darla, Heather, and Jules…may blog awesomeness continue to abound for you all. Triple-like.

    • September 12, 2012 6:56 am

      Likewise, Shannon! And may none of you ever know what it is to taste lobster-flavored candy.

      • September 14, 2012 10:35 am

        I’d assume it’s much better than monkey anus chocolate.

    • September 14, 2012 10:35 am

      Thanks, Shannon. Your comments give me a morning happiness jolt. True, I could’ve gotten the same jolt had I devoured my lobster sucker. But I have a feeling that the lobster sucker offers a sugar-high that I wouldn’t come down from for days.

  5. September 12, 2012 6:49 am

    I am definitely not doing the right kind of blogging because I only receive bills and catalogs for vaginal weights in my mailbox. I don’t believe these were sent from my blogging friends. I am envious of the lighted hat.

    • September 12, 2012 10:31 am

      What, no butt plug samples?

      • September 14, 2012 10:39 am

        Or pacifier samples? Aren’t they the same according to E.L. James?

      • September 14, 2012 1:03 pm

        Of course. Sucking or being sucked, equally important. Of course she just sucks period, but whatevs.

    • September 14, 2012 10:38 am

      I can’t believe you’ve never received a Forever Lazy in the mail — what, with all the product endorsements you’ve offered Forever Lazy Inc. — and for free. Something’s not right there.

  6. September 12, 2012 6:54 am

    Well now you’ve just made the chipmunk jealous, because where is he to rest his tiny head after a long day of surfing?

    On the upside, who knew a post about swag could be laugh-out-loud funny? And look at you all cute in your ‘stache glasses and LL Bean hat.

    I’m going to frame both of those pictures. Right now. And put them next to my normal-sized pillow. Even though we both know I already dream about you.

    • September 14, 2012 10:50 am

      The mustache glasses are THE BEST, Jules! Thank you so much! I haven’t even sent you a proper thank you for those. What can I do to repay you — maybe paint a picture of a chipmunk hacky-sacking? I can give it an early ’90s spin? I can put him in an anti-apartheid shirt, or maybe something from United Colors of Benneton? Maybe some pleated jeans? Just let me know.

      I’m not kidding.

      • September 14, 2012 4:27 pm

        If you painted me a picture featuring anus chocolate, I’d be over the moon.

        MOON. Ha!

        (Dear God, Please don’t ever let anyone ever read this comment out of context. Ever.)

      • September 24, 2012 11:05 pm

        My husband burst out laughing the other night and I thought he was laughing at my blog. Awwwww. Thanks, dear. Nope. He was laughing at your comment.

  7. September 12, 2012 7:24 am

    Totally jealous that you have a winking Strawberry Shortcake. Who knew they made one of those? I still have some of my dolls and they still smell. Takes me back to my pink shag carpet and velour days.

    I must be doing something wrong because I don’t get anything in the mail either, just dumb old diaper and formula coupons that I curse loudly at. How do you get off those @$%! lists?

    • September 14, 2012 10:54 am

      My mom still has all my old Strawberry Shortcake dolls, and I can tell you that little Apple Dumpling has a scent that just won’t quit. When my daughter pulls out the box of old dolls, I get a strong whiff of artificial apple that far overpowers the lime, orange, strawberry and angel cake (whatever that scent was).

  8. September 12, 2012 7:35 am

    you are so pretty angie

    • September 14, 2012 10:56 am

      Thank you, MC — how sweet of you. But, um, did you miss the part where I mentioned my Freakishly Tiny Head?

  9. September 12, 2012 7:38 am

    Jeez, now I feel bad that I haven’t sent you anything that represents the great state of Illinois. Want anybody killed?

    • September 14, 2012 11:00 am

      Oh, Peg. That’s so sweet of you. Are you taking orders? Okay…let’s see…Illinois stuff. Can I get a set of Lincoln Logs?

  10. September 12, 2012 8:04 am

    I am waiting for my very first blogging buddy stuff (from Jules– wow, she is very giving. I should give her something back probably.) I feel sure that when my ‘staches glasses arrive, I will blog even BETTER, even BOLDER, even BLOGGIER!

    • September 12, 2012 12:23 pm

      Yes. Nicki. You will. You’re welcome.

    • September 14, 2012 11:03 am

      No pressure here, Nicki. But I think if you get a pair of mustache glasses from Jules, it would only be right if you sent her a copy of your first book. And then send me one while you’re at it. And autograph it please. That would be the best of any stuff I’ve ever received.

      Actually, I would pay good money for that kind of stuff.

      • September 14, 2012 2:40 pm

        I would love to promise you this, but I am afraid to jinx the project that must not be named.

  11. September 12, 2012 8:20 am

    I am feeling very bad right now. I have been blogging for a year and haven’t received ANYTHING! (I haven’t given anything either but that is besides the point.) I want a freakishly small pillow – and it would work for me too, since I have a freakishly small head.

    • September 14, 2012 11:05 am

      I know, maybe you could start shipping out a few of your 8,000 cardigans? I happen to be a geek for cardigans too. My birthday is the first of December. Just so you can get that date on your calendar.

  12. September 12, 2012 8:30 am

    I’ve been known to send myself postcards when I’m on vacation. You know, to keep all the bills and pizza flyers company in my mailbox. :-) Loving your blog-swag look with the hat and glasses Angie!!

    • September 14, 2012 11:07 am

      Thanks, Amb. That is brilliant! What a nice homecoming to return from vacation and see your mailbox filled with postcard greetings, albeit from yourself.

  13. September 12, 2012 9:41 am

    Hmmm, methinks I am doing something wrong if this blogging thing isn’t producing those kinds of results. True, I do have a kickass pair of stache glasses, but I did not receive them in the mail. I DID get them in person from the remarkable Jules, so maybe that’s better. But it’s still not mail. And who doesn’t love mail?

    Maybe it’s just that I don’t have a schtick. Could that be it? You love 80’s nostalgia stuff . . . Jules loves chipmunks and mustaches . . . Darla loves Justin Beiber (shhh, we’re starting something, don’t ruin it). Maybe I need to start blogging about my love for diamonds and Bradley Cooper. Think someone would send him to my doorstep, clad only in diamond tennis bracelets? This is giving me so many ideas . . .

    • September 14, 2012 11:12 am

      I think you and I both know who is the lucky one here, Misty — getting the glasses hand-delivered by Jules in the flesh? No Freakishly Tiny Pillow could compete with that.

      I have my limits on the types of ’80s nostalgia stuff I’d like to receive. If I ever got a can of Sanka in the mail, I’d revisit my plan to fill my mailbox with concrete.

      Darla and Bieber sitting in the tree, K-I-S-S-I-N-G. Yes, let’s go with that.

      • September 15, 2012 7:00 am

        Say what….?

        In the words of the immortal Woody from Toy Story (which I just watched again for the millionth time…):

        OK, I am officially freaked out now.

  14. September 12, 2012 10:30 am

    Yes. I have not gotten anything blogging either. Well, okay, I got a gold unicorn badge from Le Clown for my blog and if I was really desperate I could print it out. But loot? No. No loot. I want loot.

    Someone needs to start another contest with useless bling and then let me win it. Or just give it to me. Because I’m special, that’s why.

    • September 14, 2012 11:14 am

      I was immediately, obsessively, angrily envious of you when I read “gold unicorn badge” in your comment — only to read further and realize that it wasn’t an actual, tangible gold unicorn badge you were referring to. So now I’m back to not-hating you again. Phew.

      • September 14, 2012 1:04 pm

        I plan to break into your house to steal your winky Strawberry Shortcake. And the tiny pillow. I must have them. Where is my bling???

  15. September 12, 2012 10:54 am

    That is some sweet swag. I’m trying to figure out how I can solicit donations from the blogosphere too. Any tips?

    • September 14, 2012 11:19 am

      Okay, here’s the plan. Pretend like you love every single piece of crap you’ve come across in your lifetime under a specific category like, say, “Lithuanian lacquered boxes”. Nah, too specific. Like, say, “crap”. Yes, that’s about broad enough. Then sit back and wait for the stuff to start coming.

  16. September 12, 2012 11:24 am

    I always learn something here – and today I learned that we’re not really friends, and that other bloggers get stuff. Suddenly life feels very empty.

    Cool baseball cap.

    • September 14, 2012 11:20 am

      No, you’re wrong there. The friendships I have with other bloggers are very much real, it’s just that I only use them to get stuff.

      • September 14, 2012 2:11 pm

        Ah – my mistake. In my defense, English is my second language – and sometimes subtleties escape me. I still don’t understand why Michael Jackson sang about a chair that wasn’t his son, or why Billie Jean would claim that it was.

        Suddenly life seems a little less empty.

  17. September 12, 2012 12:12 pm

    I saw this post early this morning over my breakfast and I almost aspirated a Cheerio.

    O. M. G.

    Y’know, I don’t use OMG lightly, so when I use it here, just know that I am seriously OMG’ing.

    I think I’m going to blow up and frame the photo of you sleeping on the tiny pillow and hang it above the couch in our living room.

    Y’know, another very useful thing about that little pillow is you can bury it deep in your husband’s underwear/sock drawer and he’ll forever smell like a huge pile of pine needles that have been set on fire. ahhhh!!

    Those strawberry shortcake dolls are da bomb. I want one.

    • September 14, 2012 11:25 am

      Thanks, Darla. “Aspirated a Cheerio” is just about the best a blogger could hope to achieve in reader response.

      Oh, did I forget to mention Freakishly Tiny Pillow was scented? Yeah, I did. I guess that might’ve made it clear to people that it wasn’t intended to be slept on. And I probably should’ve stated this fact so you wouldn’t appear to be Freakishly Worst Gift-Giver.

      By the way, I am in love with that scent. Truly. In love with it. I want to bathe in it so my skin will smell of forest and eat it so my breath will smell of pine needles.

  18. September 12, 2012 1:00 pm

    Reblogged this on From the C-Sweet and commented:
    yep, that’s about how the convo goes……

    • September 14, 2012 11:26 am

      Ooh, could you send me that coffee cup? I’ll take some more stuff any time.

      • September 14, 2012 12:16 pm

        LOL – it’s the only one I have and it was a special gift. If I ever do a quantity re-order you’re at the top of the recipient list!!

  19. amymjimmo permalink
    September 12, 2012 1:17 pm

    Reading this made my day! And it made me jealous

    • September 14, 2012 11:28 am

      Thanks! I’m guessing it was Winking Strawberry Shortcake and Clothesless Raspberry Tart that set it over the top.

  20. September 12, 2012 2:17 pm

    I’ve gotta get in on this free stuff thing, although my apartment is kind of already covered in useless old things. And not junk either, stuff I’m willing to display proudly.

    • September 14, 2012 11:33 am

      Oh, yes — “display proudly”. Me too, Matt. I can tell you’re just the person to be getting this kind of stuff in the mail. And you’re in luck — Freakishly Tiny Pillow takes up hardly any space. You’ll hardly know it’s there. I’ll try to get you on Darla’s special order list.

  21. September 12, 2012 3:16 pm

    So with you! I got a foil cat from Don’t Forget to Feed the Baby and a bird painting made especially for me from Hello Sailor. Who needs a job?

  22. September 12, 2012 3:28 pm

    Cool stuff, Angie!

    People always ask me if I get paid for blogging. When I tell them I don’t they ask me why I blog. I’ve got to come up with a really good smart ass answer.

    • September 14, 2012 11:35 am

      Paprika, you blog because if you didn’t, how else would you tell the world about Enormous Cookie? Without blogging, it’d be like Enormous Cookie and Freakishly Tiny Pillow never even happened at all. And that makes me sad.

  23. September 12, 2012 6:07 pm

    Wow, Angie, I need to send you something now. I feel left out. By the by, I’m about to post a post where YOU have a cameo. You actually steal the show. Look for it tomorrow. :)

    • September 14, 2012 11:38 am

      Just don’t send me any of those peppers you tasted this week.

      That video cameo was awesome! I don’t know who that weirdo kid in the picture was, but I dig her hair. It’s very organic. It almost looks like she didn’t use a crimping iron but rather just wet her hair and braided it the night before. Just an assumption.

  24. September 12, 2012 10:22 pm

    Ahhh, I get it! Write a blog post about ‘all the free stuff’ you get, then sit back and watch the postman pile parcel after parcel of so-called free stuff at your door, that we innocent readers/suckers suddenly feel compelled to send you. Well, I’m not falling for it! Besides, I think you’ve visited my site once…you KNOW there’s nothing related to it I could send you that would be of interest. A pencil, maybe, or a Pitcher Reduction pawn, but that’s it.

    But please, let me know if this little scheme of yours works…I may give it a try.

    • September 14, 2012 11:47 am

      You got me, Todd. Am I really that transparent? Am I? If so, perhaps I could use a fleece Forever Lazy suit to conceal my savvy brain. I hear you can order them off TV. They come in one-size-fits-all. I like the color rainbow.

      A Pitcher Reduction pawn — I don’t even speak that language. But I do collect Mid-Century Modern antiques?

      • September 17, 2012 7:27 am

        Forever Lazy suits? Ordering off TV? Rainbows?

        What a strange coincidence! I don’t speak those languages, either!

  25. September 12, 2012 11:40 pm

    Awesome blog swag, Angie! I loved that you framed Jules’ photo of the surfing chipmunk. It looks so classy and is a must in any burgeoning fine art collection!

    • September 14, 2012 11:42 am

      Thanks, Jessica. Yes, a framed picture of a framed picture is the new chic thing in home decorating. I also have a picture of a picture of a picture of a bowl of fruit that’s currently hanging above my fireplace.

  26. September 13, 2012 4:46 pm

    Wow. Blog loot. Never would have guessed!

    • September 14, 2012 11:40 am

      Did I forget to tell you about the loot, Josh? It probably helps if you’re not blogging about food allergies. Like, I don’t know if anyone would send you a lobster lollipop in the mail, what with it containing shellfish juice and all.

  27. September 18, 2012 12:49 am

    “It’s midnight and you’re still bloggin?” HA! HA! Luv it. That get said quite a bit around my house. You should start a blogging museum featuring all your treasures! :)

    • September 24, 2012 11:02 pm

      I know — pretty pathetic, isn’t it. My poor husband. He has to leave comments on my blog to remind me to come to bed. And I reply back “five more minutes”.

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