Afterparty 8: Returns

A few days ago, Rey described my Returning Blog Party as an “attempt at web traffic”. Now, maybe I've had a libble troo mussh to drink, imbibing on all the intoxicating words of my guests, but my fingers are loose enough at this afterparty to let everyone in on a very shocking secret. Lean in so I don't have to type this too loudly. Closer. Closer. Wait, that's too close. Better. Okay, here's the big secret: a blog party is an attempt at web traffic.

Wait! Wait, come back, the party isn't over yet! Let me explain. We all want our words to be read by others, and there are many ways to generate links. I suppose I could go the easy route and sign up with one of those link exchange services where people earn points by clicking links and having links clicked on their sites, but that gets a little too cold and mathematical for me. The blog party is metaphorical to a block party. It's personal. You get to know your neighbors and they get to know you. There's traffic of clickers and traffic of readers and then there's traffic of friends. Anyone familiar with my competitive nature knows that the numbers do appeal to me, but I don't want them to be faceless. I'd like to know just who you people are. And the really special thing, the part I really appreciate is the mingling, because it also becomes about my readers getting to know one another, about people visiting the sites I visit, and when we're all friends with one another, this really does become a neighborhood.

I think I'm starting to sober up now, enough to be sensibly embarrassed by the last two paragraphs, but too exhausted to bother rewriting them. As I mop up, and sanity and order return, I'll reminisce about all the swell folks in my neighborhood that answered the question ”WHAT ARE THE BEST THINGS IN YOUR LIFE THAT HAVE RETURNED?” with impressive poignancy, humor, and humanity:

Lorna was first to arrive, setting a high standard for those that would follow. She pondered things she's glad to have lost, things she wished she hadn't lost, and those which she'd like to lose. At the heart of the post lay the one thing she's never lost: her wits. Cheers!

Mom-to-be Kelly continued to celebration, bringing her grandmother and her best friend from high school, important people in her life lost and regained. Salute!

Scott wrambled by with a healthy helping of a high school friend. Not only that, but he set his contribution up to find yet another friend! So if you're Bill Hatcher (not the nature photographer) and you attended Manteo High School in the late 80's, what the heck are you doing here? I don't know you. Your old friend Scott's looking for you, so drop him a line. To old friends!

Hey, was that TheWriteJerry I saw? Continuing the trend of touching personal accounts, he reminded his audience of his love story, how he broke up with, prayed for, and regained a love that became his Mrs. Write. L'chaim!

Every party has a troublemaker, and rather than talk about lost things he's found, Rey made me nervous by talking about the best things that have repeated, with food as his favorite. Of course, once he elaborated as to what he meant by food repeating, it became a veritable feast. Rey wasn't a troublemaker after all, but the life of the party. Platanos!

Ah, but then Darrell arrived, certain to really liven things up. My topics range from meaningless pop culture to personal introspection, but no matter what I ask, Darrell becomes the Southern Prop Comic, smashing watermelons with his words. Only this time, he searched his soul and came up with a moving lost-and-found list that included his faith, his wife, his son, his brother, his dog, and his childhood cat. There wasn't a dry eye in the house, yet I expected the next writer might surely change that. Propane!

But Darrell's wife Wendy would also dig deep, and focus on the ups and downs of her relationship with her father, ending on a hopefully lasting high note. To family!

Last but not least was the crafty Kev Bayer. Technically, Kev was third or fourth but set his table up on the wrong part of the block, which allows me to end this summation on a high note. Kev took a deep breath and in one paragraph gave thanks for everything that comes back to him, from his wife to his daughter to taxes and more! MAXIMIZE!

And then there were nine, as Neolithic joined the fray with prequels, animation, and true love. Update!

And, that's the party. We still have a few beers and sodas for any late arrivals, so feel free to stop by the comments section. Hopefully, I didn't miss anyone. Thanks so much for joining in this carnival of creativity! We'll definitely do this again some time. Jozxyqk!



Anonymous A Wanker said...

WOW - Eight people!
Woooooo Hooooo!
Big Party!!!

7/07/2006 8:37 AM  
Blogger MCF said...

1. It's actually nine; I'll need to update the post later to include Neolithic's contribution.

2. I said in the introduction that I didn't want faceless numbers. I was looking for quality over quantity, which could clearly be found by reading each post rather than counting paragraphs. Even in real life I prefer intimate gatherings sharing laughs and stories with a few good friends rather than a crowd of people I don't know that well and can't hear over the din.

3. It's actually ten if we count the return of a drunken idiot to share a witty observation and show he can count more than groceries and shopping carts. But we won't.

7/07/2006 10:13 AM  
Anonymous A Wanker said...

Mysteriously Choked Definitions

Drunken Idiot - Someone who doesn't march in lockstep with the author of this blog.

7/07/2006 10:21 AM  
Blogger MCF said...

False. I don't mind disagreement nor debate. Note that I never delete or censor comments. You come across antagonistic, looking for conflict, and as far as I can tell I've never done anything to provoke that level of response.

7/07/2006 10:30 AM  
Blogger Kelly said...

MCF: I don't blame your response at all, but I think it's better when you just ignore those sorts of comments.

Thanks for hosting the party, it was fun!

7/07/2006 10:37 AM  
Anonymous A Wanker said...

I've not reviewed the archives, but I don't think I've resorted to name calling, the likes of "idiot".

I do however, find it ironic that you attempt to insult me by disparaging grocery store workers, of whom few are 30-something comic book readers still living with their parents.

7/07/2006 11:03 AM  
Blogger MCF said...

Fair enough. I'm sorry I resorted to name-calling and insults. I'm usually above that. I have my limits though and I guess you caught me in a bad mood. My apologies.

And you're absolutely right, Kelly. Thanks again for your contribution!

7/07/2006 11:15 AM  
Blogger Rey said...

Hey, every time I call you a name you keep ranking on me for hours! And I've known you longer than Wanker too!

7/07/2006 1:07 PM  
Blogger Kev said...

Yay! I got a "MAXIMIZE!", which is definitely better than a "TERRORIZE!".

Nothing wrong with drumming up a little traffic - plus, it's interesting to read everyone's take on the party (or Astonishing Test).

7/07/2006 10:56 PM  
Blogger neolithic said...

Ahh, a friendly Blog Party that mildly turned semi bad in the comments. How briefly amusing :P

I tend to agree with you MCF, that the smaller, more intimate parties tend to be more fun than the big ones. Big gatherings seem to be more about the bling, favouring style over substance, whereas smaller parties favour substance more. Funny it is how when we hear party, the majority think of the "parents are away" high school bash that is popularized in this day and age.

It kind of reminds me of the debate between mainstream and independent film. When I was in high school and university, I preferred indies to big films, and it was in the era when independent films got big notice. I'm saddened to find nowadays, people are more willing to shell out the bucks for a remake of a classic rather than an original, new work. I guess I'll be a gaffer and editor professionally, and creatively, make low budget, eclectic indie features. I just can't see myself helming a remake of a remake [shudders].

Once again though, good party, and I like the concept of having fewer genuine readers and friends rather than many passers by who like your bling.

7/08/2006 12:46 AM  
Blogger Lorna said...

count me as a regular reader and friend, as well as someone who likes your bling.

7/08/2006 5:46 PM  
Blogger Scott Roche said...

Thanks for throwing a great party MCF! I appreciate it. My wee little blog doesn't get many hits (which suits me fine, no wankers) but the comments I got were encouraging. The posts I read (haven't gotten to you all yet) were awesome and the above bitterness (wanker) is just a little shot of spice in the mix.

And Wanker, if you don't like being called an idiot, then son't open your mouth (keyboard, whatevah) and prove it

7/10/2006 8:36 PM  

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