Sunday, February 14, 2010


So, GREAT questions, folks and I've been thinking all weekend about answering them.

Here goes!

Sprite's Keeper asks: Why's a raven like a writer's desk?

Well, SK, to assume there's a logical answer to this riddle would be to assume that Wonderland is a logical place. In fact, there's no answer at all.

Mrs. Bear asks: What's the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow?

Would that be African or European?

Captain Dumbass asks: What does big hands say about a woman?

That she wears big gloves, smartass.

Jenn asks: How did you build a blogging readership (other than great posts)?

I don't have too terribly large of a readership and I've never put any real work into it either. It's happened really gradually and over a looooong period of time, and I think it's happened for a couple of reasons. One is that I read and comment on a ton of blogs. If you can write a funny/witty/smart/insane comment on a blog, that blog's writer and other readers will check you out and I think that is how lots of folks that read Oscarelli now found the blog. I also try to reply to all my commenters via email if possible because I really do love and appreciate every comment I get and I like establishing a personal connection with readers. I think that helps to keep people coming back. I'm also really lucky that a lot of awesome blogs have Oscarelli in their public blogroll that drives traffic to the site and gives Oscarelli credibility. So if you link to me, thanks!

Aliceson asks: How have you changed since you started writing your blog and how has your writing changed?

Well, my writing has changed A LOT. Please don't EVER go back in my archives and read my earliest posts. They were awful. It took me several months to develop my writing style and comfort zone on Oscarelli. It started out as more of a documentation of Oscar's milestones and is now much more personal about my feelings and struggles and victories as a parent and wife and human being. I think I've changed, too. I'm a bit more cynical now, a more seasoned parent, and I'm much more honest about my mistakes.

Big Mama Cass wants to know: What are your plans for V-Day?

Oh, Cass, they were so unglamorous. My husband let me sleep in until 9AM and made breakfast; I got handmade valentines and photo magnets from Oscar and a very sweet card from my husband; played Buzz Lightyear with Oscar for hours; baked black-bottom cupcakes with Oscar. Actually, it was a pretty amazing day.

Stimey asks: What are your favorite things about blogging? Why do you blog?

My favorite thing about blogging hands down is the community. I love all of the friends I've made with bloggers all over the country and world. I feel really lucky to have connected with so many wonderful writers and exceptional people. And I blog because it makes my life feel more full. I've always loved to write (I was a journalism major, after all) and it is great to have Oscarelli as an outlet.

Barbara wants to know: How did you meet your husband?

Ah, have I never written about this? I met my husband my sophomore year in high school. His locker was beside my best friend Juile's and he had lunch with my other best friend Christie. We traveled in the same circle of friends and hung out for several months before we started dating. He was the first guy I ever dated who didn't dye his hair and/or have multiple piercings. I didn't think it would last more than a month. We've been together the better part of 16 years, married for five.

Becky says: I'd love to hear about the work you did before you became a stay-at-home mom!

Before having kids, I was a non-profit fundraiser. I did all kinds of fundraising: phone-a-thons, direct mail, major donors, membership, special events (my favorite), foundation grants. A little bit of everything. I worked for mostly women's advocacy groups until my last job, where I worked for a labor union advocacy group. I did some union activism in college so this last job was my favorite. The organization was brand new and I played a central role in building the fundraising program from the ground up. I got to work with some really amazing people, including one of my own personal political heroes (I'm not going to write his name here, but I'll email you if you really want to know.) I also got to meet Tom Morello, Danny Glover, and tons of cool politicians (here in DC politicians are like celebrities). But, it was mostly very unglamorous. I did a lot of calling people and asking them for large sums of money, and lots and lots of strategic planning and budgeting and meetings and meeting planning and tons and tons of pressure. I don't miss it, but I do feel very proud of the work I did while I was there.

Thank you all so much for indulging me. I think I feel my mojo stirring.


Captain Dumbass said...

That's 'dumb,' dumb ass, not smart ass.

On second thought, you're probably right.

Stimey said...

You know that as soon as you tell people not to read your old posts that they immediately start combing through your archives.

Sprite's Keeper said...

Ha! The Cap'n beat me to it! I'll never quite get the answer to my riddle either and I had to listen to it again this morning. At least it's better than Mulan.

VandyJ said...

I have to admire your former job. I can't cold call people to save my life. Tried selling insurance and was an abismal failure. I still get nervous in large groups where I don't know anybody. Nick great at mingling, me not so much.

jpooh said...

I couldn't think of a single question to ask, and all of these other people came up with GREAT ones. (I blame being in the throes of Seasonal Affective Disorder; the only thing I can muster enthusiasm for is eating.)

I LOVE the pic of the boys in your header, too - tooooooo cute!

Jan from the Sushi Bar

gretchen said...

I agree with everything Jan just said. LOVE the new picture. And love the idea of this post. And couldn't think of anything to ask, but enjoyed other's interesting and intelligent questions. Well, Captain D's wasn't really intelligent...but it was interesting.

Casey said...

Oh man, I missed out on the Q&A! Damn. So do YOU wear big gloves? Wink wink.

Barbara said...

Like the new header.

You may have told the story about your husband but I haven't read your archives because you told me not too!

Keely said...

Totally going back to read your archives now.

I may need to ask people for inspirational questions, too.