The War on Christmas

Setting: The North Pole, Santa’s Compound

It is going to be hard to infiltrate Santa’s bunker. His intelligence department is one of the best in the world. They see you when you’re sleeping. They know when you’re awake. Trying to take down Santa could be a big mistake. Luckily, the Happy Holiday Alliance had a man on the inside. A disgruntled elf has promised to provide inside information in exchange for asylum in the states and admittance to dental school. We thought we could turn a member of the Reindeer Force, but he was promoted to lead reindeer and guide, so that is no longer an option.

Another issue – their secret weapon – the Christmas Cheer. We’re not really sure what it is, but it seems to give them extra power. We’ve also hear that is spreads when people sing loud for all to hear. We have distributed noise canceling headphones to the troops to combat the issue. Our corporate sponsor Starbucks is lending a hand by distributing non-specific holiday cups and wishing people happy holidays as we’ve heard that saying Merry Christmas and putting non-religious, but Christmas specific symbols on the cup also increases the Christmas Cheer quotient.

With all of these precautions in place, we are ready to take the compound and finally win the war on Christmas. Hopefully, tomorrow I will check in during a victory dinner of grilled reindeer and Santa will be defeated.

 

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Calling it Quits on the Month of Tater

I proclaimed this the month of Tater. I was going to write something every day this month. I did pretty good for a while. I’m not sure the posts were quality post, but they were posts.  The further in to the month I got, the less I found I had to say. I started doing as little as possible to fulfill the post a day promise.

I cheated a couple of times and reblogged an old post with a new paragraph to introduce it.

I used being in NYC as an excuse to skip a weekend of writing.

I posted about NYC with mostly pictures.

I participated in the weekly photo challenge with a picture I had just posted in the NYC post.

I did a post that was just a list of Christmas shows I watch.

I’ve now skipped another day.

Now I’m sitting here thinking I should post before I go to church and I have nothing I want to write about.

It’s obvious I am not meant to post every day. So, I’m calling it quits on the month of Tater. I will go back to writing only when I feel like I have a post in me. That might mean some months I only post a couple of times. It might mean a post every day.  It might mean I eventually give up and quit the blog altogether(probably not). I will try to help myself by possibly going back to my weekly wrap up posts on Friday. Maybe I will finally write another life as a jailbrarian post. Maybe one day I will actually look in to writing for someone who will pay me(not likely anyone would want me). I’m just not going to force it again. It’s not like I’m ever going to make a living with this, so way make it seem like a job.

 

500th Post!

It’s a milestone here at Tater World Headquarters. We(in the royal sense) have reached our 500th post and we couldn’t have done it without you, our faithful reader. Well, I could have done it without readers, but it would be kind of pointless to write a 500th post if no one had read th first 499. So, thank you for being here and for reading my posts. Now, go buy me gifts to celebrate my milestone. Or, click here to send me a donation to support my blogging habit.

In retrospect, I should have saved my Me Now vs Me Then post for now. That would have been a good post for post 500. Now, I’ve got nothing. I’m so good at this.

There might be a break in the month of Tater tomorrow as I will be in NYC watching Hamilton tomorrow afternoon. Stay tuned for pictures and reports from the city Sunday or Monday.

To make up for the lack of a decent post for number 500, feel free to go back and read some of my better posts(if such a thing exists)

Every Story Has an End

Day 16 of the month of Tater and I’m sure based on the title you’re thinking “Oh no. Another one of his sappy ‘feelings’ posts about death or change or something”  Good news, fake reader! You’re wrong! This is about actual stories in books, TV and movies.

I watched the series finale of Vice Principals this week. It was only on for two seasons and Danny McBride says that this was always the plan. He had a story. He told the story. The story is over. I like that. Every story has an end and it is better if the creator of that story writes the end(unless your name is George RR Martin). Too many times, a story is not allowed to end naturally. It goes on way past the natural end or it is ended early due to ratings issues.

Under the Dome was a good Stephen King book that would have been a good TV mini-series. Unfortunately, the ratings meant the network kept asking for more, so the story dragged on and on way past the natural end. The Mist, on the other hand, was a TV series that I worried would suffer the same fate, but instead, was canceled after one season mid-story. I would rather a TV show have two very good seasons and then end than go on indefinitely, even after there are decent stories to tell. Unfortunately, it is a business and driven by money, not story.

The same happens at the movies. Some movie franchises end before the story is over because of poor earnings. Some franchises(I’m looking at you, Transformers) go on way too long. Sometimes, the franchise tells the story in full but does something stupid like split a book in to two movies when one would suffice(cough, Twilight) in order to wring some more money out of the fans. Again, a creative industry driven by money, not creativity.

Alas, the same happens with books. Usually, with books it is the problem of a series going on too long. I’m not sure I need another Stephanie Plum or Alex Cross adventure, though I admit I am part of the problem because I keep reading them.  If you can keep the stories fresh, a long series is fine. John Sandford’s Lucas Davenport, Connelly’s Bosch series and Crais’ Elvis Cole/Joe Pike are some examples of that. The worst offenders in the “stop already” book series are the “the author keeps writing after they are dead” series. I get the desire to finish a book if the author was close to done upon their death, but that’s about it. We don’t need more Vince Flynn books if they aren’t written by Vince Flynn. Terry Pratchett had the right idea when he directed “whatever he was working on at the time of his death to be taken out along with his computers, to be put in the middle of a road and for a steamroller to steamroll over them all” to stop people from writing “Pratchett novels” after he was gone. More authors should go this route.

Every story has to end. Please let them end naturally.

 

Halfway There

We have reached the midpoint of the Month of Tater, the month of me posting every day even if I have nothing to say. Here are a few observations:

I can’t write every day. My life isn’t interesting enough to fill posts with anecdotes from my day. I don’t have enough to say on topics to have a full post every day. Sometimes I have things to say about a topic, but I don’t write because for various reasons. The is the last month I will do the write every day thing unless there is a 30 day writing challenge that interests me.

My readership has changed. Until just recently almost all of the clicks on my blog came via Facebook. The only people reading my posts were people I knew from real life. I had the occasional reader from random google searches, but basically my friends and family read what I wrote. Over the past couple of months my clicks from Facebook have steadily gone down and my clicks from WordPress reader and other blogs have increased. The more I write, the less the people who know me read. The more I write and participate in the blogging world, the more other bloggers read.

The more I write, the less I read. The time I spend writing in the morning is time I used to spend reading. That, coupled with my last book I read not being great, has really slowed down my reading lately. I’ve got way too many books from the library and not enough time to read them.

In summary, I’m just as anxious for the month of Tater to be over as you are.

A Month of Tater

I’ve been considering doing another 30 day writing challenge, but all of the ones I find are too similar to the one I did before, seem boring, or are not the right fit for me. This is also a month when you can participate in NaNoWriMo, but I’m not a fiction writer, so that’s out. I could go the sappy direction and do a month of Thanksgiving, but I just threw up in my mouth a little just thinking about that. So, it looks like I’m on my own.

I will try to think of something to write about each day this month. Today was easy. Just write about the fact that I’m going to write every day this month. Easy and boring. You are welcome.

This can also be an audience participation exercise. Use the comments to give me suggestions on topics or to ask me questions I can answer in a post. I’m sure I’m so interesting there are plenty of things you need to know about me. So, hit the comments and I will do what I can not to bore you.

Welcome to a Month of Tater.

Too Much

I keep trying to decide what to write about, but there’s just too much going on right now to settle on a topic.

Do I write an angry post about Trump? His attack on the first amendment and freedom of press? His threats to pull FEMA out of Puerto Rico? The fact that he is, in fact, a moron? I feel like I could post every day about him and his poor decisions.

Do I write about Harvey Weinstein and the years of people covering up his crimes? Do I write about the fact that too many powerful men(and plenty of men with little power) think this is OK behavior? Do I write about how we elected one of these men president? Do I talk about how sad it is that some men can’t seem to not grope or otherwise assault women and that this is a sign that we need to do a much better job in raising our sons?

Do I write happy news that the Nats once again imploded in the playoffs and will be sitting at home the rest of the postseason? Have I mentioned how much I despise that team?

Or do I go with the option of boring you about my personal stuff? If I do this, do I try to find some funny or do I go with the deep, introspective type of post?

Maybe I can just write a post with a bunch of questions about what I should write about. No, that would be stupid.