Saturday, October 3, 2015

It's the start of something....?

Since the day I started writing this blog, I always viewed my posts as my random ramblings on everyday life, but other bloggers are always talking about how you need to find a niche and stick to it. I have created off-shoot blogs wanting to follow that general principle, but I always ended up rolling them back into the original blog. I recently decided to keep everything in one place and just use categories for those readers that are only interested in a particular topic. For the most part, I guess I just assumed that people were picking and choosing which posts they actually read. That is...until this week.

I recently wrote a blog post that I didn't think was all that different than the rest, but apparently it stuck out as "not really me" and not what they thought "my reader base" was used to. It was kind of funny because the person who told me this thought they had hurt my feelings or something. In reality, all I could think was: I have a style? I have a reader base? Someone actually reads enough of my posts to notice that one was different than the rest? Wait a minute...the others were similar? I thought it was a bunch of random nonsense that I just had fun writing. Well, that got me thinking once again about what people actually enjoy reading. So here's what I'm going to do to satisfy my own curiosity and maybe even improve the quality of what you have to read at average jester: I'm going to give you a quiz. Actually, I guess it's more of a poll. Good practice with a presidential election looming in the distance.

I am going to start a blog for each of the categories I see myself using regularly today and have you vote on which one you would like to see finished. I'm sure I will end up finishing all of them at some point (or something like them) because that's what I do. I write whatever pops into my head. I will label them all with a letter and let you vote. You can comment on the post itself, Google+, Facebook, Twitter or a good old fashioned email. Without any further ado...because this might get a bit lengthy anyway, here are the categories that I personally think I bounce around in today along with a brief description of what they mean to me:

A. Attitude: Be happy. Look for the good in everything. Smile. Have a nice day!
B. Hubby Health: Not everyone is a workout champ. Some of us struggle a bit more and care a bit less.
C. Service: Customer service, helping others, training and development.
D. She said-He Said: (This is an idea my wife and I have to trade some topics back and forth between our blogs for man-woman comparisons. Only have one post so far...)
E. Dads with Daughters: Intended to be a primer for dads dealing with understanding daughters. (Another one I just got started.)
F. Self Preservation: (Wide range, but more specific than "random.") Patriotism, survival, problems in our world today....dare I say...political??

Here are some samples "on the fly" from ideas today alone. (Any of my loyal readers can tell you that I can spin a post out of nothing. I guess I'm just one of those guys with the ability to talk for hours without a topic.) Anyway...Vote on which of the posts below you would actually be interested in hearing the conclusion. (Hopefully there's more than one....)

A. Attitude
It's already been one of those days. It's Saturday morning (the one day I can sleep in a bit) and my oldest daughter Ziva wakes me up because she thinks one of her teeth is loose. So, in a groggy state, I sit up grab a piece of tissue and pull one of her front teeth out. (I hope it was the one she was referring to..) The rest of the morning made me think that maybe it wasn't because both girls have been going at each other with both barrels. One fight can't even finish before the next fight is starting. This is the point I would be pulling my hair out if I had any left to get ahold of. Fortunately I have a wife that is amazing at calming me down just as fast as she calms the kids down. It's also at this point that I realize I should practice what I preach and start looking for the good in everything. I decide that having two wonderful (who happen to be fighting right now) daughters is way better than not having them at all. I could be stuck at work away from family - or not  have a family at all. I decided to put a smile on my face and make a challenge out of this. I will win them over and calm them down in five minutes or less....and here's how it went..... [VOTE A]

B. Hubby HealthFall is quickly rushing up on us so my family has been trying to take advantage of every possible minute to spend outside as a family before the snow starts flying. Today we took a a little family walk in through the local State park. It was a little early to see the changing colors of Fall, but my wife had just run a 5K that included the 95 steps up the hill through the park as part of the course. My wife has a morbid curiosity (as far as I'm concerned) to challenge herself to a do-over a few hours after the race to see how she can attack those stairs without a two mile run ahead of them. I felt I should be supportive since I am also trying to "be better about" my own health, so I decided to.... [VOTE B]

C. ServiceLife is full of opportunities to help someone else. I have had the most obvious of examples through my years of customer service, but that's not really the point I want to address today. Helping someone else while it's part of you job description is obviously a noble and worthy undertaking, but when it comes down to it, you are getting paid to do it. Think about times in your everyday life where you can step in a help out in one way, shape or form. Kinda like the old fashioned example of helping the little old lady to cross the street. We spent a little time at a local park today and I found myself perplexed by whether or not to "help" someone else. It's not uncommon to see children doing dangerous things at the park while their "supervisor" is chatting away on their cell phone...if they're even in the immediate area. My issue is whether or not to address the situation. I would obviously jump to action if an accident occurred, but can I in good faith sit back and watch activities that I am almost certain will result in serious injury. If I say something, I will most certainly either be yelled at for being nosy and pushy or (even worse) seen as a child predator paying a little too much attention to someone else's kids. My gut reaction was to just..... [VOTE C]

D. She said-He SaidMy eldest daughter Ziva has been a spit-fire all morning. I had thought I had it bad while my wife Sarah was running in the local 5K this morning, but the real resentment and bad attitude came out once my wife got home from the race. Of course I had both girls engaged in a stand-off as Sarah walked in the door and that didn't make anything easier. Ziva only waited about 15 seconds to point out how much Sarah smelled after running her race. She has been doing an exemplary job of pushing my wife's buttons lately...and today was no exception. My wife (like me...and most parents) spends a lot of time dealing with resentment from our kids. That is, IF you are being a real parent. Anyway, at the height of my wife feeling like Ziva hates her today, we ask her to take a quick photo of Sarah and I since we had a nice nature backdrop. Turns out the photo cut my wife out of the photo completely. It was a nice picture of me though. My wife's first thought was that it was proof Ziva was upset with her at the time. When I talked to Ziva about it, she told me..... [VOTE D]   (I know this one's harder because you don't have my wife's side, but vote from the gut.)

E. Dads with DaughtersThere are a lot of things that most men will never have the need or desire to understand about girls unless they have little girls of their own. Having had the benefit of extremely short hair for the last 20+ years, I hadn't spent a lot of time worrying about hairstyles. Fast forward through more than six years of having a daughter (4+ for two girls) and you will find a guy who can adequately braid hair. I probably shouldn't admit it, but I am actually better at hair braiding than my wife. It's one thing to know how to braid. What surprised me this weekend was my thought process while we were watching "Brave" on DVD. My wife made a comment about how beautiful her thick, full, curly hair was. My first thought was that it would be a nightmare when it came to combing out tangles. As a father who's already been through daughter induction, I feel the need to let other dads with daughters know.... [VOTE E]

F. Self PreservationI am torn between the ideas of keeping up with current events and just watching Netflix to avoid it. Every time I turn around there is a school shooting, officer shooting, political scandal or some idiot just being a jerk. Part of me understands the importance of staying informed so that I can vote appropriately to help guide the direction our takes, but the other side of me feels overwhelmed by the sheer idiocy and ignorance of many so-called Americans today. I gladly support our peace officers and would not hesitate to support them in any way possible. I have always felt the school shootings are a direct result of current gun laws restricting the rights of law-abiding citizens from carrying firearms in or near schools. All I can do right now is continue to back legislators that oppose gun control and continue to promote and educate proper self-defense by any means necessary. Although I am 100% against taking guns out of the hands of law-abiding citizens, I also know there are a number of ways to subdue (or kill if necessary) an attacker. A few things I have pointed out to friends in the past are.... [VOTE F]

Your vote counts
Cast your vote when you get bored later tonight. This post will be broadcast across the website, my Google+ page, the average jester Facebook page and the average jester Twitter page. You can use any of those to vote or send me an email at