If you are on your first ever blog hunt, you may have to put on your heavy-duty wading boots and slog through the weeds. There are blogs about blogs. Blogs on dogs. There are even bloggity blog blog blogs. And if you are a writer, there are blogs on writing – but even more on NOT writing!
Hmmmm. Where to start on a journey into blog world? In an overwhelming universe it might be best to take the well-trodden path heading directly to….cats. Like Bolt and Keel, adventure kitties.
“The humans strapped on our adventure coats and we knew, things were about to get serious.” ~ Bolt (or possibly Keel)
Two young Victoria women were about to head off into the wildnerness one weekend when they stumbled upon a pair of kittens. The SPCA wasn’t open and the rest is history: Bolt and Keel have accompanied their humans kayaking, rock climbing, hiking up mountains and crashing through the underbrush ever since. The result is everything you might want in a blog:
1.Blogs can be intensely useful, as in: Who doesn’t need 7 steps to create purrfessional adventurers? Humans Danielle and Kayleen offer crittercal insights about outdoor cat gear, feeding, and the pros and cons of kitty snowshoes in breaking trails.
2. Blogs need pictures. Preferably of cats on kayaks, cats in snowshoes, cats in tents and cats in packs.
3. Blogs can be subversive: Danielle and Kayleen are fun human guides, but Bolt and Keel are the exemplars of what is in fact a seriously subversive site – as the best blogs probably are. I live in New Westminster – where there are no fewer than seven off-leash dog parks, each consisting of valuable parklands set aside for those guys. Meanwhile, the cats of New West languish on the window ledges of condo towers, gazing existentially at the shadows of passing bugs, their rights to fresh air, freedom and catparks denied. It’s not right. And Bolt and Keel reveal why!
SO: Who’s gonna let the cats out?
Below is a list of blogs I intend to return to for insights into design, lack of design, purpose, hiking trails, and a reminder that great writing still matters….See what you think!
- BLOG OF BLOGS: an uber-list of blogs in BC by categories: advocacy, First Nations, arts, homelessness; the personal, the political, the personal as political, etc. Worth a look.
- POPUP CITY: secret underwater housing in Amsterdam; living with the dead in Manila; pigeons with backpacks tackling London’s air pollution: these stories shed light on grassroots changes to urban dynamics around the world. Great stories. Sadly, a dog’s breakfast of a landing page..
- DAILY OVERVIEW: because sometimes there are no words.
- VANCOUVER TRAILS BLOG: useful for people who trail around Vancouver (great scroll down story summaries). Also reveals how blogs complement website pages.
- If you want content, try MARGINAL REVOLUTION (“Does capitalism needs saving”) – but you’ll get a stunning reminder as to why design matters. If you want design, try MARC AND ANGEL HACK LIFE – but you’ll get a lot of new age lists (7 tips for inner peace, 18 quotes for self esteem). The style/substance problem continues to plague the universe.
- THE BIG ROUNDTABLE: real stories by real people with real things to say. The blog is beside the point, though….
- STATE OF VANCOUVER: Blogs let journalists get away with using the “I” word. It’s still journalism. And it’s still journalists pointing you to their actual journalism. Blogs as cogs in the information wheel…
Next week: Vancouver’s educational institutions: Look out! Comparative website analysis coming….