Thursday, April 20, 2006


Linky love

(With props to Andrea, from whom I blatantly stole the phrase that titles this post.)

When in doubt of what to write about, you can always just post a run-down of cool stuff you've recently stumbed upon on the Interwebs. With bonus commentary, bien sûr.

I have one of those new Google personalized home page thingees, which I used at work to peek into my Gmail account. The firewall prevents me from actually opening any of the mail, or going to the Gmail home page itself, but I can see if there are messages in there and who they are from. It's actually a little bit torturous, seeing mail in there and not being able to read it. And yet I continue to peek...

Ahem, I seem to have sidetracked myself from my point, which was that I also have a Reuters "odd news" feed on that page, which is how I found this news story. The first one is about how women in Cyprus are planning to make the world's longest bra chain on April 30, to heighten awareness of breast cancer. They hope to string together as many as 100,000 bras, which will form a chain more than 50 miles long. I think I have about half that many in my "these bras don't fit any more, or have pokey bones sticking out of them, so I don't wear them, but I am pathologically unable to throw them away" drawer. Too much information?

Without even attempting a segue, hows about we talk about families? (Yah, I know, if I worked at it a little harder, I could come up with a segue. But it's early and I've only had half a cup of coffee.) And you know what? Even having said that, it's going to take some back story to get there.

When I first started blogging, I had just spent an evening with a bunch of girlfriends, admiring their lovely and lovingly rendered scrap books. (I loved the idea behind scrapbooking, and even had some of the requisite supplies. But I could never get the opportunity (read: time) and the organizational capability and the creativity to intersect. But I still went to scrapbooking nights, mostly to mooch the food and wine and admire my friends' books.) One of my friends said that in scrapbooking, she sees herself as the family historian and that idea stayed with me.

When I'm blogging, I always have that idea of myself as the family historian (and documenter of minutia) in mind. So I really like the idea of JotSpot's Family Site. I haven't had a lot of time to play with it yet, but it looks way cool, especially if you have a large and geographically dispersed family.

I particularly like the idea of an online family calendar with everyone's birthdays and milestones. I'm pretty good at remembering that stuff, but I feel horrible when I do miss something. And I like the geneology, too. I've got a book (inconveniently written in Dutch) that documents my family way back to its ancestry with the de Beers - yes, those famous diamond people - and my links to my great-great-great-great-great uncle, an actual canonized saint. Sadly, neither the righteousness nor the riches seem to have trickled down the bloodline to my generation.

Oh alright, if you want a segue so badly, how about: "And speaking of fun online time-sinks..." or "And on the subject of your relative importance in the world..." (get it? relative importance?? I slay me.) ... the useless and yet somehow compelling little aplet called BlogInfluence allows you to rate your 'influence' in the Blogosphere by aggregating your Google page rank, your Technorati and Bloglines stats, and some other Meaningful and Relevant bloggy data.

Lucky for you, that's all I've got for today's ramble. Don't worry, I'm out of time, not out of arcane links and obscure commentary - there's lots left where that came from!