Monday, February 9, 2009

Blog Sharks! part one

If you are older than dirt, as I am, you remember the silly Saturday Night Live skits called (cue Jaws tuba... dah dmp dah dmp dah dmp) Land Shark.

[AOL Video]

Well, recently we had a rare (for this blog) sighting of (dah dmp dah dmp dah dmp) Blog Sharks.

I accept full responsibility. I unwittingly dangled the bait. Here's part one of the Rest of the Story.

In telling about my experience with this unprecedented natural disaster, I said,

"But most of the stories are of the heroic efforts of the people working twenty-four hours to get the power back up. And of neighbors helping each other. Of the rapidity and effectiveness of this President's response, in stark contrast to the Katrina victims who are still waiting."

A website of political commentary had linked to my blog, (unbeknownst to me) to share the photos and stories of the ice storm that I had posted. The author of this website writes a weekly syndicated column which appears in nearly 200 newspapers and websites. According to Wikipedia, the website is "at most times residing among the top five conservative political blogs."

And there was a link from that website to Patience-please, Days of Dog Poop and Stories.

So an army of folks got offended. (If you think the comments are bad here, you should see what they say about me there!) The anonymous commenter here thought I was taking a "cheap shot at President Bush" though on that other site he isn't anonymous, he is 'Tim from Paducah'.

He went on to say, in the comments here, and on the political website:

"The excellent response to this disaster has everything to do wih the character and the spirit of Western Kentuckians and nothing to do with anyone in Washington; but how would a Northeastern liberal artist relocation program transplant know anything about character and spirit."

First, I want to reassure my Northeastern liberal (and conservative and politically uncommitted) readers that those are Tim from Paducah's words, not mine. I am well aware that folks in the northeastern parts of this country (as well as people in other countries altogether, other continents, even) know a whole lot about character and spirit, and have frequently demonstrated both.

Some of you might be confused by the "artist relocation program transplant" name calling. My husband and I moved here, six and a half years ago, as part of an innovative program initiated by the City of Paducah. The city had an idea to revitalize a blighted, drug infested, decaying section of Paducah, by encouraging artists to move in and fix up the homes. When we bought our burned out shell for $17,000 from a private citizen, we became the first out of town artists to sign up. There was no guarantee that any other artists would come, ever, but we loved the city so much that we were willing to take the risk. We especially loved the people.

The house was amazing. The people we bought it from had purchased it after a fire had destroyed the interior. They had gutted it, mostly, and then had abandoned the project, leaving it to sit vacant for two years. There were no interior walls, just the inside of the exterior brick, and no windows. Where our dining room table now sits, there was a 6' by 9' hole. Peering over the edge of this hole one could see the two dead possums floating in four feet of standing water which was the basement. All of the original woodwork, fireplaces, staircase, fixtures, everything had been removed. It was our dream shell.

We had a nice little eighteen acre horse farm in Maryland. We sold that for Bill to be part of the exciting dream which was Paducah's Artist Relocation Program. We put all of our resources into rebuilding this house, at way more cost than we planned. (Anyone who has ever rehabbed a home will draw in their breath and roll their eyes and nod, I'm sure.) We left family and friends, and I placed the kids' ancient ponies who, I feared, would not survive the move, with my generous stepdaughter.

The whippets, nine of them in those days, and I moved here two months before Bill did. He was making sure the transfer of his medical practice went smoothly, and that his patients were cared for. I knew no one. The house wasn't yet finished so the dogs and I lived in the new addition: Bill's studio and gallery. No shower, no kitchen, no light in the powder room! No fence for the dogs, no computer, no phone, no cell phone service unless I drove out of town.

No friends, and at this point the neighborhood was still a little dicey.

too be continued...

hug your hounds


  1. LOL. This is the first time I have came across the term "blog shark" this is very interesting terms. There are people who has nothing better to do with their time. We met some on our blog too.

    I am waiting to read part 2 of your story.


  2. Ahh! the troubles our little blogs cause...

  3. Hmmm...Blog Shark. I like it. We don't get many of those at our place, but we think you are handling it well.


  4. Tim wants me to assure you that he isn't the "Tim from Paducah"!

  5. Holy cow, one little comment and you get to be famous. I think George W. is a complete doofus, and I am a dog bred in Boston, born in Missouri and living in Phoenix. I lost my train of thought...oh ya, George W. is a complete doofus.

  6. We are waiting for the next installment. Isn't this a great country. Everyone is allowed to have an opinion and express it. On top of that you can move anywhere you want and start a "new life" whenever you wish.

  7. Don't forget to talk about that time the Mayor gave a speech while standing on your underpanties (or was it your bra)?! ;)

  8. LOL Such a typical Southern response. Way back in the mid 1800's they blamed the Yankees for ruining their towns now they blame the Yankees for restoring them. Which they consider a ruination. Far better to have a fallen down, dilapidated town full of home growns that way things can be as they always were. LOL.

  9. Well, scheesh. I guess we never know is lurking out there. I personally found your points well taken. And I would respectfully inform Mr. LOL Anonymous just ahead of me, that not all Southerners are dumb enough to "blame Yankees" for anything....but I don't want to get into the thicket.

    Love the dog photos!!

  10. I'm glad you defended yourself against that blog shark (whichever Tim he is)- way to go girl!


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