Clattery MacHinery on Poetry

February 7, 2007

Warning to Other Writers About Using Blogger

Filed under: Blogger, by Bud Bloom, freedom, freedom of speech, poetry, poets, pseudonyms, WordPress — Clattery MacHinery @ 2:31 am

Some of you may know that I have another poetry blog that is not kept under a pseudonym.

There are several reasons I use Bud Bloom. Here are four.

1. A pseudonym is psychologically liberating. Each time I write as Bud Bloom, I re-enter the world with no other role other than to tackle the subject matter at hand.

2. If you know who I am, you are probably a “friend”, someone I have chosen to share my identity with. In this way, Bud Bloom is like a secret hand shake. I get to share thoughts that come from the real me with those of my choosing, those I trust.

3. Alternatively, I may choose that certain people have no clue that I participate in this activity. It’s not something that happens often, but every once in a while, I meet someone I would not like to share that I have this blog as a reflective aspect of my personality. This has nothing to do with shame, by the way, although for other writers, I could see that it could.

4. With a pseudonym, I may be bold and say things, take political or religious positions that others may hate. If they hate these ideas, they may want to look me up and bring me harm. When I am not Bud Bloom, I am the easiest person to find, a sitting duck.

A serious fault in the Blogger conversion program, has merged my two identities. When I am not blogging as Bud Bloom, it is important that people know who I am. This is different from my day job that makes me the easy mark. It has to do with poetry, and goals. Therefore, I would like to be able to be “looked up” and easily identified. As relatively popular as this blog has become, the other is both more popular and more relied upon by others. I must be able to have my real name when I choose to blog with it.

By merging the two identities, it is as if Blogger is forcing me and other writers to make a choice. The problem is that I had already made my choice to have both.

If all my posts at my other blog and around the Blogger world were by “Bud Bloom,” it would be very clear who Bud Bloom really is. My pseudonym, which I have had for years before blogging ever existed, would be revealed in the blogosphere. It would then be obvious who Bud Bloom was in other realms as well. In fact, last month, Blogger was responsible for revealing this to the entire blogging world through their Blogger conversion program.

I may have to delete this blog. I imagine that writers around the world have not complained, but simply felt the heat and deleted the blogs that put them at risk, hopefully before their identities were revealed to the wrong people, hopefully before they were marked for death or an investigation was opened that would imprison them for ideas they expressed.

Why not convert to WordPress or something? Because the new blog precludes this conversion to other software. I imagine the reason is that Blogger will be charging for these services soon, and does not want anyone “escaping”. I may have folded if it had to do with such economic hijinks. But, when it has to do with my freedom of expression. I cannot. I write. [Note: it was a pleasant surprise to be able to bring all my Bud Bloom posts over to this WordPress Blog]

I have been e-mailing Blogger “support” for weeks now. They took weeks to respond, and once Karl started in, he failed to read what the issue was, and converted all my posts everywhere to Bud Bloom again. He e-mailed me, telling me he fixed the problem. I immediately e-mailed him back, and he changed things such that I could only post elsewhere as “Bud Bloom”–another shallow reading of the problem, and another quick “fix”.

I have e-mailed him every other day since for over a week, and he does not respond. It is as if he has written on a docket “problem fixed by yours truly, Karl superstar, once again” or this issue has been placed into another queue as I await another member of the Blogger Team to take over. I should not think through this situation so much. Maybe Karl is just on an employee-of-the-month vacation or something.

Bud

November 4, 2006

Wrestling With Poetry in November


 

by Homer (ca. 8th century BCE)
 

translated by Alexander Pope (1688-1744)
 

The Iliad
 

Book 23: Funeral Games in Honour of Patroclus
[wherein Achilles bestows on Nestor the unawarded fifth prize, the two-handled urn]
 

            Achilles this to reverend Nestor bears.
            And thus the purpose of his gift declares:
            “Accept thou this, O sacred sire! (he said)
            In dear memorial of Patroclus dead;
            Dead and for ever lost Patroclus lies,
            For ever snatch’d from our desiring eyes!
            Take thou this token of a grateful heart,
            Though ’tis not thine to hurl the distant dart,
            The quoit to toss, the ponderous mace to wield,
            Or urge the race, or wrestle on the field:
            Thy pristine vigour age has overthrown,
            But left the glory of the past thy own.”

            He said, and placed the goblet at his side;
            With joy the venerable king replied:

            “Wisely and well, my son, thy words have proved
            A senior honour’d, and a friend beloved!
            Too true it is, deserted of my strength,
            These wither’d arms and limbs have fail’d at length.
            Oh! had I now that force I felt of yore,
            Known through Buprasium and the Pylian shore!
            Victorious then in every solemn game,
            Ordain’d to Amarynces’ mighty name;
            The brave Epeians gave my glory way,
            AEtolians, Pylians, all resign’d the day.
            I quell’d Clytomedes in fights of hand,
            And backward hurl’d Ancaeus on the sand,
            Surpass’d Iphyclus in the swift career,
            Phyleus and Polydorus with the spear.
            The sons of Actor won the prize of horse,
            But won by numbers, not by art or force:
            For the famed twins, impatient to survey
            Prize after prize by Nestor borne away,
            Sprung to their car; and with united pains
            One lash’d the coursers, while one ruled the reins.
            Such once I was! Now to these tasks succeeds
            A younger race, that emulate our deeds:
            I yield, alas! (to age who must not yield?)
            Though once the foremost hero of the field.
            Go thou, my son! by generous friendship led,
            With martial honours decorate the dead:
            While pleased I take the gift thy hands present,
            (Pledge of benevolence, and kind intent,)
            Rejoiced, of all the numerous Greeks, to see
            Not one but honours sacred age and me:
            Those due distinctions thou so well canst pay,
            May the just gods return another day!”
 

 


 

_____

 


 

I have been tired and often not feeling well the past couple months, nothing serious, just part of being me with the maladies I have. This is one reason for the slowdown in posts. I work well over 40 hours a week, and work on a poetry column that takes 20-30 hours a week as well, so the Bud Bloom time is what’s left after taking care of personal and family matters.

A second reason has turned up the past couple weeks. That has to do with the Pocha Pocha project, the Positive Change Poetry Channel. I want to get that off the ground, and I’m thinking that literature, visuals, and music forums should go up first, then possibly a mixed-media periodical, and then the development of a resource center for artistic expression, a site that is not nationalistic in any unnecessary sense, that reaches to be there for anyone, anywhere, any language. There are other steps that will become goals beyond the internet, some expressed in the post linked to above, but this is the beginning. I want PochaPocha.com to be up as soon as reasonably possible.

But the third reason is another online identity I have, which moved me to make this post. As a practical matter, I will be spending hours and hours this month with another pseudonym. The Massachusetts wrestling community knows me as “dansdad”. Seriously, I have walked into tournaments and heard “Hey, that’s dansdad”.

At MassWrestling.com, I am a moderator for the articles, and the College forum. November means that colleges nationwide (California’s a bit different) are beginning their programs, and have their rosters and schedules up online. I serve the wrestling community across the country by making lists of the colleges with wrestling programs, sorting them A to Z, and by state (and for you clickers, I don’t know how those “?”‘s got in there this past year).

I then take the up-to-date alphabetical list, and click into all the rosters of all the colleges, looking for the wrestlers from Massachusetts. I create directories of them by school and alphabetically. Someone’s got to do it.

So now, priorities get switched, because the wrestling project is time sensitive. I really ought to have everything up by the end of the month. Usually, I am jamming with my Thanksgiving Day time off, to get it all near complete.

I don’t know how this will work out. I have never been Bud Bloom and dansdad at the same time. In fact, I have only been Bud Bloom while looking forward to going to readings and festivals, never local meets and tournaments. I was at the high school tournament below, for instance, and will be there this year too. But I hope to bring some interesting and high quality poetry blog posts for you here this month.

Thanks very much.

dansdad
 

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