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The Versatile Blogger Award

Well, the time has come to pass this on. I have only procrastinated for nearly a month now. But in all fairness to myself, during this past month I found and subbed several wonderful sites which many are included in my list of sites I am awarding.

On January 7, 2012, Chris from Word Play awarded me with the Versatile Blogger Award (Now please, you MUST CLICK HERE before continuing). Sincerely… thank you, Chris. I am both honored and humbled – and honestly not really sure why you choose me, but you did so now it is time for me to carry on this award.

According to the requirements of the award I must:

•  Nominate 15 other bloggers
•  Inform my nominees
•  Share 7 random facts about myself
•  Thank the one who nominated me
•  Add a picture of the award to this post

So let’s get moving and start with the list of 15 blogs. First, though, a brief commercial from someone who is not my sponsor…

In my list here, I will be listing a specific post rather than the blog in general, so please, check them all out. This is how I have found nearly all the blogs I follow. This was not an easy task, which is why I procrastinated for so long. I started around 8 PM tonight and it is now 12:49 AM, and that was just choosing the sites and which post. Now I have to write this as well as figure out seven things to share about myself. Anyway, without further ado, in alphabetical order, the Versatile Blogger Award goes to…..

1. 365 Veterans: Honoring a Veteran a day for a year | The Twilight Zone of the USS CONSTELLATION:  A true story about an occurrence that happened in the Gulf of Tonkin in February of 1970, with a Twilight Zone finish.

2. Barking In The Dark | Election Day 2020: A True Story (part one):  A satirical story about what life would be like after the New Republican Party takes control of our government. Here is part two. And I specifically chose this post because I’M WAITING FOR PART THREE, TONY!!! I am addicted to politics, especially satire, and Tony gives me my fix. Now, where’s part three?

3. Creative Endeavors, The Home of | Tuesday Rant:  This site is pretty much all about humor, and this post covers the whole spectrum along with some other tidbits.

4. Don in Massachusetts | Ewwwwww by Cameron Cardow:  Like I just previously mentioned, I am a political junkie, and Don here gives me my political cartoon and quotes fix on a daily basis. He somehow finds only the best.

5. Facehookin’ | Smell Good Stuff For Your Muff: A site full of witty and sarcastic humor, another daily fix I need. This post is the first one I read on her site, and the section about a different approach to advertising still has me ROTFLMAO.

6. Guapola | An Adventure – CHEESESTEAKS!!!:  I just subbed this site literally two days ago, but I’ve been reading his comments on Barking in the Dark for a while now, and just love his sense of humor.

7. I Want Ice Water | The Pastor’s Ass:  As the author’s site says, “Is a mixture of humor & seriousness that reflects my own personal philosophy of life.” So check out the story about the pastor’s ass.

8. onmysquare | Happy Black History Month!!! Today We Salute The Homies That Ain’t Here:  A variety of thoughts put to virtual paper. This specific post is exactly what it sounds like.

9. Our Process | Provo Post High School II part 2:  The author is a substitute teacher who also has a gift of drawing. This specific post is one in a series of his days substituting for a special needs class. He most certainly deserves an award for humanity in caring for the needs and welfare of these students, as well having a mountain of patience in working with the challenges these students live every day in life.

10. Peace for Every Living Thing | Romney:  Karmen covers a variety of topics including her love for the earth and environment, as well as politics. Karman hails from Utah, and is very open about her disdain for Mitt Romney. She and I are very much alike in both these regards.

11. polentical | Daily Show / Colbert Report: Week in Review:  There are three different authors on this site which all share the same interests. Matthew in particular helps keep me up to date on both the Daily Show and the Colbert Report. Again, another political junkie site mixed in with posts from the entertainment world.

12. The ObamaCrat | “One A Day” Black History Month ~ Mr. Jean Gregoire Sagbo:  This site I literally subbed today, but immediately fell in love when I read this post.

13. Today in Heritage History | January 27, 1942 – Colder Than a Toverheks Borst:  Again, another blog I just subbed today. Here Peter posts a daily historical fact – along with a twisted sense of humor I love.

14. Yo Yo-Dyne Propulsion Systems: Reno Division | SECRETS REVEALED: The Truth behind Santa and Hanukkah Harry:  Rachael is a fellow Mensan and her dry witty humor in both her posts and comments keep me laughing. When she teams up with Don in Massachusetts, I make a bowl of popcorn and sit back for the show.

15. You’ve Been Hooked! | The Universe is Truly a Marvel to Behold…:  Daily life working as a bellboy in a full service hotel. I am sure everyone can attest to the odd bi-legged creatures which wander in and out of hotels. The Hook shares his strange encounters with his hotel guests.

It is now 1:51 AM and I am determined to finish this tonight (or this morning as it really is). So now on to the seven things about myself you did not know. But first, another word from someone who is not my sponsor…

Seven Things About Myself You Do Not Know (oh, boy….)

1.  I went on a date with Ed O’Neill. Yes, “Al Bundy” from Married with Children Actually, it was more along the lines of spending a day together. I was still attending Purdue in 1993 (since I was on the “long-term” program) and was a server at a fine steak house in Lafayette IN during that time. Next door to the restaurant was the only extended-stay suite hotel, which is where the cast of Blue Chips stayed when they were in town doing some filming at one of our older local high school gymnasiums. One Saturday night, I was the closing server and in walks Ed and was seated in my station. We proceed to chat and he mentioned that they did not film on Sunday’s. Jokingly I responded, “I’d be happy to show you around the “wonderful” town of Lafayette, Indiana.” Much to my surprise, he said yes. So the next day I meet him at the hotel, we went swimming (was hoping to see Nick Nolte but didn’t), went for a tour around town, to a movie, dinner, etc. and really had a very pleasant time. I was very amused watching the locals throughout the day. Lafayette does not see many Hollywood stars, so everyone knew they were in town filming. Ed wore a baseball cap and kept the brim pulled down fairly low. People would glance, do a double-take, look a little harder, and I’m pretty sure most ended up deciding that it was who they thought it was. But no one stopped to ask for an autograph. And now that I think about it, I never asked nor got an autograph either.

2.  I have swam with the dolphins. During a spring break trip in 1991, my boyfriend and myself went to Florida with another couple friend of ours. In one of the keys was a dolphin park which we had already secured a “swim” before leaving Indiana. The trainers would tell the dolphins what to do. It was an absolutely magical experience, especially when holding on to the dorsal fin and being pulled through the water.

3.  I did a photo shoot for Playboy Magazine.  Back in the spring of 1984, I was finishing up my sophomore year at Purdue. Playboy came through to do a “Women of the Big Ten” shoot. There were three options to choose from: 1) Fully clothed, 2) semi-nude, and 3) fully nude. I tried out for the fully clothed and was chosen from thousands of other women. The shoot was done next to Ross Ade Stadium down a flight of stairs outside. I was outfitted in a skimpy little sundress which was very low-cut and short, with string bikini underpants. I carried books in my arms, and bounced down the steps so that my skirt would fly up and expose my panties. To my disappointment, though, I did not make the issue. Not all the women did. And since Playboy is, well, Playboy, they favored the women how wore less cloths than I did. Nonetheless, it was fun and I was paid something like $200 for the shoot.

4.  Pets I have owned.  Besides the normal cats and dogs, here are some other less conventional pets I have owned. I had a pet billy goat names “Billy.” I have owned two ferrets, “Riki Tiki Tavi” and “Portnoy” – names after the groundhog in “Bloom County“. I had an iguana named “Iggy.” I had a beta fish commit suicide (it jumped out of it’s bowl and I found it all dried up on the coffee table. That’s the last fish I’ve ever owned.) And I had an aquarium with several sirens, which are aquatic salamanders. LOL…. I had these when I lived a whole one year in a sorority (discovered that was NOT my thing). Needless to say, most of the other girls in the house hated them. I loved it! So evil I was – and still are for that matter.

5.  My mother died from Creutzfeldt–Jakob disease. It is a degenerative neurological disorder (brain disease) that is incurable and invariably fatal. It is also the human form of Mad Cow Disease. Even though this fact technically is not about me, I included it because I really get a kick out of watching the reaction on a doctor’s face when I get to tell them for the first time what my mother died of. It really is too funny. And I’ve been seeing a lot of this reaction lately because…..

6.  I found out on October 31, 2011, that I have Multiple Sclerosis. More to come on this one as I will most likely start writing posts from time to time about my trials and tribulations of learning to live with this disease.

7.  I am a recovering addict. Clean date: September 6, 2006. I turned to drugs because it was a way of killing the pain from the life I was living as an abused spouse. I eventually drove away with a suitcase in my car and went into hiding for nearly 5 years. I lived in a van and off of what was left from my investments during my period of time as a mortgage banker, which was not much by then. Dickhead loved to spend my money. But I somehow made it stretch. The first three years I used, then cleaned up. After finally feeling safe from my ex, I reappeared into society in 2008 and rebuilt a life from scratch. Literally. All I had were the clothes on my back as my van finally crapped out and I left it on the side of the road. I returned to Albuquerque to move in with my best friend, Lyn. LOL… and the irony of it all. I moved out of Lyn’s into my own place, finally after 6 years of running and having nothing, only to be moving back into Lyn’s next week as the MS has now deteriorated my health that I can no longer work full time and cover my living expenses since I am taking a cut in pay. Lyn is giving me two rooms this time so I may use one as my office in hopes of eventually becoming successful in creating graphics (I specialize in doggie stuff, so click HERE to see a few things I have created – and I am definitely changing my logo as that one is gross), selling photography online, and building and maintaining WordPress websites for people willing to contract me. My current job is extremely stressful as I am Director for a company which provides the hotel reservations for large sporting tournaments around the country. Hospitality is a very demanding job, and the stress is only adding to my health problems. It’s time to make a move and start building what I truly want to do. I will stay with my company during our upcoming busy spring/summer season, but plan on leaving by this fall. By then, I should have my new sites up and running and marketed.

It is now 3 AM. Stick a fork in me, I am done. Good night all! I will be back shortly as I am now addicted to the internet, wordpress, blogging, graphics (which is what my first degree is in), photo manipulation, etc etc etc.

UPDATE:  Sunday, February 5, 2011.  I have added in a 16th blogger I would like to recognize.
I couldn’t find her post last night when I was writing this,
and she wrote THE MOST moving true story I have ever read.
I have published a post all to herself,
so please click here to read about A Hunting: From The Periphery by V.Lyn

Oh, and here is a photo from Wikipedia of a siren….


    • Oh, I’ve had some many wonderful adventures, and some very difficult times. But there are so many who are much worse off than I am. Plus my addiction, as well as living among the homeless when I was in hiding, have me a totally different perspective and insight as to what the world truly is about. Mitt Romney is so clueless… he has no idea what so many people have to deal with just to make it from sun up to sun down.

  1. You are amazing! You had mentioned your MS earlier so that part I knew — glad you have a good friend (Lyn).

    Thank you SO VERY MUCH for nominating my site! Wow! Even to be nominated is such an honor and now I’m feeling more than slightly intimidated — so many fabulous bloggers out there!

    • LOL… that’s why it took me almost a month to make myself move on with the task of choosing 15 sites. I have to admit, I saw some people with the award who had to choose 10 sites – but since the one I received said 15, then I went with that. Plus…. that was 5 I didn’t have to wean out.

      You have no idea how fortunate I am to have Lyn in my life. I have 3 brothers back east, but my addiction put up a wall between us. My family just “does not do that” so they’ve still had a hard time accepting it even though I’ve been clean for many years now. Well, you can pick your friends, but you cannot pick your family.

  2. Thank you for the nomination, which is kind of you, and also for such a thoughtful and intriguing list of sites! There’s lots to chew on here, and I look forward to it. It’ll be a pleasure to start thinking of who to pass the honor to. (Whom to pass the honor to? To whom to pass the honor? Dang, one of those sites might have to be grammar-related.)

    It was also nice to get to know more about your background. Your writing is interesting and strong, so I’m not surprised that the person behind it is, as well.

    • Thank you for your kind words.

      It was a very very difficult task just having to choose 15 of the many I subscribe to. Everyone really needs to be honored because blogging is done from the heart, not from a paycheck (at least everyone I sub to is like that). I really wanted to just put up a grid of all the sites, grab some darts and start throwing for the first 15 I would hit.

    • Thanks. Oh, adventure is my middle name. But even the bad decisions I made gave me a different perspective on life which is a blessing many do not have.

      It was tough choosing, and your site is most deserving of being listed as well. Actually everyone I subscribe to is. Just like I said to Matthew, I wanted to throw darts to pick my 15 sites. It’d help minimize the guilt I’m now feeling.

  3. Michelle,
    You have achieved what many of my haters have desired to accomplish for many years…made me speechless. Shut my mouth/fingers down. I am humbled, grateful and oh so appreciative of this award and of being included in such a talented group of bloggers/writers/authors. Thank you from deep within.

  4. A few of these I am already a subscriber of and the rest I will definately check out. Thanks Michelle for the heads up.

    • It was your site that led me to several others. I saw Tony’s comment on one of your posts, liked what he had to say, so checked him out. It has been a chain reaction since then.

  5. congratulations and thank you.
    I’ve only been coming around a little while so far, but you deserve every last blog award there is.
    And, based on the facts above, a bunch of real-world ones too!

    • You are most welcome. I’ve been reading your comments on Tony’s site for a while now… not sure why it took me so long to get my butt over to your site. But glad I did!

  6. THANK YOU so very much. I am both honored and humbled not just by the award, but by your honesty and life full of integrity that you’ve shared here. I will honor the qualifications and do my best to fulfill them. I love YOUR blog and am very grateful to have found it. And, now that I know a little about you, I am even more grateful to be following you. My best back you.Thank you for reading, following and encouraging my ill-est of ill-humor :). Stay tuned.
    PKC @ todayinhh

  7. Michelle: I am very surprised to be included with those other bloggers. I wish my writing or life experience were near to what their blogs expose. I appreciate the award and now of course have a lot of work to do to pass it along. Thanks and Holy Hanna I am impressed and awe struck with your humor and toughness in the face of such a stacked deck. You are fantastic.

    • What I’ve been through is nothing compared to many others I met along the way. Nothing. I may start posting about it, not sure yet.

      Choosing blogs was not easy as everyone is deserving. But your special needs class postings really touched me.

  8. You’re welcome, and I chose you because you are easily the most versatile blogger I know, with the wide range of topics you cover and the variety of talents you express here. And what you wrote here in your seven things section is fascinating as well as courageous. I get the feeling that it’s just the tip of the iceberg with you, and the story of your life experience.

    • Kind of. It’s not all about me. It more so what I’ve seen others go through. Even though I went through a horrible abusive marriage, fought addiction, etc, overall I have had a very fortunate and happy life. I just made some very stupid decisions, learned from them, and moved on. But where I went during the deepest part of my addiction, I saw stuff that you hope you never see in your worst nightmares. There are some truly horrible people in this world – and they’re usually that way because they have been a victim at some point in time. Does not mean I condone some acts I’ve seen, which I most certainly do not. But I just see it from a different perspective than I did when I was younger.

  9. thank you sweetheart. i could tell that you were an exceptionally interesting person with an interesting life story but some of this is quite surprising – in a good way – except for the MS of course…i so hope you can maintain your health and can can get the new gig going – your photo stuff is terrific. be well…be strong., and continue…

    • I’ve just started cutting back my hours at work by two hours a day – and that is making a world of difference. Thanks on the photo compliment. And sense I’m moving in with Lyn, I can ride along when she goes to do her doggie stuff and can then take thousands of photos for my work. Next paycheck I’m ordering a very nice unlimited package of wordpress themes which i can customize to make each one unique, and will be getting a nice tripod soon, too. Those are primarily the last two things I need to get. I’m excited to finally start moving forward with my new site and designs – but I’ve got a lot of work to do. So many breeds to represent. So many….

  10. Playboy at Purdue??? My husband is an IU alum so you know how that story goes. Thank you for sharing so much of your life story. It’s an inspiration.

      • I dunno. WP has been bugging out tonight. When I click on a link for a new post in my email, it’s been taking me to the comments. And it’s also making everyone enter in their name and stuff on my site – and many others (altho I noticed yours isn’t) and I have my settings set so that no one has to enter in their info.

        I think they’re doing some big upgrade by the looks of it.

        LOL… I’m entering this comment in from the front end of my site (not from the admin side) and I even have to enter in my own email and name.

        • Usually I have no problem with it. But I think by building some of my sites, it’s helped me understand better how works. And I will say, the SEO on is phenomenal!

        • But I will say the stats are not correct. We all actually have more hits than what the stat’s show. I discovered that when comparing the stats on my .org sites between what google analytics says and what wp says. G Analytics is always more. And I’m seeing that on my flag counter on the bottom of my site, too. Those hits are collecting faster than the hits on the wp stat page.

        • No, not at all. There’s a link just below it. Step through and it will give you an embed code. Just toss that puppy in a text widget and you’re good to go.

        • I did…now lets see just how far read I can be…i am discovering some fantastic bloggers the past few days, most likely all thanks to you my dear.

        • There are so many wonderful bloggers out there. I had been blogging about 5 months before I started finding them. It started with checking out the site from a blogger who left a comment I thought was cool, then someone else had received a versatile blogger award, and so on and so on. I love the wordpress community. So diverse.

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