Friday, June 27, 2008

Thanking the Academy

My blog has won an award!

Okay, so it might not be as prestigeous as 'Best British Blogger in Britain,' but I'm very proud to have been picked by Brit Gal' in the U.S.A. as a 'Special Scribe.'

Brit Gal' is a fellow UK transplant to the Brave New World - winding up in the windswept beauty of Oklahoma. She very kindly said of this blog:

"Roland's writing is always current, informative, often controversial and very to the point. I may not always agree with his opinions, but they are always well written and interesting."

I'm particularly flattered by the 'to the point' bit, since my wife is always complaining that I dilly-daddle when I'm trying to communicate with her. From now on, I'll give up speaking to her and just hold up a sign referring her to my blog!

Posts along the lines of: 'Dinner is in the oven' or 'I'm going to be late home from work tonight.'

I'd certainly recommend heading over to Brit Gal's Blog. She's always got some great posts going, runs regular competitions and helps educate America with a weekly BWOTD (That's British Word of the Day.)

Sometimes it's more of a 'phrase,' but for anybody interested in the English language (or England's continued abuse of it) it's certainly worth seeing what gems Brit Gal' has dredged up.

Her American experience is also fascinating - very different from mine. I run into Italians in sweat pants and Lincoln Town Cars. She's rubbing shoulders with farmers in tractors. And where she lives, they have tornadoes. Did I mention the tornadoes? I'm pretty sure I did.

Now, having been selected for this wonderful award, protocol demands that I send it along to some of the finest blogs in my 'blogroll.' I have to admit, though, that the whole rose thing is a bit too girly for me, so I have created the Editorial Bear Award for Excellence in Blogging instead. The Dinsey, in the vernacular.

The Editorial Bear Award for Excellence in Blogging, just to make it sound more valid than it perhaps is (since I just made it up) judges blogs on a number of criteria:

  • Frequency of Updates - a blog should be updated at least once a week. This unfortunately rules out some truly excellent bloggers I know!

  • Actually Writing a Blog - a blog should actually involve well written consideration and discussion. Just posting a news story and writing 'Can U freakin' believe that???' isn't blogging!

  • A Brush with Excellence - to be awarded an 'excellence award' you actually have to be excellent at something. A good example is the wonderful Haunted Jo, who unfortunately doesn't update enough for Editorial Bear's liking, but writes astonishingly hilarious and funny reviews which certainly deserve recognition.

I found it VERY tough to selected only five from the many blogs I enjoy. However, the following blogs are really worthy of the Editorial Bear Award for Excellence in Blogging because they do go that extra mile:

Erica Henderson's blog I Fail At Life (That's Why I Became An Artist) is a truly excellent blog. Erica keeps us updated often, with beautiful illustrations, updates on her career as a kick-ass cartoonist and random silliness that is guaranteed to start anybody's day off right. A well deserved winner of The Editorial Bear Award for Excellence in Blogging.

Lisa Bettany probably doesn't need another award for her techie blog Mostly Lisa. She's already received numerous accolades - including being voted '5th Hottest Girl on the Web' by G4's television show 'Attack of the Show.' But her blog is really impressive. It looks great, it's updated often, features beautiful photography and wacky videos and while some of the more technical posts and Apple idolatry are over my head, what she writes is often hysterically funny. Another well deserved winner of The Editorial Bear Award for Excellence in Blogging.

Smells Like Grape is a new addition to my blogroll, but a great one. Taster A and Taster B are wine connoisseurs on a journey of drinking discovery. The best part about their blog is that the two talented tasters aren't 'experts' but 'enthusiasts' and therefore taste an enormous variety of wines, from bargain-bin bottles for under ten bucks to really outstanding wines and brandies. They also make the link between their vinous voyage and suitable foods to accompany each bottle, which makes this blog a treat for foodies (and 'drinkies') everywhere.

One of the sweetest and most beautifully written blogs on the web is Reluctant Memsahib, written by a British expatriate living in the African bush with her adorable daughter Hat. This blog struck an immediate chord with me because my parents used to live in Africa and peeking into Memsahib's life is kind of like peering into the life my parents must have had back in the day. Compared to Mostly Lisa, Reluctant Memsahib's website seems remarkably unflashy - but the quality of Memsahib's writing shines through, she publishes the most beautiful pictures and updates regularly, making her a perfect candidate for the The Editorial Bear Award for Excellence in Blogging.

My final blogger, and the only man on this list, surprisingly, is
Dr Ian Hocking. Ian was the first blogger I ever interacted with when I started this blog and has an excellent and intellectual blog which looks absolutely gorgeous - if you have all the bells and whistles on your computer to view it! It's actually a bit too technical for my machine, which steadfastly refuses to load his front page. Nevertheless, I picked Ian's blog because it's consistently intelligently written, thought-provoking and just downright clever. In addition to being a skilled writer, he's got a strong sense of personal brand which is apparent as soon as you visit his blog.

So there you have it. I really wish I could have highlighted far more bloggers from my blogroll. The fact that these five blogs are 'excellent' doesn't mean they're my favourite, or my most often read, or that none of the others are fantastic - because they all are.

I mean, where would by morning blog-about be without catching up with Tequila Mockingbird's drunken exploits, or leggy-lovely Katie's 'Cuppa Joe' blog, featuring her brutal tennis smackdowns and plenty of wiener-on-kitty harassment action. Not a day goes by without visiting arch-leftie Neil Clark or conservative Christian CK and getting fired up by something they wrote (seriously - being moderate gives you a bigger cross section of targets for impotent Internet ire.)

I think all of the bloggers I link to are great and worth a visit - so I hope I haven't offended anybody by leaving them off my list.


BritGal' Sarah said...

Thanks for the write-up Roland and yes I agree that rose is a touch too feminine for you to be passing on!

Btw you made me LOL talking about communication with your dear one. You must be due anyday now, I keep looking out for the post! said...

I'm truly flattered. All bashful and blushing and foot-shuffling shy. Thank you very much.

Dr Ian Hocking said...

Thanks, Roland, and congratulations! I didn't know that about my home page. Is it still the case? (I changed it recently...)

mostly lisa said...

thanks for the l0v3! hi-5!

Taster B said...

Hi Roland! We are in St. Maarten right now and just saw your wonderful write up! Thank you so much for the kind words--we are honored. :)

Best Regards,
Becky (Taster B)