Tuesday, June 08, 2004


Friends, Romans and clones of Dr. Funkenstein:

Greetings from the plains of Castilla-LaMancha, Spain…and welcome to the first posting of my blog. There were many challenges to be surmounted in bringing this blog to you.

Challenge #1: Figuring out what the hell a blog is. I’d heard this term used with increasing frequency in the US media during 2004. Blog-mania hit a fever pitch during the democratic primaries. Each candidate seemed to get two things in his “I Wanna Be President” starter kit: A US flag lapel pin, and a copy of “Blogging for Dummies.” Dean did it. Kerry did it. Gephart did it. They all did it. Well…actually, none of them really did it. Their “people” did it for them; but delegation is the sign of a good manager, so we won’t deduct points.

But what is a blog? Sounds like something one drinks from a pewter mug. I turned for answers to the oracle of our generation: Google. A blog, as it turns out, is a web log. An Internet dumping ground for people’s thoughts, observations, recommendations and other ramblings…no matter how banal they might be. The digital wasteland done found itself a ‘nuther niche. So I got one. If you've got a niche, scratch it.

Challenge #2: Figuring out why I needed a blog? Truth be told, I don’t. Between changing diapers, cooking meals, grocery shopping, working out (when I feel sufficiently motivated to resist the snooze-bar’s siren call) and that work-thing that constantly conflicts with my sunbathing schedule, I didn’t really need an additional item on my plate. What I did need, though, was some kind of respite from the dryness of my daily existence. Spending forty hours per week (Editor’s note: If you are reading this, Paul, I meant to say sixty hours) staring at contract clauses in eight point type and debating the most prudent placement of terms like “hereinafter,” “thereby,” and “notwithstanding the foregoing” does cause one to seek a creative outlet of sorts; and Spain’s warm climate seemed to render butter sculpting impractical. Plus, my lovely wife Maria travels on a weekly basis, and there are just so many times one can watch the same Sopranos DVD Box Set before going bonkers.

Challenge #3: Naming my new blog. I thought this would be easy. Just think up a clever word play by substituting the word “blog” for “dog,” “hog,” “cog,” or any of its brethren. I churned out a healthy list of candidates: Sal’s Blog Cabin; Sal’s Blog Day Afternoon; Goin’ Whole Blog with Sal; Sal’s Three Blog Night; Blog Wild with Sal; etc. Feeling proud of my sharp wit and powerful mind, I decided to do a quick Google search to confirm my belief that no one on earth had ever coined any of these magnificent titles. Well, my confidence was a bit unfounded. Truth be told, the least used of the bunch yielded no less than 17 pages of hits. That’s the problem with the Internet age. It reinforces the fact that nobody on this planet has had an original thought since Jimi played Berkeley. In the good old days when people actually went to the library to do research, I might have operated under the delusion of my own cleverness for years before stumbling upon a DesMoine Star Register clipping that mentioned “Cooter’s Blog Cabin” in the “For Singles Only” column. In the Google age, however, delusions of grandeur are measured in nanoseconds. In my own defense, however, one of my phrases did register a startling zero hits: “Sal’s Triple Blog Dare Ya’.” I’ll bet there will be a hit tomorrow morning. In the end, I decided that word play is the domain of burned out ad execs and opted for the geographically relevant title, “Sal’s Virtual Tapas Bar.”

Challenge #4: Deciding what to write about. Indeed…the toughest challenge of all. I’ve no answers for this one quite yet. But I have faith that my masterful typing skills, combined with Spain’s plentitud of cheap yet outstanding wines, will lead the way forward. Take this first posting, for instance. I’ve barely finished a glass of wine, and have already spewed 1,127 words.


At 2:12 AM, Blogger DJBad100 said...

Great blog. Whatever makes a great blog...I don't know. But then I read the entire blog; so maybe keeping the interest of someone long enough to read the entire thing makes it a great blog.

Can you tell that I forgot what I was going to write?

The problem is that I had to create a blog account (even just to comment on this blog), then the forced option was provided to write a blog entry, and then I had to go back to the e-mail that announced SD's Virtual Tapas Bar's Blog and then I had to think about what I was going to originally write, which I forgot. So then I had to think of something else to write. Now I just don't know what to write. So this crap has spewed from my fingertips...sort of bypassed the brain.

I do remember this much: Sal, enjoyed reading your blog. In agreement about something in it, but I can't remember that either! Such is life. ;)

(If I ever remember, I'll be sure to post it here.)

Oh, yeah, here's something that I remember now: What the heck was the management-speak entry?

At 9:22 AM, Blogger Sal DeTraglia said...

Hey DJBadMoFo:

I couldn't find out who you are, since you didn't list your true name in your profile. I suspect from your writing skills, however, that you have a Ph.D, live in Pennsylvania, and have hands that are registered as deadly weapons with the Edinboro police department. Thanks for the compliment. This blog thing is a way to amuse myself during nights when Maria is on business trips and Ines has gone to bed. Also provides a justification for uncorking a bottle of wine when alone. Luis Bunuel said that wine is a purely physical sensation, but does nothing to stimulate creativity. Caca! Wine stimulates everything, except my desire to do real work.

As for the management speak piece, I wrote it last year and it has been wallowing on my C drive ever since. I fired up the Blog last night and need to give it some substance. I wrote the Bienvenido and Almodovar bits on the spot. The restaurant recommendations and buzzword pieces were old ones that I dusted off and polished. As for the South African proverb, I got that straight from Nelson Mandela -- who is currently sleeping in my guest bedroom -- as we enjoyed cognac together on my outsider terrace last night. Nelson is a good guy, and he always makes his bed before coming down for breakfast.

At 9:27 AM, Blogger carmen deltoro said...

GREAT!!!! Check the spelling of "Casa Pello"

At 9:54 PM, Blogger Lil Sis said...

Looks like you have way too much time on your hands which can only mean one thing....it's time to have another baby!

At 11:20 PM, Blogger Sal DeTraglia said...

First we need to buy lights for the bathrooms. Then we need to decorate the master bedroom. Then we need to lay tiles on the walkway around the house. THEN we can think about another baby.


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