July 19, 2006

Interviews With Bloggers Part 13: Dale of "Passion of the Dale"

The Bella Rossa Interview with Dale of "Passion of the Dale."

Dale is a Canadian Aquarius, which offers no insights into his psyche for people who don't believe in astrology or Canada, although it does explain his charming use of the letter "u" in such words as "labour." He shares my affection for Jenny Lewis and the Watson Twins, as well as a certain shame over his subscription to "Reader's Digest." He has recently noticed readers coming to his blog from Google searches for the phrases "You don't Nomi" and "Large Chest Hair Shavers for stress tests," which just goes to emphasize, again, the delightful randomness of the internet.

BELLA: What current books, music, tv, movies, hobbies, sports, etc., are currently holding your interest?

DALE: Currently I'm re-obsessing over Strangers With Candy, the TV series freshly repackaged on DVD and I've just made myself owner of JPod by Douglas Coupland.
I hope I enjoy it as much as they say I will. The one full length CD
I'd rather not trust to the random setting right now is Jenny Lewis
with the Watson Twins. It's worth the continuity.

BELLA: How would you describe your blog?

DALE: My blog could probably be called "Fun With Minutiae."
It's a look at some of the things that stop me in my tracks from day to
day. And that doesn't generally take much.

do you blog? What was your original goal or intention when you started,
and has that changed with time? Is your blog a means to an end (finding
work, developing creative ideas, making money, meeting people), or does
it exist for its own sake?

DALE: When I first started blogging in 2004, I looked at it
as a storage solution. I was writing reviews to amuse my friends and
was encouraged by their feedback enough to want to keep track of my
stuff in one place. I now use it to amuse myself and hopefully a few
friends and fellow bloggers. As a creative outlet, it helps keep some
of the jackassery out of my regular life. Although there's plenty of
it there too.

Is there one particular post that you think exemplifies your work, or represents your best writing?

DALE: I find it really hard to be objective about what is my
best writing. I have found that over time, I've edited myself into
briefer posts. My writing's improved for it and the attention span of
my readers has been satisfied. I think.

Like others, I find that I can labour for hours and post something
that draws little response but then whip off a couple of practically
random sentences and get inundated with "bravo"s and "well done"s.
Should I stop trying to figure out what makes Paris Hilton tick and
concentrate on the lighter side of cancer? You tell me.

And as for my comment on briefer posts? This may be my longest answer.

How often do you Google yourself, check yourself on Technorati, and/or pore over your referral logs and visitor statistics?

DALE: I do keep track of who's zooming me about once a week
using Site Meter. It's good for a laugh and I find it fascinating how
some people arrive on my blog doorstep. Overall I'm not too interested
in increasing or decreasing readership although if I notice a big dip,
a small tear sometimes escapes.

BELLA: What are some of your favorite, "must-read" blogs?
What keeps you going back again and again? Have you ever totally lost
interest in a blog that you once really enjoyed, and if so, why?

DALE: I never have enough time to be as brilliant as I wish I
was because I spend so much time singing "Why Can't I Be You?" The
eclectic group on my link list all get my vote for whatever they're
running for and I think they're all must-read. I do have to say
though, I never miss Saviour Onassis'
words of wisdom and ever changing moods. He keeps me thinking, laughing
and smirking whether it be at his true life adventures or fictional
exploits. Plus, that name!

BELLA: What kind of person is the likeliest reader of your blog? What would you hope they get out of reading you?

DALE: People who read my writing must be, I think, doctors.
Doctors looking for a cure. And people who are all about good taste
without all that other stuff added in.

there people in your life who don't "get the whole blog thing?" How do
you explain it to them without feeling as nerdy and defensive as I
usually do?

DALE: Many people I'm forced into communication with know
that I like to write because that's what I tell them. I have little to
no patience or
inclination to teach anyone how to spell "b-l-o-g" if I think they're going to screw it up.

BELLA: What's your relationship with your readers? How much interaction do you encourage?

DALE: I don't know most of my readers personally but love the
comments and banter flowing from some of my posts. I definitely
encourage that but would probably cross the street to avoid most of
these characters in real life. Mainly because I have a disease that
causes me to cross the street a lot.

BELLA: How much do you self-censor, knowing that your friends and family might be reading?

DALE: I'm all for censorship if it suits me. My family and
friends are sometimes right here stopping me from hitting some of the
keys but eventually there'll be a smackdown and my money's on me. I've
entertained the idea of starting up a secret blog just to badmouth them
all but I'm sure I'd accidentally send them a link to it and the abuse
would continue.

BELLA: Are you conscious of creating an online persona? How is that persona different from the real world you?

DALE: As far as online personas go, I feel that people expect
certain things from me based on what I put out there. I'm generally
good for going along with that but now and then I like to throw in a
loop. I'm not too worried about readership although I have to say I
like it when it's there. And will even make sweet love to it if asked
politely. Just as long as it don't call me every five minutes afterward.

Dell_laptop_7BELLA: What's the coolest thing that's come out of your blogging experience?

DALE: The coolest thing about blogging is that it's made with people. Is there anything we can do about that?

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