I have a few regular blog readers. Some are old and true friends from before the internet. Some are good friends accumulated over time and living. Some I’ve never met in the material world. I don’t know how this latter class of readers found me as I do not promote my blog. I don’t share it on social media. A few weeks ago, I added the hashtag “lifestyle blogger” and this shook the algorithm up. I acquired a few new bots. Be that as it may, I probably only have 100 followers.
That’s an empty gas tank in the digital world.
Perhaps these readers enjoy my posts about ennui and world-weariness. Maybe they’re fans of opera broadcasts and like me uttered a loud “UGH” when they tuned in to hear Wagner’s Die Walküre on Saturday’s “Live from the Met” broadcast. What could be worse than that dark and brooding opera on an overcast March day in Maine, where everything is still dead and dirty? Sure, sure…the “Ride of the Valkyries” leitmotif was thrilling, but it barely lifted my spirits above the “I need a serotonin reuptake inhibitor to deal with these still-frozen leaves in my sun drop bed” level.
We’ve already discussed and concluded that blogging, thank you notes, and the Oxford comma have gone the way of the dodo. Like spring gloves, when this blog is gone, there will be a brief period of lamentation, some wailing and gnashing of teeth, and then everyone will look at their phones again. Or their transponders or chips or whatever replaces the slim packet of rare earth minerals we embrace more lovingly than our children, aging parents, and our communities.
Pass me a cup of coffee, quick!
Last fall, a Rusty Lantern gas station and convenience store opened in Lisbon Falls. Citizens and route 196 commuters watched the project with curiosity. I passed it on my walks to the post office and wondered how it would change our town. Uncle Bob suggested it would snarl and increase traffic on my street.
I serendipitously stopped in the day of the grand opening and bought a Rusty Lantern Contigo-brand coffee mug, guaranteeing me ninety-nine cent coffee refills for life. I was introduced to the owner and the manger as “the Moxie Lady” and I’m pleased to say the Rusty Lantern did make a “Chugger” level sponsorship donation. We received it a few weeks ago and I’m happy to be partnering with them to make the 2019 Moxie Festival great.
I enjoy popping into the store and chatting with the men and women who work there. They all have stories to tell and I like hearing them in person instead of reading about it on Facebook or seeing it on Instagram.
As they say in the popular vernacular, “it’s all good.”
One regular customer told me “The Rusty Lantern is just what this town needed” and I’d have to agree. It’s a little bit of what I needed too.
What I really need, though, is 50,000 people lined up on the Moxie Festival Parade route at 10:00 a.m. on July 13, 2019, waving orange pom poms. That’s my mission right now.
104 days. Bring it!