Wednesday, 30 December 2015

A Blogger's Tricks

If this were a birding blog and I was one of those bloggers who goes birding every day, NQS readers could be fed an unremitting diet of birding posts, one after another. Good days, bad days, average days. Especially there'd be average days, of course. Lots and lots and lots of them. At school I learned that there are three types of average: mean, mode and median. This is a mathematician's wheeze to try and make 'average' less boring. Each describes 'average' in a different way, and such a blog would have to employ all three on a rotating basis to inject even the teeniest bit of interest into a steady stream of bog standard birdy outings. Regular readers would find themselves absolutely gagging for a rarity to ple-e-e-e-ease liven things up...

Aren't you glad I'm not really much of a birder?

I'm not even a naturalist. Not really. I'm pretty bad at butterflies, almost hopeless at moths, useless at dragonflies and even worse at plants. Admittedly I can do a lot of fish, but picture me on a sunny day beside the river/lake/gravel pit, with my knowledgeable friends the botanist and the lepidopterist, and who looks clever quickest? Eh? Exactly.

So, not many birds; no other easily observable natural history. That's why for NQS I have to resort to other tricks.

Cycling is one of those tricks. I can think of a few reasons why I might want to read about a blogger's cycling exploits.
  • As long as he wasn't too young or inhumanly fit I might seek a little inspiration to galvanise me into doing something about my bulging gut.
  • If he was fat and slow I would definitely read all his cycling posts in order to gloat smugly at my athletic superiority.
  • Of course, a blogger who cycled to his birds would be a must-read.
  • Also, a blogger who cycled to nice places and took photos...
Re the first two, sorry, but deciding whether I am too young, inhumanly fit, fat or slow is a subjective matter to be judged only by the reader...but I can unequivocally demonstrate that I do cycle to my birds and do cycle to nice places and take photos...

April 2014. Nipped over to Exmouth for this Glaucous Gull

Out in yesterday's sunshine, and up to the Hardy Monument. The view south takes in Chesil Beach, the Fleet and Portland, but as that was all shrouded in murk here's the view east. Incidentally, 'Hardy' not as in Dorset's own Thomas Hardy but as in Trafalgar's own "Kiss me, Hardy!"

Also yesterday: West Bay, the western end of the promenade. The place was exceedingly busy for a December Tuesday. I can never quite fathom why West Bay is so popular. The seafront architecture is rivalled only by Seaton for utter direness, and the chips are mostly awful. Mind you, there are usually motorbikes to look at. And boats. For some I guess West Bay is therefore Nirvana.


  1. That view of West Bay is food and drink to your mode-mean or median civil engineer.
    Indeed, at my last visit I noticed Wikipedia had 25 headings for concrete and it's derivatives.
    A must read, surely.

    1. Yes Ric, plenty of concrete at West Bay! I'll try to include further samples in future posts.

  2. Perhaps also a photo of the cyclist beside his bike. Then we could say, "if after all that cycling he's as fat as that, I don't feel so bad" - or "wow, lean and mean, that's how I should look".

    1. Excellent idea Derek. The one thing that is consistently missing from birding Blogs, although perhaps with good reason, is photos of the Bloggers themselves. Very rare indeed. I'm probably approaching 1200 posts on mine, yet I bet the number of photos of me would number in the single figures. Then again, you want to retain readers if possible....

    2. I guess my blog has about the same amount of pictures of me Jonathan, although with me, most people recognise my two little terriers more than they do me.

    3. Are we a bit camera-shy? I too cannot help noticing that many blogs rarely, if ever, feature portraits of the blogger. Even birders' online profile photos will often be a bit coy: looking through bins/down scope or back-of-the-head jobs...

      Full lycra-clad shots of the cycling me in action were published on the last incarnation of NQS. Viewing figures rose dramatically, as you would expect, but the constant pestering you then get from an adoring public is not as endearing as you might think. I shan't be doing that again in a hurry.