Birthday Time

Today was my birthday!

Unfortunately, that means I will not be posting any blog reviews. Sorry. Updates will continue as normal next Wednesday, so just keep your pants on until then.

Hasta miercoles ('Until Wednesday' for those of us who are espanol-illiterate),
Randall A.


The Kingston Lounge

"Guerrilla preservation and urban archaeology. Brooklyn and beyond."

Many of us who live in the city don't really get curious about those cordoned off, abandoned buildings, or the condemned structures just outside of town. We routinely pass them by, not even sparing a glance in their direction; to us, they are just another spacewaster that need not take up room in our thoughts. For a small few, however, these locations are almost irresistible.

It's somewhat well known by the name of 'urban exploring.' This type of exploration involves finding old, abandoned, condemned, or otherwise interesting and relatively recent man-made structures, and exploring them like one would a cave. Often, it is a personal hobby, and pleasure comes only to those willing to physically seek it. Once in a blue moon, though, the rest of us get lucky to find people like Richard Nickel, Jr., the writer and photographer of The Kingston Lounge.
"The gantry crane at sunset..." -Richard Nickel, Jr.

Mr. Richard Nickel likes to rediscover those urban settings that have so recently been lost to us. He captures images of these places with stunning, yet subtle, precision and artistic prowess. These are not just the Kodak disposable-camera pictures of a hobbyist, but rather the incredibly professional and beautiful captures of a seasoned photographer.

The big question that seems to arise in the comments section of this blog is just how he garnered the permission to enter into these usually prohibited sections of the world. Two thoughts come to mind: he is either an exceedingly good talker, or he's an menacingly sneaky photographer. Regardless, the work Nickel produces is sure to pique your curiosity, and intrigue all the way to the last paragraph.

Interested yet in seeing a part of your world that you didn't even know was there? Then check out The Kingston Lounge, and see just what you've been missing out on.


Template Faerie

"Blog add-ons and advice for hobbyists"
Most 'web surfers' (a phrase I'm sure is outdated even now) have at least read a blog. Many of them have made one, as well, even if it was unsuccessful. There's so many blogs out there about this topic, or that -- but what about a blog that helps you make your blog?

Surely it's not the only blog of this kind out there. In fact, a cursory Google search will net you quite a few. So, for Sarah, the writer of Template Faerie, the blog is not about a perfectly unique niche, but rather about perfecting it. Sarah strives not only for a well-done blog about blogging; she adds her own (sometimes abrasive) flavor to her posts.

Everybody knows a little controversy here and a little controversy there can go a long way for readership, especially in the Internet Age when we're all so jaded that it has become our sustenance. This leads many writers to think that they must curry the favor of their disloyal readers with offerings of tasteful dissatisfaction, and Sarah makes it clear that she is often dissatisfied with the blogging world.

Whether that attracts you, or scares you, is obviously up to you -- sometimes it's a fresh read from those overly nice writers that praise everything they can without acknowledging the bad (a trait I, myself, have been guilty of once upon a time). However, there's more to Template Faerie than just abrasiveness, of course; there's helpful information.

If you're not a blog writer, you won't find this particular blog particularly useful. If you are, though, you'll discover that there's quite a few useful add-ons and bits of advice. From "5 Reasons Why I Won't Read Your Blog" to "How to Feed your Blog to Twitter", there's much help to be had.

There's no reason your blog shouldn't make the grade, so why not get some advice from Template Faerie?