Coffee Share 181201

This is a Weekly Coffee Share hosted by: Eclectic Alli.

Alli manages a weekly list of posts from any who want to just stay in touch, chat about blogging, writing, travel, photography, children, pets, work, life hacks or just about anything else that might be of interest.

Here’s the link for 2 weeks back.

Here’s the link for this week.

Greetings.  So glad you’re finally here.  This place is always warmer, friendlier, more thoughtful and encouraging every time you stop by.  You have to admit, sometimes we, the members of Alli’s coffee share club, can blur the line between fun and therapy.

Here, sit.  Sit and enjoy a dose of down-time while I get something for you to drink.  Did you get a close look at my header photo?  Did you note that someone actually created and deployed a Christmas sweater coffee cup cozy . . . ?  I have friends who would do such things.  At the risk of being rightly accused of wrongfully appropriating their verbiage, I tell you, they can be soooo cute.


And, it’s December.  The year end is in sight.  This always causes me, and likely you too, to reflect on how exactly this last year carried me to this point.  So let’s see.

I entered the year still struggling to make my story blog usable by potential readers.  I had not invested enough time yet to either learn the ropes of laying out a blog site and I did not have sufficient content to make the site worth visiting anyway.  By early December of 2017, I had 20 stories captured.  I took some time and learned a few things that allowed me to clean up my site and had two inspirations for new stories and decided to pitch them to a couple of groups via Facebook.  Both were, by my standard, smash hits and shattered my monthly read count ceiling of single digits as far as the eye could see.


The Kid Bomb Incident is a fun memory of how I weaponized my girl friend’s child before a family reunion.

The Better Grade Incident is the account of how I turned a class grade of “D” to a “B” – and astounded my best friend after we both had treated a teacher very badly.

They were the proof I needed that I could do this blog-thing.  I just needed some additional site clean-up and structure and more and better content. But by January 2018, I was hooked on blogging as a framework for sharing my stories.  This was serious fun! blog button I gave myself permission to really treat the collection as mine in that, when I found a typo or better way to say something, I had no publisher to tell me that it was too late to change things.  I made each story better as I found ways to do so.  Learning how to better use photos proved to be huge and very entertaining even to this author.

lumbarI did have a growing problem at the beginning of the year.  My back clearly was not healthy.  I was in daily pain and had begun using a walking stick to assure safer mobility.  By June, we had the problem isolated and I was checking into the local hospital for a real, my first serious, surgery.   This, very successful, operation grounded me from work for both June and July, but after everyone, including my surgeon, told me that I’d be down for 3 months, I felt ready to go back after just 2 – but I had spent those 2 months obeying (mostly) my doctor, physical therapists and wife by sitting still, healing and writing.  These  2 months alone produce 7 new stories and 1 remains my most popular story.

Sun Starfish

Water Adventures, did not feel to me like a block buster, but my readers disagreed and even now, firmly holds the total readers count record by a healthy margin that I doubt will be breached any time soon.  open range signI suspect that, because it started at a very famous place for folks who grew up in my hometown of Petaluma, Calif. that I caught a wave of nostalgia.  Sorry – the pun was unavoidable.

I did find that coming back to work was harder than I expected.  My job can be stressful and it changed in the 2 months I was out from occasionally stressful to virtually every day while I was finding out that my tolerance of stress has been negatively impacted by (I think) the surgery.  A friend who is very familiar with back surgeries explained to me that many people don’t get that it can take a year for the anesthesia used to knock us out to fully cycle out of our bodies.  I don’t know, clinically, how true this is, but it certainly aligns with my experience.

donut shop signSo, some peers and I have been joking about changing jobs.  The most used has been the donut shop as a low stress kind of job.  Think about it.  If a customer is unhappy for almost any reason, you give them a donut and everyone leaves happy.shaving-legs.jpg


I did offer one idea of opening a barber shop for women only where we would shave legs.  It sounded low stress to me,  but oddly – no takers. . .

All around, it’s been a great year for getting to know peer bloggers and developing this fun way of sharing my art.  I hope you will always find me thankful.

Many of you have both read and commented constructively on my work.  Please accept my humble thanks for helping make a very memorable and fun year of growth and productivity for this new blogger.

Okay, coffee time is over. Thanks for stopping by but let’s get back to writing.

Blessings all.

To select another story, please visit the full index by clicking here.

Gary photo n bio

6 thoughts on “Coffee Share 181201

  1. I think I like this idea of a coffee mug warmer. I actually saw some really cheese festive ones and thought about getting one, but I haven’t (yet anyway).

    I find it interesting how pieces that I think are going to be a hit, sometimes aren’t and then ones I think won’t be a “block bluster” actually are. Keeps it interesting I guess.

    Great coffee share. Have a good week.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I have seen tea pot cozies before. Not my cup of tea. Wait, that’s not what I meant to say… Nice little run down on your blog and life for the year. Guys don’t have barbers shave their beards any more, so not too surprising that you didn’t have any takers on being a barber who only shaves women’s legs. I disagree, though, I can see how there is a possibility it could be very stressful…. Have a good week!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Greetings for another week, Gary and it’s a great idea to go over how the year’s been going. That reminds me to get on with writing my Christmas/end of year newsletter but we still have the end of year dance and violin concerts to go and then I can get started. This Christmas newsletter thing is a tradition my grandfather started which skipped a generation and came down to me. He was a Lutheran Pastor and they moved around a bit and so were away from family and needed to keep in touch.
    Pleased to hear you’re recovering from your back surgery That’s a big thing to go through and a relief just even to wake up and find out nothing drastic has gone wrong.
    Things are a bit all over the place for me atm. I am a true blue partying extrovert who loves swinging from the chandelier and chatting to hosts of people. However, I’m not 21 anymore and my health will let me get away with it but it’s like making a deal with the devil. I know the next day I’ll be in bed or just needing to hover around my computer but not even thinking too much. Just chilling out. However, I’d much rather experience the thrill and exhilaration of being myself than playing it safe all the time.
    Hope you enjoy the week ahead.
    Best wishes,

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ah Rowena, life was so much easier when we were 21. I could bury my introvert nature by short gigs of extrovertism and wild whopping with friends that required some amount of recovery the next day in bed with a late sleep in and when I had to wake up, a good book.

      I’m not 21 anymore either. On the other hand, I cannot imagine going back to those days when all my writing had to be via pen and paper. How did I ever get anything of merit written?

      I hope your medical challenges are fading into the background melody of adaptations and cures. I think there is lots of life still to play with and write about.


      Liked by 1 person

      1. Gary, my health status becomes very perplexing and while I do try to grip hold of the highs and not feel like the lows have moved in to stay, that’s a lot to get my head around. I had a spectacular weekend after a great trip out to Elizabeth Bay on Friday and even the cake turned out to perfection, which is never something you can take for granted either. I am conscious, however, that we live in a small community and it’s difficult to know quite where to pitch myself. I can be swinging from the chandeliers one day and in bed barely able to move for periods of time as well. It would be a relief for people just to take me how I am on a given day and it would be helpful if I came with traffic lights to give people some kind of indication. Even my family has trouble picking where I’m at. My son actually came up with the idea of traffic lights when I had the flare up 6 years ago and had chemo. Back then, I was sitting on an orange light. It’s definitely something I need to explore more because I know this is a common challenge for many people, not just with their health/disability but also grappling with life’s other challenges like the death of a loved one.
        BTW I still use pen and paper a bit but it’s such a chore to type it up. However, I do find that the friction between the pen and paper can whet the creative juices and I don’t take my laptop on train trips.
        Hope you have a great week.
        Best wishes,

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Okay – I had a project to get out, to our mutual friend Solveig and it’s done, but I’ve been wanting to get back to you on this because I had a friend in the local IT management world. She was my customer for a while. Huge personality, very talented, very outspoken and never afraid to threaten anyone or anything that got in her way. But she found me worthy of her trust and friendship (of a sort) and I always loved how to gauge her mood on any given day. She did it with shoes. . . I’m pretty sure she kept 3-5 pairs in the office at a time and changed them as she felt the need. Her bright red heavy pumps were to be feared and even I approached with caution. Asking about her shoe choice (other than the red pumps) would often lead to loud laughter over the message she was trying to send.

        I always love you detailed comments. You leave me thinking.


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