Monday, October 5, 2009

The Goat God In A Tree . . .

Where to start ??? The eternal question . . . were I a dog, I'd be exclaiming, "So many fire hydrants, so little time . . ."
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Well first, let me start by thanking the wonderful Lille Diane at Woodstock Lily for encouraging me this past weekend to go take a look at one of the funniest and shenanigan filled blogs I've ever come across, I mean how could a blog named Nanny Goats In Panties not be hilarious ??? It's all about goats, no kidding ! So I went there to take a look, left a little comment, and in no time, the head nanny goat Margaret had been by and signed up to "follow" this humble little blog, and asked if she could borrow the goat photos from Haiti in the post just a couple below this one . . . so, I'll be curious to see what they become in the hands of a nanny goat in panties.
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And it just happens that when Margaret of Nanny Goats (sounds sort of like John o'Groats; I wonder if they're friends?) signed up to follow the Magic Lantern Show she became follower number 300 . . . Now I have to admit, I still haven't figured out whether the "followers" business on blogs has any real importance; which is not to say I'm not grateful to all 300 of you, equally, for having spent those few seconds it takes to sign up to "follow" a blog. But of all the three hundred "followers" who clicked those buttons over the past year, only a handful, and a wonderful handful at that, actually drop by from time to time to visit, and more importantly to comment. Now that may be just as well, because if there were 300 comments coming in on every post, it would quickly become impossible to answer them all, and answering comments is half the fun of blogging. But if there were 300 comments coming in regularly, that would be a sign of popularity, and one reason one blogs I suppose is with a fleeting hope of attaining some measure of popularity in this domain . . . I guess anyway . . . although I have to admit, I'm wonderfully pleased with the current level, and not sure that more popularity would be a good thing, because the current faithful few are a wonderful group indeed, even if one or two are a bit rowdy sometimes after a Tuesday Tipple, or revealing their Décolleté, and I wish I could go on here to credit each and every one of you who has made this first year of blogging a real adventure, but most of you are already in the sidebar, and so are permanently credited . . . as permanently anyway as anything is in the world of blogs, which is simply a reflection of the real world full stop.
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So, 300 is a nice round number . . . I wonder if it will stay in that vicinity, or diminish, I've noticed sometimes followers drop back out, or whether it will continue to grow. The number of visits is growing, approaching the 20000 mark since 1 January, 2009. . . so now, what will it take to reach 200000 ? Or 2000000 ? Well, my gut feeling is that it is not important to focus on numbers, just to get on with the quiet business of pouring out my soul in these pages, while surfing the breaking wave of life advancing at the speed of light, of children growing up, family, work, playing a little guitar when time permits, and taking photographs to nourrish future pages here . . .
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Speaking of which, here is a photo taken on a trip to Nimes in southern France a couple of summers ago, in which the Goat God has taken up residence in the ancient stump of an olive tree . . . and I still can't figure out for the life of me whether someone worked the wood here to bring out the goat soul hidden in it . . . or perhaps it had just been butted repeatedly by a goat that had lived there ?
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33 comments:

Jo said...

Oh, look! Yay! I'm first, I'm first!

Yes, blogging is a lot of fun, and sometimes for me it becomes overwhelming. I try to answer all of the commenters on my blog, but sometimes I am just not able to do it, for various reason, partly because I become overwhelmed. When I first started blogging, I didn't think of it in a social-networking sort of way, but that it what it seems to have become. So, thank goodness not everyone comments, but you may be surprised at how many people do read your blog. It's wonderful...!

Owen said...

Jo ! You are definitely first today ! That makes you the winner of the highly prized Early Bird Award today, and today's prize is permission to eat as much chocolate as you like today, on the condition that you take a nice long walk to compensate...
:-D

I can well imagine you may feel overwhelmed at times with close to 700 followers and alot of comments coming in... but then that is directly proportional to the excellent writing you do on such a regular basis on a wide variety of topics... I'm happy to have stumbled on your blog...

The Sagittarian said...

Again, great pix! I love that last one, did someone just carve it out of a stump? (Oh that sounds soooo wrong)

@eloh said...

This reminds me of the tree sculptures in the rear gardens of Heidelberg Castle.

I like this black and white, gives it an ominous look.

Selina Kingston said...

300 followers? 20,000 viewers?? It must be because you are so very good. That's the only reason I come back time after time.

But how do you find time to read everyone's blogs and leave comments as well? It's most impressive.

And I love love love that photo by the way but can you tell me why that Sagittarian finds rudeness in any old innocent phrase??! See it's impressive you have excellent followers too!

Selina x
(Thanks for you honest comments on my blog, by the way - I always appreciate them!)

the watercats said...

That's definately got to be some kind of druid, earth monkey clearing thing!... if that's naturally occuring it's beautiful... beautiful either way.. I want it... looks perfect for sacrificing things on for the sun :-P

Adam said...

I guess it's the same as having 300 'friends' on Facebook. Blogging can become a social media too, and those who have high numbers of followers are probably those following very high numbers of blogs themselves. I've never wanted to take that route, not because I don't find other blogs interesting but purely because it takes so much time. I decided that the time I do consecrate to blogging would be better served meeting people in the flesh, doing research and working on my prose! For what final reason, I'm not always sure!

Nathalie said...

Now that goat tree is something !
So extraordinary in fact that I couldn't help but think it was the result of post processing. But you're a serious guy so I'll take your word for its genuine nature.

As I read your blog this morning the number of followers has dropped to 298 - such is the fate of our blogs that nothing lasts... but it will rise again to much above 300 I'm sure.

It is my opinion that good blogs find their public and see their readership increase at a steady pace.

Keep it up!
Cheers,
Nathalie

Nathalie said...

BTW, your worked iron goat from Haiti is a real beauty - and your overturned car a frightening sight.

Loulou said...

What???? "answering comments is half the fun of blogging" ??? Half only?
Just kidding. Figures don't really matter, but let's say that some count more than some others!
Have a wonderful week
Loulou

designslinger.com said...

We started our daily visit to Magic Lantern recently.
We've kind of leveled out at about 350-400 visitors per day, then Friday's number came in at 2,543!!!
We were stunned.
Then Saturday we were back to a comfortable 310.
Numbers are fleeting. It's the blog/blogger that keeps us coming back, and the fun we have blogging that keeps us going.

TechnoBabe said...

Someone had to have worked on that leftover tree to make it look like a goat head. Had to have. Don't ya think???

French Fancy said...

That looks like something out of a pagan ritual. How weird.

Congrats on your 300 followers. I've not even reached 100 yet.

louciao said...

Size isn't everything, Owen. Sorry, just trying to get your goat!

Margaret Pangert said...

that is indeed a graceful goat, Owen. If I were Picasso, I would re-create it in iron and put it in the Museum of Modern Art in NY. Cool that you found that!

cieldequimper said...

Merci pour le commentaire... Moi je me sens un peu débordée en ce moment. Eh oui, le boulot...

babbler said...

Owen, and everyone I recognise as a familiar friend and gentleslug,

Hello! I want you all to know that on my drive to town, I have occaision to pass by a fellow whom I have named "Mr. Goat" grazing upon his grassy grounds in front of a car body shop off the side of the road near Newport Oregon. One day I stopped to visit Mr. Goat because it appeared that he had gotten tangled in his rope. I alerted the owner to his plight, and was promptly rewarded with learning Mr. Goats given name, which is "Butter." (He does have a very cute way of coming up to a person and applying pressure to your leg in a loving waywith the top of his furry gray head.)
Every time I pass the shop on the road, I ask the occupants in my car whther they think Butter is working or lounging in his goat house. Usually it depends upon the weather, so if it is particularly nice out, you can be sure that he is warming his belly on the sunlit pavement. If it is raining, he will be seen as a small head hiding all the way back in his goat house behind the lump of hay. Once in a while, his owner will give him lots of fruit, which tends to ferment and make him drunk. At these times you will notice that he will be down the hill on his lead in any kind of weather, searching for the tenderest shoots of grass on the hill. If the moon is full, Mr. Goat, er, Butter, will be "Out enjoying the evening air," much to the delight of everyone in the car.

This photo, to me, pays homage to my dear friend, Mr. Goat, AKA, "Butter."

Have a nice slide,

Love, Mrs. Slug

jeff said...

Salut mon pote de loin loin loin !
Lorsque je regarde ta photo... et plus du tout le texte qui l'accompagne ( Non, tu n'as pas d'excuses Owen... tu as voulu me vexer au sujet de mon excellent english... et bien.... tu as réussi ! ! ! )...Donc ta photo ne va pas sans me rappeller un travail de Picasso ! Pablo serait fier de voir que, inconsciemment, ses oeuvres laissent des traces dans l'inconscient universel !
Il s'agit de quoi en fait... D'un arbre, d'un guidon de bicyclette, d'un "toro"...? Non, je ne lirais pas le texte qui l'accompagne... mais si... je le lirais car tu es un excellent poète des mots ! Mais là, ce soir, les ressorts du matelas, le doux traversin et les draps si soyeux m'appellent pour aller pionser un bon coup ! Alors je reviendrais demain armé d'un traducteur ( ici dans le sud, ça veut dire que le mec qui connait la langue est en joue et qu'à la première connerie... on le flingue ! Un peu comme la carcasse de voiture que tu as vu sur mon blog !
Allez amigo...! Bonne soirée et sois sage ! Ne fais pas de folies de ton corps... et n'oublies pas ton infusion !...
Ciao bello !...:-)
A un de ces jours !

Peter said...

A recent fascination for goats? :-)
I visited your different links... Interesting, nice! Good, that's the way we should work, linking to others; not so easy to spontaneously find the blogs you find the most interesting.

Blogging also allows you to meet people; I may have met some 15 or 20 bloggers by now, meeting another one tomorrow! :-)

Owen said...

Peter : Perhaps I'm transforming, like Kafka, into an old goat ? I do love goat cheese... and thoroughly agree, blogging is about connecting with people, I hope to meet more, I've only met three so far... definitely would like to meet you and Adam in Paris one of these days, if my job will ever let me come up for air (gasp, choke, hack, he sputters while drowning)

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Ah Sacré Jeff ! Quelles merveilles de poèmes de chaleureux pensées tu es capable d'aligner quand tu t'y mets... un vrai plaisir... et avec Peter on disait que c'est sympa de rencontrer d'autres bloggeurs ou bloggeuses (pas très romantique ce mot "bloggeuse" !) Ah, un de ces quatre je partirai dans le sud pour passer par Avignon et trouver (je l'espère) la fameuse Nath, et puis par Hyère ou demain trouver un certain JF, puis vers je ne sais pas où, Draguingnon pour dire coucou à Clo, puis à Menton pour dire Woof à Jilly, puis à Rome pour voir Lola, et puis en Inde pour voir on sait qui ! Doux reves en pionçant bien les ressorts, afin d'être en forme pour continuer l'aventure...

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Dear Mrs Slug : What a fabulous goat story ! Really, the perfect name for a lovable goat "Butter". Priceless. That story is so excellent I think you should drop by Nanny Goats In Panties and leave it in her comment box... given how she loves all things with a goat scent on them. I do hope your good self and Mr Slug are sliding happily through life's slalom of calamities, well protected from marauding human feet in work boots... may your sliding be smooth !
:-D

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Salut Ciel, j'espère que le moment de débordement passera pour que tu reprennes tranquilement...

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Hello Margaret : Indeed, maybe I should head back there with a saw and save it from the weather, although perhaps this photo is enough, I wouldn't want to anger the goat gods... I agree that Picasso might have liked this one...

robert said...

With a family-name that, when translated into English, would be Goat (Geiß in German) this entry was surely of interest.
With regard to numbers, there are three ways (Geiß, Geiss, Γκαίς)it can be written over here in Greece - looks as if my son will have much fun later, writing his name, let alone fun with public authorities...
A nice week for you.

Owen said...

Ah Mad Lynne : But size sure helps sometimes, and no getting my goat by butting in like that ! I'll bet you've been over at the Saj's place again, given that it's Tuesday and all. Happy strolling in Vancouver to you, you lucky sod... (to borrow a phrase from our mutual friend)
:-P

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Hi FF, agreed, this is one of the weirder things I've ever stumbled on, I half expected to see some white robed Druids come out from the nearby olive grove. Funny how serendipity works too, I'd sort of forgotten about this photo, but my random screen saver put it on the screen just before I stumbled on the Nanny Goats blog this weekend, so it was fresh in mind...

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TechnoB : well I'm really not sure, it was just so odd there all by itself. If there'd been other works of sculpture about the place I would agree, but this was just standing there as though fate had sculpted it through centuries of weather... the jury is still out on that one...

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Hi DesignSlinger... better slinging designs than guns I think. Wonder what caused a Friday with ten times as many visits as usual... the weirdities of the blogosphere I guess... in any case, you are right, it is the bloggers who capture our imaginations that keep us coming back...

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Hey Loulou ! Well ok, maybe three quarters of the fun ? Will do my best to make the week wonderful... with work what it is these days that is going to be a challenge... but that's ok, life would be dull with no challenges... love your photo of the man in the water there, it's a beauty...

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Hello Nath : I promise, no post processing as far as the photo goes, other than converting to black and white, but still can't figure out if it was a naturally occurring sculpture or not... or maybe Pablo stopped by that garden years ago ? Many thanks in any case... (better not let Louciao or Saj here you saying things like "Keep it up", or those rowdy people will be back here leaving all sorts of raucous remarks !)
:-D

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Hi Adam, I'm sure your perception is fairly true, like an incontinent dog I admit to having watered quite a few fire hydrants by signing up to follow blogs out there, leaving my calling card, but always thinking that one day I'll have more time to get back to them... which day may never come, or perhaps it will, who knows... Anyway, the time you spend out meeting people to get their stories, and working on your prose, certainly shows in your posted results... which are always a pleasure to peruse...

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Hi Vicky : I think you're right ! It may be a giant divining rod which put down roots when it discovered water not to deep below the surface... well, if you really want it, I can take you to the spot, I remember pretty well where it is (was?), hopefully no other collector of odd objects has been there since with a saw... as in, I came, I saw, I sawed, I took it home...

Owen said...

Hi Selina, ah that Saj, she's really something, eh ? A thousand thanks... honestly, I don't know where the time goes, I feel like I never quite get around everywhere I'd like too, and before I know it, the cycle starts all over again, but I see it sort of as insurance against precocious Alzheimers, something very nourishing for the mind I think to use it, to exercise it, and cooking up comments all over the map on widely varied subjects for hours at a time is fabulous fun, if nothing else... so, stop by when you can, the coffee is always on....

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@eloh, have never been to Heidelberg nor its castle... is that where the printing press came from ? And yes, this is one ominous goat, sort of like some African masks that witch doctors might wear... I'd love to strap this on my forehead and dance through the streets of New Orleans on a Mardi Gras night...

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Dearest Saj, it sounds so wrong, but it feels so right ! Did I say that ? Well, just take the goat by the horns, as it were, and feel the earth's vibrations welling up from a hidden source, I'm sure these are some sort of magical antennae for receiving energy from the stars, and converting it to wavelengths readable by goats...
;-p

Quiche said...

Nifty, strange, organic sculpture...formation...thingy- ha! Whatever it is, or how it came to be, it is extremely interesting- great photographer too!

As for blogging...I am apparently as unsuccessful at it as I am at getting paid/hired to do graphic design- sad, but true. I am however grateful and appreciative of the nifty friends world over I have made, the reason I stay, and consolation for the lack of viewers/followers. Likewise, par excellence, Blogger is one of the few places that is essentially one's own space, sound board, etc., and I like that you have to opt into Google Ad Sense, when in most social networking and many blog sites there is no opt-out of banner ads without a fee- props to Blogger!

Catherine said...

wow that tree stump looks really pagan - is there a cult worshipping it ?? Blair Goat Project meets Lord of the Goats???

Owen said...

Catherine, if there isn't a cult yet, I think I'm going to have to start one... The Cult of the Horned Goat ? Butt Heads Anonymous ? Kult of Krazy Kids ? Well, anyone have any other ideas for a name for a new goat worshipping cult ? Goat cheese and wine will be served while we mull it over...

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Hey Quiche ! It's been a little while... many thanks, and yes, I too am surprised at just how far and wide blog allows one to roam, while sitting in an armchair. Here's hoping your graphics and blogging both will take wing...
A bientôt

AmyR said...

300 comments - I couldn't even imagine!


I love that the nanny goats are not only wearing panties, but granny panties at that! Nannies in Grannies. :D

Adam said...

Owen: It's a good idea you have to meet up in Paris. We should organise something with Peter!

Nanny Goats In Panties said...

You are so sweet! Thanks for all the gooey link love and the kind words and how cool is that that I'm the 300th follower? I'm going to try not to spoil it by saying that somebody since then has pooped out and another taken its place so now the numbers are all confused...at one point I was indeed the 300th follower, or at least I was the first 300th follower - woo hoo!!!

And that tree...how weird is that?

Nanny Goats In Panties said...

And 300 followers? That's awewsome!

Harry 'aka' Mojo said...

Hey Owen..Why am I always the last one to comment? HA!..
Love the photo..I can see it now..
late at night..little trolls dancing
a " Trolls Dance" by the firelight
chanting a Trolls chant as only they can..eating clams on the half shell and leaving them on the ground not to be cleaned up the next day..Just a wicked little trolls toga party and this is the aftermath..:-)
Cheers Mate!

Roxana said...

yes, as others have already pointed out, even if my group of readers and followers is very small compared to yours, i also find it increasingly difficult to answer the comments, i would post more frequently if i could solve that dilemma - but i am like you, i really enjoy and treasure the dialogue, so it doesn't look like i am likely to find a solution very soon :-)

does it sound weird if i say that i have fallen in love with your goats? :-)

Tom Bejgrowicz said...

Owen,
I'm up towards 950 visits a month, about 3000 page views, 1:38 per visit on the site, etc. I can't complain – even if very few leave comments. Okay, I just complained a hair right there I suppose! ;)

Overall, I barely have time to shoot and post the images, let alone surf the web myself. With that said, I greatly appreciate the fact that anyone's stopping by, you know? God knows there's a billion other blogs to explore.

It can't last forever. For me, there's only so many great places to explore and so much time to concentrate on something that doesn't make me any money. The fun is sharing, and the more that view the blog the more fun it becomes.

Cheers,
Tom b.