Sunday, January 08, 2006
The Sog Blog
Paulzy and I have an odd relationship. The fact that it even exists is pretty serendipitous. When Dave and I were doing SERFing, he happened to see the blog title pop up on the main Blogger site, recognized the name (the SERF is the Southeast Recreational Facility), visited and left a message. As a result, I started reading his blog. Eventually, I dropped him a note that we should pick up a beer sometime, and met in the real world after, probably, 9 months. Now I count him in my circle of friends even though we've probably only met up with each other a handful of times in the real world.

We have a surprising amount in common--primarily, we're both liberals from roughly the same geographic area of Northern Wisconsin. I've always had an interest in "prairie progressivism," the old-school rural politics of the DFL and the even old-schoolier Progressive Party (you ever been to a Democratic Party meeting in a town of 866 people? I have. Several). Give the two of us beer and barstools and we'll chat (increasingly nonsensically as intoxication increases) for hours.

Anyway, to avoid doing work at work, there's often a flurry of e-mails between the two of us (he still lives near Madison). The topics generally revolve around politics, sports, and the tech industry. But we also both like discussing Paul Soglin, Madison's former mayor (somebody out there, please write a Wikipedia entry). My mom's also a fan, as he was mayor when she was at Wisconsin. He's the former "Red Mayor" that came to power out of the anti-war protests of the late 60's and matured to become a rather pragmatic and effective public administrator. Ironically enough, he was narrowly beaten from the left in 2003 general election by the current Mayor Dave (who I also admire) after the unpopular incumbent Sue Bauman lost in the primary.

Reading the WSJ today (the Wisconsin State Journal, not that crony rag from New York), I saw this article:

Political bloggers blossom in Wisconsin

In the article, they mentioned Paul Soglin's blog, Waxing America, that he apparently started in October. It should be interesting reading. I've put it on the menu on the left (no pun intended).
It's true. Awful random when you consider the sheer numbers of "recently updated" blogs that scroll through Blogger, among them the thousands of spam blogs. Add to that the low probabilities of me clicking through to one based on a name that was quite possibly a misspelling. Add to that the whimsical (or pathetic) mood I had to be in to randomly comment on some guy's workout blog. Compound that with the possibility that said workout blog's author was actually a really nice guy, unlike, as to which Nathan can attest, many of the folk who work out at the SERF and one ballsy enough to invite me out for a random beer. (I would talk of the improbabilities of me being the kind of guy that would have an occasional beer, but even a cursory knowledge of my blog would contradict that.)

Serendipitous indeed.
Thanks for the mention and link. Well-written post about Rapids and its deterioration.

Barry Orton
(UW prof & Soglin blog factotum)
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