Robert Basler, Oddly Enough Blog, Reuters blog (December 5, 2011)
"News, but not the serious kind"
"Let's get the sad news out of the way first.
"After an exhilarating five-year run, this blog is ending its run here. Websites change, and take new directions.
"The slightly better news is that we have a couple of weeks until my final post, so let's have fun...."
That phrase, "let's have some fun," pretty much sums up Robert Basler's Oddly Enough blog. A tip of the Lemming's hat to Mr. Basler, for drawing our attention to bizarre fashion, British royalty, and assorted weirdness. It's the Lemming's opinion that folks need to lighten up from time to time, unhitch that tight collar, and laugh a little.
Basler's Oddly Enough has helped us do just that.
But why, oh, why would Reuters consign Oddly Enough to the dustbin of history?! Particularly now, on the very heels of the calamitous news that Cinnamon the rabbit shuffled off this mortal coil. Well, nearly. Disapproving Rabbits' Cinnamon became one with Nineveh and Troy in June. ("Sic Transit Gloria Bunny - Cinnamon, of Disapproving Rabbits" (June 22, 2011)) That "mortal coil," by the way, has nothing to do with a busted electric motor. It's from Shakespeare's "Hamlet," and that's another topic.
Back to Mr. Basler and Oddly Enough:
"...I've enjoyed everything about creating and writing Oddly Enough. My advice is, if somebody offers to pay you to be a sarcastic smartass, take the job. Especially if it includes dental insurance.
"Some of the things I will miss most…
"9. The Photos: The Reuters photo file is a grand candy store. It has been a treat to look through it daily, searching for goofy gems in a sea of serious images. I'm sure it's fair to say many of the shots in my blog don't get used anyplace else. Indeed, it was the richness of our photo archive that inspired the blog's fabled Goofy Face Museum and Doughnut Shop, which will be a runaway success if it ever opens...."
It is the Lemming's sincere hope that Reuters has the good sense to keep the old Oddly Enough blog posts online - and at their original URLs. Some online content, like weather forecasts and halftime scores for last week's game, may not be worth keeping around. Basler's Goofy Face Museum and Doughnut Shop? That collection of oddball expressions should have entertainment value, as long as folks know what "spam," "Ronald," and "Outback Steakhouse," mean.
Maybe even longer.
The Lemming's opined on the annoying habit some website owners have, of shuffling, reorganizing, or removing, content. The Lemming suspects clueless supervisors, caffeinated interns, and sophomores with all the answers, are involved: and that's yet another topic.
Robert Basler's Oddly Enough blog has wandered into the silly side of serious news on occasion:
- "Self-Discipline Threatens Economy! No, Really"
(October 1, 2009)
- "Mr. Basler's Worst Men's Fashions, 2010"
(December 10, 2010)
- "Mr. Basler's Worst Women's Fashions of the Year"
(December 9, 2010)
- "Good Grief, What Was the Fashion Designer Thinking?!"
(March 8, 2010)
- "Frankenmodel: Or, 'After This Job, You Die'"
(January 29, 2010)
Then there were posts like the one micro-reviewed in "Is Your Fitness Instructor a Zombie?"
You'll find more of the Lemming's take on world of fashion, by clicking the "fashion link in this blog's Label Cloud.
Here's the rest of Mr. Basler's countdown of things he'll miss:
"...8. The Animals: Readers know I have a soft spot for animals. I have supported animal rescue in this blog, and....
"...7. The Words: This is a blog for lovers of our language. I have tried my best to revive neglected words such as haberdasher and scalawag and floozy. If you heard someone shout 'Huzzah!' in Starbucks...
"...6. Lamar: I didn't see it coming when I created this recurring character representing the incompetence in all of us. ... When the blog goes away Lamar will be relocated to a secret place by the Federal Witless Protection Program....
"...5. The Duchess: A blogger's best friend, without a doubt. When I want to pander for page views, I turn to Catherine...
"...4. Those wacky Republicans: Where do I begin? With....
"...3. The Truth: I'm allowed to invent fun stuff in this blog, but as a journalist I know the truth is much stranger than anything I can imagine....
"...2. The Commenters: I value all my readers, but especially those who have contributed so much to the comments section. We've received an astonishing 46,000 reader comments in five years....
"...1. And the number one thing I'll miss about this blog is… Wait. It's here somewhere. Nobody leaves this room!..."
Finally, about #4, "Those wacky Republicans," the Lemming is nowhere near 'intelligent' or 'sophisticated' to believe that Republicans are doo-doo heads and Democrats possess knowledge and wisdom beyond human understanding. Or that Democrats are daft and Republicans reasonable. Life's seldom that simple. Mr. Basler apparently has spent his life in North America's dominant coastal culture, and is imbued with that culture's perceptions and assumptions.
And those fashion photos are hilariously bizarre.
Update (December 16, 2011)
Mr. Basler's last Oddly Enough post:
- "The last huzzah?"
Oddly Enough, Reuters blog (December 15, 2011)
- "Intermittent Alliteration: Interested?"
(January 8, 2011)
- "Shirley Booth Didn't Kill Lincoln at a Ford Dealership?"
(January 3, 2011)
- "Oddly Enough Blog: Basil Strings Along"
(December 29, 2010)
- "Holiday Santa: 'How Much for Just the Head?' "
(December 25, 2010)
- "Eight Goofiest Photos: Again; Except Not Eight This Time"
(December 16, 2010)