How Long Can We Do This?

by Bob Sparrow

masthead_4_copy.png   While Suzanne was enjoying the cooler environs of Nipomo and I was trying to sneak into Russia, this past August marked a small blog milestone – our 4-year anniversary. Those of you who have been with us for the entire ride may remember that our blog started in August 2011 – we certainly don’t remember back that far! Initially it was a way to use social media to drive visitors to our ill-fated tribute poem writing business, Red Posey. The blog was then entitled Morning News in Verse and we would follow a USA Today newspaper format by writing four rhyming stanzas about topical news – one stanza each about Headlines, Business, Sports and Entertainment. Suzanne and I would alternate publishing a poem EVERYDAY!   That everyday thing lasted for about two months, when we realized that it was occupying way too much of our life – like all of it; so we cut back to twice a week. Every once in a while we would deviate from the poetic format, as deviates are wont to do, and write prose about various subjects. An example of this occurred in September of 2011, the 10th anniversary of 9/11, when Suzanne wrote a moving piece entitled, Small Moments – A 9/11 Tribute, World Trade Center 9/11/01which received a large number of hits and many great comments – it is still to this day, probably the most visited blog in our archives. We eventually noticed that our number of blog hits and comments would increase when we scrapped the iambic pentameter and just wrote prose, not like pros, but prose nonetheless. While we immediately noticed the increase in interest when we scraped the poetry format, it took us until March of the next year to officially change our content and format to what it is currently. And since we weren’t rhyming any more we changed our name – not to Morning News Without Verse, but to ‘From A Bird’s Eye View’, a name borrowed from a newspaper column our mother wrote for the Novato Advance back when our dad was owner, editor and publisher of that paper in the 1940 and 50s.

We continued to post a blog twice a week, on Tuesdays and Fridays, until July 2012. Then, either sensing that we were running out of ideas or audience, or both, we switched to our current schedule of every Monday morning. Whether the deadline was everyday, twice a week or once a week, I am happy to report that we have not missed a scheduled posting since starting this back in August 2011; I guess that’s due in part to our father’s newspaper blood coursing through our veins, where missing a deadline just isn’t an option.

Novato Advance

Dad & Mom in front of the Novato Advance

Over these past four years we have published over 300 blogs, which have generated over 25,000 ‘views’ and nearly 1,000 comments (A special thank you to those who comment and let us know that our words don’t just fly off into cyber space). Our biggest day came last December when 388 people clicked on Suzanne’s ‘A TRIBUTE TO MY FIRST BEST FRIEND’ about her friend Leslie Sherman.  And if you Google ‘From a Bird’s Eye View blog’, you will find about 530 results over 12 pages – we are fortunate enough to be found . . . on the first page!!!

I’ve been lucky enough to visit a lot of remarkable places and meet a number of interesting people; and I am thankful for staying awake in English class long enough to understand how to put a sentence together without dangling a modifier . . . most of the time. But the best part of all this is working with my sister, Suzanne. While our styles are a bit different, we enjoy reading and editing each other’s posts prior to publishing (OK, she edits mine a whole lot more than I edit hers!), discussing subject matter, travel schedules and just plain catching up with each other on a much more regular basis than before we started writing together.

So as we try to avoid breaking our arms from patting ourselves on the back, we’d mostly like to thank you loyal ‘bird watchers’ for tuning in. As you know, we have written about everything from the ridiculous to the sublime (mostly me the ridiculous and Suzanne the sublime), so thank you for tolerating the expression of our thoughts, opinions and experiences.

How long can we do this? As long as you keep reading, we’ll keep writing.

Suz-Bob

Thank you!!

 

STILL DIGGING FOR THE GOOD NEWS

Headlines: Time to Stick Our Heads in the Sand

Rogue solder in Afghanistan, the Taliban’s enraged;

Massacres In Syria – this whole world’s an ugly stage.

But on this Tuesday morning, let’s not the bad news chase;

Let’s focus on the things that put a smile upon our face.

Money: Just What We Needed – Longer Days

We’ve made it through that weekend where we had to change our clocks,

And now we are just days away from the Vernal Equinox.

When Spring begins in earnest and the sun is beaming stronger,

When our nights are getting warmer and our days are lighter longer.

Sports: Tiger’s Having Another Hissy Fit

College basketball’s ‘Big Dance’ gets started off this week,

While Peyton’s on a US tour, a new football team to seek.

And Tiger keeps on swearing and after bad shots bangs his club;

It seems that the ‘new Tiger’ is more like a tiger cub.

Life: Whatever You Eat . . . It’s Bad For You.

In looking for some good news about things to drink and eat,

We didn’t find much solace for those who eat red meat.

But veggies contain pesticides and mercury’s in our fish,

So this evening try some raw nuts and a gourmet tofu dish

 Bon Appetite!

Subscribe now and avoid the rush when we become famous.

Thank you, Sis!

by Bob Sparrow

First and foremost, thank you Sis for last week’s wonderfully written tribute that touched my heart.  I feel so very fortunate that you are not just family, you are a true friend.

Those who have lost someone very close know that for a period of time, the world just isn’t quite right; days seem a little cloudier, the music is a little flat; things are just out of rhyme.  Which, for someone tasked to put some topical, humorous rhymes together, is problematic. For example, reading the HEADLINES this week all I get is:

      The word came in a ‘Rush’, when he called that girl a slut;                                                   He passed up a really good chance to keep his pie hole shut.

Ok, it’s not out of rhyme, but it’s not out of Shakespeare either.  There’s just no good stories about MONEY these days:

   They have nets around the top floors of the ‘sweat shops’ in China                                       To catch the workers when they jump, so they don’t miss a day of work.

See, out of rhyme.  SPORTS – you’d think it would be easy with all that’s going on.

Waiting for March Madness, waiting for Baseball, waiting for the Masters                            Waiting for Danica Patrick to beat the boys.

See, now I’m writing about NASCAR, for crying out loud, ya’ll.  And LIFE?  It sucks right now, but it will get better, and so will my rhymes.

So why not subscribe to Morning News In Verse so it comes directly to your email – where you can delete it without even opening it up.  It’s free.  Two steps: A) fill in the white blank in the right hand column of this blog with your email address, and 2) go to your email and confirm the subscription.  Instruction for the secret handshake will be forwarded as soon as your background clearance is complete.

Also we’d really like to hear from you, so click on ‘comment’ and let us know what you’re thinking.  Or riddle me this: we get more hits, significantly more, when we write prose verses poetry, can you tell us why?  Saying something like ‘bad poetry’ is perfectly acceptable.

Thank you to current and future subscribers for your support

Show Me The Money

Headlines: The Free Throws Were Not Free

While Republicans were busy debating, and trying to raise some more cash,

Obama was looking to the NBA to increase his campaigning stash.

Magic Johnson, Mark Cuban and a slew of other stars were there for Obama’s little speech

Just a small gathering of the elite, who paid thirty thousand . . . each!

Money: This Gives Me Gas

Why the sudden rise in gas? you inquire, it’s up past the four dollar mark.

The experts have tried to figure out why, but they say that they’re still in the dark.

Production is up and consumption is down, is this really just some kind of scam?

Well yes, they’re raising the prices of gas, simply because they can.

Sports: The 11th Commandment

Brady Quinn finally got some attention, for speaking his mind in GQ

And making some comments on Tebow, which caused quite a hullabaloo.

Now Brady is down at the training camp, packing up all of his gear,

Because he took Tebow’s name in vain, he probably won’t be there next year.

Life: What, No Who, Will You Be Wearing?

This Sunday the Oscars will be handed out, in resplendent style we’re sure.

Joan Rivers, Red Carpet, and ‘Who designed that?’, we’ll simply have to endure.

We’ll enjoy Billy Crystal taking shots at the stars, in his tux he will dance and he’ll sing,

And not for the first time a film might be honored that just doesn’t say anything.

 

 

 

THIS WILL HELP BRING YOU DOWN FROM YOUR VALENTINE CHOCOLATE HIGH

Headlines: Apparently Before ‘The Pill’ There Was Aspirin

Contraception’s become a political football that was bouncing around on the ground,

When Andrea Mitchell, wanted someone to address it, and here is the person she found.

A colorful backer of Santorum is he, Foster Friess (yes, that’s pronounced ‘Freeze’);

Who said, “Back in my day they just used an aspirin, the gals put it between their two knees”

Money: Another Wise Investment By Our Government

Clean-energy company, Solyndra, which we now know didn’t have a clue,

Got a half-billion loan from the government, without telling them what they could do.

They raved all about their technology to make energy plentiful and green,

And now they have gone out of business, I guess we’re the only ones that got cleaned

Sports: The ‘Showdown’ At Pebble

Mickelson and Woods at last played together on Sunday at famed Pebble Beach.

They both trailed the leader by just a few strokes, so the prize was still in their reach.

Phil hit all the fairways and dropped all his puts and ended up winning it all;

While Tiger looked more like a whipped pussy cat, who was left choking on a hair ball.

 Life: Someone Like You?  Not That I’ve Ever Heard

We usually rag on the rich and the famous; it’s so easy to carp and to gripe,

But it seems for the most part, this year’s Grammys show, finally lived up to the hype.

Adele was clearly the star of the show with six Grammys tucked under her wing;

So British, so cheeky, so funny, so real, and Wow can she ever sing!

Subscribe and win a chance at a trip around the world

(in your imagination)

A Post Without Politics – You’re Welcome!

Headlines: Who Needs Ammo?

The army in old Mexico is not the one of old;

The one that fought for Spanish gold with bravery untold.

They were bold caballeros who fought until the death,

But now they’re rather mellow, finding 15 tons of meth.

 

Money: FBI Finds Out That Steve Jobs Was Different From the Rest of Us!

This week the FBI released its file on Steve Jobs;

They called him an elitist who would often act the snob.

They said that he did acid and probably smoked some pot,

But he’s the one who did create so many toys iBought.

Sports: It’s The ‘Lull Season’

Of NBA and college hoops there’s just not much to write,

And I’m only watching hockey cuz I’m hoping for a fight.

No football hype, no Tebow bash, no fans in soccer riot;

Why even Giselse Bundchen has decided to stay quiet.

 

Life: ‘Beach Gizzers’ Back Together at the Grammys

This Sunday is the Grammys, an all-star music fest;

The Beach Boys will be singing, but they’re hardly at their best.

Their skin is chapped and leathery, their voices strained and dry,

But their music always takes us back to those golden days gone by.

Be a ‘subscriber’; it’s free and we’ll come directly to your email

See box in the upper right of this page

Here’s To A Super Weekend

Headlines: ‘The Donald’ Has Spoken

The list of presidential candidates is getting fairly thin,

As Mr. Trump has just stepped up to tell us who should win.

He’s just backed Mr. Romney with his self-important flair

And Mitt’s not sure that it’s a plus to have the backing of ‘The Hair’

Money: Facebook IPO – Because $3.9 Billion in Cash Isn’t Enough

We’ve watched the Facebook story and how their profits spike,

And with their recent IPO we can really show we ‘Like’.

Is this investment for the rich, the young or empty nesters?

Oh, never mind, it’s only open to those privileged investors.

Sports: It’s Super Weekend . . . For Madison Avenue

This weekend there’ll be football, you can hear the final roar,

For Sunday is the Super Bowl or perhaps the Super Bore.

As many times the game is dull and often times it’s bad;

So pay attention at timeouts, as it’s then you’ll see the ads.

Life: Gives A Whole New Meaning to S.A.G.

Madonna is the half time show for Super Bowl this week;

At 54 it could be that she’s slightly past her peak.

But malfunctions of her wardrobe is of no concern, unless

The sight of her support hose can be seen beneath her dress.

 

 

Perry, Eastman, Lowe and Shatner

Headlines: “I’m Suspending My Campaign and I’d Like to Endorse . . . uhhh.

Governor Rick Perry has closed down his whole campaign;

He realized that his efforts were probably in vain.

As to whom he will endorse for election this November

He’d like to tell us all, but it seems he can’t remember.

Money: No Smiles For The Camera

They gave us ‘Kodak moments’ and film that was the best,

But the digital revolution caused the company much unrest.

George Eastman, the great founder, surely sheds a tear from heaven;

The Eastman Kodak Company has filed Chapter 11.

Sports: Who needs ESPN?

Is Payton coming back?  Will Eli play his best?

Will the team that wins it all be from the east or from the west?

Whatever you are hearing, if you really want to know;

All you have to do is get connected to Rob Lowe.

Life:  In Super Bowl Ad Has Shatner Going Over A Cliff A Bus

William Shatner was a ‘Trekie’ as the famous Capt. Kirk

And then in Boston Legal on TV did legal work.

For 14 years he’s told us they’ll negotiate with us,

But in an ad forthcoming, Priceline throws him off the bus.

Nomination Decided With Just Two States!

Headlines: Is the nomination process already over?

Iowa and New Hampshire have chosen Romney with their vote,

So it seems the other 48 have clearly missed the boat.

Romney is the nominee, stop the presses, hold the ads;

The best the rest of us can hope is not to have a hanging chad.

 

Money: Should the person putting out the unemployment numbers lose his job?

Last week our unemployment number was on a slight decline

And if that’s all we heard or saw then things would be just fine

But more numbers were released this week, unemployment’s seen a spike

So depending on your party, just pick the numbers that you like

 

Sports: C’mon Man, Where’s His Tats?  

If you’re wondering what all the fuss is around young Mr. Tebow,

There is something about the NFL fan that you clearly need to know.

They mock him and deride him with ridicule so strong,

Because their typical role model has a rap sheet a mile long.

 

Life: I’d Like to Thank All the Little People, Because They Make Me Look So Big

The Peoples Choice, The Critics Choice, the Oscars and the Emmys;

The actors in their latest fashion walk the carpet with such ease.

They put shining globes and statues upon their mansion’s shelves;

How many more awards will they create to fete themselves?

 Make it a redposey year

www.redposey.com

Bolsheviks, Brats, Bowls and Books

Headlines: In Russia, You’re Free to Vote For The Only Person on the Ballot

After 12 years of Putin the Russian people are saying

The Prime Minister should be all done.

But it’s hard to elect someone new to the office

When only Kremlin-approved parties can run.

Money: Got Some Ungrateful Rug Rats This Christmas?

If your kids were not happy with their Christmas this year

And they think money still grows on trees,

You can tell them that you’ll fill their stocking again,

But you’ll charge them a re-stocking fee.

Sports: Bowled Over

The Poinsettia, the Little Caesar the Belk and the Pinstripe,

The Fiesta, the Music City, the Sun and the Insight.

The Potato, the Liberty, the Fight Hunger, the Alamo,

The Sugar, the Rose, the Outback the New Mexico.

Life: Tired of Bowls?  Try One of These Top Books

The Leftovers, Bossypants, Death Comes to Pemberly,

In The Garden of Beasts, Catherine the Great, 11/22/63.

Last Man in Tower and Just My Type,

To Be Sung Underwater and A Stolen Life.

May Your 2012 Be Happy & Healthy

Bob & Suzanne