Wow. All the comments, FB messages and email … the love, people, the love. 🙂 Yes, I get discouraged and default to blogging about celebrity conception. And, yes, perhaps that is my little cry for help. Thanks for all the support. I promise not to quit in a blaze of glory. LOL. Of course, I find out Dennis Roddy asked to speak with me at BlogFest. Not sure if he said “Sue Kerr” or that lesbian blogger, but either way …. Dennis Roddy!
It hasn't been a bad week at all.
After a seven to nine month battle, the County Assistance office finally approved my grandmother's PDA 60+ Waiver which means we should be able to keep her out of a nursing home until it is absolutely necessary. Only a few more hurdles (mostly meetings) and I can breathe a little more easy. I also learned that my grandmother's new hairdresser went a little overboard on the red dye and she looks a little vivid. Oh well, there are worse things that could happen, right? She likes it! Battling for public benefits is an awful nightmare. My grandfather worked 30+ years for J&L Steel and got screwed on his pension. Her pension is like $78/month and it took months to get the Federal Pension Guarantee Bureau to send a simple verification of income letter. I would have simply preferred to reimburse the money rather than go through that red tape.
The fun little aside is the my second cousin's wife and I are now FB friends and she made a cute comment about that little update. I also used FB to track down some potential other second cousins. Kewl, n'est pas? Let us see if they respond to me. Still, family is family. I have nearly 1300 people in my family tree and it is addictive to track down the details of their lives. I've only met DJ once but FB really does bridge that geographic gap to give you a connection.
Around the queerosphere …
Pam has some details on how national LGBT organizations are struggling with the tough economy. This could impact us here in Pittsburgh. The Victory Fund is cutting back on campaign donations to openly LGBT candidates and we have one running here. Hopefully, this might help organizations be a bit more accountable to their constituencies and help say the HRC reconsider their stance on an inclusive ENDA? I'm not saying reduced circumstances are a good thing, but as I'm sure your ability to give has been impacted you might want to tighten up your criteria as well. The groups certainly need your support. Don't stop giving, just give in a way that reflects your own values.
Here's Pam's take:
Quite frankly, this is an opportunity to streamline organizations and look at the ways that they can collaborate and effectively use lower-cost methods of outreach and activism in this digital age. Those LGBT non-profits that learn to innovate and thrive in lean times will receive attention of donors whose dollars they want to see spent wisely and effectively.
Surf over for some interesting insight on the impact on LGBT media. As I mentioned in an earlier comment, I've been asked to contribute content to two local publications, Cue Pittsburgh and the PrideGuide. One of the factors I'm mulling over is whether writing for free has an impact beyond just me … does it devalue LGBT journalism as a whole if you can get a non-professional writer like myself to give you free content? Sure it does. So is it ethical for me to contribute when I have no intention of leaping into paid journalism and I know there are qualified LGBT professional journalists in my own backyard?
The role of bloggers and citizen journalism is less clear. For those of us who do it as a personal outlet, labor of love, or as a contribution to the movement, it simply doesn't pay the bills. On one hand it would be great to do it full time, but in times like these, it's good, quite frankly, not to be dependent on advertising or donations to survive, even if it means the day job always comes first. I think readers are more likely accept less frequently published and updated content on blogs rather than pay for it, and that if the Blend or any other frequently visited blog were to go away because its author(s) had to quit writing, eventually they'd find another outlet to read. No one is indispensable.
I can't imagine anyone paying to read a blog, at least not a Pittsburgh blog. I was pretty annoyed when the Post-Gazette put out feelers for folks to blog for free after laying off unionized writers. Most bloggers recognized the conondrum and opted out. Most. Not that they approached me, mind you. Can you imagine a lesbian blog at the PG? I'm choking on my coffee. A blog written by someone who happens to be a lesbian, sure. Maybe. If my source is right. LOL.
This is probably long enough and I have to surf over to read my soap opera updates. Yeah. I like the soaps. If I could write for the soaps, that would be awesome.