Blog: Verb, noun and new territory

By Karl Terry: PNT Managing Editor

Welcome to my blog.

Now that I’ve researched it, I think maybe I can blog.

You’ll notice that I’ve used the word blog as both a noun and a verb. Pretty good for a word I couldn’t even find in my dictionary.
OK, maybe I should buy a new dictionary more often than once every-other decade.

The word has permeated our society the last few years and I was aware of it and I’m online enough these days that I thought I knew what a blog was, but when the boss asked me to blog from Cannon Air Force Base’s change of command ceremonies this coming week I began to wonder.

The word to me brings to mind being stuck in a mud bog somewhere. But with a few clicks of the mouse I learned it was actually formed by smashing two words together and pronouncing what survived from the collision. Web and log being those two words.

Not getting any help from my dictionary, copyrighted in another century, I turned online to Wikipedia to find out exactly what a blog was. Wikipedia is obviously another of those word collisions, but I kept driving and didn’t stop to investigate.

Wikipedia says a blog is typically a chronological posting on a Web site that provides news or commentary, often on a particular subject or topic. Ah-hah news and commentary, I can do that.

The information on Wikipedia also says blogs are often like online diaries. I’ve never done a diary or journal exactly. I have related a lot of personal stories, recollections and reflections through my weekly columns. Throughout my family and workplace they have a song they sing “My baloney has a first name — It’s K-A-R-L.”

Blogging could be fun. The boss said it could be commentary and that comes easy to those of us with a good line of bull.

My other concern was how we were going to do it technically. The boss’ first answer was that there were lots of places I could get a connection on base including some type of wireless hotspot. I pointed out I didn’t have a computer with a wireless card available and he said, “Well, we’ll figure something out.”

Next time I talked to him he had it figured out. “Dictation,” he said.

“What’s that?” I asked, using my best baloney voice.

He quickly pointed out he knew how old I was and how long I’d been in the newspaper business. He was right, I’ve dictated or caught more dictated football stories on Friday night than I care to remember. I was just a little bummed that my first venture into the blogosphere would be via such a low-tech vehicle. To pull me down even further the boss later e-mailed me saying not to call him on his cell phone. He can’t take dictation while talking on it.

I do think this thing can be pulled off live from the flightline but I’m relieved to say it probably wouldn’t be possible without a couple of determined journalistic dinosaurs at the helm. It’s kinda like when Mr. Ford’s new invention was first traveling the countryside. Once in awhile it became stuck in a mud bog and it took a team of mules to extricate the flashy Model-T.

Check our Web site pntonline.com Monday morning to see how my first blog turns out. Let’s celebrate this historic milestone online together.

Karl Terry is the managing editor of the Portales News-Tribune. He can be contacted at 356-4481, ext. 33, or by e-mail:
karl_terry@link.freedom.com