The unexpected side effects of blogging

Frarochvia noticed an important detail in one of yesterday’s pictures – an ASL book. Last night I started taking ASL classes through Minneapolis Community Education.

“Hey, big kitty, what does this mean in Kitty Sign Language (KSL)?” -Mayhem

“It means you’re smooshing my ear and cruising for a bruising, May!” -Chaos

ASL is one of those unexpected side effects of blogging. (Not making the connection yet? Read on!) Like many of you, I’ve developed a number of friendships through blogging and have met bloggers from the Twin Cities, from across the US, and from overseas. Spoken English has been the common language; however, it isn’t the common language of some deaf bloggers I very much hope to meet and spend time with: my dear friend Fraro, local Limedragon, and Tiphanie. I don’t want our meetings to consist of us typing frantically and staring at our computer screens – we already have that down without leaving our own living rooms.

So I’ve been inspired to go forth and learn ASL. And I find myself thinking about blogging and the direct benefits (connection! community! friendship! laughter and tears!) and some indirect benefits, such as this ASL class. What have the expected and unexpected benefits of blogging been for you? The direct and indirect benefits? I’m curious. This seems a great topic for discussion.

Speaking of discussion, recently, Deb aka Chappysmom wrote about a post she’d read on getting more blog comments by replying to comments via comments instead of via email. She was curious what we thought about it; a very interesting discussion subsequently developed in her comments as the author of the aforementioned post and others participated.

Now, I personally really like replying to comments via email because some great conversations and friendships get started that way. You know who you are! ;) But since I’m curious to see what sort of discussion develops in the comments if I reply there and maybe some of you return a time or two to contribute additional thoughts to the discussion, I’m not going to reply to the emailed comments for this post. Nor am I going to reply to every single comment with a comment of my own. I’m just going to participate in the discussion, and I hope you will, too!

“Gee, I guess he wasn’t kidding about that one… Hey, what do you think this is the sign for in KSL? Maybe ‘Help?!!’ Or ‘Unpaw me, you wretch?!!’” -Mayhem

(Nope, they aren’t dusty or dirty – they are simply covered in catnip…)