The power of blogs
I believe that one of the most powerfulâ€”and underappreciatedâ€”things about blogs is their ability to give us an entirely new perspective on a city or a job or a person, a window into a life completely different from our own.
For instance, I bookmarked Scott Lynchâ€™s personal blog because I enjoyed reading his first novel. But in addition to writing, he is also a firefighter, and he blogs about his experiences on the job. A recent entry gave me a peek into the challenges of that job that I had never considered:
â€œItâ€™s difficult to think of our cuddly, cozy, familiar homes as inherently dangerous places, but believe me, outside of the Acme Razor Blade and Hydrochloric Acid Factory, homes are the most unpredictable and dangerous places you could ever think to have a fire. We keep so much stuff in so many weird placesâ€”through thoughtlessness, negligence, or unhappy accidentâ€”that can â€˜enhance the experience.â€™ You want a ready-made hazmat incident? How many chemicals do you keep under your kitchen sink? Twenty? Thirty? What fun things happen when you burn them together? How about your bathroom cleansers? Your aerosol cleaners and air-fresheners? Stacks of batteries? Shotgun shells? Knives and swords? Weightlifting equipment? Good lord, what do you have in your garage? Weed killers, fertilizers, several different types of oil and fuel, wasp spray, spray paints, varnishes ... rakes, chainsaws, hatchets, knives ... you've got â€™em. I've got â€™em.â€ (Scott Lynch)
Now I have a whole new reason to respect firefighters and the work that they do, one that I may never have thought of if I hadnâ€™t read the blog of a firefighter.
For associations representing professions or industries that are underappreciated or even unknown to the publicâ€”could a memberâ€™s blog help open peopleâ€™s eyes? Not a carefully massaged press release, but a simple, first-person account of day-to-day experiences in your profession or industry. Iâ€™d be curious to see it happen.
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