Here’s Why My Blogging Cup Runneth Over

by Jan Geronimo on September 11, 2009

blogging buddiesPhoto Credit:  Lucas Landau

What to you is a successful blogger? Is it the material things that blogging has brought you? That’s not my kind of metric. True, I plan to put up some ads here to make this blog self-sustaining. But if I fail? Just have to pay for the blog upkeep from my pocket. No sweat.

What successful blogging means to me

My relationship with my blogging buddies and readers is what keeps me writing online. It’s the fire in my belly. Makes me forgo sleep as long as I can hold out. And the first thing – barring coffee – that I look forward to in the morning.

It matters too that I make a positive difference in you my readers – however small that might be.  Have I made you feel a little better – maybe you left smiling or in deep thought – when you’re done reading?

Do I make you squirm and leave red in the face?  I can live with that, too, you know? The takeaway is that I make you feel alive and believe you can do much better than I can

Smarmy? Sentimental? Well, I don’t care what you call it.

For example, I went to Angeles City, Pampanga for a meet up with blogging buddies with only fare money and little else. Guess what? I ended up feeling rich. You want me to say that again? Rich!  This collage tells you why -

Partying with the Clin Chem Bloggers

So you see, I’ve finally met these young bloggers who helped me and five Jedi bloggers to win the Top 10 Emerging Influential Blogs of 2009. For our good fortune, it’s us who should fete them, right?  Nope, they hustled up a party in our honor.  That they were practically through with the final exams made it more enjoyable. It surprised me they brought two birthday cakes. One for me and the other was for Jena Isle who’d be celebrating her birthday soon.

Biggest takeaway: making memories together

For blogging buddies, any occasion is a perfect excuse to celebrate friendships that online interaction fosters.  And that’s what important to me.  Yes, they’re my treasure trove.

Doc Z with CLinical Chemistry Bloggers

You Lovely People

This kind of wealth is the most enduring benefit of blogging.  Memories you make with your friends – the food you shared, the drinks, the laughter, the personal stories of triumphs and grief.  The macbook pro that blogging bought for you will in due time break down.  Your Swiss watch may be lost or snatched away.  Google may decide one day to bury your blog in the search engine results pages.  The joys you have with friends, however,  rarely get devalued.  Instead, they do appreciate in value over time.

Memorable moments

  • Jedi blogger Roy has dog named Chuchie.  Sure thing, Chuchie lives up to its moniker as the dog with an attitude.  I went straight to Roy’s house when I arrived in Pampanga. To Chuchie it didn’t count that I had previously slept in the house of Puroy. That I’m an influential blogger?  She couldn’t care less.  Snarky, snarky dog.
  • Blog buddy Lyle and I bickered on Gmail Talk the night before the blog meet up on a minor issue which forced to me cut short my conference chat with him and Doc Z.  I was mad but when we came face to face, my resentment melted.  Of course, it helped a lot that he couldn’t eat till past 6pm in observance of Ramadan.  Guess what, I brought my plate of food and gorged in front of him.  Payback time!
  • Emcee Erika Shayne scared me to death when she asked me to give a few words before the young bloggers. Yet again, I cheated death and survived the experience. Erika put me at ease by prodding me which Hollywood actor I resembled most. Of course, I fumbled my way out of the trap.  Without the aid of alcohol, I just couldn’t let out that they could take me for Johnny Depp, right? That’s the trick – be always humble even if you look like Johnny Depp.
  • The food was superb. Grilled fish, sisig and other meat dishes cooked in the best Kapampangan tradition.  And I felt brave enough to eat buro – fermented rice with raw fish and small shrimps. The trick is you scoop a spoon of the pink stuff and wrap it in a leaf of radish – pretty much like you’re rolling cigarette paper.  The pungent leaf is a nice counterpoint to the dish.  Yup, buro is now my favorite .  It’s one of the things I’d look for again when I go back to Pampanga. Hey, I almost forgot their delicious tibuk tibuk or maja blanca . That, too.
Jen and Jan's Birthday

Jen and Jan's Birthday

  • Novz arrived with his family a little late because  he took them to Subic port and other places of note in Pampanga.  We had a lovely time talking with his parents.  Interestingly, it’s Dad who belted songs with relish.  The uber blogger son was relegated to the sidelines.
  • We sampled the night life of the City of Angels.  In one disco pub, we couldn’t hear ourselves talk. The show band’s music made my head throb.  At some point, Lyle and Doc Z scooted up in front of the stage and danced.  We couldn’t see them in the sea of pretty young things having fun.  The guys went back to our table grinning from ear to ear.  There was a drawback though. Doc Z nearly lost his voice dancing.  Strange huh?  Go figure.
  • We also went to videoke joint and had a room for ourselves. More drinks, food and yes, singing.  Roy did mellow songs along the likes of Jose Mari Chan. Lyle went back and forth between contemporary rock and ballads.  Doc Z did Bon Jovi.  Bonnie obliged us with a classic soft porn track.  And our gracious host and hottest momma in the city did Karen Carpenter.  Johnny Depp just took it all in, content to be a groupie of one for a change.

You are gold!

Gift that Keeps on Giving

Gift that Keeps on Giving

Remember the hit Spandau Ballet song “Gold?”  Student blogger Jhimpie sang it with so much conviction the song  is a fitting tribute to these young bloggers kindness, maturity, and sense of fun.
And my love is like a prison wall
But you could leave me standing so tall
Always believe in your soul
Youve got the power to know
Youre indestructable
Always believe in,because you are

I’ve the best of luck to meet the talented Eugene at last. While talking with Eugene had been a pleasure, I’d been bowled over by the singing prowess of Aiko, the emceeing talent of vibrant Erika, and the great camaraderie within this young circle of 29 talented bloggers.

Keep on blogging, guys.

Angeles is a city that never sleeps. But we’re good boys.  Psst – momma Jen was with us – so we called it a night at almost 3am.  Doc Z had patients to attend to even on a Sunday morning.  They checked in at a hotel while I went back to the house of Puroy to mend fences with Chuchie.  Failed.  But at least the next morning  I had the time of my life sharing breakfast with Roy and his awesome kids Angel, Ralph Emerson and Edgar Allen.

And that, guys, is what make me rich.  What about you?  What makes you keep the faith with blogging?

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  • Richard60
    What a fine looking group of people! You are very fortunate...
  • hi sir it's really overwhelming that you really had enjoyed our session last saturday.. we are very lucky to have the opportunity to meet all of you and have the chance to mingle with each other. Thanks for the appreciation that you have written in your post..

    i'm contestant in the National PAMET QUIZ SHOW , that is why I'm in a hurry.

  • Hi Jayson,

    Thanks for dropping by. I know you're all busy wrapping things up at the university so I'm very pleased you took a moment to drop by. Jayson, I've hoarded pictures of us enjoying ourselves on that great day. I've raided Jen's collection, and Doc Z, and Roy's as well. Because I truly enjoyed your company.

    Wow, you're in the PAMET Quiz Show? Galing mo naman. Good luck, Jayson. Go get them. :)

    Don't worry about the minor slip ups. You're not graded here. No one is graded here. Relax. And I'd be pleased if you can just call me Jan. Ahehehe
  • As I read this post I can't help myself not to feel envious. I envy you because you have lots of blogging buddies. I am also a blogger, but a lonely blogger that wanted to be in such happenings or gatherings. It's impossible for me to be on those kind of gatherings because of my work, also I can't be updated because I can just do my blog on computer shops. Jehzeel who is a very good friend of mine influenced me to do blogging, but in my two years of doing this stuff, I feel that I am not really into blogging. He also told me to read your blog posts, and as I see it, your goal is very good, that inspires me. More power!
  • Maybe I'm just lucky with my blogging buddies. Maybe the hard work -
    selection part of online friendships - has already been taken care of and
    still being taken care daily on my blog and in their blogs as well when I go
    visit them online. That takes care of the natural selection of who's going
    to connect with you in real life as well.

    After all, people with the same temperament, same aspirations, same set of
    values gravitate to those who are of the same persuasion. Meeting them in
    person then becomes a mere technicality.

    The bond of friendship has long been made online. Meeting them is just the
    icing on the cake. Okay, maybe the cake itself. lols

    I feel for you. I've got friends who are similarly situated and it sucks
    big time because I can't be with them in my lonely hours when I can't sleep
    and I'm longing to hear a friendly voice online. But take heart. Mag
    iimprove din situation natin.

    And that goes as well to our knowledge in blogging. Nagsimula naman tayo sa
    wala. Zero knowledge. But in our every day activities related to blogging,
    we get to learn new tricks, new ideas of doing things. In comes our
    blogging buddies. They're a blessing.

    Really? ahahaha. I will have to thank, Jehz, for pointing you in my
    direction. He really is a good friend, isn't he? As if I still have doubts
    about him no. Of course not.

    Thanks for sharing with us your thoughts. :)
  • The 3rd pic, Dr. Z with the lovely Chem students? Hi, lovely chem students.

    The 4th pic, a cake for Jan. Was that the belated b-day cake?

    Gold. Spandau? MY FAVS!

    "Always believin!'

    You've got the power to know!

    "The man with the September face..."

    Thanks for this one.


    @ Pareng Roy ... hehehe... a little awkward but don't worry no matter what I stand to what I voted. Those happy moments. Comment you left behind. Will visit you soon bro.

    Ah what the heck...

    Sigi na nga. CONGRATULATION 2009 Emerging Influential Blog. All I know is you work hard.

    You gave your precious time to the exodians blog.

    You influence me and I followed your blogs.

    I voted for you...

    You are one of the influential blogger for me.

    Can I have a cake now?
    And Water please...

    Glug! glug! glug!

    See you around.
  • Hi, Darbs.

    Yup, that's Doc Z with the lovely young bloggers. He's great with the
    ladies, Doc Z. In fact, he's a hit with everyone he meets - buddies and
    strangers alike. I see a career in politics for him, if he goes that route.

    Funny, when I was a kid my birthdays were celebrated simply. No cakes, no
    drinking, nothing. Kung kailan tumanda, dun nagka cake. Ahahaha.

    Gold. Spandau Ballet. Company of friends and would-be friends. Yup,
    surefire formula for a great get-together. :)

    Yes, Darbs, go get your slice. And take the mike too. We've got to hear you
    sing. Thanks for your kind thoughts. Means a lot to me. :)
  • hello, just checking you out, your site is very very impressive with a classy touch and the content is something indulging, keep it up...I will keep on popping up now and then...
  • Thanks a lot. That's music to my ears. :)
  • You are certainly blessed to be part of such a group JG, it's reciprocal nature is poetry in motion. You reap what you sow my friend.
  • Thanks, Trina. This encourages me to sow a little more harder. It's so precious to experience this. Started with you-read-my-blog-I-read-yours and ended up being real friends or what amounts to a blazing start toward real friendship. I can't be any luckier.
  • anjelica20
    after reading your post, all i can say is that my heart is over-flowing with joy that you guys enjoyed the little thing we prepared. we, along with our mother, Jena, really prepared for this day. and i am glad to hear that it is a success. there was birth of new friendships that are to last a lifetime. :) i am glad to be part of this group, it feels so good knowing that distance may keep us apart, but despite that, we have conquered it, we have made it possible. there is nothing impossible in this life. :) till we meet again sir, it will always be our pleasure to keep you company wherever it may be. :)
  • hi jan, i'm not sure if my earlier attempt to comment succeeded, but if it did, please delete this one. cheers!

    ah, blogger EBs and GTs. it's two of those peculiarities of the blogging universe that i have yet to explore. maybe one day - when i have the courage to meet fellow bloggers and the readiness to not meet their expectations. :P

    and when i no longer need to ask questions like: will i be interesting enough? won't i bore them to death? will they be disappointed to see i'm not as cute as advertised? hehehe.

    to answer your question, jan, a successful blogger for me is one who has created a community, or communities, in his own little corner of cyberspace. you often use the most appropriate word for it: connections. a blogger is judged by the connections he makes, and the difference he can make in each one.
  • You'd do allright, Deejay. There's something great about blog meet up - you get to check out the persons behind the blogs we're fascinated with every day of our blogging life.

    My findings? All my friends are cool. And you know what - their blogs are but a chunk of their lives. You get to see first hand the other facets that don't see the light of day in their blogs.

    Some bloggers I find distasteful online, but here's the thing - they're not that gross and yucky in person at all. During the awards night, I was very busy rewriting my dossiers on some of them. Because I had been very unfair - impure in thoughts. lols. It's just all in mind prior to the meet up, but I still felt guilty for thinking of them in a bad light. Face to face meeting corrects those misimpressions.

    Of course, I entertain the notion that they thought of me as insufferable fool. That can't be helped. And darn if I'd live my life in terrible fear of what others might think of me. Ahehehe.

    As per my investigation - you're a cool dude, Deejay. No worries. You'd be a hit in EBs.
  • taympers
    i already experienced having an eyeball with fellow bloggers too,i was a nice experience indeed and i feel like i am rich too just like yours. happy blogging
  • It's a great equalizer - having friends online. Surprisingly, they all proved to be as great in person as they are online. There's hardly no disconnect. Thank you for dropping by and leaving a comment. :)
  • Wow, seems like you had a lot of fun in Pampanga. The pictures alone show it. You are indeed blessed and fortunate to have these good folks not only as blogging buddies but as real personal friends.

    Honestly, I haven't been to Pampanga or any Northern part of Luzon. Maybe I can go visit those places when I get back to the Philippines.

    Anyways, thanks for posting the photo of you wearing the WordCamp tshirt. It would have been better if you, Elmot and Jhay would have a photo taken wearing those WordCamp shirts. Hehe :D
  • I'd worn that WordCamp shirt in Pampanga before. But I had to wear it again for picture taking. lols. It was fun - the young bloggers proved to be gracious hosts. And the food was great. Our mini-tour of the night spots in Angeles City - without the young bloggers of course - was fun, too.

    Jen, Roy and his kids, the young bloggers - even some faculty members and university officials all conspired to make it memorable.

    It felt like a reunion when in fact for most of us it's the first time we've met each other. Didn't quite realize it before - with the right people you can have - you can choose! - your second family altogether.

    Elmot and Jhay were both busy that day. Just too bad.
  • Dee
    Hey, how did you do the collage? I don't know how to do that... Great work, by the way! :)

    Ay, sayang talaga, we missed out on all the fun. I'm blaming it on the rain, hehe.

    When I'm done reading your posts, I always say "Oh man, Jan sure always write a well written piece!". Honestly, I really like how you write. I always wish I write as good as you do. Whenever I read your post, I'm always in for quality writing. (O ha, totoo iyan. No bola, hehe) :)
  • Let me reassure you - I did not do that by hand. Ahahaha. I used Picasa Web Album by Google. I just selected the pictures to be included in the collage and then I just hit the button until I got the desired arrangement of the pics.

    Thanks, Dee... It will have been great to meet one of the cutest bloggers hereabouts. Just turned out you and Luke are so... unreachable. Di na namin kayo ma-reach talaga. lols.
  • Know what Jan? My first intention in blogging, is really on earning money. I had toiled just to get Page Rank. I blog hopped to encourage readers to click my ads. But none of them paid off. Yes, I do earned from it. I was able to pay a quarterly payment for my insurance. But if time comes that I no longer earn, I will keep on blogging.

    My PR now is zero. But I don't do any blog hopping all night just to regain my PR. I am satisfied with my blog now. I don't need to advertise it that often. I already had my regular visitors, my blogger friends. And the feeling of being heard/read is what keeps me posting. Ü

    And I will surely be more eager when I would be a part of your bloggers' meet, ha ha.
  • Me, too. I think a lot of bloggers started that way. Some still chase that dream and are working hard to get their slice of it. But somehow you and I and a lot of our friends get sidetracked - and that's a good thing, too.

    We have our psychic rewards and that's enough to keep us going. An outsider seeing us attend to our blogging duties will think we're our own slavedrivers - just by the sheer amount of effort and time we devote to obsessing with our blog routine.

    But that's just the way it is. We find it enjoyable and finding friends online and connecting with them in real life as well is worth more than paycheck we get in the real world. Ah well, maybe not more than that, but something close to it. ahehehe. Ikaw lang eh, first thing we meet, patutulain agad natin si idol Doc Z. Ahahaha.
  • Aww, you're one of Holly's Jedi's. :)
  • That's right, Heather! The first one, actually! Jan and I met in Problogger's "31 Days to a Better Blog" workshop. He lured me in with the promise of meaningful comments. That led to friendship. He likes to get his friends to visit each other's blogs and get to know one another, too. So I did... and now many of his friends are my friends.

    Jan, meet Jar Jar...wait, wrong movie.
  • And you lured me with JS-Kit and sealed the deal with a volley of comments from your end.... Heather is Jar Jar? Ahehehe. I like her already.
  • Indeed! Thanks for dropping by. :)
  • Wow.. for me naman, successful para sakin yung everytime my visitors tells me na I was able to help them w/ their problems w/ regards to health and beauty hehehe
  • That's a great yardstick, too. Being useful to readers - helping them solve
    their problems - and doing this consistently is a hard thing to do.
    Congratulations! Hey, thanks a lot for leaving a comment and the visit,
    too. :)
  • zorlone
    It was actually better that I lost my voice while dancing (?), at least I had an excuse for not singing well. ;)

    Yeah! You are richer indeed! Congratulations. At least I know that I am rich too for having not only good company in the form of the jedibloggers, but another set of friends to add to my long list.

    BTW, maybe next time we can arrange for a band to play while we belt out the songs. Promise, I wont be dancing before rocking on the stage with my "Apologize." Ah, wait, do you want a Bon Jovi song instead?

    In the next meet up, uhm, Jena's birthday, I do hope that Reyjr can join us so that we could be in the company of Josh Groban. ehehe.

    Luke and Dee, I hope you can make it too.

    Okay, it's just me, but I could still remember Angeles like it was just yesterday.

  • Yeah, I'd like you to go pop. Lyle can take care of Elvis songs, Frank Sinatra, the oldies stuff. Ahehehe. With special annotation how these songs became subtitles to his special loved ones love stories. :)

    Lyle is the man, Lo. We have to give it to him. :)
  • Roy
    and I was really surprised Jan! to see you knocking on our gate like you really know your way around Angeles City!

    one more trip and you'll be going around town without us even knowing it ;)

  • The prohibitive tricycle fare was the biggest hurdle. The other details - peanuts. I didn't even use Google map to locate your place once again.

    Remember the run-away monkey on my first visit? Last Saturday I was looking for that electric post that the hyper monkey climbed - as if that would help. Maybe if the monkey scribbled something on the post, " I wuz here!" lols.

    Your blue gate struck me as very familiar. lols. All these signs helped a lot or I was a cat with an attitude in my previous life. :)
  • Roy
    next you would think twice before taking the tricycle... anyway, everything is a one jeepney ride away ;)

  • Duly noted. :) Hey, Jen has lots of interesting photos of the blog meet
    up. But just like my experience with your photos - I can't copy from her
    site directly. Same thing - every download I did can't be used - error
    can't be displayed. Daya. Ahehehe
  • i missed so much fun... i hope the CC bloggers are there too on the next bloggers' meet on mam jena's birthday... you know... my age group... hahhahaha...
  • Roy
    now you know which one to prioritize ;)

  • Yeah, I hope they attend Jen's birthday party, too. Especially Aiko - she
    sings well, Yatot. I know it! There's a punchline lurking somewhere in
    that comment. Your age group, my foot. Ahahaha. Sige lang. By the way,
    do you already know the inside story of the Three Princesses of Angeles
  • hahhaha... yah.. the age group! wahehehhe... regarding the the princesses... nope... they, meaning lyle and doc z about it... hmp! :P
  • I always loved contemporary songs. I would always hear my dad sing on a videoke almost everyday before. Maybe same as Novs' dad. And that's how I learned those songs.
  • Jan, I was pleasantly surprised when I learned Lyle knows how to sing those old time favorites... really... "It's Now or Never", he he he..."Words", etc. He's a music lover - this one.

    Roy sang some Elvis hits too , "Are you lonesome tonight?" That old, Roy???? (grinning) and whoa - one of my favorites - "Bed of Roses" by Doc Z.

    Holly, now I know why we click, and one, and two... "...I'm on the/ top of the world/..." It would be fun singing a duet with you.

    It was "Superstar" though that I sang (halfway), the mike did not cooperate.

    Next time I'll take a video of everything, don'tg worry.
  • Roy
    fortunately, I don't have the spirit of San Miguel with me.

    Otherwise, I could have done Jailhouse Rock or Hound Dog instead ;)

  • And I should have asked for something stiffer than SanMig lite. Ahehehe. But it was ok. I'm more comfortable listening to the music you guys made. :)
  • Why did I read that as "Super Trouper"?

    Do you do ABBA, too, Jen? (Did you see the movie "Mama Mia!"? Katie gave me the DVD for my birthday. It's embarrassing - for others - to watch it with me.)
  • "Chiquitita, dime por que
    tu dolor hoy te encadena
    en tus ojos hay
    una sombra de gran pena..."

    Fernando was my first favorite - probably the first ABBA song I ever heard. I'm not sure which is my favorite of ALL of them, now. "Slipping Through My Fingers" makes me cry. "The Way Old Friends Do" makes me smile through the tears. There are only two I can think of that I DON'T like: "Nina, Pretty Ballerina" and "Dancing Queen." I don't know why - but I can't stand those songs! The rest, I love.
  • Holly, don't tell me you do ABBA too, wow. I had watched Mama Mia 3 times and I always "danced" to the music...he he he...

    Why would it embarrass them? I am proud to be a Carpenter and ABBA fan...There is one blogger who is an ABBA fan through and through, and even brags about it - Matthew Urdan of DWMT. In fact I won in one of his contests about ABBA.

    DWMT is Delta Waters Meandering Torrent. He's an entrecarder.

    I like "Fernando", "Chiquitita" and yes "Super Trouper " . All of their songs!

    Jan, do you listen to these singers? I think you do. he he he...
  • KAREN CARPENTER? OMG, Jen and I need to do a duet! "I'm up on top of the world looking... down on creation... and the only explanation I can find..." Er, okay, never mind... Good choice, though, Jen!

    "Guess what, I brought my plate of food and gorged in front of him. Payback time!"

    Snarky, snarky, snarky dog indeed... ;) ::ducking::

    Great account of the GTG, Jan! Fun to read!
  • It was for nothing, Holly - my pigging out in front of Lyle. He's got steely resolve. Never wavered for a moment.

    But other than that Lyle proved once again to be the life of the party. He's the male Pat Benatar, taunting us "Give me your best shot." Of course, he delivered the fun - songs, dance (although I didn't see him flailing about) and the punchlines.
  • I could've sworn he was a slightly macho Barry Manilow...

    I heard "Mandy." Told him next time, he should do Neil Diamond's "Holly Holy" or Boston's "Hollyann."

    If there was video, it came across as green screen on this end. But I did get the sound. Y'all are very brave. I'd love to do karaoke, but you know I'd just shrivel up and ooze through a crack in the floor the minute my hand touched the mic.
  • we lost half an hour roaming around Angeles. i thought there ain't any heavy traffic there. Sayang, we weren't able to arrive earlier! next time i'll sing a song too. don't blame me if the videoke will get busted afterwards.
  • After the fun times we had with your Dad, you really have to own the stage
    as Paula Abdul used to tell American Idol contestants. Own it, Novz. Your
    father did well. You can't do no less than that - short of busting the
    videoke machine. Ahahaha
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