Well, today started out pretty lackluster. I’ve got about a 35 minute commute to work every day, and during the summer I also drive one of my kids into town for a “day camp” that my work facilitates for children of employees. The park where the day camp is hosted is for employees only and requires and ID badge for access. Well, about 20 minutes into my 35 minute drive, I realized that I’d left my ID badge at home and had to turn around and drive all the way back. Of course, that set me back about 45 minutes and once I finally did arrive at work. I spent the rest of my day trying to catch up for the time that I’d lost.
At some point I glanced over at my phone to check out my Twitter feed. I do this occasionally throughout the day to keep myself sane through various undesirable tasks. My timing must have been perfect because as soon as the feed refreshed, I started seeing badges from the Newbie Blogger Initiative awards scroll past. One of the early awards (I think it was the 2nd one announced) was the Media Award. I’ll be honest, I was kind of hoping that Beyond Bossfights would win this category, but it went to Matt over at The Game Snark, a YouTuber with admittedly much more polish and frequency than what I can provide. That win was completely deserved – well done, Matt! Once that award was announced, I was able to sit back and enjoy watching the rest of my new friends be recognized for their work and talent.
After all of the awards had been announced, the NBI Twitter account told us that there were “special awards incoming”, and thereby continued to torture us with various drum rolls, guitar solos, and pictures of kittens. The first “special award” was the reader’s choice award that want to Missy’s Mojo. I couldn’t have been happier to see this. Missy is a standout person who dove into this blogging thing full-force, has embraced the community, and has been universally embraced in return. I think she’s learned almost as much about herself over this past month as she has about blogging. After the reader’s choice award, the Rare Promising Star was awarded to Ranzington Scouts, which is a creative blog that has chronicled a guild’s adventures and uniquely presented them as works of short fiction. Rare and promising indeed!
As I was making it a point to congratulate each of the winners over Twitter, I almost missed what came next. I knew that the Promising Star was the highest award given out by the NBI as I’d noticed it over at Talarian’s blog (Gamer by Design). So I actually thought the awards were complete at this point. Until I received the notification for this tweet:
Wait, there was another award? Did I read that right – top honor? I was blown away. What an awesome surprise and a great way to end a workday that started out so difficult. Missy and I had spoken earlier about how participating in the NBI was it’s own reward, and that is absolutely true. In fact, I’ll go one further and say that even being associated with such a talented, diverse, interesting and fun group of people is it’s own reward. But I’ll also admit that it is extremely rewarding to be recognized by that same group of people for your passion and work. I will proudly display the NBI badges on my site for as long as I can keep it going (hopefully a long, long time!), and will continue to stay involved to the level that I am able.
Normally this would be a good place to end the post, but I feel that I must make at least one more observation on a somewhat serious note.
As many of you know, the blogging community lost one of our own members this week. Christopher “River” Cavelle from A High Latency Life died most unexpectedly at the very young age of 41 on Tuesday, June 10. While I didn’t know River at all, it is clear that many of you with whom I have regular interactions were at least familiar with, and in many cases close to, him. After coming down from the initial “high” of receiving the Promising Star, I struggled a little bit with celebrating a relatively menial award on the heels of a tragic loss. But then I remembered that this is life, which is full of ups, downs, hills, valleys…and sometimes even gaping troughs. We live through the hard times so that we can get to the good times. Even simple things like watching your child learn something new, reaching a blog post/podcast milestone, or being awarded a shiny new badge should be celebrated. Otherwise, why would we continue to endure the troughs and valleys?
Thanks for your friendship, one and all. May the road go ever on.