Saturday, March 13, 2010

Welcome, Gatorbone Studios! P.S. Thank you, Save Our Bridge

Eat Here Eatery is a wholly imaginary place. In the mind of our family, it means The Food We Love Most, preferably eaten with The People We Love Most, and although it only exists in our minds it has a full menu's worth of recipes and that roster of people we love is pretty firmly fixed in reality. Eat Here has vague antecedents in the real history of restaurants in St. Augustine, however. The Chimes, Le Pavillon, Cafe Alcazar, The Zanzibar, P.K.'s Cafe, The Monson Motor Lodge, and the Ponce de Leon Lodge are all cousins of varying degrees of distance. The Zanzibar was once owned by Eat Here's beloved pal Lis Williamson, whose history includes many musical and culinary tales, triumphs and joys. Her past and present are well-known in St. Augustine, but perhaps her future has only begun to reveal itself.

Here's part of it: she's one of the principals of Gatorbone Studios, which made its BlogLand debut this week. There could scarcely be a warmer or more heartfelt welcome than that offered by Ms. Moon, whose long friendship has been richly celebrated throughout the life of Bless Our Hearts. To Ms. Moon's and those of the many readers who have already left comments and affectionate words of welcome, Eat Here adds its voice: WOO dot HOO, and A dot MEN.

One of the revelations of writing a blog is this: rather than the bunch of political or other topical crackpots and loonies you expect, you find an enormously thoughtful, funny, ordinary and extraordinary collection of everyday people giving voice to things you've always thought, and maybe even more voice to things you never even considered. The range of diversity is only exceeded by the reassuringly human overlaps and unexpectedly strong personal connections. This very minute Rodney is wearing a hat made by someone I know, B2B (blog to blog); Ms. Moon has earrings about which she has a similar story. I have an envelope ready to mail to Just Eat It, with music to share. I suspect many more of us have such a story than do not. And the landscape keeps getting better and better. If you haven't already settled down in a lawn chair or on a blanket to listen to the music of Gatorbone, be good to yourself and tune in.

One of the things I'd like to improve about BlogWorld, or at least my little spot therein, is the fact that comments and responses are associated with a specific post. This means they're sort of buried, unless you think to go check on them, or are yourself directly part of the dialogue. Worse, the comments get buried right along with the "Older Posts"; who ever reads these? For instance, I got a lovely, unexpected comment from Screamish about the Cream Biscuits. It would have made you laugh, but you probably didn't see it.

I also got a comment from Theresa Segal, one of the founders of Save Our Bridge, a group that organized around the simple desire to preserve a living artificat of St. Augustine's history, The Bridge of Lions. This relic of turn-of-the-century design was slated for destruction a little more than 10 years ago. Because of Theresa, Lis and other dedicated folks Theresa talks about in her comments, the completely restored Bridge of Lions will open in just a few days. Theresa adds perspective I didn't have when I posted, but because she added it as comments to my post, this valuable isight is easy to overlook.

Perhaps you have a better way to integrate blog comments into the dialogue. If you do, please let me know. While you're thinking it over, give your troubled spirit a rest at Gatorbone Studios. You may be quietly amazed.

Eat Here credits:
Photo courtesy of Rodney, 2006
Proofreading & editorial consultation courtesy of Dylan


  1. There is a way to add the most recent comments into the sidebar of your blog. As you make more posts, it will automatically update with the corresponding comments as well as still having the older ones (depending on how many comments you want it to show.

    Go into your blog layout page. Click on "Add gadget," in the sidebar and then in the search box at the top, type in, "Blogger Buster." Scroll until you come to "Recent Comments," customize how you want it to look, and just add the gadget.

    Hope this helps! (Don't be put off by the "Blogger Buster" name. It's just the moniker of the person who developed the gadget. I've seen it work fine for years on other blogs I visit.)

  2. Michelle, it's a fine thing to feel as though you learn something new every day, but lately I feel as though this has been refined to, I learn something new every day from Michelle. Thank you! Obviously, you can see your tip in action: there's the commentary, integrated into my work just as I'd hoped. I'm so glad you're there, helping make my work and my blog better, you Big City Writer, you.
    Love, love.


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