Applying A Business Framework To This Personal Blog To Tell A Tale

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Above is the Rudolph Framework. It’s from marketing guru + author Ann Handley’s newsletter called Total Annarchy. The framework is a lighthearted take on the Christmas song and children’s book, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.

The Rudolph Framework “helps you understand the actual problem you and your business solve for your customers– not the one you *think* you solve.” Click HERE to be taken to her fun explanation of this framework.

While the Rudolph Framework is meant to help a business clarify its purpose, it’s applicable to personal blogs. It’s easy to conceptualize a personal blog as a business. As such the blog provides customers [that’d be you] with a product [my blog posts] that solve a problem for you.

I know that I’m getting abstract here, but I have a tale to tell and I feel the need to explain how I came by it, lest you think I’m nuts. Which I probably am, but let’s not dwell on that, shall we?

Just go with it.

Thus using the Rudolph Framework I give you the following story created by moi by filling in the blanks, occasionally adjusting a few words so that it makes more sense. See what you think.

In fact, should you like to fly your freak flag, you could get jiggy and try applying the Rudolph Framework to your own blog, even. I’d love to see what you come up with. ‘Cuz, you know, I’m nosy curious.

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THE TALE OF THE SPECTACLED BEAN AND THE COMMUNITY IT HAS CREATED

Once upon a time, there was a delightful personal blog called The Spectacled Bean.

It had the capacity to be a catalyst for conversation based on the tales, thoughts, and tribulations of a free spirit in suburbia.

Some people doubted it because it was not all about the benjamins.

But one day, the woman who writes the blog realized she was perfectly happy doing what she was doing in the way she was doing it.

Which meant that the blog could be as varied and wonderfully idiosyncratic as the cool kids who read and comment on it.

To help them have sense of belonging online where they are understood and accepted, as long they’re polite and not spammers and not stealing my content.

And that matters because the cool kids are the heroes of this blog and what make The Spectacled Bean fun and engaging.

Thus in the process, this blog has helped coalesce a community of articulate + good-natured lurkers, readers, and cool kids who have the savvy to know a good thing when they read it.

Everyone gets a kiss. And a big ‘ole thank you.

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Smiling In Hello-Land: 1921 Telephone Etiquette For The Social Elite

Doing research for last week’s Thursday Doors post I fell down a rabbit hole that had zilch to do with what I was supposed to be learning about.

[I’m sure you’re not surprised, are you?]

However this tangent was not in vain. I found something unique + entertaining, meant for a blog post, as you will see.

Keep reading.

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The following came from Mrs. Devereux’s Blue Book of Cincinnati Society, the go-to source for lists of club members and their home addresses for the social elite circa 1921.

Below are little snippets of telephone etiquette advice printed at the bottom of some pages in Mrs. Devereux’s book.

These snippets, put there by the printer I imagine, filled the page with text, while at the same time SUBTLY TEACHING THE SOCIAL ELITE HOW TO POLITELY USE the newfangled thing called a telephone.

These six little snippets tell a charming instructive story that I’ve transcribed at the bottom of this post.  It is a story, in fact, that I’ve gone so far as to dub: How to be a Gracious Member of the Grand Army of Telephone Users.

Enjoy!

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How to be a Gracious Member of the Grand Army of Telephone Users

Sometimes in the hustle and bustle of life it is easy to lose the better things– the finer qualities.  About the cheapest abuse in the world is the abuse of people at the other end of a telephone wire.  It is the trait of a gentleman– the proof of good breeding– just to smile when you telephone.

The voice with the smile is the voice that wins.  The smiling man or woman who uses the telephone in a sensible way always enjoys the best service.  They never get the hydrophobia when delays occur in answering a call.  Quite often the operator is not responsible for delays.  To complete quick service the party called must immediately respond.  

Did you ever see the Girl at the Switchboard during the rush hour?  If you did you never would kick again.  Some of the people who are loudest in their criticisms would drop dead of heart disease if they were under the strain which is just part of the everyday life in Hello-Land.

There are some people who in ordinary ways of life keep within the bounds of calmness and sanity, but they shy at a telephone and look upon it as the vent for all the accumulated spleen of generations of grouches.  The Supreme Court of New York has ruled that telephones may be taken out if abusive language is used by the subscriber.

Edward W. Bok, editor of the “Ladies’ Home Journal,” declares that one sure sign of an imminent nervous breakdown is a disposition to lose temper when delays occur in telephoning.  When you feel inclined to go to pieces at the ‘phone– consult a doctor.  You have rung a danger signal for yourself every time you growl over the ‘phone.

The great majority of the Grand Army of Telephone Users know the value of keeping sweet.  It is a pleasure to serve them.  They have sensed the disaster that lurks in the poison which is generated in one’s own system every time a fit is cultivated.  It saves doctor bills to smile when you phone. 

The End

Fred the Monkey & Sandrine the Bear’s Fun Afternoon

[The following story is my entry in evilsquirrel13’s The Second Annual Contest of Whatever.  Please enjoy!] 

Fred the Monkey & Sandrine the Bear’s Fun Afternoon

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Fred the Monkey was bored.

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All day it had snowed outside while he was stuck inside Grandpa Aloha and Grandma Mahalo’s house.  He wanted someone to play with, so he asked them if he could call Sandrine the Bear and invite her over to play games.

Grandpa and Grandma said that it was okay.

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Sandrine arrived at the front door wrapped in her mother’s scarf.  She looked pretty and was warm.  Sandrine was ready to have fun.

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Fred suggested that they play an easy game first.  He found Grandma Mahalo’s Tic-Tac-Toe game and the friends started to play it.

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Because Sandrine was his guest, Fred let her go first.  She was “X.”

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Fred was “O.”

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Grandpa Aloha looked on as they played.  He loved to watch the kids goof-off just like he did growing up in Hawaii.

Suddenly, he realized that down in the basement there might be his favorite game for the kids to play.  He went downstairs and searched.

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When Fred and Sandrine saw what Grandpa Aloha had found for them to play, they were delighted.  Grandpa’s favorite old-time game was Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em Robots.

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Sandrine got to pick her side first.  She was “Red Rocker.”

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Fred was “Blue Bomber.”

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But after many exciting rounds of the game, both monkey and bear were ready for a snack.  They’d had enough fun punching each other.

Fortunately, Grandma Mahalo was more than happy to make them some tea and serve it with cookies.

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Then it was time for Sandrine to go home, but the friends decided to do one last silly thing before she left.  They took a selfie with Buddha so that they’d have a photo to remind them of their fun afternoon playing games together.

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~ The End ~

The Unsolved Case Of The Purloined Tomatoes

As I was walking around the back of the house on a bright and sunny summer morning I noticed that a red ripe tomato from my container garden on the deck above had fallen onto the path below.

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Curious as always I wondered: How did that happen?  

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So I walked up onto the deck where I discovered more tomatoes off the vine.  Tomatoes with little teeth-y marks on them.  Tomatoes that seemed to have somehow fallen from the vine prematurely.

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Immediately my mind went to our favorite sneak resident squirrel, Fuzzy.  So I bided my time and waited to talk with him when he stopped by for his daily afternoon visit.

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After we exchanged the usual pleasantries, I looked him straight in the eye and asked: Fuzzy, do you notice anything different around here?  There seems to have been a crime committed.  A theft.  

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To his credit Fuzzy took the time to look around before he denied all culpability in the crime.  He looked to his left.

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He looked to his right.

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He glanced immediately below onto the deck.

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Then he suggested that the real culprit in this crime was that nasty old raccoon who lives in the old tree on the other side of the ravine.

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When I mentioned that the nasty old raccoon hadn’t been seen in years and was presumed dead, and therefore incapable of stealing green or red tomatoes, Fuzzy ignored me.  This was of no concern to him.

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Having answered my questions to his satisfaction, Fuzzy then set about doing that which he had come to do: he started licking the terra-cotta pot to get his afternoon salt feast.

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And I was left with the impression that I’d been conned once again by Fuzzy the Squirrel.

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A Bear Went Across The River To See Who He Could Court

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There’s a WHAT? WHERE?  

MOM!!!    

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They tell us that this rarely happens.  That’s what they say.

I mean, I’ve lived in southern Ohio for 25+ years and it’s a first.

Rather like the nighttime burglars who scared us into turning our lights on & speaking with one another.

Shocking, really.

Of course, the human miscreants have been nabbed.  Put in the hoosegow.  Sent away for bothering us here in suburbia.

• • •

But this fellow

is getting away with anything and everything that he can…

because the authorities don’t want to mess with him…

and because he’s cute.

Never underestimate cute.  Remember Smokey? And Yogi? And Fozzie?

But you have to wonder, did they manage to have 2 Twitter accounts: @ClermontCtyBear & @MiamiTwpBear?

• • •

Just observe him, they say.

He’s only looking for a mate. 

Bears are good swimmers, they tell us.

Isn’t it wonderful how he made it this far north into Ohio?

If you encounter him, they suggest that you do this:

“Speak in a firm voice and if necessary, raise your arms above your head and clap.”

• • •

Taking a differing point of view than the authorities, I am.

Waiting each day to learn that an 85 lbs male black bear has caught a ferry back to Kentucky and is looking for love in all the right places.

Hoping to go outside at night without fear.  Too much to ask?

Don’t care if it is.  Asking for it anyway.