I’m walking along the road, minding my own business when bang! someone walks right into me. The next moment I’m lying splat on the footpath.
“Are you okay?” I hear a familiar voice: a smooth, deep and distinctive voice. It could only belong to one person: Bob Blogosphere.
I scrape myself off the ground, and soon I am standing face-to-shoulder with the most important man in the whole blogosphere. He narrows his eyes. He stares at me. He takes off his sunnies and looks at me again. And then he smiles, revealing his perfect white teeth. “Sonia!” he cries. “Lovely to see you!”
“Sue,” I say.
Bob shrugs his shoulders. Details, details. How can he be expected to remember the name of an ordinary blogger like me?
“Are you okay?” Bob repeats.
I brush myself down. I check all my bones. Yes, I seem to be in one piece.
“Maybe you need to sit down for a moment,” says Bob. “Can I buy you a coffee?” He doesn’t wait for an answer - who has ever refused an invitation to have coffee with Bob Blogosphere? – and sets off down the road with me in tow.
A few minutes later we arrive at the trendiest cafe in town. It's the place to 'be seen'. (I've never been here before.) Bob smiles and nods to everyone as he guides me to a table at the edge of the room. He pulls out a chair and pushes me into it. I find myself facing the wall. Bob slides into the seat opposite me and glances around. He does some more smiling and some more nodding.
A waiter appears. Coffee is ordered. Bob says, "Sue…” And then his phone rings. No, that's not quite right. Bob’s phone applauds. It applauds very loudly. Everyone in the room looks up. Bob smiles. He cuts off the applause with a press of a button and announces, “Bob Blogosphere!
“Yes… yes…” he says. “The A – Z Blogging Challenge? Yes… Miss Bell, set up a meeting with the organisers for this afternoon.”
Bob turns off his phone and leans towards me. “The A – Z Blogging Challenge! It's going to be huge! So far 1798 bloggers have signed up.” He pauses. He sips his coffee. “Just think of all those blog posts: 1798 bloggers writing 26 posts each... that’s… ” I can see the numbers whirling around in Bob’s head. They keep whirling and whirling. He frowns. “Well, whatever that comes to…it’s an awful lot of posts.”
“I’m going to write 26 of those posts,” I say.
“Yes, I’m blogger number 1521. I did the challenge last year. Remember?”
Bob is silent for a moment. He screws up his face. He holds his chin. He stares into space. And then the light comes on. He says, “Yes, I remember! You didn’t do very well at all, did you?”
“Well, I wouldn’t say that,” I protest. “I think I wrote some rather good posts.”
“It’s just a pity no one else thought so,” says Bob. “You didn’t get many people stop by to comment, did you?”
“Lots of friends wrote comments…”
“Friends don’t count!” says Bob, shaking his head. “You didn’t attract any real followers, did you?”
“Well, no,” I admit.
“You didn’t take my advice. You didn’t write about anything interesting. What did you write about?” Bob leans towards me. “I’ll tell you! You wrote about sad stuff and faith and…”
I interrupt Bob. “I wrote about you.”
Bob smiles. “You did?”
“I bet those were popular posts.”
They were but I’m not about to tell Bob that. I sip my coffee.
“So what are you going to write about this year?” asks Bob.
“Clothes?” Bob looks down at his immaculate outfit. He runs his hand over his perfectly trimmed buzzcut. He glances at his designer sunnies perched on the table. Then he looks me up and down. (I’m wearing a rather shabby denim skirt and tee shirt.) “What do you know about fashion?” he says.
“Nothing,” I admit. “But I’m not going to write about fashion. Do you realise there are hundreds of stories connected with our clothes?”
“Yes, clothes are very important. We associate them with lots of different occasions and memories and emotions.” The words spill out of my mouth. I have lots of blogging ideas I want to share with Bob.
“Very interesting, I’m sure,” Bob says. He looks at his watch. “I’d like to hear more but I have a meeting with the organisers of the A – Z Challenge this afternoon. I’d better get back to my office…” He drains the last of his coffee from his cup.
“I once wrote a story about a funeral dress,” I say.
Bob rolls his eyes as he replaces his cup on its saucer. “You want some advice?” I don’t but he gives it to me anyway. “Write something people will enjoy. Something amusing. Have fun. Be a bit crazy.”
I smile. “Funny you should say that, Bob. Someone left a comment on my blog telling me to do just that.”
“And so I’ve been thinking… I have an undies story that involves a peg…” I stop and smile. I’m thinking of my other undies story. My smile turns into a grin. “Did you ever read my stiff undies story?”
But Bob’s not listening. He's looking at his watch again. He rises from his chair.
“I could write a post called No Clothes,” I say. "It's not that kind of post," I add quickly. "And I could write about thongs but then again, my American friends might get the wrong idea.” I am day dreaming. Items of clothes from A - Z are whirling around in my imagination.
“Thanks for the coffee!”
Thanks for the coffee? I shoot back to the present moment. “Bob?” But Bob has gone.
All that is left is the bill.
- Will I have fun with the A – Z blogging challenge?
- Will I write any sad stories despite Bob's advice?
- Will I be a bit crazy?
- Will I write about Bob?
Stay tuned to find out!
Image: Crazy Hair by Mihai Bojin, (CC BY 2.0)