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Wednesday, June 21, 2017

4 Things You Missed During My Blogging Hiatus

So, as you know, I've been away from blogging for a while. A long while. And it wasn't because I lost interest in blogging. No, actually, I can can blame Facebook for that. Facebook, and all of its wonderful ways of facilitating social communication became too easy -- too convenient. If I had something to say, I'd just post it on Facebook -- and the comment response would be instantaneous. No blog comments, no back-links, just wonderful, captivating social media.

The thing is, though, this blog is actually among the grandfathers of the blogging world. And I feel terrible that the modern draw of social media, pulled me away from this well-established community. But... then again, even my many blog readers moved over to Facebook, so, I suppose, in a way, I really don't have anything to feel bad about. Technology shifted, and the once-dominant blogging world took a back seat to the shiny baubles of social media.

History has a way of doing that.

But, I do still love this blog. I love the history that was built here. I love my readers. I love the stories. I love the discoveries. I can't leave this part of me unattended, barren, and full of echoes. That just doesn't seem right.

So, I'm back. I'm going to breathe life back into this blog. I'm going to revive its forgotten history. What will come of that, though, remains to be seen.

A lot has happened during my time away. So, as a recap, and to kick things off again, I'm going to share four things about me that you missed during my blogging hiatus.


1.) -- I almost moved to Kansas. -- My wife is a teacher here in Brillion, Wisconsin. A few months ago, she received a call from a small church in Salina, Kansas, asking her to administer their early childhood program. It was a tough decision -- contemplating whether to move to a new state (in the middle of nowhere), or stay here, in familiar Wisconsin. Ultimately, we chose to stay here in Wisconsin. But it was a close decision. I almost became a Kansan.

2.) -- My wife and I bought a house. -- While this was mentioned shortly before my hiatus, it was still new at the time. Every other place I've lived (after going off to college, and graduating) was a rented apartment. Now, here I am.... a home-owner. It's been two years now -- two years since we bought this house -- and we couldn't be happier! These are OUR walls, OUR roof.... OUR back yard. We have real, legitimate roots in the community, and that feels fantastic!

3.) -- I have purple polka-dotted feet. -- It may sound silly, but I'm serious. Painfully serious. Last year (in Spring), I contracted what is known as allergic vasculitis. And yes, it sounds as bad as it was. In short, I developed dime and quarter-sized holes in the tops and sides of both of my feet -- nasty, unattractive, extremely painful holes caused by some unknown allergic reaction. I couldn't walk, and when I did, I hobbled with a cane. I wore bandages for months; I was on steroids and antibiotics; my feet were too swollen to wear shoes -- it was extremely unpleasant.

After consulting a few baffled doctors, it was determined that I had most likely experienced an extreme allergic reaction to something that had severely damaged the tissue in my feet. Those nasty holes were the result. After finally getting the treatment that I needed, my feet slowly began to heal, and those nasty wounds closed up. I am, however, left with purple-scarred feet -- multiple, purple, coin-sized scars where those nasty holes once were.

4.) -- I acted in a Star Trek episode with Walter Koenig and Nichelle Nichols. -- Yep. I acted with two beloved icons of Star Trek -- the original Chekov and Uhura. Technically, we recorded our lines separately, and I wasn't in the recording booth at the same time they were, but my character experiences the story right there with them. It was a unique, once-in-a-lifetime experience, and one that I was honored to be a part of!

The episode was part of the fourth season of Starship Excelsior. It was written and produced in honor of the 50th Anniversary of Star Trek. If you want to listen to the feature-length episode, select "Tomorrow's Excelsior" on the Starship Excelsior website.


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Jon Baas

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