November 6 13

As a storyteller, I rarely have to go out and find material to write about—the material pretty much finds me. Sure, weirder things happen to me than most, but even though my day-to-day life is fairly uninteresting, there are stories everywhere, and as a good personal blogger, I can spin an entire tale out of what would be merely a 140-character tweet.

That, by the by, was one of the biggest reasons that storytelling blogging began to disappear. Sure, there was that whole money thing that people were starting to make from writing other kinds of content—the kind that helped other people or offered slideshows and tips and recipes and top ten lists. But it was Twitter, I think. People were using their funny, sad, silly, GOOD material on Twitter—mashing buttons on their smartphones to get that great thing out there into the world, and then it was stopping there. It became, “well, I already told people about our, ahem, musical upstairs (threesome) neighbors at our un-walled hotel in St. Lucia on Twitter, so I’m not going to bother blogging about it now. It’s already done. People already got a good chuckle. Onward!”

Not me. Oh, not wordy old me. I can make material never die. I’ll tweet about it—”This morning I was woken up at 6am to the sounds of the birds, and my musical upstairs neighbors”—which very few people see because I am kind of terrible at Twitter, and then put something about it on Facebook—”I’m still trying to figure out the dynamics of the three people staying above us. At first I assumed it was grandfather, mother, daughter. But based on the noises we are hearing morning, noon, and night, that’s kind of off the table”—which some more people will see, I might even take a picture and put it on instagram—”This is my WTF face.”

fbali-jade copy

(It’s actually not my wtf face. This is my “Why am I wearing shorts out in public when I have shorts” face. Or possibly my “I might just take a dip here in this pool that’s in the middle of the dining room” face.

And then I’ll still blog about it, because it’s still a story that I want to tell.

I’m the master of beating a dead horse, I guess?

One of the biggest challenges I find, really, is remembering to tell them all. I still have so many stories from my trip to tell—heck, I still have stories from the summer to tell—but since I have come back, there have been 437 other stories that I want to share, that I need to tell, that I desperately want to get down on “paper.” And then, you know, the whole ROB FORD situation goes and happens and bam! the material just falls right into a writer’s lap and there’s no choice really but to tweet that sucker until it can’t be tweeted about anymore. Oh, our mayor smoked crack in a drunken stupor? Obviously now I need to tell you what *I* do in a drunken stupor which is less, I don’t know, ILLEGAL.

Alcoholic Oreos, for the win.

Maybe students needs to stop worrying about how Oreos are as addictive as crack.

And worry about, I don’t know, ACTUAL CRACK because I can tell you that I care exactly zero percent about how many Oreos Mr. Ford stuffed into his gob during a drunken stupor.

It’s like Rob Ford is like, “oh, brownie batter, cookies, giggling, and Carlton Banks dancing is so boring, I’m going to be the Heisenberg of Mayors.”

Which, of course, only then makes me realize that we never discussed the finale of Breaking Bad over here because of my 3-day spoiler rule. And no one wants to read a cryptic post. “Remember when Jesse did that thing to that lady? OH THAT WAS AMAZING. And how it ended? I was pretty happy with how it ended, but I can’t tell you exactly what happened but there were some very gaspy, OMG moments. So if you haven’t seen it yet, you should just be ready for that to happen.”

It’s different when you write a travel blog, or a food blog, or a review blog or a fashion blog. Your posts are decided and guided a little bit for you. When there are rules, it’s easy. And I’m a really good rule follower. When it’s open-ended and sky’s the limit-esque, it’s much harder to remember to tell it all.

Occasionally, I’ll find a ripped up piece of paper than has some notes that are mostly illegible scribbled on it and then it becomes a fun game of trying to figure out what in the world I wanted to say: “1000 steps too many. child call dead dog’s name. static grandma knees weather. Johnny you’re a creampuff. SHEETS! What in the fresh hell, Homeland. helping kids with homework. Q-tips/Hannah Horvath—also wtf fake store-brand q-tips are the devil. why do people like to eat outside? apologize to my mother for the years between 1990-1995. READING LOGS ARE CRAP. why are scary movies so funny? bands and beards—who decides?”

These were obviously very pressing things I needed to talk about at some point.

My mind is a very, very weird place.


Must be all the Oreos.


  1. I like it when a story starts at one point and then ends up at an entirely different planet after I’m done with tapping it out.


    Comment by gorillabuns on November 6, 2013
  2. Twitter totally killed blogging for me. I still think of all the shit I should have blogged about (I had my appendix out! Perfect blog material!) and it is too long ago. Hell, I’m almost 2 months out from my trip and still blogging about it. But, for once, I’m writing for me and I don’t care what anyone else thinks.


    alimartell replied on

    …and I think that’s why I keep at it.
    I will never be a *famous* blogger..I will never get invited on Disney cruises or make enough money to quit my day job.

    I write for me.
    so I keep at it, just telling my stories.


    Kristabella replied on

    Well you do a great job!

    I think for me, it’s harder to just write fluffy stories. It is easier when I know I’m writing something I know I’ll want a record of, like a trip. I struggle trying to write about things like “my mom’s cat got stuck in the fridge”. That’s when I switch to Twitter and FB.


    Comment by Kristabella on November 6, 2013
  3. Love your blog Ali because you write for you – but say what everyone else is thinking.


    Comment by faith feingold on November 6, 2013
  4. Look, you didn’t say you are taking requests, but if you do, here is the one I want:
    “static grandma knees weather”


    alimartell replied on


    It’s a good one, I promise.


    Comment by Kim Tracy Prince on November 6, 2013
  5. This post is reason #728 why we’re friends. :)


    Comment by Angella on November 6, 2013
  6. You are a damn good story teller. That is what keeps me coming back.


    Comment by Jess G. on November 7, 2013

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