May 20, 2007

Ode to the guest bloggers

I'm back from London and wide awake in the wee hours. When you go to bed at 6 p.m., you're bound to feel well-rested by about 2 a.m., so here I am.

Before I turn to the crosswords, please join me in showering The World's Best Guest Bloggers with plaudits. Weren't they all great? Al, Barry, Dave, John, and Linda shared their personalities, perspectives, experiences, and wit with us each day, and I enjoyed every one of their posts. I'm sure all of us did—traffic to this site didn't drop off at all while I was gone. (And, a salve to my ego, it didn't skyrocket because I was gone either.)

We have some (virtual) awards to bestow:

The Golden Fire Extinguisher goes to Al Sanders for his blazingly fast solving times, reported daily in the comments when he wasn't on call for that day's post. Yes, I'm fast, but there's that extra notch of speed that ACPT finalists have that's awfully difficult to approach. (Al is also my pencil mentor—I bought a pair of the mechanical pencils he was using at Stamford.)

The Ava Gardner Memorial Personal Touch Award is bestowed on Linda G., who charmingly shares personal tidbits, ruminations, and reminiscences evoked by the crosswords, drawing us into her friendly orbit.

We award the Medal of Honor to Barry Weprin for his promotion of patronage of the blogging arts, combined with detailed dissection of crossword themes and a treatise on what he calls Petergordonisms.

The Special Jury Prize for Magnificent Linking goes to John Farmer, who had (I estimate) a gazillion text links in his posts. (I love text hyperlinks! I think they mimic how our brains work, making associations and finding connections between things, showing us where the writer's synapses have been firing.) John is also recognized for his journalistic report on Will Shortz's appearance at UCLA.

Dave Sullivan garners Her Majesty's Bell and Whistle for fancy blogging. Pictures! Bulleted lists! Colored text! Bold and italics—at the same time! I'm definitely going to ask Dave to show me how to do those bullets. (I know how to add pictures, but it takes longer than adding text links, so I generally skip them.)

As a fake token of my very real appreciation for all five of you, please accept these flowers (edited to remove dead-link picture that was supposed to show a bouquet with 100 red roses, but instead diverted the viewer to a mail-order bride site, and replace it with deep pink roses that connote gratitude):