Wednesday, December 30, 2009

I Hope You're As Tolerant As Joe Brownlee

At 23, I had a boyfriend (Joe Brownlee) who tolerated me for a few weeks while I grew out the hair on my legs, and in those little pockets under my arms.  Because the time-honored rule among middle school girls is three of "those" hairs and it's legit to beg your mom for a razor, I'd never really seen my own body just the way God intended me.  I just wanted to see what it looked like.  What I looked like. 

Well, today I succumbed to an itch to see something else I probably won't want to keep around long.  I want to see what happens if I put AdSense on my blogsite.  AdSense is a Google-run service that, according to Google, is "...a free program that enables website publishers of all sizes to display relevant Google ads and earn."

I'm under no illusions that I am going to earn any money.  I think it's parts of a penny for each ad click readers make.  I don't know if you've noticed, but I keep an book carousel in the right margin, not because I think I'm going to make money selling books (and if I ever thought that, I've been disabused of the notion), but because when I find a cool book, I like to recommend it, and that's an easy way.  So far as I know, nobody has ever actually bought a book by clicking through the carousel and purchasing.  At least, if they have, nobody's let me know or fattened my wallet by even a dime. 

No, the reason I'm loading AdSense onto EcoCurious is because I'm, well, CURIOUS.  Google pushes AdSense to me nearly every time I open my blog, and the thing I've succumbed to is the idea that the ads are content driven:  "AdSense gives you access to Google's vast network of advertisers, so you can show ads that are suited to your audience's interests."  I'm curious what ads Google will generate, and whether they will really be related to the stuff I talk about on EcoCurious.  Whether it will be stuff about the environment, about politics, about the way government is run - the stuff I write about.  And if so, what kind of products could those be?

I don't imagine I'll keep AdSense around any longer than I kept the body hair.  The only plus on the body hair experiment:  I discovered that unshaven body hair is soft, not all prickly.  But it didn't have much else to recommend it.  I'm pretty sure I'll feel the same about AdSense.  I've seen blogs littered with ads, and I don't find it particularly appealing.  I haven't checked to see whether the most unsightly blogs are running AdSense or a different application, but I can't imagine how someone else's advertising might make this site more attractive, or that having ads in the middle of my content could improve the flow of the content.  And I have a thing about aesthetics.  I sometimes waste an hour fiddling with spacing, etc, on these blog posts when their formatting is screwy for some reason.  So, I doubt AdSense will be here for long.  But, please be like Joe, and bear with me while I do my little experiment.  We can discover together just how spot on AdSense really is.

By the way, if you know Joe (Joseph Brownlee, lawyer, Phoenix, from Peru, Indiana, also home of Cole Porter and Kyle Macy - yes, Joe, I did remember), do tell him I said "hello," and that I publicly thanked him for tolerating my curiosity all those years ago.  Not that he'd remember.  But hey, how much more fun could you have than to walk up to a man and say "I was reading a blog the other day, and the writer asked that we pass along her thanks for tolerating her underarm and leg hair growth experiment."  For sure you'll get at least a double-take.  By the way, he didn't look like this when I dated him.  Aside from looking a few years older, Joe must have taken my cue and decided to run with his own experiment, because when we were dating, he was clean-shaven!

And, I've tried to avoid TMI (that stands for Too Much Information, mom), but if you want to visit the issue of why women shave, you might check out this blog by once-hairy, now clean-shaven Ashley English, a women's studies professional, here:   That's where I found the lovely candle-lit leg-shaving photo above!

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