Tuesday, July 15, 2008

The reluctant blogger: now read this!

My colleagues have ribbed me mercilessly over the past few weeks at my reluctance to embrace our blogging initiative. Normally, I consider myself a team player, I really do! I good-naturedly step up to the plate to pitch in on deadline, to buy the first round of drinks (well, when Happy Hour specials are in effect) and to hesitantly sample our editorial director’s latest baking effort. And yet, (in my mind, at least) I’ve been branded a slacker, a curmudgeon and a dinosaur when it comes to participating in this newer form of communication.

So be it. Hey, I’m the oldest staff member and probably the sole Baby Boomer (albeit, born at the very tail end of that storied generation). I proudly wear my years and experience. I good-naturedly shrug my shoulders when the office talk turns to the genius of Guillermo del Toro’s Hellboy II, Grand Theft Auto IV or the latest episodes of Gossip Girl and America’s Top Dog. (Say, has anyone viewed the Jane Austen marathon on PBS this week? Colin Firth as Mr. Darcy….be still my heart). And yet, I hardly consider myself an Andy Rooney crank (yet) roundly criticizing pop culture while ruminating nostalgically about the glories of paper clips and phone booths or the sad decline of Big Band music.

I’ve always been the mostly anonymous editor toiling in the trenches of trade journalism until recently, when I joined Hotel Design and today, as editor in chief, am charged with giving the magazine a “face” and “personality.” I am happy and excited to share my years of experience in the lodging industry trade press, to network at industry events and to moderate the occasional trends roundtable.

My issue with blogging, I guess, is a reluctance to assume that readers are at all interested in my more petty observations. I find many blogs narcissistic and frankly, insipid. (the postings of my esteemed and talented co-workers are an exception, of course!). I mean, really, who cares about my whining about lumpy hotel mattresses or musings on Marriott’s latest marketing campaign? How about my exclamations of joy and wonder over my beautiful new grandson, Patrick Jamison? PJ…what a doll. Have you ever seen a more beautiful baby? (see photo) He coos, he cuddles, he drools incessantly, he has big fat leg rolls and tootsies I love to kiss. Omg, stop me. I’ve been sucked into the blogosphere.

You know, this process has been strangely….cathartic. I’m beginning to feel the groove. I think I could learn to like this blogging thing. What shall I write about next? The collapsing condo-hotel market? RevPAR growth among declining occupancies? Say, how about my growing anticipation over the upcoming premiere of the Mama Mia movie? Or the pride I felt when awarded first place for my karaoke rendition of Abba’s Dancing Queen? Stay tuned…I insist!


Anonymous said...

Dear Patricia:
What do you mean by "The collapsing condo-hotel market?" Can you explain a bit more deep into this subject.
You can write me at troppls@yahoo.com
I would be so interested in reading what you have to say.


Patricia Sheehan said...

Dear troppls:

You might want to check out the July 21 issue of Hotel & Motel Management for an in-depth analysis of the condo-hotel situation, reported by contributing editor Christine Blank. The front-page story details how many recently built projects are struggling to stay afloat and defending lawsuits by owners. The soft residential real-estate market—particularly for condos—also has been a major contributor to the condo-hotel segment's recent problems, according to the story. Go to www.hotelmotel.com for the complete report.

Michael said...

Dear Patricia,

The baby is cute I agree, but what is his opinion on the latest new linen choices?


Patricia Sheehan said...

Dear Michael--

Funny you should ask! I had just last week bought a new set of sheets (Macy's store brand, 300 thread count, on sale) after ruining a lovely set of Ralph Lauren bedding when I inadvertently threw them in the wash with my daughter's school uniform skirt (black marker in pocket). Long story short: Baby PJ has yet to visit a hotel and give voice to his preference for Frette versus Croscill but I'll happily report back to you with his verbal or nonverbal comments when they become available.