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January 9, 2007

Money, I think I'll buy me a football team...

What profit a man to gain the world...


Invariably during conversation with my friends, once I’ve broached the subject of my new found interest in blogging one question always arises, “What kind of money are you making off of this?” I usually try to respond with an explanation of the non-financial profits of my latest hobby; new friends, a consistent readership, different perspectives of current events from all around the world and best of all I’m just plain having fun.

“Yes, but are you making any money from it?”

"Well, I’m pretty new to blogging and with less than ninety days under my belt I don’t even qualify for most of the money making opportunities yet.”

“Oh, so why are you doing this again?”

It’s frustrating trying to get people to understand why I would spend hours on the computer doing something that isn’t making buckets of money for me. How does one convey the joy of waking up to a new photo by the wizened wizard or that uproarious comment from Satan? How do I express the bond I now feel to our troops in Iraq because of my online friendship with a soldier named greenery in Iraq? How do I convey these benefits to people whose only concern is the monetary value of a thing?

Sadly, I can not adequately express the joy of blogging to someone who has not experienced it for themselves. This is something that goes far beyond the satisfaction gained by lining a pocket with a few pieces of silver. Blogging brings a reward that enriches the heart and soul of the individual who participates in the experience. In my opinion this is the greatest reward a person can ever hope to take from any endeavor in which they are a part of. I try my hardest to express this belief in everything I do.

That is why I was so surprised to find this question on my comment board the other night.

Yes, it is a good question and one I will try to answer to the best of my abilities.




Yes, I am effective at bringing people together; both in the blogosphere and in the real world. To me, this is one of the most important skills any person can possess as they journey through life. Why? Because it requires the acquisition of certain abilities before the skill of bringing people together can be learned.

One of the first abilities to be learned is selflessness. Learning to look beyond our own individual wants and needs is perhaps the most important ability in learning how to bring people together. Service to others is one of the chief cornerstones to any successful philosophy or religion I’ve ever studied.

Mahatma Gandhi is a shining example of this ability.

Learning to love, tolerate and accept those around you just as they are, is another cluster of abilities that I consider important to learn in the building of the skill that brings people together. I just don’t believe that you can develop any of these abilities without learning all three of them together. Combined, these three abilities are the foundation of drawing people together.

King David in the Old Testament of the Bible is a perfect example of the motivational power of love. How many individuals rallied to David’s side for no other reason than the love he had for his people?

The last ability I will mention in this post is learning to expect no reward from the task you are performing other than the joy of participating in the task you are performing. Truly I say to you, if all you ever work for is the financial rewards you can gain, you will never know the true joy of being a part of something greater than yourself.

Look at the smile upon the face of any volunteer who never earns so much as a penny from their labors and you will know what I’m talking about. The only reward they carry away from their work is the satisfaction of having participated in something meaningful.

Yes, Meander, I do believe a career can be made from bringing people together. It is a career I have pursued as a cashier in a variety of shops throughout my entire adult life. From the mayor of my city to the neighbor across the street I am not remembered as the man who gave them the best price, the best deal or even the most products for their dollar. I am known as the man who makes everyone he meets feel as if they are a part of something. Something good and wonderful...

I am so lucky to be blessed with the ability to make people feel connected. Truly, I am so in love with the miracle of life and the people who participate in the experience with me. So many of us feel alone and isolated these days. We don’t feel a part of anything greater than ourselves. We feel adrift and forgotten.

I believe this sadness can be overcome, but the task can not be accomplished by sitting around waiting for a miracle. Life is the greatest event we have to participate in and if we will just reach out to one another in love there is no end to the wonders we can perform when we work together.

And in answer to those who will say, “Good luck making any money with that belief.” I tell you in all honesty, I work for an employer who has never failed to provide sustenance for every need I’ve ever had, and also who offers the most amazing retirement plan I could ever hope for.

Am I getting rich from blogging? I invite you to take a look at the treasury of links on the right side of this page and judge for yourself. I believe I have turned a greater profit than I ever imagined possible.

So, Meander, does this answer your question?





I love my career and I just can't imagine being any happier doing anything else.




Labels: , , ,

53 Comments:

Blogger Arcturus said...

I didn't know you could channel Jesus so well ... the entry was a sort of Sermon on the Mount for the early 21st Century Blogosphere. You may be the first person on the internet to ever use liken the more sublime aspects of blogging to Gandhi and King David.

Nevertheless, one of the better things in life is to be able to earn a decent living financially doing the thing you like. In and of itself, there is nothing wrong and a lot good with that, provided that occupation isn't a harmful one ... you know, like being a tv pundit or reality show host.

January 09, 2007 5:26 PM  
Blogger G-Man said...

Why don't you try getting me and Pam Anderson together?

Every body says it can't happen here.......

January 09, 2007 5:31 PM  
Blogger Motor City Monk said...

Nice post!

I bring people together for a living as a recruiter (headhunter) but lately my candidates have been dropping like flies. My latest happened today, a really big fish - costing me a fee of about 45K. Your post has uplifted my spirits to some degree. Thanks.

January 09, 2007 5:32 PM  
Blogger G-Man said...

Dirk! What happened to yesterdays post?

January 09, 2007 5:33 PM  
Blogger Dirk_Star said...

g-man.

I said that I have an ability,not that I am a miracle worker.

Besides, is that what you really want? Gross...

arcturus, please send your donations care of...

motor city, I used to be a headhunter too! Yup, one of the many ways I've earned a buck during my travels.

January 09, 2007 5:37 PM  
Blogger notfearingchange said...

Ah Dirk!

You are awesome...

I too have been asked what the financial gain to this past time is...

people just look at me, shake their head and walk away in disbelief...

whateva' this is the bestest thing ever. Not only, but i've been touched by so many wonderful life perspectives. It is grand.

January 09, 2007 5:49 PM  
Blogger Dirk_Star said...

g-man, the Buckeyes were beaten so bad even my post was run off the field.

Yeah, I couldn't believe it either...

notfearingchange, thanks for the backup! Is that all life is about these days, making money?

January 09, 2007 5:54 PM  
Blogger Catch said...

None of my friends blog....but I dont feel I owe them any explanation as to why I blog...I enjoy it, I have new friends I have met through blogging,and 2 of you are right here in Ohio with me! I dont blog for money, I blog for fun and relaxation.Some people gamble, some people buy drugs,.... Me? I blog!

January 09, 2007 6:17 PM  
Blogger Zen Wizard said...

People ask me why I write for pleasure when I have been doing it for 20 years and haven't made any money.

Then the same lunk-headed dipshits fly to a golf course ($650) stay in a four-star-hotel ($150) and pay green's fees to get on a golf course ($120).

Funny, I was watching the PGA tour a few weeks ago, and didn't see any off these assholes in the "Top Winners" category, nor did I see them in a commercial because Titleist is begging them to shill their product.

It's called, "a hobby."

And it is a hobby you can do for peanuts.

January 09, 2007 7:29 PM  
Blogger The Wizened Wizard said...

I can only begin to imagine the strength it must have taken to pull yourself up, up out of that gator swamp and onto the mount.

But seriously, Dirkster, very nice post, although you probably should have mentioned the 'shrooms I provide you... There are things other than money... some make you larger, some make you small, but the ones that mother gives you - oops, wait, where was I going with this?

Yes, it's fun and it's great to have a window into the lives of so many interesting (and nice) people, and I thank you for being the catalyst you are, for having the talent and the will to bring so many disparate souls together. It's one heck of a good time.

Muchas gracias!

January 09, 2007 7:40 PM  
Anonymous Rose said...

Dirk, I don't know you very well but I see your face pop up everywhere. You are ok in my book.

January 09, 2007 7:58 PM  
Blogger HeatherinBeautifulBritishColumbia said...

Nicely said Dirk! I've found others through your site and I truly appreciate your introductions. Thanks!

January 09, 2007 8:49 PM  
Blogger Em said...

Why is it that some folks feel everything must be about the money? I don't think Meander meant it that way, but some folks who question what you get out of it surely do. Have they never done anything for fun? Have they never had a hobby?

In truth, when I see the occasional 'blog for pay' items...I usually head the other direction. It is fine for anyone who wants to. But I know, for me, it would change what I do. I would write differently. Think about my blog differently. And I don't want to go down that road.

January 09, 2007 8:53 PM  
Blogger Kat said...

"Truly I say to you, if all you ever work for is the financial rewards you can gain, you will never know the true joy of being a part of something greater than yourself.

Look at the smile upon the face of any volunteer who never earns so much as a penny from their labors and you will know what I’m talking about."

AMEN... absolutely. I totally, totally understand and agree completely. It truly IS more blessed to give than to receive... although, paradoxically, it is in the giving that we "receive" so much more than we ever imagined (not material stuff - I mean the REALLY important stuff, like love and friendship and, most importantly, MAKING A DIFFERENCE in others' lives).

January 09, 2007 8:58 PM  
Blogger bardouble29 said...

Dirk- great post, you are great at bringing people together and I enjoy clicking on various blogs to the side and seeing what new people and adventures I can find...once again thank you

January 09, 2007 9:21 PM  
Blogger C-dell said...

Yes it is hard to explain to people sometimes. I would not want to turn a profit from my blog. I gain more from blogging than money. If I get money for it, then it wouldn't mean as much to me.

January 09, 2007 9:31 PM  
Blogger Chucky said...

So what happened to your Ohio st. game post? I wanted to read it again.

Glad to see you're still alive after that.

Now to read this post :P

January 09, 2007 9:55 PM  
Blogger Crunchy Carpets said...

I wandered into blogging via hanging out on parenting forums. A lot.

I have really enjoyed the experience and met a lot of the moms in real life. We have fun dinners together and playdates for our kids.

I loved the diversity. I loved the various lifestyles and 'types' of moms I met..all unified by our love of parenting and (obviously) our need to talk about it.

I had never really visited blogs until a non blogger friend of mine mentioned that mom friend of hers blogged. I checked it out and thought 'woah.'

I love that the internet has enabled me to meet and make friends with people from all walks of life. All ages and situations from all over the place.

It has shown me (a rather insular person) that friendship knows no bounds.

That just because you don't have the same religion, income, age or whatever, does not mean that you can't share the bond of friendship.

I consider everyone that I visit and visits me to be my 'real' friends.

And while yes...it would be amazing for blogging to turn into some awesome career......

I think really that there is no monetary value on friendship.

January 09, 2007 10:10 PM  
Blogger Malnurtured Snay said...

I've been blogging since September 2004 and I've benefited incredibly: I've made great friends, met incredible people, borrowed a fellow blogger's Wrangler Rubicon for two weeks (in exchange for house sitting for him for that time); got a 36" TV free; went to a lot of bars; and made a grant total of .28 cents through the Amazon associate program. Unless you're Andrew Sullivan or Powerline, blogging should be for friends, not cash.

January 09, 2007 10:27 PM  
Blogger Cinderella said...

I blog because I love people!! Plus I don't have to smell them =)

Nahhh, you know I luv ya! You are a kind soul.

January 09, 2007 10:56 PM  
Blogger Jay said...

I've been blogging for almost a year. I'm amazed at how many people I've gotten to know. And at how diverse a group it is. Which is what I was hoping for.

January 09, 2007 11:14 PM  
Blogger Kati said...

Good answer!!! And when one loves what one does, money is secondary. And that's the way it should be. (That's how I feel about my library job, most of the time, but so many people insist that I should take a job with more hours so I bring home more pay. It's not what I love. I've found what I love, and I'm not going to give it up for a bigger pay-check.)

Oh, and sorry to hear your team lost. Hope they do better next season (of course, I said similar to DH when the Packers got knocked out of any running for the Super Bowl).

January 09, 2007 11:38 PM  
Blogger whimsicalnbrainpan said...

Not only are you wealthy but you spread the wealth as well.

It really is hard to explain the whole blogging experience. Most people just don't get it. But my blog and the people I have met because of it is the one of the most priceless things in my life.

January 09, 2007 11:44 PM  
Blogger Rose DesRochers said...

This reminds me of something. I admin three communities online, one of them being a writing community I founded 4 years ago. Despite the many hours I put into Today's Woman each day maintaining the website, doing tech support etc. In the eyes of many they would say that I'm not working.

I looked up some of the following job descriptions secretary, receptionist, administrator and tech support. I found at least 1 or more of the things I handle on a daily bases included in each of these job descriptions.


I keep strange hours, I sit around in my pajamas and I can take a coffee break anytime I want. What a life. I put in an average 14 hours a day in to running my sites, which is longer than an 8 hour job where I would leave my house and clock in.

Running website and a blog isn’t a job? Hog Wash!

January 09, 2007 11:52 PM  
Blogger Pepper said...

I have been asked that question as well. Some of my friends even suggested I sell my pictures on line.

I started blogging to stay connected to my children. Every once in a while you will see a comment posted by my sons but my daughter is fairly consistent. Then I met Jolie, then Skittles and the next thing I knew I was laughing and joking and sharing my adventures with a whole bunch of folks that I gladly call friends.

You are an awesome person, you not only have a gift of bringing people together but you have the gift of writing. It is a powerful combination. Use it wisely.

I worked for years at the welfare office. It can be very depressing work so I took a second job at the Dollar General. I met a lot of new people and I also met a lot of clients. It was an awesome job. I enjoyed everyone I met, I always came home happy, and stress free. Clients stopped being called clients and I started calling them friends. If there was a future in Dollar General I would have stayed there forever.

Its not how much money you make its how many lives you touch. I may end up behind the window at the welfare office when my journey is over but it has been a hec of ride. I can be satisfied with what I have accomplished, the friends that I have met and made, and at that time I hope I can look back and smile.

Keep blogging friend. You are truly enjoyed and appreciated.

Oh and Surely Not didn't like being called a possum. She conveyed to me that she hopes you become infested with fleas. :-)

January 10, 2007 12:04 AM  
Blogger Uncle Artemus said...

Well said, thoughtful and sincere. Too bad it won't make any difference to a lot of people, they still won't get it. The same sort of people who freely interrupt you while your reading a book because your not "doing" anything.

I myself just started blogging at the prompting of a friend while drunk and playing cards at my kitchen table on new years eve. I've discovered that I enjoy it a great deal. I love to write, always have and never have I sold a damn thing. It's purely a creative outlet for me and one that's cheap, interesting, and something new I haven't done before.

Creatives are routinely misunderstood by the mundane. I stopped letting it bother me after my first week as a photography major in college when I discovered I wasn't the only person out there whose interaction with life didn't fall in line with those who think the Home Shopping Network is high art.

Love your blog and I've got it on my list. I stumbled across it tonight through a random search and good thing too. It seems like a crap shoot to find anything worth reading out here.

January 10, 2007 3:25 AM  
Blogger skeet said...

I blog for money and I don't apologize for it. Some of the products and services that I write about don't lend themselves well to anything more than blatant advertising. With many I can find a way to weave a bit of my own life and experience into their post. As with any other job I've ever had, I always try to give a bit more than was asked for. I meet and usually exceed the advertiser's requirements and needs. They also meet mine. They help me keep the lights on at a time when my regular job is not doing that. I started my blog with the sole purpose of putting in my ninety days and then using it as a money-making enterprise. I anyone believes that that is the only thing it represents to me now, it can only be because they've never read it.

It is possible to combine enterprise with blogging while still doing all of the things and gaining all of the benefits that were mentioned in this post. It's also possible that some folks don't want or need that duality. Different storkes. ~shrug~

I'm well aware that some people have "seen" my blog but never "read" it because they are offended that I whore myself for bread and water on a blog rather than going to the foodbank and the welfare office. Their loss. I write good stuff.

Good piece, my friend. You go your way, I go mine, yet always the the twain shall meet.

January 10, 2007 3:38 AM  
Blogger Smalltown RN said...

That was a fabulous post. I like your analogy of the volunteer and rewards one gets from volunteering it is not financial but so much more. Being a life long volunteer, I can atest to that. You are right we have become rich. Rich with new friendships and knowledge.

Thanks for a great post....

January 10, 2007 3:58 AM  
Blogger Donna said...

I haven't been reading very long, but I have to agree with Meander. It's either that, or you're like a lure tossed to a Bass on a foggy early morning. :) Shiny things that spin always get me. LOL

There's just something about Eddie.

January 10, 2007 6:30 AM  
Blogger SignGurl said...

The benefits of blogging are impossible to convey to someone who hasn't experienced it. I've tried to no avail.

I'm so glad I was brought together with you and your band of gypsies!

January 10, 2007 7:57 AM  
Blogger KSHIPPYCHIC said...

Being a college student now, I wish I could make a little cash and I think I maybe found a way, but you are right about the best thing I have gained from blogging, and that is the people around me. I have met (some in real life) because of the blog, some of the most awesome people on the planet. My eyes have been opened to so much that I never knew about. That is priceless.

January 10, 2007 8:06 AM  
Blogger Daniel Thompson said...

Nice article. You made some good points about blogging.
Thank you for submitting your profile to The Profile Directory of Bloggers. You are listed.

January 10, 2007 12:42 PM  
Blogger crabcake said...

I get the same question right along with bloggers aren't real people.

They're not? Cause I got lots of Christmas cards and a couple of gifts from non-real folks. And I sent them some too. LOL!

Life was never supposed to be about the buck. It's about us caring about each other. In the end, that's where you find your happiness. There's no amount of money in the world that can replace friendships.

PS. How come I'm not in your valued link list? huh? huh? Is it cuz I have a big nose?

January 10, 2007 2:04 PM  
Blogger Dirk_Star said...

Thanks Daniel.

Folks, this guy has a great idea and I am encouraging everyone to go and sign up!

Crabcakes, I'll fix things right away.

Ask and you shall receive...

Except for tom bailey...

He gets nada.

January 10, 2007 3:01 PM  
Blogger Craig D said...

Hmm.. gives me an idea for a blog entry. (But will I follow through?)

January 10, 2007 3:38 PM  
Blogger G-Man said...

Can love buy you money?
Cause money can't buy you love....only a good time!

January 10, 2007 4:12 PM  
Blogger Meander said...

wow! i was reading along and had no idea i would see my comment there! no i couldn't imagine you blogging for money. but you do have some extraordinary skills at creating community and harmony. i guess i just wondered if you use these skills elsewhere in your life and/or career.

there is something about you which is so endearing. we just love you!

January 10, 2007 4:21 PM  
Blogger Dirk_Star said...

Good to see you, meander!

I thought your question was a good one and it just happened to fit right in with a number of discussions I've been having lately.

I think it is sad how so many people judge the success of something solely by how many dollars it brings in.

I think there is so much more to life than dollars and cents...

Thanks, you inspired me as usual and I thank you for being the catalyst for this post.

And may I say, your outfits continue to be a catalyst for other things as well.

Ah, but that is for another post...

January 10, 2007 4:30 PM  
Blogger Dazd said...

Well said Dirk. This is a fine example of blogging with healthy comments following.

Keep up the good work!

January 10, 2007 4:36 PM  
Blogger Spoke said...

The blogasphere is amazing. I learn a lot of things about people and our planet. Things like Kiva...(check my blog)

January 10, 2007 5:49 PM  
Blogger Enemy of the Republic said...

Blogging rules, dude. Sometimes it is exhausting, but it has saved me from despair more than once. And it's nice to meet cool people like you.

January 10, 2007 7:33 PM  
Blogger eddie said...

Hey dirk, sorry i've been awall but mind is fired right now but you do a good job at the blog boss thanks...

January 10, 2007 9:17 PM  
Blogger Crashdummie said...

Awwwwwwwww you are a lil' sunshine that always manage to brighten my day, no matter how dark or or threatning the thundering clouds are!

January 11, 2007 4:24 AM  
Blogger The Wizened Wizard said...

I can't seem to find the community bulletin board, so (I hope you don't mind) I'm posting this here:

POT LUCK SUPPER AT THE WIZARD'S PLACE FRIDAY NIGHT

5:30

BRING A DISH TO PASS

WIZARD WILL PROVIDE SOME OF RAYMOND'S WINE AND SIGMUND'S MEAD


Elizabeth and Sigmund have agreed to come, Raymond will be there, and Bambi, Flower, and Thumper Jr. have all said they would make an appearance, so please come to meet them in person. Wiley will provide song.

Hope to see you all then!

January 11, 2007 7:21 AM  
Blogger Satan said...

i have been trying to turn a buck from this blogging thing and it hasnt been easy

maybe i need an infomercial

January 11, 2007 10:19 AM  
Blogger ~Deb said...

It’s amazing how people don’t understand the concept of blogging. But think of it like this- these are the people who aren’t into writing. They don’t know what it’s like to write or keep some kind of journal. They’re private people who don’t want their business or ideas out there on the net- even if it is anonymous. These people only want to be on the computer if it’s meant for a lucrative purpose. But the thing is, blogging is so healthy. It’s good to vent, rant, rave about anything and get advice and different point of views from various people all over the world. It’s also helpful for other people to read blogs such as yours or a blog where it’s full of regular everyday advice. Not that you should take advice from just anyone on the net, but it’s just nice to have. You contribute to the world of bloggers in a positive way. I enjoy your writing.

Volunteering is unheard of to some people. I’m thankful you volunteered to write your thoughts and opinions. I’ve enjoyed them a great deal these past few months as I’ve been reading along.

January 11, 2007 10:37 AM  
Blogger Pixie said...

Dirk I truly think you are one of the best bloggers around.
Keep up the good work!

January 11, 2007 11:17 AM  
Blogger russkal said...

I blog everyday.

Visit other people's blogs, post an entry twice or thrice a week, and comment as much as I can.

Overall, it takes me three hours or more just to do all these stuff. And the people who have been to my site knows, I do it every midnight.

And yet, I never earned a single penny out of it.

And yet, I'm not complaining.

And yet, I am happy.

For what I earn from blogging is far more valuable...

It gives me wisdom - reading valuable insights on diverse topics, learning something new each time.

It enriches my culture.

It increases my sense of humor.

Best of all, It allows me to gain friendship.

People may argue that friendships made in the blogosphere are not real at all, but if you have been to my blog and read my post about my daughter's birthday, you'll know why I believe otherwise.

And while I have nothing against some people who earn in this endeavor, I admire those who, like me, spend countless hours in front of the computer not just to blog, but to reach out to the world. Without getting paid dollars at all.

January 11, 2007 1:49 PM  
Blogger Lizard Princess said...

Money isn't the root of all evil, but the LOVE of money is. When you aren't satisfied with a little, you'll never be satisfied with a lot. It's all about where your heart is at! Very nice post.

January 11, 2007 3:45 PM  
Blogger MasterQ said...

Truly an inspiration, Dirk. I originally started blogging as a kind of online journal. But after stumbling across your blog and coming along for the ride I find that blogging can be so much more.

Thanks.

p.s.
You can tell you're a hub of this community because of all the comments you get on a continual basis.

January 11, 2007 4:53 PM  
Blogger Paul F. said...

After blogging for over a year, I have found that people are even more boring and uninteresting than I originally thought.

January 11, 2007 8:20 PM  
Blogger Dirk_Star said...

Paul, do you play Magic the Gathering?

Beause your comment is almost a direct quote from a card called Telepathy.

January 11, 2007 10:27 PM  
Blogger Scott from Oregon said...

Hmmmmm.

I got this mysterious comment by some guy with a name that sounded vaguely familiar, like a dead show with someone who had a hearing impairment...

"Mad props to you@ Mimi! Link me!" or something similar.

I just figured it was another one of those blog cruisers looking for an audience...

I am still making up my mind...

The free world will transform by the interconnectedness of ideas...

But just as internetporn has made close-ups of vaginas passe and boring, so too will too much blog...

It will be interesting to see where the end of the road is...

January 12, 2007 4:38 AM  

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