The Liebster Award – Breaking the Rules

Liebster Award

Thank you, to Janice at Ontheland, for selecting me as a nominee for the Liebster Award, which celebrates new and less known blogs with less than 3000 followers.  When you visit Ontheland, you’ll find that Janice shares her concerns for the environment.  She often responds to various word prompts and poetry challenges, and much of her poetry is focused on nature.  She’s an advocate for sustainability and fair-trade products.

The “Rules” of the Liebster Award are as follows:

  1. Thank the blogger who nominated you and link to their blog
  2. Nominate 11 other bloggers to Liebster Awards 2016
  3. Answer 11 questions from the blogger who nominated you
  4. Tell our readers 11 random facts about yourself
  5. Give your candidates 11 questions to answer on their blog when they publish their appointment

Now, I’m a rule breaker from way back, so I won’t be nominating anyone for the Liebster Award. I agree with Janice’s view about placing an obligation on others. I would not do so for a friend, and I consider many of the bloggers I follow to be friends. However, I will recommend bloggers to follow, just as I did when I participated in the Three Quote Challenge in November 2015. In fact, I’ll use those same names meeting the guidelines (provided I can determine their follower counts), supplemented to total eleven.


1. Why do you blog?  I started in April 2014, by posting a poem a day for National Poetry Writing Month (NaPoWriMo). I followed that by posting a handful of non-poetry blogs, a few scattered poems and another month of poems for NaPoWriMo 2015. In the past year, I’ve gained inspiration to write more from the ability of other poets who write consistently, and I’ve often been inspired by their words. I enjoy sharing my poetry and the interaction that follows.

2. What are your favorite hobbies?  That would be photography and writing. There are more than twenty of my photos on the walls of our home, and at least half of those are canvas prints. I started writing poetry in the early nineties (my late thirties), but I had a relatively dry ten year period until 2010, or so. I wrote more than 100 love poems, from mid-2011 to mid-2012. I am not published. Someday.

3. What are your pet peeves?  Those change as the direction of my thoughts change, but one that’s always at the top of my list is intolerance and discrimination regarding sexual orientation. I am a supporter of Human Rights Campaign (HRC).

4. What is your favorite food or meal?  I’m always looking for a new salmon recipe. My favorite is also one of the simplest to make: Two six ounce salmon fillets laid in an open baking dish, scored to pour a teaspoon of maple syrup in each and topped with ground black pepper and sea salt, then baked at 425° for seventeen minutes. A variation puts seasoned (salt & pepper) asparagus spears under the salmon, with dill weed sprinkled on the salmon, in place of the maple syrup. Another favorite is our Saturday tradition of homemade pizza. Our usual is a white/vegetarian with eggplant, asparagus, sun-dried tomatoes, mushrooms, black olives, garlic (lots!) and artichoke hearts, with fontina as a base and crumbled goat cheese on top. Sometimes we’ll add some salmon left over from a previous meal. We have a gas/convection oven. It takes just eleven minutes at 440°, on a pizza stone.

5. Do you prefer coffee or tea, or neither?  Coffee, made in a French press – most often black, but with a creamer when I make iced coffee. I make a point of buying free-trade coffee from a local small business that sells “farmer-direct” coffee and roasts on location. The owner is in a “co-op” with a handful of small shop owners, and a couple of times a year he travels to visit the families that grow their coffee.

6. Name a favorite something (e.g., book, singer, band, author, poem).  Willie Nile is a singer-songwriter who has been around since the eighties and doesn’t get enough recognition. Some of his work showcases his take on topical events. A perfect example is Cell Phones (Ringing In The Pockets Of The Dead) – written in response to the Madrid train bombing.

7. Are you a morning person?  Morning. I had an afternoon shift for the majority of my working life, usually working until one or two AM, so I often slept until ten or eleven in the morning (rising for just an hour or so at seven to help get my children off to school). These days, although I’m retired, I live with someone who is out the door for work around seven. It’s important to me to keep the same hours as her, so I’m usually up by six and in bed by ten.

8. What sports do you enjoy, if any?  Viewing? Football. I have little patience for baseball. That said, I seldom sit through an entire game of football – I’m too easily distracted. I do remember freezing my butt off at Rich Stadium, watching the Buffalo Bills during their Super Bowl years.

Participating? Kayaking and riding my bicycle, although the hills in my immediate area these days have put a damper on that. When I kayak, it’s on calm water (generally), not whitewater. I kayak alone and need to exit where I launch. Whitewater kayaking would not permit that. I enjoy taking photos and video while on the water.

9. What is a reference source that you use frequently?  Google Maps. I know, the Evil Google, right! What can you do?

I have a copy of Garner’s Modern American Usage that should be more dogeared than it actually is. (Usually, I’m fairly good at faking it.)

10. What quality do you value most in a friend?  Loyalty, followed by honesty.

11. What is a favorite journey, either traveled or planned for the future?  I met the love of my life in Chicago. We’ve returned there a couple of times for the Chicago Jazz Festival. Chicago will always be a special place for me.



1. I’m the eldest of four children. Of my three sisters, the eldest is gone from our lives. The remaining two are very special to me.

2. I ran the quarter-mile on my high school track team in the late sixties and early seventies. My high school sweetheart wasn’t too happy that my last race (at a New York State Sectionals Meet) caused us to arrive at our senior prom after the dinner was served.

3. My first two cars were gold – the second one was a 1964 Chevy Impala SS. (I’ve had about 25 vehicles in the last 45 years, but the most recent is nine years old.)

4. As much as I went fishing with my father when I was a child, it doesn’t interest me, now. I don’t have the patience.

5. I have a guitar that I want to learn to play – that patience thing again.

6. My right ankle was broken when my leg was run over by a forklift, on a loading dock in 1998.

7. I had been scuba diving in Buffalo Harbor/Lake Erie earlier that day, and my wet suit was hanging to dry on a fence outside of work. It was the last time I went diving.

8. My ten year retirement anniversary is two months away.

9. I learned to touch-type in high school, forty-five years ago. With no need for a typewriter, touch typing was just a memory by the time I got to computer keyboards. It still is.

10. I’ve worn eyeglasses since I was five years old, when I was far sighted. My eyes changed as I reached my teens, and I went for a little more than a year without glasses when I was thirteen. I then became nearsighted, and I have been wearing glasses ever since. (Except for a ten year period when I wore contacts – that ended when it became necessary for me to wear bifocals.)

11. Sometimes, I have to explain to people that my poems are not necessarily a reflection of my circumstances or emotions. Observations of others, news events, etc. sometimes run through my mind.

Bonus Fact: I moved from Buffalo, New York, to mid-Missouri in 2012 to be with someone. As much as I miss Western New York, I wouldn’t have it any other way.


BLOGS I RECOMMEND FOLLOWING, in no particular order (poets – imagine that!)

Peace, love and patchouli (Kim) – her morning missives are worth waking up to

Gathering Stones Strung on Threads (Peter Notehelfer) – his daily take on quotes is astounding

Ben Naga – don’t be surprised if his comments come in the form of a poem

Claudia McGill Writes Poetry, Did You Know That? – a bibliophile who combines art and poetry

Lillian the Home Poet – photos as good as her poetry, and that’s saying a lot

Dancing Echoes – again, photography on a level with her poetry, sometimes Cheryl adds thoughts that make you think (as if her poetry doesn’t!)

Poems from in between (Jenifer)- always something here to stir your emotions

koko boocro (Ria) – The banner says it all: “Jamaican flavored – Wood, Needle & Word Craft” (especially word craft)

The Mystic Fool – attraction, desire and emotion… tales old, new or imagined? You decide.

thoughts and entanglements (Pat – jazzytower) – come here for your daily dose of haiku, always well done

Graceful Press Poetry (Jennifer) – her poems always make me think, and the cover for her collection of poems, Castle Ruins, (appearing in her right hand column) always knocks me out


11 NEW QUESTIONS: What questions? I’m a rule breaker, remember?

Thanks again, to Janice, Ontheland.

Ken G. / rivrvlogr

10 thoughts on “The Liebster Award – Breaking the Rules

  1. Much as I hate the idea of doing it myself, I love reading the answers to these questionnaires. When they’re interesting, of course. Thanks for having the patience to finish this one, Ken. It was worth it 🙂


    • I’ve had more than one optometrist tell me I wouldn’t be happy with bifocal contacts. For most of my life I’ve had an astigmatism in one eye. When I finally decided I might give bifocal contacts a try two years ago, I had developed an astigmatism in the other eye and was told you need at least one eye without the condition. I’ve worn a toric lens for the astigmatism, but I guess tailoring a lens for both bifocal and astigmatism is too much customization. I’ve also been told that some people wear a reading contact in one eye and a normal lens in the other. Apparently the brain can adjust for that.
      On another note, glasses have always corrected my vision to 20/15, so every time I used my contacts I had to adjust to 20/20.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I didn’t realize an astigmatism was something you could develop later in life. It is weird what the brain adjusts to. When I first got mine, years ago, I sometimes felt like a lens was turning and adjusting (I got this vision of a Borg from Star Trek), for near and far, but now it doesn’t really happen. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I enjoyed your post– your pizza sounds fantastic. And (for the sake of conversation) I noticed a similarity and difference in our families of birth– I am oldest of four but my one brother is the youngest.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. there you go making me feel so special 🙂 I’m playing catch up here now that the high speed is zipping along. Makes life so much easier and emails a lot user friendly than on the iPad 🙂 You are the best, not missing western NY at all yet….enjoying the warm weather 🙂 Peace and love, K

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Thanks for the recommendation. 🙂

    Here are a few random facts” about me in exchange,


    Amused, bemused castaway
    Delinquent, evanescent, fugitive

    Gabbles heedlessly
    Incorrigibly juvenile


    Loves music

    Occupationally puzzled

    Quietly rabid
    Silently troubled

    Unaccountably vain
    Witless Xenaphile




    …..Amused – pleasurably entertained, occupied, or diverted; aroused to mirth.
    …..Bemused – bewildered or confused; lost in thought; preoccupied.
    …..Castaway – a shipwrecked person; an outcast; anything cast adrift or thrown away.
    …..Delinquent – failing in or neglectful of a duty or obligation; a person who is delinquent.
    …..Evanescent – vanishing; fading away; fleeting.
    …..Fugitive – having taken flight, or run away; fleeting; transitory; elusive; wandering, roving
    ……….or vagabond.
    …..Gabbles – speaks or converses rapidly and unintelligibly; jabbers.
    …..Heedlessly – carelessly; thoughtlessly; unmindfully.
    …..Incorrigibly – bad beyond correction or reform.
    …..Juvenile – of, pertaining to, characteristic of, or suitable or intended for young persons;
    ……….immature; childish; infantile.
    …..Knotty – involved, intricate, or difficult.
    …..Ne’er-do-well – useless; worthless; an improvident, irresponsible, or lazy person.
    …..Occupationally – of that which chiefly engages one’s time.
    …..Puzzled – to be perplexed or confused; to ponder or study over some perplexing problem or
    …..Rabid – irrationally extreme in opinion or practice; furious or raging; violently intense.
    …..Troubled – concerned, worried; exhibiting emotional or behavioural problems.
    …..Unaccountably – incomprehensibly, mysteriously.
    …..Vain – excessively proud of or concerned about one’s own appearance, qualities,
    ……….achievements, etc.; conceited; proceeding from or showing personal vanity; senseless or
    …..Witless – nitwitted, senseless, soft witted.
    …..Xenaphile – No, this is not a typo, nor does it mean that I love foreigners (apart from the
    ……….Warrior Princess of course)
    …..Yea sayer – a person with an optimistic and confident outlook; a person who habitually
    ……….agrees with or is submissive to others.
    …..Zany – ludicrously or whimsically comical; clownish.


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