The evening of the first day of the blog

by Jeff Oaks

I’m still trying to figure out what I want to do here. I asked friends on Facebook and got a flurry of polite answers–“just be yourself” and “do what you want”–which made me ask What do I want? One thing about Facebook is that it’s a mess of sorts. It’s not an out-of-control mess like Myspace was; the fixed format of Facebook keeps things from being too wild. But I use Facebook for posting photos, making little quips about the world, about my friends, teaching, my dog, daylight savings time, and all sorts of things. Facebook is my daily conversation with the world. This site, though, I want to be a quieter, more thoughtful place. Where Facebook is reactionary, this blog can be ruminant, thoughtful.

In any case, I’m glad to announce that I have done tonight’s assignment for our digital laboratory class. I started it. I’ve even now downloaded some images from my iPhone and from my laptop. It was easy. Much of the digital world is easy to use.

Maybe I can write out a few possible projects I’m thinking about:

1) Turning a long essay I wrote about my father into a digital “object”. It’s too long for most publications to take, so I think it might make an interesting test case for a digital project.

2) Taking all the river photos I have, arranging them in sequence, like a slide show, and read say ten poems that have to do with the river somehow. We have to do an audio/visual essay of some kind, and that would be fairly easy to do. I have enough photos of the river to create something interesting.

3) I could figure out how to arrange my first chapbook, The Unknown Country, out as a digital chapbook. I’m not sure how one might do that, but I’d be interested in trying.