clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all!


It was my intention to write someting last night, but as is often the case, good intentions go by the boards at Christmas time.  Our family got together for gift-giving and feasting last night, and our Christmas lasted too late for me to write coherently.

Yet here we are, Christmas day 2008.  Ken has already given you his list of gifts for many deserving folks, both friend and foe.  I think Ken has done a great job there, and I hope all those worhties receive the best the season has to offer.

My focus in this piece will be a bit more internal.  I want to talk just a bit about this blog, our members, and what this has all meant to me.  When JL decided to ask me to take over this thing back in April of 2007, I had no real idea what I was letting myself in for.  But it has been a wonderful exprience, and lest you think I am considering doing the same with this reflection, don't -- I plan to do this for a long time.

In the time since I took over, this blog has continued down the growth path that JL envisioned, and has now become one of the most read blogs on SB Nation and one of the most read in the Big Blue blogosphere.  That has not happend because of me, but because of all of you.  It is the outstanding commentary of the members here at A Sea of Blue that draws readers in to this place, not the writing of Ken, JL or me.  SB Nation has worked hard to give us a platform that allows us to grow a community, and with the help of our members, we have grown a community that I think anyone would be proud of.  I am very proud of our members, more than I can ever accurately express.


Besides the community we have developed together here, there are a few other things I am very proud of.  I will pat myself on the back first, and say that maybe the best decision I made all year in any area of my life was to ask Ken Howlett to join me on the front page of A Sea of Blue.  Ken has exceeded my expectations and even my wildest hopes, and as most of you know, my expectations and hopes are considerable.  Without his counsel and his outstanding, detailed authorship and wisdom, I fear the quality of this blog would have slipped, particularly recently when the demands of my job have begun to significantly infringe upon my blogging time.  Ken has been my Christmas present all year, one that I am deeply thankful for.

Another thing I am proud of is how well this blog runs itself when I am away.  If something is broken, I am alerted by a member.  If someone comes and posts nonsense, I get the word quickly before damage can be done.  If I slip up grammatically or spelling-wise, somebody tells me so that error doesn't have to live forever in infamy.  All the time these days I am greeted by thoughtful and incisive FanPosts that I can happily promote to the front page for the benefit of all Kentucky fans.  You have no idea what joy it gives me to be able to promote a FanPost to the front page knowing full well that it not only defends and enhances the reputation of A Sea of Blue, but of its members as well.

Finally, I am proud of the diversity of opinion that we have here, and the incredible respect and patience our members have with Ken, JL, I, and each other.  Honorable and decorous disagreement is the cornerstone of this blog.  We don't want to become an echo chamber for one set of opinions, and we want to be welcoming to all, regardless of partisan affilliation, who wish to join in the conversation and add value to A Sea of Blue. 

Together, we have achieved a rare standard at A Sea of Blue, which is "Don't write anything here you would not say to another person's face."  To me, that is the pinnacle of blogging achievement given the absurdities (usually granted by anonymity) we all see at other places around the Internet.  Our members have held themselves accountable for the quality of their remarks, as well as holding others accountable to the same standard.  That, my friends, is the very definition of a superior online community, and you will not find a finer community anywere on the Internet than we have here at A Sea of Blue.  That is not due to me, Ken or JL, but to every member who dedicates himself to the principles of honest, polite but frank discussion of our favorite NCAA sports program, that of the Kentucky Widlcats.


Last but not least, I want to single out a few people for special recognition.  Oldcat'69 has thoughtfully provided us with outstanding, first hand remembrances of the bygone days of the Baron, all of which were extraordinarily well written and entertaining.  We thank him from the bottom of our hearts for adding value to the blog.

Kykat51 has been one of the most consistent members of our community, and she deserves special recognition for keeping me on my toes and making sure that the riff-raff don't take over the place when I am away doing something else.  There are Big Blue fans, and then there is kykat51 -- Bluest of the Blue.

Kentuckygirl0724 gets special recognition for doing something badly needed around these parts, but something I don't dare try -- writing poetry about Kentucky.  She has done it so well, in fact, that her poems have become among the most recommended FanPosts in A Sea of Blue history.  If anything, we have a tendency to become a bit too staid and predictable around here, and Kentuckygirl0724 has helped bring us out of that and into the world of meter and rhyme.  I can't say enough about how much I have enjoyed that.

Last but not least, FortyYearCatFan gets a special shout-out.  Forty has unquestionably been one of our most active and sometimes controversial members, and even though he and I occasionally go at each other in a friendly way, he does a great job of bringing statistics and his personal experiences to us in his own inimitable style.  I think Forty has posted more facts and figures around this place than any other member, and even though it is often more like a deluge than a drizzle or even steady rain, his hard work and dedication to A Sea of Blue is indisputable.  We would be remiss if we didn't recognize that fact, and are grateful to count him among our membership.

There are many more who deserve recognition, but despite reports to the contrary, I cannot write endlessly and this piece has gone on long enough.  So for those I did not single out, please accept my heartfelt thanks for your contributions to A Sea of Blue.  So many of you continue to make such perceptive and intelligent comments, and with the kind of enthusiasm worthy of a Kentucky fan.  You are all appreciated ... every single one.

In closing, let me wish each and every one of you a merry Christmas or whatever holiday is most applicable to you.  Thank you all for being here with me, and may all of you and your family enjoy the fullest and most profound blessings of the Holiday season no matter what your creed or faith may be.