I’m very pleased to announce that my post The Offering (A History of Jacke Wilson in 100 Objects #26) has been selected for WordPress’s Freshly Pressed showcase feature. Hooray! There it is, right between a terrific post about the new black stormtrooper in the next Star Wars installment and a post from Longreads (a wonderful site, by the way) about the essays of Charles D’Ambrosio. Pretty good company! I feel a little out of place, like maybe the invitations got mixed up in the mail and I got one by mistake. But I’m enjoying the party anyway!
With each Object I hope for some kind of connection with readers (that’s the goal, after all), but I never know what will resonate and how. Certainly the posts about music lessons have struck a chord, as it were, and the posts about fatherhood, and coaching, and…well, I’ve been fortunate to find an audience in a few different areas. The Offering is a little different: yes, it’s about parenting, but it’s also about the relationship between humans and animals. That’s a topic that hasn’t come up in the Objects before (I don’t think), but it’s clearly one that touches something in people. Here are a few of the notes I’ve received from Wonderful Readers:
I’m not sure what I was expecting from the title but what I got was pretty incredible! Thank you for an unexpectedly excellent post to brighten my (late) evening. It’s clear you’ve put a lot of thought into what could have been just a simple, one-dimensional story but is assuredly something more now. I hope your family no longer has to be so transient!
Hmm. We aren’t, for now at least, but the pull of the Big Move is always near… Here’s another:
Your story touched my heart… I loved how you paralleled the fox with your own worries and concerns about taking care and protecting your family. Wonderful Post.. Loved it.
Oh my. Thank you!
This was so well-written and engaging. Thank you. I wish that more people could have similar experiences with the natural world and the other creatures that live in it. Despite our intellectual abilities, we’re unable to grasp that the impulses that drive life are similar in all species, which would perhaps lead to more empathy, respect and care for the world around us.
I totally agree. The comment makes me want to be a better person.
And this one, which gave me goosebumps:
Last Monday I stood with my little dog Pedro in the middle of a silver birch wood in the middle of England in the middle of the day.
I could hear an absolute cacophony of barking and wailing and woofing. Hounds.
I put the mutt on his lead and we stood silently, still under a rogue oak on the side of a track.
The baying and woofing was so close. Pedro was rigid. Seconds later a fox, a flaky ropey shaggy fox nonchalantly trotted past, across the track and into a field of brown heather.
The dog and I held our breath as moments later a posse of hysterical bloodhounds chased past.
Closely followed by 34 horses and ponies all shapes and sizes ridden by riders all sizes and shapes.
Did the fox escape?
Did he survive?
Does he live to tell the tale of the day he was chased by the hunt in the woods?
Is he the fox who noses through my bin and howls late late into the night?
Your tale resonated.
Nature in the raw.
Yes indeed. As I replied in the comments, my hope is that Nature won (and by “Nature” here I mean I am rooting very hard for the fox).
As always, I’m very thankful to my readers for being the best damn bunch of readers and commenters on the planet. And many thanks to WordPress and their editorial team for helping my story reach a wider audience.
Okay, enough about the past! I’ve got some new Objects in the works, Objectinos queued up to tide you over until then, and another edition of the Jacke Wilson Show almost ready. All that distasteful self-promoting is behind us too. Onward and upward, people!