Blogging U

Getting Visual on the Blog

The Look & Feel of the Blog


  • It’s the only blog that…
    • Uses psychology to interpret and explain current events.
    • Uses snark, sarcasm, and profanity to analyze current events.
    • Uses strong visual support for its message.
    • Applies psychology to our daily lives.
    • Tries to educate about psychology.
    • Tries to educate about current events.
    • Tries to lead by example: the reader doesn’t have to just accept things as they are, but can analyze them for themselves and walk away with a clearer understanding of current events.
    • Engages its readers in a lively humorous way to discuss the events of the day.
  • The broader context

    • There are many blogs that address current events.
    • There are many blogs that address psychology.
    • There are many blogs that are snarky and sarcastic.
    • The blog is factual enough for it be filed under psychology since that is the blog’s main focus.



  • Mood
    • The overall mood is one of edgy humor: snarky, sarcasticky, and profaney.
    • But, I prefer a more steampunk feel: more sepia and daguerreotype, wire frame glasses, leather bound books, fountain pens, paper, wooden desks, 1920’s Underwood typewriters. You’ll see these images in the header and scattered throughout the posts.
    • I am partial to darker warmer colors: browns, oranges, grays.
    • Overstuffed chairs, quiet chuckling, reading at desks, writing in notebooks.
    • Excited discussion as ideas are explored and jokes are cracked.

Taglines & Toys

  • The old journalistic W’s: 
    • Who: people who are interested in psychology, current events, and snark
    • What: it is about psychology, current events, and snarky sarcasticky jokes
    • When: I post two to four times a week of about 1500 to 2000 words each.
    • Where: I am physically located in Nairobi, Kenya, but the audience by and large resides in North America.
    • How: Snark and solid information. Everything factual is documented with links to the articles that at least support the information reported even if it was not learned from there.
    • Kinds of posts: Funny, sarcastic, a twist on the topic that isn’t usual, eg. Obama created Trump. And informative posts using solid psychological findings, theories, and approaches.
  • Pitch: Wonkette meets Kahneman and Milgram.
  • Current Tagline: CalicoJack Explains Life & Everything using Psychology & Snark. Right now as I look back over concept and thoughts on the blog seems pretty fair. I’ve considered using, snarky, sarcasticky, and profaney, and while it captures the the language aspect of the blog, it doesn’t capture the current events or psychology aspects.

Thinking Visually

  • Iconography: There are several traditional symbols used for my interests and concerns.
    • Psychology: the Greek psy
    • Current events: newspaper
    • Snark: ?


  • Psychology: There are some other very commonly recognized symbols which are seen on covers of novels, popular press non-fiction, and textbooks. They are tried and true and tired.
    • Sigmund Freud
    • Psychoanalyst couch
    • People
    • My take so far: I have two header images: Sherlock Holmes’ desk and Sigmund Freud’s desk. While neither jump out and shout either man, they are recognizable for the aficionado. They come from that late 19th early 20th century and have much of the right look for my sensibilities.
  • Current Events: I am more focused on US politics than current events so far, but I’d like to keep my options open. Also, I have a post concerning a case of parents causing the death of their child through neglect. I don’t feel the need to have a newspaper or other symbol of current events or politics.
  • Snark: I use a picture of the Snark, Jack London’s yawl. Not many people will recognize it. But, I love ships, wooden ships, etc. so for me, I like it.
  • Other considerations: I would love to produce my own media, but don’t have the time to develop the skills. I’m limited to media that has an open creative commons license.

2 replies »

    • I am a process person. I need to verbalize or write or draw to get it out of my head and begin to work with an idea. Students come to my classroom for help with a research project and I end up writing all over the board because that’s the way I think. Somehow, having an audience makes it easier, too. If you have to explain something so that someone else understands it, then you begin to get the right level of detail.

      The Blogging U course is good for that. It gives just a little nudge and the right amount of structure.


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