300 Posts and Counting! So What?

fireworks 2By Bill Henk – Prepare to launch the fireworks!  Not because it’s July 4th, 2013, mind you.

Why then?  Because this is my 300th blog post, of course.

“Big deal,” you say.   Well, it is to me.  It’s the one that comes after #299 after all!

OK, it’s not like rolling a perfect 300 game in bowling.   And it’s not the equivalent of a win total that would guarantee  a pitcher a berth in the Hall of Fame at Cooperstown.  It’s probably closer to a weak hitter putting up a .300 batting average or a kick returner on the taxi squad taking it all 300 feet into the end zone.

300It’s definitely not on a par with all the times in the Bible where a meager army of 300 turns back hordes of invaders against incredible odds.  Similarly, neither does it rank up there with the spectacularly violent movie rendition of the 300 Spartans versus the 300,000 Persians at the Battle of Thermopylae.

But hey, it’s infinitely better than having the lowest credit score possible.  And, as Roman numerals and binary expressions go, CCC and 100101100 look pretty cool, don’t you think?

Seriously, at this modest blogging milestone, I most of all want to thank all the readers who have supported the Marquette Educator in our nearly four years of operation.  Our audience has swelled dramatically during that time, and the College of Education appreciates the interest in our work.   The bottom line is that readers make the efforts of our talented  cadre of bloggers worthwhile.  For that matter, I’d be remiss in not expressing my gratitude to all of the individuals who have written for the blog, especially the regular contributors.

Since August of 2009, when I wrote my first post, I’ve witnessed our blog evolve in extremely gratifying ways.  Back then, I was the only blogger, and I had to crank out posts twice a week, on Mondays and Thursdays.   That pace was grueling, especially for someone like me who anguishes over my writing.  In hindsight, I’m still astonished that I could actually pull that off.  You see, my goal is always to get the language exactly right, and sad to say, I’m the type of maniac who becomes mortified  upon discovering so much as a typo after I’ve posted something.

300POSTSAt the same time I have to credit that mania with fueling whatever quality I’ve been able to achieve in my blogging.  Never once did I slap together a post to meet a deadline, although the prospect crossed my mind many times.   Instead of taking shortcuts, I tried to offer readers something timely, important, entertaining, and hopefully substantial and reasonably thoughtful on each and every occasion.

As a result, when I look back over my body of work, I take pride in it — rightly or wrongly.  Overall it’s been enormously liberating to be able to express myself to the outside world with such frequency and without editing.   I’ve greatly appreciated the opportunity to assume the role of a would-be public intellectual and to convey my views on a wide range of educational issues. And there have been times when blogging has been extremely therapeutic to me emotionally.

Frankly, the blog has been a marvelous tool for me to communicate with stakeholders — students, alumni, staff, donors, foundations, legislators, teachers, educational leaders, the community, and even our excellent faculty, too many of whom in my estimation have yet to grasp, appreciate, or personally embrace the power of this form of social media — principally its enormous reach.

My blogging has also  afforded me the luxury to be a storyteller, and like any astute author, I try to write from my own experiences, both professional and personal.  I think every single phase of my life is reflected somewhere within my posts — from my first days of schooling, through elementary and senior high school, college, graduate school, and then as a faculty member, department chair, and dean.  On the personal side, my posts also draw from my roles as a husband, father, son, brother, uncle, friend, colleague, musician, former athlete, and pet lover.

When my blogging days are over, apart from whatever professional impact my work here exerts, my posts will represent a possible source of insight, and perhaps a gift, to my daughter.   I hope she’ll read them as a way to understand her old, eccentric, or departed father better, both as an educator and a human being.  But most of all, I hope she discerns values and ways of thinking within my writing that will help her, in the best Jesuit tradition, to “Be THE Difference” in the world.  Trust me, from the nearly eight amazing years we’ve spent together, I already know that she has special potential.

If my blogging inspires her to reach for greatness, especially as a woman for others, then the countless hours I’ve spent diligently and lovingly composing my posts will have been fully worthwhile.


4 Responses to “300 Posts and Counting! So What?”

  1. 1 Kathy Mago July 5, 2013 at 4:21 pm

    Very informing and interesting especially for Audrey.


  2. 3 Donna Fisher July 5, 2013 at 7:21 pm

    Enjoyed reading Blog #300….you are to be commended for your dedication to writing about the things that matter so much to you. I, of course, am drawn to those that concern the family. I know that Audrey will use them when she is older to confirm what she already knows: that her dad is a pretty terrific guy!!!


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