Tuesday, November 1, 2005

"Basil" or "basil"??

William Teach, who resides at Pirate's Cove, was the most recent person to ask about the captialization of the name Basil.

And therein lies a tale.

When this little blog launched back in December, 2004, I was wondering what to call it. You see, I really hadn't thought this thing through. Still haven't, if you must know the truth of the matter.

Anyway after an exhaustive search of, oh, maybe 20-30 minutes, I selected Blogger as the place where I'd put up a blog. And, when I went to register with them, I tried to use my "standard" ID for my Blogger account.

Okay, before you tell me, I'll tell you: I know it's a bad idea to have the same ID for every account. Yes, it can be convenient, becase you don't have to remember a bunch of stuff and remember what goes where. But I was lazy, and I was using the same ID (and, when possible, the same password) for all my different type of accounts.

The thing is, someone already was using it. So, I had to fall back to another ID, one I used before I settled on my more recent "common" ID. It too, was taken. So, even further back in my memory I went, and ... finally! ... one that wasn't already taken.

So, now that I had an account, I had to name the blog. So, I named it the same thing.

Just so you know, the name "Basil" didn't appear in the ID or in the URL of the blog.

But, after getting the hang of it, and publishing my "test blog," I noticed the ''B'' that Blogger used as the favicon.

"Hmmm," I thought. Actually, I think I may have actually said "Hmmm," but I thought it, too.

Anyway, "Hmmm. Look at that 'B' will you. My name's 'Basil' and I could call this thing 'Basil's Blog' and already have a 'B' favicon done up."

I thought I was so clever.

So, I deleted the blog I set up and created a new blog: http://basils.blogspot.com/. And for the name of the blog, I picked "Basil's Blog."

The thing is, when I picked the template appearance, I chose Blogger's template called "Snapshot" which, I found, displayed the blog's name in lower case. So "Basil's Blog" became "basil's blog" even though behind the scenes, it was indeed "Basil's Blog."

My first thought when seeing it was, "okay." And I thought no further.

Eventually, I got my Big Sister (who's 5'4'') to send me a copy of the picture of her and me that was taken at our great-grandparents' 50th wedding anniversary. I cropped out my image and edited the "Snapshot" template to have a customized banner. And, since it already looked like "basil's blog" instead of "Basil's Blog" I went with the lowercase name in the banner.

At the first of February, I submitted an entry to an Alliance "Precision Guided Humor" assignment regarding Michael Moore's next movie. My premise was it was about bloggers. And I put way too much time/effort into it. But I got my first avalanche of hits from a major blog because of it. Sort of.

Like I said, the premise of my assignment piece was that Michael Moore was making a movie about bloggers. And (according to my "humor" piece) he had actually set up a blog about it. Or, had set it up with the help of Ana Marie Cox (Wonkette).

Some people thought that silly thing was for real. And word got back to Wonkette. She had a sense of humor about it, because she linked to it.

What's all this got to do with "Basil" vs "basil"? Well, if you read the Assignment, I included a little scene inspired by "Who's On First?":

"Basil?" came the voice on the other end.

"It's 'basil'" I corrected.

"Yes, that's what I said," came the voice. I didn't say anything. He continued, "I'd like to talk to you about your blog."

"Why?" I asked.

"So, you are the 'Basil' of 'Basil's Blog?'" he said.

"It's 'basil' and it's 'basil's blog,'" I corrected.

"Yes, that's what I said. I'd like to talk to you about your blog," He repeated.

"You remember when I asked 'Why?' Well, what I meant by that was, 'Why?'"

"You're not that snotty on your blog," he said.

"Wait till I write about this conversation."

And that's the only time ... the only time ... I ever insisted on the lowercase "basil" instead of uppercase. In a joke. In a humor post. About a fake conversation between me and Michael Moore.

Still, the idea of insisting on lowercase was funny to me. And others perpetuated that. Whether because they thought it was funny or they thought I wanted it that way ... well, it really doesn't matter; it's still funny.

And I perpetuated it too, by signing my e-mails, my posts, and my comments as "basil." But the uppercase never bothered me at all, just in case any thought it did.

But when I took time away from the blog to pack up for the move from TypePad to Basil's Top-Notch Self-Service Web Hosting Run Out Of A Spare Bedroom On A Computer Made Out Of Spare Parts Company (BTNSSWHROOASBOACMOOSP Co.), I got sloppy and didn't put any thought into the "Basil"/"basil" issue.

But, now that I've written this post, I think I'll return to what brung me to this dance.

Welcome back to basil's blog.


  1. i, as well, like being lower-case.

    i was moehawk long before i found this humble little blog, and will continue to be moehawk unless the capitalization nazis finally win their war and have their way.

    good for you, basil!

  2. "basil" or "Basil" ?

    So, Basil ... oops, I mean basil ... has gone back to basil instead of Basil.

    Who cares. What a loser!

  3. Well, Doggone It basil, I Dure As Heck Am Glad You Cleared This Up! I've Been Trying To Perpetuate Your Capitalization With Care, And t]The New WP Blog (While I LOVE It!) Threw Me For A Loop.

    Glad To See You've Returned To The Greatness That Becomes You In Your lower-case Modesty. t.s. eliot Would Be Pleased.

  4. There's a million stories in this City. And that was a pretty good one.

  5. moehawk:
    I will continue the fight. I will not falter. I will not fail.

    I'm glad that cleared everything up.

    William Teach:


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