The Current Within Us

Now that the Olympics are over, I find my thoughts and focus meandering back to river journeys and tales of adventure, especially now that "Gauley Season" is about to begin. While I have no doubt that the U.S. Presidential Election will be front and center for most of the fall, at least until the end of October the river will be foremost on my mind. The following is a Guest Post from my good friend and fellow blogger Ken Armstrong of Ken Armstrong Writing Stuff.


I approached Ken about two weeks ago asking if he would be willing to write a guest post for my blog. What Ken has written has blown me away with not only his kindness and his unique and clever turns of phrase, but also by his uncanny ability to read my mind and think similar things at the same time.

There have been multiple occasions when Ken and I have been thinking the same things at the same time, and once we were even reading each other's blog posts and commenting on each other's posts at the very same instant about the joint posts we had just written on our own blogs.

I consider Ken to be a kindred spirit, and if you enjoy my writing, I know you will enjoy this post from Ken. Without any further ado, here is Ken's post:

The Current Within Us by Ken Armstrong
I like Matt’s Blog a lot.

(This is Matt’s Blog, in case you’re disorientated)

I asked myself, “Why is That? Why do I like Matt’s Blog?”

I answered myself, “Because Matt and I have quite a few things in common.”

My wife replied, “Are you gonna be in there all night? There’s people out here waiting you know.”

So here’s three things Matt and I may have in common. Two of them are moderately interesting, one is just wrong and one is meant to be a bit deep and insightful.

You can judge.

1) We are both positive people
Check this Blog, it’s full to the banks with enthusiasm, fun, lust for life, discussion and general positivity. Matt does ‘+’, really well. I like to think of myself as being generally pretty positive too. In that age-old debate, I frequently find the glass to be three-quarters full. This doesn’t mean that Matt won’t disagree, argue or persuasively put forth his point of view when the need arises. It also doesn’t mean he won’t stand up for wrong doing and injustice when he sees it.

(Note to self: You’re making him sound like bloody Batman now, calm down, eh?).

So, we’re positive, yeah.

(How do you do that reverse ‘B’ anyway? I’ve just lost five minutes of my life on that.)
(Note: Like this Ken.)

Matt and I have ABBA in common.

See, this is just ‘wrong’. Matt adores ABBA, that’s a given. But I don’t. Nah-hah. I think they’re good. They’ve been around in my life since that Eurovision thing. I have ABBA Gold on CD. I’ve seen ‘Chess’. But I don’t love them in any way, shape, or form like Matt does.

Yet ABBA is part of the glue which binds us together… is it just me or does that sound a bit off?

It all started many moons ago when I boasted on my own blog that I was good at recalling lyrics (I am… just deal with it). Matt tested me with some obscure ABBA lyrics and I delivered the goods. ‘Trouble is, as a result of that exchange, Matt seems to have mistaken me for a like-minded ABBA devotee. I'm not, I love Tom Waits like Matt loves ABBA.

So why is ABBA the second thing we have in common? Just because it is. It’s wacky but it’s true and I like that, I really do.

3) The River
I could be wrong about this but I think Matt and I have ‘The River’ in common.

‘The River’ has always been an important part of my life and, from reading Matt’s blog, I think it’s clear that it’s an important part of his too.

I grew up beside the river. It wasn’t a wild untamed river like Matt’s, in fact it was wide and slow. The river defined our lives in a very real sense. We marked the passing of the seasons as the salmon came and went, as the eels ran, as the mayfly spawned, as the swans reared their young. I would take a boat after school and paddle up into the river and sit in among the rushes, pulling out lively little Perch, stalking legendary monstrous Pike. I saw lives taken by the river, lives given to the river.

And then I left it behind.

So, finally then, here’s one little difference between us.

Matt has settled by the river which is so important to him, the river which runs like a metaphor for his very life-blood. He keeps his river close to him and he embraces it.

Whereas I left my own river behind me a long time ago. It may still run in my veins but I will never get back to it. I may never really see it again...

Thanks for letting me Blog over here Dude. It’s been wet but I reckon that I’ll dry out in time, I usually do.

A music video Ken has included with this post that he encourages you to watch and listen to.


No, thank you Ken!

If you're still reading, you've probably learned something about me and something about Ken. Not only is Ken an awesome writer, he's a really great guy. And he's got an awesome sense of humor as well, somewhat dark and sarcastic like my own, even though we are both pretty positive individuals. It's for these reasons, but mostly for reasons that are evident in Ken's writing, that Ken is the latest recipient of the rare "MTMD Blog Award of Excellence."


Congratulations Mate! I can't think of anyone more deserving.

Ken Armstrong in shock that he has received yet another award.

If you haven't visited and read Ken's Blog yet, what are you waiting for?

Thanks for reading.

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Scotty's Princess said...


Ken must be very happy writing this post for you, Matt. And it's good to have read some facts about you straight from Ken's mouth, hehe! And it's good to know more about Ken, too.

I also love writing about my friends but had only written them in my own blog. Writing an article for friends in their own respective blogs is a good idea. This shows total unselfishness and good camaraderie among and between bloggers.

August 28, 2008 8:53 AM
MamaFlo said...

EXCELLENT!! I enjoyed this read very much.
I sure can think like Ken writes, I wonder why I can't put it down on paper that way.

August 28, 2008 10:09 AM
Fiendish said...

Awesome post.

Quite poignant about the old river, Ken: surely it's not as long-gone as all that?

August 28, 2008 12:51 PM
Ken Armstrong said...

Ah yeah, I do get nostalgic for my river from time to time - it's called 'The Garavogue', incidentally.

Plus I got to mildly dis ABBA in Matt's place - how cool is that? :)

August 28, 2008 2:38 PM
Jena Isle said...

This seems like a sentimental post. I didn't laugh out loud like I usually do with Ken's post. But I enjoyed the "reminiscing" part. Rivers usually leave an indelible memory in a person's life. I have my own river too...
Thanks for sharing.

Btw Matt, I was surprised to see that my blog "The Clamor of Kalinga", was included in the contest. I just posted your contest in my blog to help spread the word and not to join. Had I known I would have campaigned for it (lol). Anyway, thanks.

August 28, 2008 2:43 PM
Amy Lilley Designs said...

wonderful melding of the minds and guys are river, I am, Ken and Matt, this is good reading...would love more posts from you...

August 28, 2008 7:38 PM
J. C. said...

Really great post. I live in a city and area that is blessed with one of the most beautiful rivers - Una. If you google it you might find some images of this nature's treasure. So here is my secret - I am working on moving close to Una, it's my dream. Doctors say that rivers have some god stuff for you. They can make you more calm and positive. (sorry for the stream of conscience in this comment)

August 29, 2008 6:21 AM
Xavier Lur said...

Hi, I have subscribed to your RSS feeds, would you mind Subscribing to my RSS feeds too @ Thanks!

August 29, 2008 9:20 AM
Carla said...

I think life goes much easier being positive. It just so much more pleasant. Thanks for the uplift.

August 29, 2008 11:22 AM
nicole said...

Great post, Ken. You are a special guy. :)

Matt, I am also from Michigan; grew up in Lansing and Bloomfield Hills. Is "your river" the Grand? That's mine for sure, and God, I can remember so many canoes which tipped over in the Grand with me in them. Not pleasant, considering the state of the water, but good memories nevertheless. :)

August 29, 2008 12:52 PM
tashabud said...

I love rivers, and any place that has water. Not necessarily to be in them, but just to view them, mostly. Whatever place the water inhabits or wherever the water runs through are usually the most scenic, beautiful, and romantic places to me.

Good post--A heart-warming kind. Thanks for sharing.

August 29, 2008 1:48 PM
bonoriau said...

Really good article. I think both of you are good combination.

August 29, 2008 2:41 PM
hope said...

I've been visiting here from Ken's page. That's the cool thing about "meet" the best people you may never lay eyes on, but yet feel free to converse with and share ideas. Yep, I'm hooked on Ken's sense of humor too. You and Ken are both good at making folks feel at home conversing with you.

I need to go write on my own blog but now I've got "Dancing Queen" stuck in my head. :)

August 29, 2008 7:39 PM
hope said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
August 31, 2008 11:12 AM
hope said...

Sorry Matt! Was going to drop you my e-mail and hit the wrong button!

Have a great Labor Day weekend!

August 31, 2008 11:14 AM
Liquid said...

I am lovin' your blog! Here through Entrecard.

I'll sooooooooooo be back soon and often.

September 01, 2008 11:34 AM

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