Need a reason to keep fostering connections through your own blogging home? Every time I get frustrated with the latest round of online ‘improvements,’ I remember Big Al and the Lizard of the Loo.

I’ve never met Big Al. He’s just a child. In England.

But I have met his Auntie Kate. I started following Kate Shrewsday’s blog several years ago, because I love the oddball English trivia, weird Russian stories, dog-and-cat extravaganzas, and her husband Phil’s dedication to authentic pudding burning, I mean, making technique.

I love everything Kate writes. So much that when I happened to be in London several years ago, I begged asked her to meet me. We dragged our husbands to a pub, and it was like we’d been friends for years. (Meeting the people I read in this space is still one of my biggest arguments for doing it in the first place. With the dwindling connection we’re likely to feel in social media in the coming months, where better than to try to foster deeper connections than here, where we control our own platforms???)

Anyway.

My most favorite topic on Kate’s (or just about any) blog is when she gives updates about her wee nephew Big Al. I’m such an Al fan that Auntie Kate even sent me video from one of his school events, and I watched it like a preening relative.

Several years ago, when we had a lizard living in our bathroom, I even made a video for Big Al. Because they don’t have weird pink lizards in England, I thought Big Al might like to have a vicarious pet all his own.

And, according to Auntie Kate, Big Al and his family STILL watch the Lizard of the Loo video. It was one of my first Reader Questions, really. Since they’ve been so popular, I thought it would be fun to revisit early days.

To remember why we seek connection in this platform.

To reinforce why it still matters.

To see photos from my appearance at Landmark Booksellers Main Street Festival booth in Franklin, TN yesterday (and to see me really giddy over meeting Jim Crutchfield, author of The Natchez Trace: A Pictorial History), click here: Andra Watkins Tumblr