Shih Suz, or Things I’ve Keyworded Successfully Yet Mysteriously

A large part of my day job is spent analyzing and editing documents for SEO, or search engine optimization. SEO means how to get your stuff on Google, preferably in the first page of returns (aka rankings).  I have to know how to use keywords successfully.  Keywords, for my less internet-savvy readers, are simply the terms people type in when they search on any search engine.

For my blog, I take a far less serious approach to keywording, not worrying about it too much. Still, it’s amusing to me to see when I have (usually inadvertently) optimized something nicely. And I just love to see the keywords that inexplicably brought people to my site. Continue reading

My Astoria Photos: On!


I consider it quite the compliment to see some of my Astoria photos in this gallery on Queens.

OK, so, yes you could say I have a bit of an inside edge. But, I just looooove seeing my name as the photographer’s credit!

My photos in the gallery:

Triboro Bridge from Astoria Park (the one above)

Socrates Sculpture Park Summer Solstice

Pretty Victorian Home

What Often Replaces Pretty Victorian Homes after Being Torn Down


My New Name: Victoria Victor?

When I move to Mexico, I don’t know if I should keep using my first name. In Spanish, “Joy” is pronounced “yoi,” which sounds too similar to “yo” and also “hoy” (“I” and “today”). It’s also, let’s face it, terribly unfeminine. Somehow, that soft j-sound keeps my name feminine and lyrical (Jhhhoy. Ah, like a fresh breeze, isn’t it?). Yoi, meanwhile, sounds like a springing wire, or like I might be a mental basket-case, since it’s one syllable shy of “yo-yo.”

Thankfully, my name is all real-live nouns. So, I can do a literal translation, and become Alegria Victoria. That has a nice ring to it. Or, Alegria Conquista. Even better!

I also like Victoria Victor. The way Spanish V is pronounced — a soft B — is nice, too. (pron: Beak-tore-ee-ah Beak-tor) . Hmm.

And before anyone gets too literal on me, I’m not really planning to foist off my name, although the idea of having a new, easier name is delightful. Why? Well, how many times have you, my friend, had to endure this conversation?

Person 1: What’s your name?

Me: Joy.

Person 1: Joy. Joy? Joy to the World!!!

Me (frowning): Yes. Like that.

Person 1: I bet you get that all the time.

Me: No, never.

(awkward pause).

Photos: A Bizarre French Fort in Wisconsin

Not quite knowing what to expect, my family recently visited the Forts Folle Avoine in Northwestern Wisconsin.

Turns out it’s one of those places where historical reenactments are followed to the letter, with your guide staying “in character” the entire time. In this case, our guide was an Ojibwe (St. Croix Chippewa) woman living on a French fur trading post along the Yellow River in the year 1800.

The first factoid we learned was how Ojibwe women changed diapers back in the day. “Diapers” meaning a wad of moss. Then, as the tour went on, I accumulated even more useless trivia knowledge (useless unless I end up a member of a Wisconsin Indian tribe living on a fur trading post in the year 1800!!!), such as: Continue reading