Put briefly, the chronology of events would look something like this:
- Became interested in prepping; started reading Survivalblog.
- Noticed many links to Tamara's blog; started reading that too.
- Noticed many recurring commenters, like Weerd Beard.
- Worked for Census. Used some of that money to buy my first gun (a .22 bolt-action rifle) to complement bug-out bag.
- Started posting about shooting.
- Started reading other gun blogs.
- Used last remaining Census money to buy Mosin-Nagant, because after reading these blogs I realized I wanted something boomier.
- Took my friend Chris Bridges to the range and let him shoot both rifles.
- He wrote a post about it.
- I wrote a follow-up to his post.
- Linoge, using means unknown to me, found Chris' post and followed a link to this post of mine.
- He wrote a post linking to mine.
- For the first time EVER, I am noticed by the gunblog community, and despite being an outsider he makes me feel welcome by telling me that my rifle is cool.
- I start reading more gun blogs, commenting on same, and writing more about shooting.
- Somewhere between here and 2012, I pick up my identity as the little sister of the gunblog community.
- Oleg Volk notices me somehow.
- He talks to me on Skype, and the first question out of his mouth is "So, what's with all the ponies?"
- We become friends.
- He helps me raise funds to buy a pistol and a carry permit.
- Because of this, my mother decides to get her permit and pistol too.
- Linoge puts me in touch with Iain Harrison at Crimson Trace, and I get my first T&E product.
- This puts me on a path of doing product reviews.
- Now fully invested in the gunblog community, I try to give back to it as well.
- For some reason I still can't fathom, you folks find me likable. You help me out and stick up for me and make me feel so welcome that for the first time in YEARS, I contemplate meeting people face to face.
- I meet Oleg. He doesn't hate me, and makes me feel comfortable in my own skin.
- Writer. Reviewer. Kinda-sorta Internet Famous, at least in gunnie circles.
- I have tons of people who like me and say they want to meet me.
- The thought of meeting them at a blog shoot doesn't terrify me like it used to.
Linoge didn't start me on the road to blogging, but he helped me get where I am today. I guess you could call him my god-blogfather. If it weren't for him, I doubt I would be doing more than reading a handful of blogs. I probably wouldn't be a gun-rights activist. I certainly wouldn't be a product reviewer!
So while I am saddened to learn that in ten or so posts, he will be giving up blogging, I am flattered that he chose to honor me thus. In a way, I feel like he has passed his mantle on to me. I hope I am worthy of this honor.