The Postcard Project
The best way to hear about the current Mom's reactions, comments, and the overall success and/or failures in this project is right here. Feel free to comment, as that's what makes the Postcard Project even more fun!

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Postcard Project Update - Saturday, May 08, 2004

Just thought I'd come check my email, and it's crazy. I've got a bunch. (I get an email EVERY TIME someone requests Mom's address.) And as I sit here typing this, they keep coming...

I'll try to spare you over the next few days with my boring excitement over the website hits. I'll try to keep it to myself, ok?

Hello everyone reading from the Post. If you see the article somewhere else, or hear about it on the radio, please let me know.


Hey everybody. We did it - front page!

We just met Mom today for a late lunch, but first we took the kids to the Butterfly House. Then we went to lunch. Upon entering the restaurant, Mom told me she picked up the paper, and there was nothing in it. She was referring to the Saturday Post. I blew it off, and said that the reporter said it probably wouldn't get in until next week. Wouldn't it be crazy if she didn't see it?

And what's even funnier, is she's seen me twice in three days, and I've kept a straight face. Mom has 'danced with the devil' (of sorts) and she didn't even know it.

This is just too much fun...


Just got off the phone with a lady who wrote for the St. Louis Post Dispatch for 30 years. She is calling the editor and going to try to get an article in the paper before Mother's Day.

So, I may need to keep Mom away from the paper this weekend...!


Postcard Project Update - Friday, May 07, 2004

I think it's safe to post this now.

As you know, the project is about to explode. I have a feeling that our hits will go through the roof Sunday, and early next week. If you are reading this post as result of just finding out about the site, it's not too late to send something to Mom. Let's overwhelm her with mail in the next few weeks. Get something in the mail on Monday morning. A crazy note, a birthday item, or (of course) a postcard.

For my readers and others who have been playing along for any or all of the last 6 months, I'd like to share an excerpt of an email I received from a reporter at a local paper (name to be posted tomorrow):

...just so you're not surprised, if current design holds, it's unmistakablely on the front page. I'm kinda surprised how big it is. They really liked what you did for your mom.

I hope the prank goes for at least several more days, weeks, who knows. In any case, you're onto something. Your site will endure...


The paper has a readership of at least a half a million readers. Pretty overwhelming, huh?

The big question remains: Will Mom see the article? And if not, will someone spill the secret to her Monday, maybe at work? I sure hope not.

Love ya Mom. Happy Mother's Day, whether you find out or not. You are a wonderful lady, just like your Mom was.

I need a beer.


Discussion:

Could this project have been pulled off without the Internet? How?


Several things can happen this weekend/early next week.
  • There will be a media frenzy. Its on TV, radio, other papers.

  • Other media does not duplicate the article. Only a surge of hits from the St. Louis area

  • Mom finds out

Assuming the media picks up on the project, it won't be over for a while. If other papers pick up the story, maybe TV, maybe radio, the website hits will go through the roof. Mom will be getting stuff from everywhere. Whether she 'knows' or not will be of little importance.

If there is no media beyond the article in the paper, and Mom doesn't see it, we will continue 'normal operations'.

If Mom finds out, I will look into my options, which include making some changes or selling the entire website and project. Simply changing Moms is the most logical option, but not one that I will take lightly. No sense in nominating your Mom at this time. It is already consuming a large amount of my time.


Postcard Project Update - Thursday, May 06, 2004

Well, so here's what happened:

I was at lunch yesterday, and this lady did something funny. I laughed and said something to the guy in line by me. Soon, we were chatting as we ordered our food, and we ended up eating lunch together. I happened to mention that my Mom is getting all this weird mail, from all around the world. We had a good lunch, nice conversation, swapped business cards and off he went. I thought nothing else of it.

Fast forward to today, 5:00PM. I just got home from work. My oldest has a concert tonight, and he has to be there at 6:00. Mom is coming to the concert. She's off work at 4:00, so I'm kinda wondering where she is. So I call her.

"Where are you?" I ask.

"Just got on the highway, I'm about 45 minutes away," she replies, "and it's your fault I'm late."

"It is? Why?"

"Some reporter and a photographer met me today right after school. They wanted to interview me for some article they are writing."

"No way!!! That's wild!"

"Yeah," said Mom, "they took pictures of me with all this mail, and just of me, and asked me all kinds of questions."

"Oh my gosh, that's crazy!" I said. "You brought the mail with you to work?"

"Yeah, they called last night and asked if they could meet me. Said he ran into you at lunch."

"Oh yeah, I talked to him, I mentioned it, but I didn't think anything of it." I replied.

"Well, he did. And tomorrow after work, the photographer is going to follow me home and take pictures of me opening my mailbox, and sitting at the table opening my mail. He's going to put an article in the paper this weekend."

The conversation went on from there, talking about her meeting us at the concert, etc.

At the concert, she brought it up again, saying she's pretty positive that it's Renee. My wife and I kept great poker faces, never laughing, acting surprised.

Looks like I'll have her fooled all the way up to the Sunday paper.

What's funny is, when she reads the story, she's going to freak out when she sees my picture, and reads the whole story from November to now.

Happy Mother's Day, Mom. It was me all along.


I just had my picture taken for an upcoming feature.... but where?


Tonight my 11 year old has a band concert. His concert is in the same buildings that I performed in many times growing up. Kinda cool. Anyway, Mom will be there, too. After something happens today, I can pretty much guarantee some good updates tonight or tomorrow morning, after she leaves, because she'll bring up the mail for sure.

It's funny, I can't get near my computer when Mom is around. Can't check my email. Can't check this site for new comments. Can't even log onto Yahoo! Instant Messenger. And I'm a geek. I have an email connection at all times, via computer, two-way pager, or PDA.

I can tell you, however, that I have a sneaky feeling that this little ditty we've got going here may be over soon. Mom's gonna find out. I can continue to hide it from her for many a few more weeks, but maybe not even that.

So, stay tuned for new news, maybe even tonight. This project has started to consume a fair amount of my time, and my real business can't be forgotten. So I'll post what I can...


Postcard Project Update - Wednesday, May 05, 2004

There's something exciting going on...


There is a different sense of humor required for this project. I'm starting to get to witness this firsthand.

People at 'my real job' are starting to find out about the Postcard Project. I'm blown away by the amount of people (most of them over 50) who don't get it.

"Why are you having strangers send stuff to your Mom?"

"You're sick."

"That doesn't make sense."

"What's the point?"

Now I know why the site has generated a HUGE amount of traffic, but not a HUGE amount of what I like to call 'address requests'. With over a quarter-million hits since January, I've often wondered why only a few thousand people have requested Mom's address, and why even fewer have actually gone through with the entire sticking-something-in-the-mail process.

Apparently, if you are a 'sender', you're weird. Yeah. You have this warped sense of humor that you consider to be normal. But it's not. You probably watched Oh Brother Where Art Thou and laughed histerically. You laugh at corny jokes, and you think that someone hitting their head on a low-hanging pipe is funny.

Yep, you're one of them. And you probably enjoy life. But imagine that your life wasn't so fun and (somewhat) carefree. Imagine that you didn't have that sense of humor. Imagine that you were a stuffy 9-5, do my job, go home and go to bed kinda person. How boring, and unfortunate. If that were you, you'd look at Postcards For Mom and just shrug. It doesn't make sense. Some guy is having strangers send obscure notes and items to his own Mother. Why? Most likely you click your little red X and go back to your work. You aren't looking forward to the baseball game on TV, or playing poker with the guys - no, you are looking forward to your 89 cent Budget Gourmet lunch (for dinner) and an apple. Poor pathetic you.

So, to all of those who are continuing to make this project a success, and a fun ride, thank you from the bottom of my twisted heart. You're certifiably sick.


Well Mom is starting to get Birthday Items, I suppose. I've been getting a few emails from people who have sent Mom things, and were nice enough to send me a scanned copy. So many, in fact, that I've added the Sixth Gallery to the site. And it's nearly full.

Check it out.

UPDATE: Talked to Jim, Mom's husband. He said Mom got a 'handful' of mail yesterday, and it's becoming more and more every day. Keep it up! He also mentioned that she keeps quizzing him on the 'Beths baby' notes, because she never told my brother or myself about that. So Jim's on the hotseat. I'm going to find out something today that no one else but her and Renee or Lyla know about, to throw her again. I'll let you know.


Postcard Project Update - Tuesday, May 04, 2004

Many people from many countries besides the US send stuff to Mom. How much does it cost you to mail:
A postcard?
A letter?


The May Newsletter is out, as you already know. If this is your first time reading the blog page, make sure to bookmark it and check it every few days. We have some good conversations going at times and I update anything that I hear from Mom and other relatives...


Postcard Project Update - Monday, May 03, 2004

Rachel sent me a copy of the letter she sent to mom:

Celeste,
You know, I thought your birthday was in June--I do that every year, don't I--but I was looking through my 'Birthday/Anniversary/etc Calendar' and OH MY GOODNESS...there's your name in big red letters with the words "Do Not Forget" written underneath. So, I decided to get the jump on everyone and send you something now...no longer will I be referred to as the SLACKER in the family circle! Now, I'd like to take you out for a 'Girls Day'--just us girls--sometime around your birthday. Let's make it a big day with ALL the girls--leave those silly men at home! Give me a call regarding what day would be best for you. Best to try reach me on my cell...you have the number, right?
Have a wonderful day and look for a gift --in addition to 'Girls Day'-- later in the month. Take care!
R."


Well I did it. I switched comment programs. Now this site is on HaloScan. we'll see if it has better performance than the last one. Unfortunately, all previous comments are no longer available.

Welcome to Coffee Talk. Let's talk.


Postcard Project Update - Sunday, May 02, 2004

Carrie Jean writes: I've probably sent Celeste about 50 pieces of mail by this point. I enjoy writing to her as her old friend Joannie, and I'm the weirdo who is continually refering to the elusive Bertrand as of late. I'm so glad the joke has lasted this long. I'm having a great time of it. Vive le Postcards!
hehe... coolness

And Kate says: Thanks for being nice about my spasm of moron-ness in mentioning you by
name. Although I am not as much of a moron as the guy who wrote you hate mail suggesting that you send her maglites and lube. What an idiot. I bet he has a baseball cap with "mustache rides free" on the front, and he wears it for special occasions.

I was wondering about that. send Mom a Maglite? is that really funny? I mean, how many people would send someone a Maglite? weird.
(PS If you are suffering from Maglite-Sending Syndrome (MSS), you can send them to me. I like shining them in Kevin's face at night and watching him get that gazed-look, which isn't too hard to do, anyway...)


Hey everyone, I'm going to do the newsletter tomorrow morning, assuming they don't make me work too hard at my job... thank God I have a good gov't job and I don't have to do much. (In fact, I tell my son to "Get a gov't job and you'll never have to work again")

Things have been super-quiet for the last 4 days. I had only *one* request for Mom's address the whole weekend. One. Geez. I'm sitting in the basement and writing this. I'm also checking email, and it looks like I've got a few more things to post in the Gallery. Cool. I even took a dorky picture of myself just now. Ugh I'm a fat cow.

A few updates: Mom got pink-eye early last week. I didn't mention it then because I figured only me and Jim knew about it. By now, I'm sure plenty of relatives know about it, so I figured it was safe to post. Go ahead and mention it in your next correspondence (birthday related, of course!). She has not mentioned the 'silly mail' and I expect to ask her about it later this week. Because of Mom's affliction, I can't go to her house, but she's got the medicine and says she's not contagious anymore. I'll see her Thursday.

As for getting the word out, thank you to all of you who are writing emails, posting the link on other sites, and mentioning the site to your friends. We've had way over 300,000 hits since January. Maybe even 400,000. I guess I should check. But that involves math.

My brother is still in Savannah, GA, and will be all the rest of this week. Then he's off to Florida next week. So if any of you are in the GA/FL area, maybe you should mention Kev, or just the Air Force, or convertible Camaro's (Mom will get it).

I wrote to my Aunt Cher, who Mom swares is in a picture that someone sent her (it's not her!) and Aunt Cher says that we need to ramp up the blaming of Duff or Renee. I agree. They are just the type who'd do something like this...

I guess I'll shutup for now and drink another Bud Light.


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