Just a trifle

This post is what I have written for this month’s meeting of the writing group I joined last year.  The prompt “Just a trifle” was really about how a detail can bring a piece of narrative to life.  Considering the names of my blogs, I could not resist writing about them.

One of the piano pieces I learned to play while I was still at junior school was called “Un petit rien”.  The editorial notes above the music explained that the phrase meant “A trifle”.  Once I began to learn French I realised that it actually meant “A little nothing”.

My Grandad asked a riddle.

“What is smaller than nothing?”

We were puzzled.

“The dot on the middle,” he told us.

We were still puzzled.

He fetched paper and a pencil.  First he drew the shape of a nought (or zero as we are learning to say.)  Next he put a dot in the middle.  “That’s smaller than nothing!”

Smaller than nothing

Smaller than nothing

So a trifle is something insignificant – or is it?

When I began my first blog in July 2012 I needed a name for it.  As it was going to be about sayings and perhaps proverbs, I thought a name along those lines would be appropriate.  Registering for a free WordPress blog, I needed a name, which had not already been used.

I tried “catintheadage” – it had gone.  So had “consideredtrifles”.  That was an abandoned blog about food.  Later in the day I tried “suesconsideredtrifles”.  It was mine!

After about eight months, having caught the blogging bug, I was debating whether or not to start a new blog.  I decided that if I could have Sue’s Trifles, I’d definitely do so.  I could and I did.  Sue’s Trifles now has 500 posts.  These range from craft posts to responses to blogging challenges, points of view and more besides.  A blogger wrote a memorable comment on a post I published about mental health.  She thanked me for tackling a not-at-all trifling subject.

Out of my 500 posts only three have been specifically about mental health, but one of those has the most votes as a 5 star post.  It is in my top five most-viewed posts.

My most popular post for a long time was the first craft one I wrote. It was about a pin cushion I made at the craft group using Cathedral window patchwork.  That has now been overtaken by a knitting one about enlarging the neck of a child’s sweater.  Two posts linked with other sites have also been viewed more than most.  One about overcoming shyness was featured on a site for bloggers over-40 and the other was the reflections post after this year’s A to Z challenge.

One of my favourite trifles is this, written in response to the prompt: Three people walked into a bar.

Three men walked into a bar.  They didn’t do it on purpose.

It was a dark and stormy night.  The electricity had gone off, so there were no street lights.  They had been in a bar earlier and were a bit the worse for wear.

They decided to take a short cut down a side street.  They were walking three abreast with their arms linked for mutual support.  They didn’t see the alley gate – a red and white striped bar across the road.

Three men walked into a bar.  Ouch!

5 thoughts on “Just a trifle

  1. Congratulations on the achievement of blogging staying power. Looking for appropriate blog names can be fun, but also challenging. I went through many titles before finding the one that I felt suited me best.

    Here’s to the next 600 posts!

    Arlee Bird
    A to Z Challenge Co-host
    Wrote By Rote


  2. I may be wrong but I’m fairly certain “Un petit rien” actually means ‘a little thing’ rather than nothing which would need “ne rien”. So ‘a little thing’ really does translate to ‘a trifle’!


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