Two Ice Floes – The First Year

By Mr. & Mrs. Cog

This year has raced by - as in ‘Time flies when you’re having fun’. To tell the truth we were taken by surprise when we realized Two Ice Floes was coming up on its one year anniversary. On the one hand it feels like we are just getting started with where we would like to see this website go. But on the other it is hard to believe it has only been a year since we entered TIF mode with you our readers, acquaintances and new friends.

Even as we continue to discuss this initial mile marker and all its ramifications, we are both quite pleased with our efforts thus far and the path TIF has travelled during its first year. Most of all we feel fortunate to be in a place and time where such a diverse group of kind and thoughtful people can find each other to kibitz and share ideas. What we would give for the opportunity to gather all of us in the same room for a day or evening banquet in order to meet one another and have the opportunity to marvel at our unique group.

Since we are so spread out geographically, and the idea of unveiling our avatars is so strange to many of us who have enjoyed the anonymity of ZeroHedge, perhaps we can shed some light on what you might discover at that proverbial Two Ice Floes First Annual Banquet.

Launched on Valentine’s Day, February 14, 2014, Two Ice Floes has experienced more than 375,000 visits since we opened our doors for the first time. Similar to Zero Hedge, where many visitors read the articles but do not actively participate in the comment section, TIF’s membership roll is rather large compared to the small number who actually comment. We find many members log in several times a week, read the articles and forums and then leave no bread crumbs behind as they exit stage right. Hopefully our quiet mice will become more active during our second year of growth.

To our great surprise and everlasting gratitude we have received some generous donations from supporters offering monetary and verbal encouragement in support of our endeavors. In addition, there have been several other websites who like what they see and have linked directly to TIF and cross posted our articles. The word is quickly spreading; Two Ice Floes is a very unique destination.

As promised Two Ice Floes has provided complimentary memberships to many who were not in a position to contribute monetarily, but had valuable thoughts and ideas they wished to share. Thank you for having the courage to ask for help, then to participate and share in the ultimate exchange of value.

The members of TIF fit no common demographic other than consistently possessing colorful personalities. Their ages, from what little we know, range from the 20’s to 80’s with both male and female represented in the age spectrum. Our membership hails from all over the globe, ranging from windswept beaches on exotic islands to tiny hamlets in the middle of huge continents, from crowded modern cities to isolated off-grid outposts scattered across the countryside. With members logging in from across the U.S. and Canada as well as Europe, Africa, Russia, China, Australia and New Zealand to name just the more common, we are floored how connected we all are in the same virtual place.

While we do not know exactly what motivates TIF members to join the community nor visitors to stop by, we do know which of TIF’s articles are cross posted elsewhere on the internet and can then surmise from that traffic where a number of Premium members or Dispatches newsletter sign-ups originate from. While we initially experienced a flood of sign-ups from ZeroHedge where Cognitive Dissonance has been publishing for the last five years, because we have been re-posted on a number of alternative websites with a focus other than financial, this has brought a diverse membership and readership to TIF.

In turn, those other websites have introduced TIF to a wide variety of people interested in exploring consciousness, natural health, alternative ways of living and even Earth and space sciences. As different as all these points of origin are, the common thread which appears to bring people here is their strong desire for honest, open and respectful conversation that leads to a sharing of ideas and ultimately personal learning and growth.

So much to learn, so little time.

So much to learn, so little time.

We are constantly blown away by the raw talent and extreme generosity of all our guest authors here at Two Ice Floes. The amount of time and effort contributed by each and every one is astounding. In addition to the obvious win/win for those who wish to see their work published and for Two Ice Floes to showcase outstanding original material not seen anywhere else on the web, there are other very cool advantages which are perhaps a bit more subtle.

Because we place such a high value on an honest and open introspection (which we then attempt to lead by example) it is as if our guest contributors naturally speak from the heart and reveal a raw genuineness that adds integrity and respect both to their own work and to TIF regardless of the subject matter. It seems just by getting together we inspire each other to share that part of us which is more real. In essence because we wish to create a new reality we are in fact doing so, igniting a self fulfilling process.

We both agree this magical tone of voice, one which is shared by many who contribute both with articles and in the comment section as well as in the member forums, is entirely unique and can be found nowhere else on the web. It is our best guess that as Two Ice Floes grows and evolves this magic will continue to differentiate us from other websites as we build upon our wonderful Genesis.

We have learned so much from all of you over this past year. We just love how you roll up your sleeves and take the time to contribute. Whether the topic is homesteading, scientific exploration or human interest, there is immense value in putting our heads together and kibitzing. And let’s face it; the camaraderie is most welcome during these times when looking too closely at anything is overtly discouraged.

You might be surprised how often we get messages from non-members who just want to reach out and comment on an article or offer some advice on a particular project. Cog has heard from engineers and other interested parties on a number of occasions with helpful advice to improve upon his technical projects. A few times we have received editing help with corrections or suggestions. And often we receive unsolicited articles from authors asking to be published in the popular ‘Your Turn to Publish’ feature. We welcome any and all feedback and suggestions here at Two Ice Floes since we are making it up as we go. There is always room for improvement.

One ambitious soul even made detailed corrections and edits to Cog’s very first published work, the epic five part Welcome to the Insane Asylum series. Upon hearing this Cog said, “Well, now I’m going to have to rewrite the entire thing.” Yes dear, just as soon as we put in the eight foot quarter acre garden fence, bulldoze the driveway to create a new parking area, remodel the entire kitchen and pantry, caulk and seal the log cabin and outbuildings, cut nine cords of wood for this winter and another nine for next winter, install the small and large photovoltaic solar systems and finish a dozen other small project and maintenance items. Then you can sit down and rewrite whatever you want (lol).

As discussed with Zenscreamer and a few others in the beginning, we TIF’ers have become (virtual) neighbors. It held true then and maybe even more so today. We can each be busy with our families and personal lives, but it is nice to know we can share a story or some good advice over the garden fence. On occasion a few even get together for lunch or exchange phone numbers for important things like… canning emergencies (lol).

If we could do anything to improve Two Ice Floes, it would be to encourage all our members to participate even more in the threads and forums. Your collective and individual insight is greatly valued and appreciated. Everyone has their own unique flavor to add to the conversation along with their little snippets of wisdom to share. All of the community, not just us, wants to hear from the (mostly) silent majority. With the world becoming ever more wonky by the day, one thing we can all benefit from is good honest conversation. Jump in there people! Any suggestions for new articles, forums or threads are most welcome. We can always utilize new concepts, ideas and subjects to write about.

In closing we wish to point out that websites which have lasting power and have grown over the years always seem to have a core group of people who have molded its shape from the beginning. You, our present day members, are those people who are now part of something very new and different here. We are incredibly grateful to have the opportunity to connect and grow together with you. Thank you for investing some of your time to join us here on TIF and support us in multiple ways as we chip away at the bigger picture. It is our sincerest hope and intention to continue this for a long time to come.

02-12-2015

Mr. & Mrs. Cog

Sometimes we find reality is perhaps a bit different than we thought.

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21 thoughts on “Two Ice Floes – The First Year”

    1. Thank you.

      But without the active participation of the membership, this blog would be little more than Mrs. Cog and I talking to ourselves. And you know what they say about people who talk to themselves. :-)

      At least when we also talk to others our insanity isn’t as glaringly obvious.

      Cognitive Dissonance

  1. Coincidentally, this is also the anniversary date for the Doomstead Diner Blog & Forum, my Home Base.

    Just joined up here, and glad to see you are building the 2IF audience! We are 3 years in to our eperiment, progressing up the Alexa Rankings and these days getting around 80K Page Hits/Mo. No Zero Hedge of course, but we do have some people reading/listening!

    I’d like to invite all the 2IF members to come visit with us on the Diner Blog & Forum, where we have now 10s of thousands of posts on many of the topics under consideration here as well. No cost for Diner membership, it’s all voluntary donations at the moment.

    We hope to get together with CD and Mrs. Cog for a Podcast in the near future.

    Nice to be here, and keep up the good work!

    RE

    1. Welcome Reverse Engineer,

      I have come to recognize what others might view a coincidence is sometimes synchronicity. In the mind of many the term synchronicity implies a match or the same, when I see it as similar in vibration, though easily several vibrational levels apart. This is why very different sounds or vibrations can appear poles apart and yet be in harmony vibrationally.

      I am experiencing a bit of blog envy regarding Doomstead Diner’s growth, though you did have a two year head start and your format and guiding philosophy are quite different from Two Ice Floes. Our commonality lay in the desire of our membership to ask the tough questions and be willing to listen to opposing views and perspectives. There is no personal growth without confronting our own cognitive dissonance, a process that involves some degree of pain and disorientation.

      Regarding the potential to join one of your Podcasts in the future, we still have not given it much thought since you proposed it several days ago. Our anniversary here on TIF has been front and center, as well as finishing several projects here on the homestead. Mrs. Cog will not let me leave the joint until the crown molding is installed in our remodeled kitchen. She doesn’t believe me when I tell her I don’t know how to do it. :-)

      A principal impediment to joining your Podcast is our atrociously slow broadband up here on the mountain. While not as slow as dial up, our DSL connection will not support video upload. But even if it could we would not do video. At this point we still prefer to retain our anonymity as much as possible. It is the message we wish to highlight, not the person or personality.

      We are delighted you have decided to join TIF and I am certain you presence here will prompt our membership to visit Doomstead Diner to find out what all the excitement is about over there.

      Cognitive Dissonance

  2. Well, getting the readership up has been my top priority, since no matter what you are writing if people are not reading it you are just PITW.

    What really helped the Diner in terms of Growth was first the Interviews we did with many “Collapse Starz” like Nicole Foss, Gail Tverberg, David Korowicz, Ugo Bardi, Guy McPherson and many others. Then I got the brainstorm of turning my Frostbite Falls Daily Rant into Audio and we took another big leap upward in hits. People like media and are used to getting information this way from TV, so you pick up a lot of people who don’t like to read long analysis.

    Far as issues with broadband go, this is not a problem long as you have a Cell Phone or Land Line phone that works, we can do audio over that technology too. I am fine with operating Anon, since I also operate that way though I do video, but since few people live in Alaska, the likelihood I am recognized generally is small.

    BTW, although my writing and radio personality are different than yours, I don’t think our messages are much different. You should also visit our Sustaining Universal Needs website at http://SUN4Living.com. You will find many themes there you also write about.

    RE

    1. RE

      You said…….

      Well, getting the readership up has been my top priority, since no matter what you are writing if people are not reading it you are just PITW.

      I do understand your point of view. But it also begs the question, “What is the purpose of your writing. What do you hope to gain from writing what you do?” It is a fair question considering for thousands of years, while people, places and things may change, the fundamental issues remain the same.

      I know you understand that point of view since you have highlighted your “Sustaining Universal Needs” website. One of the keys to breaking the chains of (self) slavery is freeing the individual from dependency upon a central authority, which itself creates its own ‘authority‘ by limiting resources, then doling them out to gain power and control.

      Are we able to make much of a difference if the only people we are talking to are the choir aka membership? I personally think so because while everyone is traveling a different personal path of growth and awareness, nearly everyone is also constrained by ‘the system‘ and those who claim (and we who defer to) the authority.

      Your unique solution is Doomstead Diner and Sustaining Universal Needs. Ours is Two Ice Floes. While catering to different factions of the same herd, the goals are essentially the same. Self education and a higher awareness of what lay beyond the official narrative and the all consuming illusion.

      Cognitive Dissonance

  3. Happy anniversary Twoicefloes !!

    I’m so glad I found this place and I want to say thank you again for building it. I’ve learned so much from everyone and I want to thank them also. Let’s have many more anniversaries.

    keep calm and keep growing, Mr Pepper

  4. ^^^^^ (Just another time that I wish this interface had a “like” button so I could chime in on some sentiments above, lol)

    Sorry to have missed the party yesterday — I was AFK all day with the hubby. ^-^

    It’s been an amazing, eye-opening year. I really can’t remember what my perspective was like before TIF; the Cogs’ little haven has become my second home. Fortunately for me, the gracious hosts haven’t seen me as a nuisance and kicked me out yet. :D I feel very blessed to be here.

    I have come to recognize what others might view a coincidence is sometimes synchronicity. In the mind of many the term synchronicity implies a match or the same, when I see it as similar in vibration, though easily several vibrational levels apart.

    Thank you for the image/concept Cog — in my mind I see the curling structure of a Mandelbrot, its fractal harmony resonating but never quite repeating….

    Thank you so much!

      1. Mr. & Mrs,
        Thank you for your marvelous minds and sense of caring enough so, to create this place for us to gather, learn, hangout, and simply enjoy. A hearty & hale Well Done!

        Please keep putting the message out for some more of us to join the dialog.
        For myself, I haven’t really found my voice here, but that’s maybe due to the fact, that typically, after another wonderful read here, I don’t wish to spoil the moment. Maybe also, after being placed into a thoughtful space, I convince myself I likely will not add any greater substance to whichever conversation is under way.

        Last, I, (generally), seek a modest profile. Hence the old adage – two ears, (2eyes for reading your great site), one mouth; I do my best when I listen / read twice as much as I speak.
        Thank you, again.
        If you plan the banquet for next year, I’ll bring an appetizer…

        1. polomaf,

          Please do not underestimate the power and clarity of your inner voice. When it is time to speak, and you will know that time, what comes forth will be both profound and fulfilling for all.

          However, like mama always said practice makes perfect. At least for now baby steps are all you, or anyone else, can expect from you. Our goal when creating TwoIceFloes was to create a ‘safe’ place where those who are unsteady and uncertain may gain confidence and experience. It is the primary reason behind the fee for membership. Those who wish to disrupt and abuse are least likely to pay for the privilege to do so when there are plenty of other ‘free’ places to haunt.

          Welcome polomaf. And thank you for taking your first step.

          Cognitive Dissonance

  5. Last night I was in a group therapy session and mentioned I had actually given money to a web site while simultaneously declaring I was not a joiner in practice. Such a dichotomy of thought stuck me as ironic (and stupid) and so I happened to log on tonight and stumbled upon this string of accolades for TIF. I was attracted to Mr. and Ms’ Cogs essays on ZH early on because of their probity and timeliness. I believe there are many alternatives for us as humans to expand our consciousness and TIF provides such a vehicle. I find the plethora of views herein vastly stimulating to this old codger. While long out of college I miss the free give and take of a good debate or a good essay written from the heart as Ms Cog points out. I strive to keep an open mind free from the Matrix of our culture.

    I have never been in lockstep with most others and never will be thank goodness. We are all defined by our individuality even as we pursue our biological need to be part of the herd. Standing out just a little from the mainstream invites the hammer of mediocrity. TIF and its contributors gives me a window I am not otherwise privileged to access through any other media that I am aware of.

    Thank you Mr/Ms Cog for your efforts in spreading a modicum of sanity in our sometimes insane world. I firmly believe your positive approach to our collective mortal being furthers a higher plane of consciousness to all those who aspire to a better understanding of themselves.

    GoforIT

    1. Guts?

      There is a saying in the investing world that goes something like this. “Never confuse brilliance with a bull market.

      That holds true for real life, though with some modification.

      “Never confuse guts with stupidity.” :-)

      Thanks for stopping by and leaving your paw prints in the mountain snow.

      Cognitive Dissonance

      1. Check the porch next to the rain barrel, you’ll find the gift of a dead rabbit I left, too. The little bugger had fancy ideas about not being caught, but there should be enough big pieces left for a stew. Enjoy.

  6. Good to find others thinking. I’m hundreds of miles north of you, where it’s frost free for 6-7 weeks. What we know is little, which we attempt to understand by creating mental models. Whose model is correct? What we face is the collapse of the systems/persons we were trained to trust. You add the distrust we ought have of ourselves. Brave same old world. Thanks for being thoughtful companions.

  7. Hello CD & MrsCog:

    I feel a year older from reading this kind and generous article, and it was a very good year. Thank you both for your offering up of yourselves and your support to myself, and all the others who were on board.
    It’s so good to see new names actively participating in your unique community. I too have been just amazed at the cross section of types and lands and the bents of the minds.

    Yes, a very, very good year and my deep appreciation for what you have done, and continue to do for all concerned.

    Glynn Baker
    An outer edge of the Valdivian galaxy

    1. Before you know it that little TIF toddler will be all grown up and off to spiritual divinity school. :-)

      Thank you Glynn for your active participation over the last year here on TIF. We grow by interacting with different minds and spirits, not by staying within our own comfort zones. It has been a pleasure visiting the outer edge of the Valdivian galaxy.

      Cognitive Dissonance

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