Wednesday, 25 June 2008

Happy Blog day!


It is one year since I started this whole blogging thing. Originally, my main focus was on football, Man City and Sven-Göran Eriksson, and it's been quite a year for him as well as for me, though I have drifted away slightly from the beautiful game in my musings, and he has ended up (again) several million pounds richer and living in Mexico. Somewhat different paths, but there you go.

In every close season I start feeling a bit fed up with football, and this year it's worse than ever because it really does seem as if what little heart and soul left in the game has evaporated. Every other story seems to be about who's buying out which club, which massively overpaid 'star' is moving to or from Real Madrid, Barcelona, Chelsea, whatever, and what the players' female companions (I refuse to use the term'WAG' on principle) are wearing, buying, selling...

As for City, I'm not, and - ahem - have never been, happy about Shinawatra being in charge of the team, and in common with Simon Hattenstone, am pondering a divorce from the club. It's very hard to tear oneself away even so, and I know that I will still be watching the results at a quarter to five on a Saturday afternoon. That's if any games are going to actually kick off at 3.00 on a Saturday in future. Despite protests from some critics I will probably post more about footy. So there!

I have been asked 'How do you find the time?' To which I can only shrug and say that I make the time. Sometimes a subject burns with me, so that I feel compelled to write about it, others I write when I'm in the mood, building up a post over time and scheduling publication for later.

But perhaps more interestingly, I have been asked 'Why do you do it?'

And why do I do it indeed? When I started, I had been reading some forums for a while, mostly Metafilter and Comment Is Free, and was really taken by the way that a discussion could develop with the participation of the readers, becoming something quite different to what it had originally been. I think -dredging up stuff from my college days - that it's called intertextuality. Most tellingly in this vein has been the development of Seth Freedman's views on the Israel/Palestine conflict. It is worth spending some time (if you have any) reading about this, I think. So, where MeFi often made me laugh, CiF often made me angry, and I joined both in order to be able to express my opinions. It seemed a logical step after that to set up a forum of my own. Of course, Blogger being a free service, and a couple of clicks away, certainly helped.

I have always wanted to be a writer (though I'm under no illusions as to my abilities) and a year or so ago, on the back of a redundancy and an uncertain personal future, vaguely thought that I might be able to make a living out of internet publishing someday. Now, a year on, I'm under no illusions on that score either. It doesn't look like I'll be pulling a Kottke-esque blog wage anytime soon. But it doesn't matter. Blogging has given me the opportunity to tell a small but loyal audience how I'm feeling, what's been going on in my life, and I hope raise the occasional smile or provoke the occasional thought. The best thing about it has been the (admittedly rare) occasions when two friends who don't know each other have started a discussion in the comments section, and I have become a bystander in my own blog. That there is one commenter who is able to hold a (usually surreal) conversation with himself is neither here nor there, but it certainly brings a smile to my face when I read his comments.

Just a few stats to finish. I have posted 146 times in this past year, with November 07 the month with the most posts (22).

The most commented on post was entitled Easter My Worries from the 21st of March this year with 27 comments made. After 'football' (50 tags) and 'city' (45 tags) the highest tag is 'politics' with 25. My favourite post is entitled Faith Hope & Charity, published in November 07. The biggest disappointment is always when I put in a deal of effort to build a detailed post and am confronted with tumbleweed blowing across a dusty plain, or worse, people don't bother to click on the hyperlinks. When that happens, I try to think about how often I actually read 'non professional' blogs myself and then carry on.

I hope you've enjoyed it, at least some of the time, as much as I have. I aim to carry on for a while. When I (finally) reach 5,000 hits I know that I'll be thinking about hitting 10,000.


EP said...

You might get more clicks if you fixed yer RSS feed you bloody Luddite!

Happy Blog Day.

Myeral said...

Point taken! Feedburner is fixed (to the best of my - admittedly limited - knowledge) Please let me know if it's OK now. Thankyew

EP said...

Apparently not fixed, sorry:

Myeral said...

Shit on a stick! No time now, but will apply some bandages later. Cheers

Myeral said...

As far as I can tell, it should be working now. Have run a Feed Medic check and it's coming up as fine. Can you re-subscribe if it doesn't work?

freddie mercury said...

Why do you do it? Why do people do anything? Because people are communicative machines and must sing out.
However, real communication needs feedback and this is where you humans run aground (possibly on Scylla Black: surprise surprise!).
For your latest wheeze, the Inbetween-net, is all set up to provide improved channels of communication and what do you do with it? That's right: business as usual. Porn, gossip, the worship of unsuitable idols and a playground for the Maenads (who, by the way, are any sex you like.)
Thus, the problem with such notions as your cif; it becomes an arena of the Maenads where voices howl in the void.
But what can you expect from a culture where people are taught that "debating" is the highest form of communication? All this leads to is people who just want to score points of each other. Would any human obituary of your Mr Dennis Healy fail to mention the "dead sheep" comment? Would it also not fail to note his part in the scandal of Diego Garcia? Here is your problem: your culture pays no attention to communication yet constantly pretends to, and you sit in front of your scrying devices and wait for your chance to pounce and ponce. Either that or you sit in your house watching people sitting in a house.

And yet still I love you.

Oh, by the way, that thing between your ears is the most marvellous thing in the universe. Just pouring beer into it may not be the best that you can do.

Sorry, just one more thing. Mr Myeral, you mistake "being a writer" with "getting paid to be a writer". In the same way, you make the mistake of referring to "you scientists".
Basically, you are all writers, poets, scientists and players. You are all thieves and liars and heroes and extras. Adventurers and dancers and wankers and angels and cunts. It is just a question of degree. Magic, isn't it?

Myeral said...

I don't want to be too serious about this, but am clear in my own mind on the distinction between being a writer and being paid for writing. James Joyce is the clearest example of this. It's the craft that matters, not the payment for it.

And you, Mr Mercury, are you separate from 'us' 'writers, poets, scientists and players... thieves and liars and heroes and extras. Adventurers and dancers and wankers and angels and cunts"?

I suppose it is, at least, a kind of magic.

freddie mercury said...

I am in fact, Mercury the god, as many know me. Mr Bulsara happened to hit upon my first name, and I looked kindly upon him because of it.
No, I am not seperate from you, I am part of you, you look kindly upon me, or not.
See you next Wednesday!

Joe Dimaggio said...

Brian May would have one small and I mean miniscule comment to say about Mr Bulsara's digestons of your ever sprawling blog on life the and the other particles that surround it! It's a load of bollocks until that you can prove that it can be reality. We live in the real world and until our lives can differentiate from dreams and the people we really are then humanity will give up on life!

Dream and we are the the millions of plankton on this planet. There is an alternative universe out there and Carl Sagan wasn't a mad star gazer!

It may not but not be Brian that says it but I certainly say it

arthur miller said...

Joe's still clearly missing Marilyn.

frederic nietzsche said...

où est ma demeure?
malheur à cette grande cité! je voudrais voir la colonne de feu qui l'incendiera car il faut que de telles colonnes précédent le grand midi. Je te donne cette enseignement en guise d'adieu à toi, fou: quand ne plus aimer, il faut passer.

Freddie kruger said...

Pourquoi M. Nietzsche parles en Francais? Mon Dieu! Moi Aussi!

Fred Gwynne said...

I miss Marilyn too!

billy wilder said...

I don't

a thousand maniacs said...

Stop that! Stop that now!

10000 maniacs said...

We all miss Marilyn. Don't we?