sunset from behind the wire

sunset from behind the wire

Friday, July 31, 2015

Blogging

I've been blogging for about six years now. I started hesitantly, on more of a dare than anything else.  

Recently, I've thought about discontinuing the practice because there is a significant portion of the blogging regimen that smacks of narcissism. I've been reading Hemingway while on the road recently. His terse, tense short stories are masterful. He was good when was good and his second best was still better than most other men's best. Eventually, Hemingway fell victim to his own legend. In The Green Hills of Africa and later in The Old Man and the Sea, he didn't write like the great early Hemingway but more like one of Hemingway's heroes might have written had they been literate. He ceased to see himself as a writer and saw himself instead as a hunter, a warrior, a mighty man who could take it even if he could no longer dish it out. 

If you live long enough to look back, it's evident that we lead different lives at different times. We're still who we were - at least shades of our former selves, but life and experience changes us. Sometimes it hardens us. Other times it breaks us. Our reaction to adversity defines who we are if to nobody but ourselves.

The times that we find ourselves living in are outrageous, and blogging about that daily assault of abomination and weirdness becomes nearly reflexive -- at least to me. 

Perhaps blogging is similar to Yeates' lonely impulse of delight (An Irish Airman Forsees his Death) "I balanced all, brought all to mind, the years to come seemed waste of breath, a waste of breath the years behind". I prefer to think that I leave behind a somewhat mute record of impressions. Breadcrumbs for those who would read that lead to at least what I, in my narcissistic best, thought of this or that.

I've been writing my own brand of terse, tense prose, which I do as an artist might doodle on a sketch pad. If you follow this blog, you'll see it showing up more regularly...at least until I tire of my own drivel and doodling. Think of those stories as mandalas that are crafted for their own sake and then destroyed.




30 comments:

  1. too much narcissism?

    This week, a magnificent Rule 5 photo blog, where Heidi Klum reminisces about Ernest Hemingway

    http://goodstuffsworld.blogspot.com/2015/07/goodstuffs-blogging-magazine-201st-issue.html

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    Replies
    1. Good coverage of Hemingway's life (but what else would one expect from Goodstuff?).

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  2. Blogging for me is like singing in the shower…except I don't do that. Its for me, to vent. I do like reading blogs though. Its a digital water cooler.

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  3. Blogging is much akin to throwing messages in bottles into the ocean. At first glance, it is a complete waste of time. For many, putting down ones thoughts in writing acts as the glue that consolidates who they are and what their philosophy is.

    A break in the routine from time to time is a good thing. But you'll find yourself at some point in the future itching to post that brilliant tome, and you, like Arnie Schwartzenegger, 'will be back.'

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    Replies
    1. I'm not suggesting that I'll quit. I only thought about it.

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    2. We all think about it. pat, pat, pat, hug!
      Now go get to writing, wait that isn't what you wanted to hear...
      Alrighty then, I would be devastated if you quit, heart broken, really sad, I beg (no small thing for me) of you Please keep blogging...

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    3. Since you're begging...

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  4. Maybe I read between the wrong lines, but I find nothing narcissistic about your writing. Writing about things as you see them is not narcissistic to me. You are just stating things as you see them. You are not boring us with how great you are. Fine line, I guess, but I'm not smart enough to see what you think you see. I just enjoy your posts and even laugh at some of it. Keep up the good work, but don't follow Hemmingway's answer to life. Gunpowder taste bad.

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    1. If I settled in Ketchum, Idaho, I'd likely end up the way that Ernest did...but I don't plan to move to Ketchum, which is pretty in the summer but flooded with scumbags who like to ski in the winter at Bald Mountain and Sun Valley. Even if I didn't take the Hemingway out, I'd take a hostage if I lived there just on general principles...Maybe a super model? Or two?

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  5. Bloging gives bored, unhappy people - most often women (in the day time at any rate) something to do. They can run over other people's children while they drive and talk to people they don't know.

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    1. Cellphones enable the same conduct.

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    2. Well hell, I didn't even know I was bored'n unhappy...

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    3. Maybe you need to ask Dad, who would take the opportunity to point out to you that he needs to go fishing...with a bottle of Jack in his hip pocket.

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  6. Narccisism is gathering a captive audience and telling stories or pontificating. You do no such thing. You provide insite and education while explaining ideas to the world and we flock to you to listen. Thank you for what you have given us. By the way, just ordered White Powder.

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    Replies
    1. I hope that you like the book.

      You may like The Old Whore better...

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  7. My Uncle, who was a Texan, took A levels at a school in the U.K. One of his exam questions asked, "To what extent do you think Yeats a great poet?" His answer read, "Not to any great extent." I've always liked that.

    I think you saw his Confederate flag photo in the living room at 204.

    Write on.

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    Replies
    1. If your uncle is anything like your mother (who for the reading audience is just a wee bit to the right of Atilla the Hun politically), I'm sure that he's a typical Texan.

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    2. He ended up a joint partner in a Denton law firm, curiously, but died young. RIP. He was on the compassionate side of the SD, unlike KPH...

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  8. there's an altogether different side of me that blogging brings out- the angry one.
    Its like screaming.

    and when they hear you and tell you that you're doing just fine, you get addicted to it.

    what I've seen about your works is you're true, true to yourself, and in essence its what I've borrowed from you (at least learning to).

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    Replies
    1. You can rage against the machine on your blog and people understand, because they have the same intensity in them -- even if it rarely is manifest.

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    2. That's the most beautiful part I guess, the line between what's manifest and what's intended.

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  9. Always enjoy the blog, I never know what I'll see here! :-) That's part of the fun!

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  10. I enjoy reading all the experienced bloggers. It gives me a goal to reach.

    You, sir, do NOT write "drivel".

    And I'm not even good enough to make it up to the level of drivel.......

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    Replies
    1. I like your blog, Dr. J. Don't underestimate yourself.

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  11. We all need a direction. I'm sure glad I picked a silly one. If I chose to write as much as you, I'm afraid this guy that took "Dumb Bell English" three times at Santa Monica City College would be lost.

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  12. Your'e not allowed to quit *FULL STOP* Writing is a tool of creative expression.
    Anything can come across as narcissistic if you're doing it publicly. And so what if it sometimes is! Yes, we all lead different lives at different times and are affected by the shades of experience which, in turn, will alter our creativity and give it a different dimension. I call that growth.

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  13. AND... as my continual challenger, you can't leave the blogosphere or I'll have no inspiration. You are responsible for that which you have tamed.

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    Replies
    1. You can't be tamed, Jules. Pity the man who tries.

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It's virtual - it's a mirage - it's life