I remember when it was kind of cool to be a blogger. You’d walk around with a swagger in your step, a twinkle in your eye. Now it’s just humiliating. Blogging has become like mahjong or needlepoint or clipping coupons out of Walgreens circulars: something old folks do while waiting to croak.
(Illustration found here — one among a series of funny blog ‘toons).
In the above snip,Â Nicholas Carr is offering a take on results released earlier this month of aÂ Pew Internet poll — blogging ain’t popular among the young, and the blogosphere is become mainly a playground for the gray-haired set, a communicative platform moving from cutting-edge to just another redundant device: “Tech experts say it doesn’t mean blogging is going away. Rather, it’s gone the way of the telephone and e-mail â€” still useful, just not sexy.”
Maybe ChatRoulette is the future — a la Logan’s Run.
Why way-not cool?
A late arrival to the blogging universe:Â I’m over 60 and have been working this site, Compatible Creatures (bold-face the bold face), only about two-and-a-half years, but enough time to get a measure of this online-only 15-year phenomenon — the surge in popularity coming with the Iraqi war (see a time-line of bloggingÂ here) — and how the Internet operates.
So, according to the poll, I’m the age of the blogger, but now I’m at the age of being sick of it all.
News watching nowadays sucks.
Even Vancouver’s version of the winter olympics — a nasty, fatal crash on the luge track and snow-less-weather (really, let’s not yet go to the weather thing, a really, really scary event(s) coming hard, straight and directly right at me, along of course, with the rest of humanity) — carries that now-familiar sketch of a horrid, sad and usually-unfair scenario underneath a commercial bluster or personal bravado.
An example is Haiti.
Underneath the obvious horror of the earthquake was another historical horror — how Catholic Spain and later an arrogant US policy created the horror called Haiti before the horror of the 7.1 quake — and that information is just unconscionable horrible.
See Toussaint L’Ouverture andÂ an early instance of horrible hypocrisy via the historically-famous “Louisiana Purchase” to get just a clue.
And stir in a bit on the current state of affairs with the executive, legislative and judicial branches of the US government is enough to make me blow chunks and want to throttle Lawrence Welk.
In an instance, the Internets might contain too-much data, much-more than a shitload of information, more than a human could ingest without major bowel obstruction, or gop’stipation (so named after Republicans currently in Congress), especially as seen through a prism of whether it’s real or just a wad of monkey turds tossed into the fire to smoke-out the dumb-ass.
Anyone with walking-around sense should know by now some heavy and startling shit is at play upon the land — there’s too many gasping, gaping holes in the overloaded-ship of humanity, with piles of people getting killed in various places, climate change, peak oil, and yes, even “peak soil,” no jobs and no homes, and soon no food, some of these ruptures are well-beyond being conventionally and conveniently patched.
A frightful time, indeed, mama.
Coupled with a natural/earth/enviornment fail point — as last week’s hyper-winter storms so suggests after being cliched into “Snowmageddon” — is a paradoxical and ironically-illogical propensity for potential violence as “serial killer” has mutated into “mass killer.”
(Illustration found here).
Anyway, the subject here is blogging and blogging is writing and writing is research, whether it’s via some academic process or from my own past experience, researched by the brain, all good writing is based upon upon research — hence when in preparing a post, it seems three hundred paragraphs are researched to create one that actually appears in a story.
And hence the news-watching-sucks credo.
Despite it all, however, the Internet dishes it out closer to reality than the MSM — I agree withÂ Lara Logan and her spiel a couple of years ago on US news coverage: “I were to watch the news that you’re watching in the United States, I’d just blow my brains out. ‘Cause it would drive me nuts.”
Blogs are a life-form all its own.
The heads-up on the bloggers’ poll mentioned above came from a kind of blogging-update-on-all-kinds of news site, The Daily Dish, which multi-posts all during the day and the Pew info was originally seenÂ here — The Dish is also most-excellent live-covering events, such as the recent/ongoing unrest in Iran, or the Haiti disaster (I visit The Dish several times a day).
Andrew Sullivan, who administers The Dish via The Atlantic magazine, is gay and a political conservative, which appears to have no bearing on what the overall blog presents — all kinds of junk from politics to sports to sexual practices — except in his own posts and other writings in other media.
Sullivan made blogging popular — he’s currently featured high onÂ President Obama’s reading list — and The Dish is just a sample of a vigorous, though, vaporous culture that’s found bubbling around on the Internets.
There’s even back-stabbing, over-reacting and gossip-mongering amongst the higher-escalations of the blogger community — bloggers feed/deflect off other bloggers, who in turn, although they hate it, must feed/deflect off the MSM (bloggers for the very-most part must depend on the MSM for news reporting) with Sullivan himself taking some unfair raking in the newest virtual dust-up.
Read one angle of theÂ affairÂ here and another here.
A sad commentary on current journalism is the needful fact the best presentation of the horrid news of the day is from false-news organizations — The Daily Show and it’s mentally-unstable twin, The Colbert Report.
Jon Stewart chimed in last week with a mock of the blogosphere’s ranklings in the nefarious ether.
Watch Stewart’s real-funny bit via HuffPost — society on the World-Wide-Web has always carried it’s own word-language, but the whole-shootin’ match really starts to appear other-worldly and preposterous when proclaimed in headlines, so says Stewart: “If you just followed this show on the blogs, you would think I was just running around town, cutting people open from scrote to sternum, wearing their skin as a trophy.”
Dude, these are serious bloggers.
I’m not too serious — NOT!
And this particular blog, Compatible Creatures (bold again), serves just as a creative outlet for myself only (and a tiny-handful of others — 59 people on one particular day last July) and since I enjoyed building/editing newspaper pages years ago, the process of putting together one of these posts is similar, and without a deadline clock on some far wall, it usually takes up considerable, though, enjoyable time — which is healthy, maybe?
Compatible Creatures, compatible creatures — a soft alliterated word sequence to describe things not-so-pretty: war and politics and life.
I find it freakin’ hilarious.
So in good standing with the Pew Internet poll, an old guy waiting to croak sits around blogging, and in this particular case, whining.
And speaking of a good whine…
A couple of weeks ago, my daughter who lives just south of Nashville, Tennessee, and I carried on a lengthy gmail chat mostly about music/culture from the 1990s, an era we both agreed was a high-point in rock-n-roll, especially alternate-rock, which came into its own during that decade.
We tossed songs off at each other for a couple of hours, everything from Bush and Alanis Morissette and Third Eye Blind and a bunch from REM and Live with the great “Lightning Crashes” and Soul Asylum and Blur’s Song 2 and Matchbox Twenty and The Wallflowers and even Smash Mouth’s “Walk on the Sun” and Blink 182 along with a shitload of others, a chat intertwined with stuff about movies, TV, friends and her siblings.
And very-much a fun time.
The song that set us off was Green Day’s “Basket Case:”
Do you have the time
To listen to me whine
About nothing and everything
All at once
I am one of those
Neurotic to the bone
No doubt about it
And even with the creeps and paranoia and the mind playin’ freakin’ tricks, one has to get a grip and look at the positive side:
Grasping to control
So I better hold on