Grist to the Mill

07 April, 2004


Posting irrelevant, unconnected, and occasionally personal messages on the Internet is a strange and probably egocentric thing to do. It's a perfect ‘Internet’ thing, because all human life is there - (just like eBay, in fact, where you can find men’s shoes; collectible tin soldiers from esoteric combats; fridge magnets; new cars masquerading as ‘unwanted prizes’, etc). According to a newspaper, one million people will keep a blog by the end of 2004. The piece goes on to say that: “The typical blog is written by a teenage girl who uses it twice a month to update her friends and classmates on happenings in her life”.

I’ve browsed through blogs like the one mentioned by the newspaper and nearly all of them are poorly written accounts of mundane non-events, “Is Kevin going ice-skating?” “Today I bought a new blouse”. Having said that, I don’t consider my own messages of especial interest to others (if a piece of writing has no specific reader in mind, or no readership at all, is it really a 'message’?), yet it keeps me amused - especially at work. I can’t think of a context more relevant than blogging for this: ‘Everyone is a bore to someone. The thing to avoid is being a bore to oneself.’

Only one person is aware I’m doing this, but I like it that way. There are no graphics/pictures/hyperlinks here, and I like the idea that this is the electronic equivalent of a heavy, un-illustrated book on a low shelf in a public library. Luminous sunlight, pouring through high windows and cutting through the silence, would reveal a thick layer of dust on top of this particular blog which languishes, unchosen, like a wallflower… (ahh).

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