It’s 9/11, and I’ve mostly given up blogging about 9/11, because I don’t have anything new to say on it. My Year Ten at Ground Zero post at Revolutionary Nonsense pretty much summed it up:
So, with the shattered Towers transformed into watered gravestones for those eternally interred by them, we can at last put our grief and rage from memory into history. We have remembered, and we have moved on, through the light and shadow of a world born in fire. We make the best of that world to the extent that we feel that those who suffered at last have peace. Time will bury all wounds, but as the centuries pass, men and women will walk through Lower Manhattan and see the names of those martyred for being American.
This is what stands in the place of smoke and death today. Because, America.
Rather, I’m more interested in the subject of the blogosphere, partially because Instapundit took the opportunity of the anniversary to ponder his status as survivor, but mostly because I seemed to notice the blogosphere at about that time. I started blogging myself in 2003, and I’m still doing it. But I’ve burned out a couple of times. It happens. It starts to feel like a job, or worse, an unpaid internship that never ends. You start getting bored with the struggle to say something that several million people are not already saying. So you just stop.
But I keep coming back. Whenever I shuttered a blog, I would suddenly find myself with things to say. So I’d start a new blog. At one point I had two, plus a randomly updated LiveJournal. That was too much, which prompted me to set up shop at WordPress in 2011.
I don’t nuke blogs when I tire of them anymore. The new rule is: When I don’t feel like blogging, I don’t blog. Andrew Sullivan used to take August off, I usually end up doing the same. When I feel like blogging again, I come back.
Here’s another blogger that burned out and came back. She’s funny, too.
Is there anything lamer than having two “Sorry I no blog” posts in a row?
But I seriously had a good reason. Seriously.
Anyhoo, while I prep for the school year, here’s some nonsense. First my first feedback on Solar System Blues from someone who doesn’t know me and is therefore under no pressure to say they liked it (Goodreads link):
This book was just amazing. I won it through a good-reads giveaway and was so excited when I won. The whole idea and aspect of the book keeps you on your toes and excites you to turn every page. I recommend reading this book.
So there, people who have not the readiness to slam down $2.99 (more for dead tree) for a copy of an “amazing” book! How stupid do YOU feel?
Yeah, not very. I get that. God carried away. Sorry.
Here’s some vintage 1978 French punk rock, by way of an apology. I know, but listen to it:
That just rocks, that’s all that does…
I blame Anthony Weiner.
Sure, it could be the usual Summer Doldrums, wherein the sunshine and long, lazy nights make the idea of venting on the Internet seem dull puerile. And there’s a sting possibility that Crusader Kings has been eating into my blogging time.
But I prefer to think that the prospect of commenting on Weiner II: The Weinering, with its concomitant Bill & Hlllary Reboot sapped my will for punditry. It’s so pathetic, on so many levels, and yet the movie will keep rolling no matter how sure we are of the ending.
But vacation and all of that. Content will follow.
Some kind of head cold. The wife has it, too. Darling Daughter is thankfully immune.
In Lieu of an update, enjoy some Radio Birdman:
(Dirk Gently reference.)
Periods of time come when the thought of adding content to a blog puzzles the will. The evergreen political nonsense saps the spirit. Repeating the same arguments to the same applause sounds agonizingly dull.
Besides, it’s springtime outside. The human animal was not meant to remain inside shut up with People Being Wrong on the Internet when the trees bloom and the thermometer finally creeps above the magical number of 70.
And besides that, I’ve found an entirely new way to express myself.
Youtube posits this as the “Official video” of “Oh Yeah” the tune by Swiss electronica duo Yello. The track hit #51 on Billboard in the spring of ’87, and appeared in Ferris Bueller, Secret of My Success, and any other scene where the director wanted a montage expressing a character’s sudden overpowering desire. ‘Cording to Wikipedia, they had a whole slew of albums and such, and had regular hits on the UK charts and the US Hot Dance Club/Club Play Singles chart. Still most of us know them from this, if we know them at all.
Well they’ve put out an app that will make you a DJ.
Yellofier video tutorial from Yello on Vimeo.
Downloaded it on a whim, spent a few days playing with it. It’s genius: intuitive and idiot-simple.You can record any sound and turn it into a not-bad-sounding electronica song in a few minutes. I have done so, the results are silly.
Yellow Boom from Andrew Patrick on Vimeo.
That’s the first thing I made on the first day I messed with it. Nothing to it: theme and variation. The one’s I’ve done since are better, better enough that I download them to my iTunes and like them on repeated listens. I’ll post them somehow later: on Soundcloud, maybe. “Duke Bike Rider” is my phony rock-n’-roller stage name. We all wear different hats.
This is spring: your ears perk up and you try something new. Your life renews.
…I found myself overladen with Things to Do. You know the story. Blogging will be light for the forseeable. Right now, enjoy some Dante:
I found myself in dark woods, the right road lost. To tell
about those woods is hard – so tangled and so rough
And savage that thinking of it now, I feel
the old fear stirring: death is hardly more bitter.
And yet, to treat the good I found there as well,
I’ll tell what I saw, though how I came to enter
I cannot well say, being so full of sleep
Whatever moment it was I began to blunder
Off the true path.
The only way out is through…
One of the things I had in mind for this blog was a combination of my politics blog, Revolutionary Nonsense, with my music blog, Genre Confusion, mostly because writing two blogs was exhausting. And while my political writings shifted over here with ease, the music criticism hasn’t. Genre Confusion was about a lot of things (hatred of trendies and their trendy music mags, pointing out the iterations of the music-industry double-helix), but the major project was called Rating My CD’s: a review of every last disc in my collection, by genre, alphabetically, and by release date. Which is to say, I start with a group of basic rock discs (as oppose to Jazz, Blues, Hip-Hop, Punk & Metal), and I review the Beatles before Johnny Cash, and I do Rubber Soul before Revolver. I managed about 50 of these before Genre Confusion got folded. You can check the noise out here.
Since the move, I’ve managed to review the following:
In that last one, I promised “Next week, the Rolling Stones.” That was in April of 2012. So, Yeah.
Whatever. Check this space for a lot of rambling about the World’s Oldest Rock n’ Roll Band. I’ve got a few Stones CD’s, so this could take a while. What’s a week, anyway? It’s not like the Stones are going anywhere.
Men this old have no business making a song this good.
(Yeah, I changed the theme again. The other one shrunk the blog posts too much.)
I changed the theme.
I liked Esquire; I really did. The look was the best one I’ve had. But the functionality was nil. All the widgets got stuffed to the footer. I wanted to display my business more prominently. So, after clicking idly around, I settled on Grid Focus. Sure, it’s kind of newspapery, but that’s kind of what I’m looking for right now. And if someone ever figures out away to put widgets in the sidebar/header of Esquire, I’ll go back in a minute.
Anyway, no, you’re not seeing things. I’m just never satisfied with the way this blog looks.
Last year, with Irene glowering down on us and a baby on the way, I went into a kind of proto-daddy super-protective fury: buying up pallets of bottled water, jerky, batteries, etc.
Now, I’ve got Sandy about to give a big kiss to a blizzard/Nor’Easter. Gah. I don’t want to freak, but when the local Wal-Mart is selling generators by the truckload, it’s hard to avoid it.
Yes, every now and then I’m going to refresh the theme of this place. I liked the Chunky Theme: it was uncluttered, and displayed everything in big bold letters. But I felt the need for some brightness, and Chunky was sedate in a turquoise kind of way.
And taking pictures with Instagram is utterly un-Chunky…
So welcome to Esquire. I’ve been eyeing it for some time, but always demurred due to the lack of Page Links. But I can live with displaying them at the bottom, where my Twitter and Category links already were. So anyone desperate to read my About Page and such, that’s where they’ll be. I’m thinking of publishing my Essays in book form anyway.
There’s another change in the works. I’m getting kinda bored with paying attention to the election. Everything’s in horserace mode at this point, and anyone emotionally committed to one candidate or another is probably feeling a bit like the horse. So that leads to weariness and reticence. Scrolling Insty and Memeorandum and Twitter for fodder is easy, but I don’t remember anyone asking for a re-post of what the rest of the Right-o-Sphere is already talking about. Granted, that’s how blogging works, but it doesn’t quite satisfy all the reasons that I do it.
So I’m going to try to put more original content here. I’ve got writing projects moldering around here, and precious little time to do anything. And what is a blog, if not a place to work through the noise in your head.
Obviously I can’t swear off politics; the folly of man, and attempts to undo that folly by expanding the authority of man, is a well running never dry. But It cannot represent the majority of my written works, and if Obama wins, I’m going to need something the break up the apathy and despair.