16 years of blogging

I started this 16 years ago today. Here’s the traditional link to that first fart.

It’s not a bumper year for posts. By the number of posts since this started is at an all-time low. Or so the stats tell me. The number of posts rather than visitors/views is what I watch. Ironic since my writing output has swelled. A further sign of the inward turn. Part of the change is that the outside world’s absurdities have become cruel. I realise that it’s always been that way. The difference is that humour and satire no longer impact my ability to process this eternal cruelty.

I never intended for my keyboard pecks to change the world. Every post has been a selfish act to appease the voices. From that perspective, this habit is a roaring success.

It’s pushed my written communication abilities to a level I never dreamt possible. Banging out the madness carved space for a quieter, “professional” voice. It gets things done via emails that I didn’t realise were possible.

Writing helps focus thinking. Defecating the loonier thoughts helps clear the systems for a better one. I’ve found it a productive, laborious way to clear the mud from muddled ideas. Then structure them into something coherent. Despite the slog, the process is rewarding. You should try it.

The process has physiological benefits. I can get up before dawn to write. There is no other time in the day. So there’s an urgency for getting out of bed and hitting the keys. Or maybe it’s the coffee. Most likely, it is.

Another unexpected discovery is to hear my thinking voice. You don’t hear it directly in the everyday mental babble. Seeing it appear in words over the years, you start to notice. The words it uses. The way its sentences stumble out. What it emphasises before the backspace and the edits and the spell check and the grammar check. It’s a nutty preference for two-word sentences.

It’s tempting to think that human-typed blogs will go the way of hand-calculated logarithmic tables. At the personal level, that doesn’t matter. I’m not convinced there will be a digital simulation of the person in my lifetime. Even if there was, this typing is not for the world. It’s a selfish act. A form of thinking. Netting drifting thoughts into visual words for interrogation.

After all these years, it feels like I’m always discovering new things. So most likely, this will continue until something convinces me otherwise, or I’m rendered unable to peck the keys.

Thank you to everyone who’s read this and any of the rest. Your input has been invaluable fuel to the fire.


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