I can imagine multiple reasons making up the complex motivation to blog. Blogging itself may be a somewhat passe’ thing on the Internet anyway. Facebook, Chat-bots, and content management systems may all have some degree of blogging potential, but the purpose and function for blogging may be usurped for other purposes like news dissemination, social networking, constructing social solidarity with some group or network, persuasive influence of a target audience, or just plain old simple egotistical and personal vanity. Certainly blogging by itself cannot compete with the power and pace of the “intelligent” development of the Internet.

I like to think I blog for two or three main intersecting reasons. First is the use of the blog as a new writing forum and framework for the rapid reconnaissance and exploration of new ideas, especially ones that collide in a fertile manner across semantic and cognitive domains. Secondly, it is to continue to exercise what’s left of my old writing muscles to keep tone and fitness of those muscles. Third, I simply like to blog for blogging’s sake, because I have long written just for the sake of writing. Beyond those simple reasons, I do not attempt to justify this line of effort on any grander or global scale.

Certainly the potential power of the blog is its global reach and potentially global influence. I’m sure “going viral” has its own advantages and disadvantages, but remaining low key, “just doing one’s own thing,” is not one of them. If I were truly blogging just to blog, for M. (un-gendered Mr./Ms.) Blog’s sake, then it would be enough to sit in my small lonely office and just compose letters to myself. If I could afford the postage and envelopes I might even mail them back to myself and claim poor-“person’s” copyright. What a way to practice my “dis-cursive” penmanship at least.

For myself writing has been a solitary endeavor, but publishing has been even lonelier. Writing all my life has been a vehicle to escape the world and to create a world primarily of my own imagination. I have written many manuscripts to have them pile up in out of the way corners of the house or to stack up in banker’s boxes over the years, inviting cobwebs, mildew and sometime even rodents. I kind of feel like blogging eliminates somewhat the remaining debitage of my yet active years on earth, during which time I can slowly and carefully, gradually, begin tossing a bunch of old paper work into my fire-pit in the backyard.

So now I blog primarily for M. Blog’s and my own sake. We make a least a good if strange “schizoid” duo. Though I have repeatedly lost several blog efforts with a substantial quantity of content, I miss the tune-up and toning that working out with M. Blog on a daily basis brings to my authorial persona. Now all we probably need is some new 3-B (Bureaucratic Big Brother) or perhaps some “Uncle X” to monitor what M. Blog and myself might digitally “dis-curse” about.

Categories Blogging


I would argue that good blog would not, perhaps should not, or even could not well be in “natural” length much more than a single page of paper at 12 font and with single line spacing (or say between 500 and 700 words.) This limitation of length has nothing to do with the intrinsic value of the text. Indeed, a better integrated text is always easier to read than an unintegrated piece of writing. Neither does this extrinsic limitation have much of anything to do with the inherent informational capacity of say an average 22 or 32 year old person, versus someone averaging 55 or 65 years of age. Perhaps it should be put like this: “if you can’t deliver 90 percent of the knockout punchline within the first page then there is no knockout likely to be had except instead a never-ending slug fest to the bitter bleeding end.”

The historical facts seem to read more like this: the average age of Internet readership is probably, per hour, younger than older, and the younger age set has probably had a vastly higher proportion of more average computing time during their short lives than those much older who came of age in a time when computing was still a fairly primitive appliance that no one could quite figure out what to do with it. Essentially, the average younger than older reader with more percentage of their lives spent uselessly on-line, will simply not have the patience or self-discipline to read a blog, even if fairly well written, down more than half a page in length, much less anything more than a full page in length. I would expect more than 70 percent bailing out before the end of the first paragraph.

Neither is it because younger people on average are stupider than their parents and uncles and aunts, necessarily. It seems only that they learned to move at an accelerated pace of processing, which if not maintained, quickly turns to boredom and “attention deficit.” Likely, their average parents and grandparents would demonstrate as a function of cognitive discipline a commitment to finish reading to the bottom of the page, even poorly written pieces, but that might not necessarily mean the older adult reader gained any more benefit from attending to the full reading than their younger children who probably moved on to more interesting things by the middle of the page.

It would be our grievous error to mistake a youth’s most apparent lack of interest as symptomatic of weak brain power or lazy attention, thus promulgating a theory of the loss of intelligence and a dumbing down of the younger generation, again, on average, just as it would also be a mistake to believe, much less assert, that older people are on average smarter not only because all the dumb have died off young, but only because they had the discipline to read a document, however poor in taste or lacking of flow, to the final word even if they had next to zero interest in what it was trying to say.

The point of all this being that we perhaps should not take too much for granted that which is almost completely new and historically unprecedented, and that which we little understand in any complete or truly correct sense. What we assume to be a text, and the qualities of a text, its literalness, its literacy and legibility, and its literariness and readability, that we older people assumed to be applicable and true de facto of any and all texts or even of any or all kinds of texts within their own natural, intrinsic limitations, may no longer apply in the technological mapping of a virtual world that is defined by digital text-like “pages” that flow unceasingly like rain through our computer screens as windows upon a virtual world. We move from a textual, traditional information age in which knowledge was always great but bounded, to a new post-textual modern world in which knowledge is unbounded but mostly of equivalent minimal value as anything decontextualized, or as something of real intrinsic worth, literalness, literality, or legibility.

The modern form of knowledge and information production is inherently transient, ephemeral, “virtual,” and only significant to the extent that it makes and leaves some mark upon the mind’s eye-view of the digital consumer, the new modern “every person” of the world. Reading a text ultimately is no longer a mainly passive process of making sense of strange printed letters and words on paper, but it is an active engagement, a participation in the on-going production of a virtual world that barely pretends to mirror and parallel the real world, if in fantasy only.

Categories Blogging, Globality


As I grow older now I’ve begun practicing again my cursive penmanship in order to bring myself back almost to the level at which I left off in 8th Grade—when I was all of 13-14 years of age. I remember letting go of the practice and use of penmanship for the sake of a “note-taking” shorthand-style that rapidly degraded into a form of print-manship that even I had difficulty reading afterwards. My adolescent rationalization was that I could print faster and in smaller combined spaces on limited paper in small notebooks—my goal was to be able to write as fast as someone might normally speak. It was a goal well achieved by my graduate years, after years of classroom lectures and seminars, but by the time of fieldwork only realized with a word-processing keyboard on a laptop computer. With regular practice for short periods—a couple of sentences here a page or half a page there, I soon came to notice a couple of interesting coincidences.

I have been regularly keeping my own notebooks for decades but all in note-taking, print-manship style. But my hand writing sucked to being mostly illegible even by me. As I consistently practiced my cursive in a small notebook, at first I noticed that a part of me that had been closed of, apparently in a cognitive sense, reopened with a new kind of “old memory” and sense of greater “hand-writing” capacity that was essentially illegible to anyone but myself. Secondly, I also noticed that as my cursive improved to levels left off in 8th Grade, so too did my printing style and lettering improve substantially with better line, fluidity, evenness, form of lettering, etc. Now I consider the practice psychologically and behaviorally pleasing to do, especially when done well, and I believe it is remediating perhaps of something important in the integration of my aging mind. A part of myself long since turned of, with many early memory associations, turned back on.

I believe penmanship, rather than print-manship, has become something all but lost in the brave new world among a younger generation, a lost skill if not art form, like English spelling, long division and complex multiplication. Now I am not one to publish calls to the return to the good old days of horses and buggies as a mode of transportation in order to prevent major automobile accidents and perhaps much air pollution. But I must critically question the advantages and relative disadvantages of the trade-off between intimate long-hand letters and finally formed, well written documents in actual words, and the speed and thrift of text-messaging, the economy of memes, and the noise and information overload of YouTube.

My family calls me a hoarder, especially of old books collecting dust and mildew. I wrote by typewriter and now by word-processor lengthy manuscripts that few have ever read. I refrain to my critically observant family members that I am not a book hoarder, but a bibliophile, and proudly so self-proclaimed. Yet I know I will have no Viking send-off on a small boat in which the majority of my books and manuscripts will be burned with my body. Instead, I can imagine most of my books ending up at the local dump or recycling back through another time the local “Friends of the Library.”

Then we must reckon with the passing of each generation to the next one descending, the loss of basic knowledges and skills and abilities possessed and often prized by those of the past. We of the passing generation are not the ones to gainsay the wisdom and values in a rapidly changing world of those who will inherit our books and our texts and other words, and who are now being raised within a technologically different world. Maybe not learning good penmanship is not a bad thing after all, but makes room for a brand new way way of communicating through digital texts in virtual, mostly immaterial, media rather than actual paper. Perhaps the new “old way” of paper print and penmanship was when compared to new technology just a downright inefficient means of literacy development. Perhaps everything will be OK in the future of the world, but somehow I still have doubts, and will not miss the way the world is becoming as much as I miss how it used to be with manual/electrical typewriters, land-line telephones, real books on a small bookshelf, and nice paper, pens and ink.

Then I also think and am glad that perhaps our youth are of a much smarter world than we grew up with, and thus will become much more intelligent about that world than we had been otherwise. At least they may not share my own sets of extremes that I have known too well in the course of my life and that served most often just as the limiting factors of my book-bound world and paper-biased worldview. Youth always has the potential of overcoming unprecedented challenges and rising to new levels of achievement far far away better than what we have ever previously known or even imagined. At least I hope so.



“Bloggishing” is what I call the portmanteau of “Blogging” and “Publishing,” in which the act and form and forum of writing a blog combines intimately and immediately with the process of on-line publishing, editing and proofing. During the production of a blog article, or “text,” the dual split processes of writing and publication are almost directly feeding back and forth from beginning to end, and leads to a creative process that cannot be easily or well-achieved otherwise. And yet the products, the “texts,” that appear of value now, today, will be soon replaced with something brand new, totally different, and hopefully better, tomorrow or the next day and then after the next. The blog is thus not a traditional “text” in any conventional sense as we grew up taking it for granted, but a central mechanism for the development and communication of a contemporary symbolic framework for integrating ideas, knowledge and information into a single “system of digital meaning” with hopefully significations extended beyond its literal or even its literary value.

This has about the 5th or 6th time over the past twenty-odd years that I’ve tried to consistently blog. I’ve always found it an interesting new way of writing and textual communication. Trouble has been that all I wrote on various blog platforms was lost due to the system updates and systems outdatedness with lack of updating, ultimately rendering the site useless and the content irretrievable. I’m giving it one final go. Perhaps anything published to the Internet has been meant to be something of ephemera, always at least continuously changing on a dynamic, “epigenetic” information landscape.

Perhaps we of the now older generation were raised with a sense of “classic” texts of many (infinite) possible variations. We were cultivated with the vague idea and ideal that text might be, would be, could be, something of lasting, permanent value. That text could be anything but permanent, here today, for the now, but disappeared, virtually vanished by tomorrow, as something, anything, but mainly of temporary, transient, waxing and waning forcefulness, is something new (and possibly unsettling for older folks) about our Brave World of tomorrow’s possibilities more than yesterday’s epigraphs and testaments and memorials. We sextagenarians were not meant by grand design to inherit tomorrow’s world.

The hopeful sign seems to be this system does only a few things, like publishing blog articles in ascending order on the top page. It seems simple enough (simplicity oft seems to work best with complex systems), perhaps as something not requiring too many constant updates to remain minimally functional. (At least I can easily see the “save” button.) I must apologize—but this is a one-way publication forum for others to read but not to scribe or subscribe to it. If one wants to be a participant in a broader public forum, then I would recommend getting a Facebook account that can be much better managed.

The object of this forum is the consistent writing, publication and feedback of short blogs defined as anything (more or less than) five or six or so well defined and structured paragraphs, exploring a central but complex topic in a hopefully subtle and sophisticated if not sublime but relatively dense manner. The purpose is the experimentation and exploration of different “textualities” as a new forum of communication and self-expression. Immediate editorial feedback and publication permits the rapid development of the text toward some final (but unreachable) state. Writing in this regard may be not so much a product as a progressive process toward some near-finished state (or at least toward a half-finished set of statements.) Here is my first blog piece, and it is the way I roll.

The writing of blogs in the contemporary world, for a potentially worldwide audience, recommends to interested people at least some kind of normative set of qualitative standards of what makes good blogs good and better blogs better. Someone else can carry through with rational end-states and reasonable, realistic limits, beyond blogging itself. Certainly blogging has its own stylistic and structural considerations—sentence, paragraph and essay as a whole becomes structured through the process of its immediate publication, in competition with the rest of the worldwide web itself.

Categories Blogging, Globality