What’s a Blog?

I read an article the other day on a piece of cultural ephemera – the Web Log or “blog.” The article, from the AP, reported that a lot of “bloggers,” as these diarists are called, are less than faithful to their sites, and that of X number of blog sites reviewed, only such-and-such percentage had been updated in the last week. The cynical journalistic conclusion was that Americans continue to be a people struck by techno-fads but unable to stick with their passion of the moment.

The interviews were the typical kind of lament, the “Well, I started it for our Hawaii vacation but just kind of lost interest” sort of thing. Or the blogger simply “got busy” and dropped off the Internet like a faithless pen pal.

Which brings me to note that had this secret site been reviewed by the blog police, I too would have shown up as a “slacker,” or one who has abandoned his blog, since I haven’t felt the urge to add in about seven weeks or so.

But I am no blogger. In case there’s any confusion, this is my life here. This is not a scratch pad or short-term journal of days. No, this is me all told. Or at least as much as I care to tell. My plan is enormous – to log the rest of my days here, the iconoclast unbound. Further, I don’t use this space to dash off random thoughts on the events of the day, as these bloggers do, but plan and craft these little essays to stand alone as moments in my life. These are statements of how my life is framed at a given time, how my thoughts are coalescing around the days.

I figure there are enough people commenting on what Bush said last week, or what the new Vines album portends for pop music.

Also, among the few “successful” blogs I’ve encountered, the practice of massive hyper-linking abounds, setting it apart from my purposefully hyperlink-free entries. Such a mass of links to “what’s happening now” material belies the temporary nature of the writing, since most of those hyperlinks will point to nothing within a few months or years.

The very word  – blog – smacks of cultural flightiness, of a term of the moment, and I predict it won’t be around much longer. This fad, like all the others, will drop off the radar of the major cultural engines. Those who are left will be blogging for themselves alone. Or they, like all the rest, will simply give up out of ennui, or, more likely, because some new techno-fad came along to entice their distracted minds.

So though I sometimes tell myself I need to write a bit to stay consistent and to keep the flow of my life chronicled, I will not write here simply to write something. I have no use for electronic doodling. And although my log will contain a measured amount of asides – like this one – I hope to keep the main subjects as timeless as the thoughts that invade every mind as it encounters life in passing. These have always been – and remain – topics of the heart, of the mind, and of nature.

So I’ll be seeing you soon – but how soon, I can’t say.

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