Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Thief of Words

Not every blog post has to be a rehash of the two feelings I can muster.

You, dear reader(s) (if there is more than one of you), are a thief. A damn sneak thief that comes like a cat burglar in the night, cases the joint, and then ever so gently breaks the close on my free hold, and takes the family jewels, and anything else you can carry off into the night. I do not know how you dress for the occasion of your thievery. I wonder if you are there all dressed in black like some proto ninja thinking that black is the best colour for sneaking off into the night with someones prized collection of GI Joe dolls (it isn't).  Or are you just sitting there in your small clothes, bored out of your mind, and thinking that I will just wander over to GI's place and steal a few things that he won't even notice.

Since I am  a minimalist, in both possessions and words, these thefts do get noticed. Whether it is important or not is a totally different story, and really dear reader(s) you aren't a thief, because I give these words as freely as possible. Though these words that I write, even the ones that on occasion make people cry, aren't really free. I have to pay for them, not with money, that would be easy, but with other things. I pay for them with thought, experience, feelings, and a whole of lot of trying to remember shit long enough to write it all down. That last bit is sometimes the most important bit, the thoughts, the feelings, and the experiences, come regardless of my desire for them to or not. They are like waves, you do not beg the sun for mercy, and you do not ask the ocean to stop pounding the beaches of the world with waves.

Those waves of thoughts, feelings, and experiences, that pound the beach of me, and that are slowly eroding that sandcastle of my persona that I have painstaking built, are the 'possessions' of my intellectual life.  These possessions are probably not valuable to anyone other than me, but that is the important bit. They have a value to me, and to me is the most important value of all. Many moons ago, I wrote that I was writing this blog for me, and any readers that I obtained were just gravy. That was, as far as I could make it, true at the time. However, as time passed, and those waves pounded upon me, I began to write this blog for other people. Some of them were readers, and some of them were not (and remain so), but that didn't matter to me at the time. What mattered to me was that I was being read, granted it was clear that some people were reading me only to check my spelling and grammar, and those readers are not a loss that I will feel with any sort of sadness. But, other people, the people I really wanted to write for, were reading me for content. They understood that the act of my 'creative' (using the term very broadly) involved me sitting at my computer and just writing the post as it happened in my mind. Calm reflection, and the MLA handbook on grammar were not being consulted.

The death of the grammar Nazis is not to be mourned, because even though they serve a purpose, they are usually to wrapped up in some fucking split infinitive to worry about the actual content. It was the content that I was writing for my readers, and that is when I realized I had lost my way. When I began writing to be read, instead of writing just to write, my 'muse' left me high and dry. The waves, as hard as it was to conceive just stopped coming onto my beach. The, seemingly inexhaustible, well of ideas had run dry, and it was impossible for me to comprehend. On occasion the ideas would trickle in, but they would then be run through the (imaginary) sieve of 'how will this be received' before they were (mostly) discarded, and not written.

You, dear reader(s), affected me like a drought affected a desert, you left me with nothing but sand, useless grains of ideas that could not be molded or stuck together to form any sort of coherent thought or post. Your acts of thievery, however innocently meant, became a challenge for me. It eventually dawned upon me that your reading of any post I wrote was a mere blip in your day (as it should be) we are bombarded by the information superhighway, and this blog is but one, small pit stop on that road, but for me it is the pit stop that I own, and that makes all the difference. It might be a dump, but it is my dump, and ramshackled or not, it is all I have. The act of writing this blip is a lot more difficult than the act of reading it (at least I hope so). Readers are like people standing in line at a buffet, and writers are like the poor sod cutting the prime rib. We can only cut one piece at a time, while you can stand in line stuffing your faces with cupcakes, shrimp, and pizza whilst waiting for us to give you a small slice of our 'prime rib'. Not that my writing is in any way 'prime' but it is mine and for me is the (main) reason it exists.

  It is exactly my fault that I allowed this not too subtle shift in my thinking to affect this endeavor, and I am here to make my mea culpa, and to (hopefully) take this project back to its creative roots. Those roots, the ones that birthed this blog, are based on the idea that I write for me, and perhaps the desk drawer, not to be read. It is a mind boggling act of selfishness, but then again I think that if you have read me, you can easily surmise that I am a mind boggling selfish asshole. If any of my readers do still exist, and there are reasons to doubt that they do, I hope they understand that this is not an invitation to fuck off, but a realization that while they are desperately needed, they are not the star of this show. I also hope that they realize that one man shows are not in vogue and that every Humphrey Bogart needs a Tim Holt in order to make the film a success.


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