I have noticed a a sense of ennui around the blogs recently; a feeling that some people are struggling to think of things to write about while others, once prolific, are not writing at all. Then we have the blogger's angst, the 'why am I doing this?' or 'why are my stats falling?' and 'does any of it matter anyway?' that besets us all at some time.
Yesterday, even Bryan Appleyard, was pondering on the 'obsessive absurdity' of blogging. He links to a poem called The Blogger's Lament written way back in 2006 for The Daily Duck by Brit, aka my son, Andrew. I've had an interesting time following all those links, revisiting my own early days of blogging and seeing the names of old correspondents I haven't spoken to in a while.
Some blogs never change, especially those devoted to politics and/or religion, where the writers are so certain of their ground that there is no point in offering an alternative opinion. Visiting some of those blogs two years on, I see the same unshakeable views being expressed and I wonder what has been the point of it all? No-one has learned anything from anyone else, no-one has really communicated. I prefer the self-contradiction that Bryan Appleyard identifies in his own blogging history. To change one's views shows an openness to other opinions and a willingness to learn, so I hope Thought Experiments will continue to 'contain multitudes.'
On a lighter note, I think it is not only possible but also desirable to hold contradictory views. How awful to be utterly predictable: no surprises, no shocks, no excitement in life. No random distractions! Isn't variety meant to spice life up a bit? Robert Herrick thought so:
A sweet disorder in the dress
Kindles in clothes a wantonness:
A lawn about the the shoulders thrown
Into a fine distraction:
An erring lace, which here and here
Enthrals the crimson stomacher:
A cuff neglectful, and thereby
Ribbands to flow confusedly:
A winning wave (deserving note)
In the tempestuous petticoat:
A careless shoe-string, in whose tie
I see a wild civility:
Do more bewitch me, than when Art
Is too precise in every part.