February 20, 2008

Give 'Em What They Want

Here's what most of you are used to, and what you appear to prefer. Since arguments, reasons, history and similar kinds of crap bore you, I've eliminated them. I'm learning!

This is terrible shit.

Fight! Fight! Fight! Heh.

Say what?

Racist wanker!

There now. I expect to have 30,000 visitors a day by the end of the week. That's half a day's blogging right there!

What a disappointing lot you are. This is the first piece I genuinely enjoyed writing in about six months. Almost no one noticed it. I received one -- one -- email that discussed it in terms that are meaningful to me. (Thanks, A.P.) That was also the only email I received about it. Put aside whether you think it's successful or not. I myself think certain aspects of it are well done; others could certainly be improved. A few more revisions, perhaps after setting it aside for several days, would have helped. But that's not blogging as most of you conceive it; that might come dangerously close to...gasp, writing! Can't have any of that shit. (On the other hand, perhaps that article is nothing more than shit, unworthy of comment of any kind. In which case, ignore what follows.)

What is deeply sad about most of you is that when something isn't identical to what you're accustomed to and to what everyone else does (at least in general form, if not in perspective), you have no idea what to think of it -- because everyone else hasn't already agreed what your opinion should be. (An earlier post that was somewhat "different" was greeted with a similar yawn. I also received a total of one email about that piece.) Blogging as you think of it could be neatly fit within a tiny, airless box. Watching all of you slowly suffocate is very sad. Even worse, it's boring.

I would have discussed these issues in terms of certain of the underlying factors involved in my series on tribalism, along with many other examples of related phenomena. I have a huge number of notes for that series, and I estimate that the series would extend through at least ten or fifteen essays. Oh, dear. It would be long. Many of you would probably find parts of it depressing. A fair number of you write blog entries or, which is even kinder, send me emails telling me how much you dislike that kind of shit.

No more shit for you!

More to the point, and much more seriously for me: as regular readers know, I survive on next to nothing financially. Blogging, and occasionally blogging that veers uncomfortably close to something a bit more ambitious, is all I can do. But the writing I try to do is time-consuming and sometimes difficult, made more difficult by the fact that I experience varying degrees of physical discomfort and pain almost all the time. If I could afford minimally decent health care, some of that might be alleviated. But I can't; the donations I receive permit me to survive on the most basic level, and nothing more. I'm grateful for that, since the alternative is worse -- although on certain days, I would consider the alternative a relief. But here's the thing: I regularly have to beg for donations simply so that I can pay next month's rent, and so that the cats and I can continue to eat. That time is here again. Very awkward, since I've just been out of commission for quite a while, but the first of the month comes around whether I can get out of bed or not.

Insert more pathetic begging here.

If I receive enough so that my very minimal expenses are covered for the next few months, I'll start the tribalism series. (If there is anyone out there nutty enough to want to give me a whole bunch of money, by which I mean anything more than a couple of hundred dollars, many thanks for your extraordinary generosity and your nuttiness, but please contact me before doing so. For various reasons that I can't detail here, large one-time donations create certain problems for me at this point.) I find it close to impossible to become immersed in a very complicated longer term project when I'm constantly overcome by anxiety about the possibility of eviction and similar unpleasant events.

Writing articles like this one or this one is comparatively easy for me now, since I've done this for several years. It's still work, but it's work I'm very familiar with. The tribalism series, and posts like the little piece the other day, are different in kind. They require a gestation period and preparation, which vary depending on the nature of the material. Given the complexity of the tribalism series, that gestation period has gone on for a few years. (The recent post took shape in my mind over about a week.) The tribalism series will consist of almost exclusively new material for me (except for some aspects of the introductory installments), and a number of identifications and connections that I've never discussed before. Under other circumstances, I'd demand a sizable advance before I wrote it, an advance of the kind associated with -- dare I say it? -- a book. Since idiots and hacks regularly get books published these days, I don't see why I shouldn't, particularly since that series might offer an original thought or two. But I won't do that, both because I doubt anyone would be interested in making such an offer -- and also because of my very undependable health. Since my work is regularly interrupted by my being unable to function at all, I couldn't in good conscience commit myself to a long-term project when I might not be able to finish it, especially when such a project would require intensive work on an almost daily basis.

However, if I have enough to get by for the next few months, I'll do my very best to post semi-regularly, say, three to four essays per week, including at least one in the tribalism series. As for whether many people will be interested in that series...well, based on the reaction to my past writing, I honestly doubt that they will. I suppose I could change that if, like certain successful bloggers, I ended every other essay by insisting that, despite everything, you must still support and vote for more and better Democrats! Yeah, that's the ticket. And I'd do it, except for the fact that I consider that to be unadulterated, often deeply dishonest shit.

In the meantime, here's some more blogging for you:

This is important! Much more important than crap like this.

This is deep! Obama represents "a fecund balance." I am in awe.

On the other hand...Indeed.

And now my blogging for today is done! I think I'll do this again tomorrow.