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Thursday, 14 September 2006

Previous Post - The Report of The Working Party Blah Blah Blah...

Thanks to all those of you who responded - as we're edging towards 50,000 (yes, that's 50,000) visits, I think it's a reasonable guess that as many of you refrained from commenting, as did so - fair enough - but I thought as there were so many (unusually) on topic comments, I'd post a few of them up here and respond in post, if that's OK. I can remove anything the authors don't want to be put up for greater scrutiny by my global audience (...I'm laughing as I type that, I hope you all realise...)

So, Spinny wrote:

So what you're saying is that Real Life is just decoration, while our blogging personas are the *real* us?

It was a bad metaphor really Spin - just didn't want to go all Hemingway and use the iceberg one. But I think we all do have aspects to our lives that are more suited to the written word than to normal conversation. Anyone who's had the misfortune to meet or speak to me in "real life" will be able to tell you that I am nowhere near as eloquent in the saloon bar as I am here - so that's *really* not very eloquent at all. Some people save the cherry til last - others savour the filling - some like the icing, perhaps - at the risk of extending a very bad metaphor into an even worse one. Bring back David Lodge's Metonyms, I say...

JDA writted:

I faithfully check the mailbox daily! how sad is that?

Not nearly as sad as checking your people counter every half an hour, I'd say.....

....which some people do, apparently...

Molly lilted:

Bobster...sometimes we seek this place as an outlet. Sometimes we seek it as a place to rejoice. Sometimes we come here when we are sad, sometimes happy and dancing.

I wondered what all the racket was...

{Minion} {notice how I always put the fancy parenthesis in as a mark opf respect to the great one..??):

anyway blogs/internet to me is loads more fun that [sic]* the facking tv.

Yes, and I think that - without getting too socio-political - that is an important aspect to the phenomenon. In "the good old days" we could (e.g.) all meet up in a pub with our mates and chat about last night's telly etc. That was where our human contact and community resided. Things are a lot more fractured now, we work weirder hours, there's more *stuff* than ever to wade through, so perhaps we find our kindred spirits through this random blog world of ours. I know I've come across people I would have got on really well with in the era of my youth - possibly even to the point of incredibly debauched bonkery involving a variety of see-through lingerie items. But I shouldn't give away too may of Istvanski's secrets now, should I?

Betty writes:

Blogging is like *real life* magnified to the power of ten. If you come to blogging hoping to escape real life problems, then you've got the wrong attitude. Rather like those people who move away from home to start a "new life" your old problems will only resurface in your new home. Heh heh.

Yes, I think it is a bit of a goldfish bowl and it's like real life to the power of ten only without the nuances that can stop a deadpan comment sounding like a jibe.


I think blogging makes a lot of sense for people who have something to sell or some specific agenda. For me it's just a pastime, a place to unload some thoughts, sometimes fun, sometimes a drag. I think it's a bad idea to take it too seriously.

I think it *is* important that when something like the blog world comes up there are people who use it for more human, communicative, gentler ends than making a few bob. I'd love, obviously, to be noticed as a writer or comedienne or whatever and to be paid to do something like what I do here (yeah, right!) but I would never change the way this blog works because the whole reason for doing it is that I know I have attracted a few people here who seem to like my stuff for what it is (and because, I assume) they don't feel they are being scammed. Maybe I just make them laugh sometimes - I dunno. But I prefer the sound of free laughter, is all. I think the culture *needs* a spot of altruism here and there, don't you?

Ister the Twister the hasta la vista writted:'re saying that we're all schitzos now, are we Bob?

Yes. And you can both fuck off...

(That's an old gag, but I knew you'd love it Ist - I don't really want you to fuck off at all)

Geoffster saided:

I've had enough socialising for a lifetime and I get more of a laugh blogging than being in a pub full of fucking and cunting locals.

Sorry, but how could I not put swearing *that* good up for the general public, eh?


I just use my blog to unload, really is my 'virtual' diary. Here I can be whoever I want to be and maybe I'm more real here than I'm 'allowed' to be in real life and quite frankly I often prefer here to real life...

All of which suggests that there *is* something a bit more than a virtual diary going on. The "being whoever [one] wants to be" part implies an element of fantasy rather than straightforward journal keeping. I certainly relish the freedom of it - being and saying whatever you want. We need, I think, to test all these meally mouthed concepts (freedom, liberty, democracy) that are being tossed at us while our real freedom and liberty is being eroded daily. It's a small rebellion - but a necessary one, I feel. And fun. At this point, I think Mollster would urge me to put in a good word for Billy. He's a smashing cove Jools. That's all I'm saying...

dh again:

I like this introspective stuff (in moderation of course) and Robert gives good blog.

[...well, I don't often get much praise, do I?...]

Billy (you know, the lovely cove...):

...but what is interesting is that this exaggeration affects me in real life, which then affects my blogging person.

And so the cycle continues.

Yes, I think one's "real-life" self can be broadened by the contact on here - sure. I've really opened up emotionally doing this (and especially the Bobcasts - plug there...) I can access a lot of stuff readily that I used to "bottle". And I think the blog's changed because of that, perhaps.

Ro-Mo drivelled on for an hour** then said:

...but what DOES amaze me about the little circles of bloggers that tend to congregate around certain sites like this one for example is the rapport even though I haven't got a clue what any of you look like.

Yes, there is a rapport, isn't there? Or is it just us who think that? I do feel enormous fondnedd for anyone who comes here and leaves a note. I can't think of many who still visit that have been anything other than encouraging, generous and constructive. Ta for that.

Leighton Cooke dayeth:

I prefer to see bloggers as an anarchic pool of dissenters like the ranters.

That's a lovely thought Leighton - and if I knew as much as I shouyld about the dissenting tradition, I'd probably agree with you. Ignorance, unfortunately, prevails. We certainly get our fair share of ranters, mind...

realdoc proscribeth:

I feel you can be more honest with blogging than in real life because ultimately it doesn't matter what your virtual pals think of you but I find it refreshing that so many people are just really nice and supportive and interesting. Restores your faith in human nature a bit.

A nice note to end on, I think.

Thanks all - your all "tops in your bag"!!

* Sorry, I shouldn't be pedantic after misusing the word queue recently, but I can't help meself...

**I'm only joking Ro!

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  1. Fondnedd? Bob - you should be ashamed of yousnelf for such bad teepign!

    By the way (no I refuse to abbreviate to btw - makes me want to vomit) Romo For Real No 5 is up and running.

    Womo xx (as Jonathan Ross says when he's whispering in my ear on an evening).

  2. Fondnedd? Bob - you should be ashamed of yousnelf for such bad teepign!

    By the way (no I refuse to abbreviate to btw - makes me want to vomit) Romo For Real No 5 is up and running.

    Womo xx (as Jonathan Ross says when he's whispering in my ear on an evening).

  3. Interesting and pertinant quote today in the guardian from Susan Sontag about her journal.
    'In the journal I do not just express myself more openly than I could to any person; I create myself.'

  4. *mutters while wandering off*
    *mumble* picking on me *mumble mumble*
    *Mutter* posted disclaimer after *mumble mutter*

    *exit page next*

  5. Sorry just noted another Sontag quote
    'it does not simply record my actual, daily life but rather- in many cases- offers an alternative to it'

  6. All of those comments together make up rather a lovely little montage.

    I think they show that all of the different ways people use the space.

    Like you, I feel fondness for the people who visit me. The voices are all so different and distinctive. So unique. And it does restore your faith in humanity doesn't it?

  7. "a smashing cove"

    Makes me sound like some seaside feature, I'd rather be a pier. Or a cliff.

  8. Yes it really does. What exactly is a 'smashing cove" apart from like Billy said 'a seaside feature' with big waves crashing at it?

  9. "What exactly is a 'smashing cove"?

    Honestly, I despair sometimes...

    Does *no one* read P.G. Woodhouse [sic]???

    In joke there between me and a fellow blogger in the Twickenham area....

    realdoc. Susan Sontag? I *well* would....

    Ro-Mo: Leave the blue pencil to Spinny. You trying to tell me you've never heard of the old Anglo-Saxon term fondnedd???? And you an Eng-Lit major.....

    Billy: "I'd rather be a pier. Or a cliff. "
    request for the next Billcast: Move it. Or Wonderful Land, at a pinch...Basically, anything produced by Norrie "Nowwie" Paramor....

    {Min}: Come on mate - I just "bigged you up"- as I believe the common parlance has it...

    Mollster: Yes, "footfalls echo dahn the hall" as Tommy no mates would no doubt have gabbed it...

  10. Bob - went mad and stayed up and did another poohcast - you get a nice dedic on no-6 - mind you I think I dedicate one to you each pod anyway don't I? Tara chuck.x

  11. I enjoyed reading all those comments. Although i'm not a prolific blogger I don't think I could stop blogging now iv'e started.

  12. yes, it's addictive isn't it bb? I think I'll post up the comments instead of my usual rubbish in future - much more entertaining..

    Who have you got this weekend? My lot will be getting the annual drubbing uip at Old Trafford on Sunday, so don't be alarmed if I'm a little subdued next week...

  13. All of which suggests that there *is* something a bit more than a virtual diary going on. The "being whoever [one] wants to be" part implies an element of fantasy rather than straightforward journal keeping.

    I really am more real here than I am in my 'proper' life. The be whoever I want to be is not the fantasy bit but the fact I have no constraints so I can relax and just be me, whoever that may be at any point in time. I do just keep a journal but of course we all do 'edit'. I mean does everyone really want to know the minutiae of my life, of course not, so we all I would imagine portray elements of ourselves, those we feel others may find interesting,thoughful,amusing?