Sunday, December 16, 2007

Wow, I’ve neglected this for a while. I still seem to be getting traffic, though, and not just from my wife, so I might as well put something up. I’ve thought about dozens of things to write in the last few months – actually sitting down to do it has been the problem. I’ve been intending to review the comics I pick up, so maybe I’ll start that with the next run. I’ve thought about doing books, but I don’t really read anything new, so it often feels like the discourse is over by the time I get to something (I could leap into the whole Golden Compass fray, but that’s so overblown on all fronts that it’d just be tiresome). When it comes to more personal things, well, I dunno. That’s more of what I started out with, but when I do that it’s something that I have to phrase just perfectly. I care more about the nuance of such posts, so I can’t just sit down and bang one out for all to see. How I say something is just as important as what I’m trying to say. I’d like to do some skeptical blogging, but I don’t have a lot of time to devote to it. Besides, with established pros like Bronze Dog and the Two-Percent Company out there, I don’t feel I have a lot to add, especially as it seems they have more time. I could blog on some gaming items – reviews of my esoteric collection. While that has been overdone elsewhere, that’s one thing where a fresh perspective is often welcome.

I really started this thing to help me practice my writing, in pursuit of actually doing some on a serious level. I’ve got dozens of story hooks and ideas bouncing around my head; unfortunately, I’ve always been a stronger rhetorical essayist than storyteller. I can make an inflamed, well-backed article to rival Chris Hitchens; ask me to tell the story of a man and his dog, and I’ll scratch my head for a while. Oddly enough, my talent as a skilled bullshitter translates better into the nonfiction realm than into an engaging fiction. One exception is my magnum opus of fast-talk tall tales, the “West Virginia Snow Snake”. I’ve been developing that one for more than a decade, and can go on at length about this rare and deadly breed of winter-adapted reptile. I once had a supervisor in the process of canceling her ski reservations before I let on that it was just a story. Maybe I’ll put it down in print sometime, but I really think that the telling sells it as much as the myriad of “facts” that some online goober will inevitably google to “prove me wrong” about my own damn bullshit story. With things like that, someone always misses the point. Not that I wouldn’t like to see it picked up as a meme (someone had to be the first with the “Pirates vs. Ninjas" crap), but snakes were done to death last year.

Maybe I’ll expound more later. I’ve got an essay starting in my head about the themes of absence and/or bitter domesticality of mothers in the comic Bloom County. It’s a rather obvious thing, if you take the time to notice, and Breathed, being a Pulitzer winner, is a valid target for deep examination, even a quarter-century after his heyday.