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Not-a-Blog-ing

I've often told friends and correspondents that I am not a blogger. I am a writer and an editor who happens to blog occasionally. Even the name of this blog was born of a belief that it was "Not A Blog," though it has quite clearly evolved into one. It was for that reason that I altered the name of the blog subtly, some time ago, closing the spaces in its title and proclaiming it "Notablog."

I know there are many bloggers out there who comment on the events of the day ... sometimes on the events of the hour ... quite regularly. But I must admit that this sort of thing never truly interested me. How many times can I fulminate over this or that trend in domestic politics or foreign policy? How many times can I express my disgust with the Bush administration, while having equal animosity toward its Democratic "opponents"? How many times can I repeat the mantra that cultural change is a precursor to fundamental political change and that, for example, when you embrace democracy without certain cultural preconditions, you get majoritarian results in the Middle East that empower and legitimize theocratic, fundamentalist, and/or militant forces?

And so on, and so on ...

Though I don't post daily discussions on fiery political topics and substantive philosophical and ideological issues, I just don't see the usefulness of repeating myself over and over and over again about the same stuff day-in, day-out. And if I did, I'd get no other work done!

So, in its place, you get a "Song of the Day," that has run daily since September 1, 2004, except when I dimmed the lights for three days after my dog Blondie's passing. Yeah, you still get my thoughts on radical politics and my occasional fulminations, you still get articles and announcements, but, to paraphrase Emma Goldman: If I can't dance or sing, I want no part of the revolution.

Though I love engagement and participating in dialogue, I am curiously autocratic where my "Songs of the Day" are concerned: I continue the policy of closing those selections to all discussion because my choices are not up for debate. Yes, I can enjoy discussing the historical background of a song and the virtues or vices of a particular rendition, or even a particular artist or composer, and I do welcome private notes from Notablog readers on such topics. But I think it would be terribly counterproductive and awfully time-consuming to engage in a constant public reaffirmation of my musical tastes, which are quite eclectic, as Notablog readers regularly note. (They match my intellectual tastes, which are equally eclectic, since I've learned from the left, right, and center...) So, if you don't like my songs, or a particular song, fine. Get your own blog and make your own list! :)

In the meanwhile, if you don't see any non-Song entry posted on a given day, be sure to check out the lively comments pages. For example, the discussion of "Brokeback Mountain" continues, and should pick up steam as we enter Oscar season. I welcome additional comments on this and on any other subject open to reader input.

I should also state that I get lots of private email and I do answer every letter I receive. It may take me time, but I get to every note. And many of those emails are worthy of longer blog posts. But I treat private correspondence as personal, and unless I ask permission, readers won't see their private thoughts on public display here.

Occasionally, however, I get an email whose topic might benefit readers more generally. I hope to publish a few of these correspondences soon enough, including one later today on Rand studies.

So, for now, I just want to thank all of you for your loyal readership and your continuing personal support.

Comments welcome.

Comments

Sorry, Chris, but you _are_ a blogger. A web site with dated entries (as opposed to static sites such as your "favorite things") is a blog, and you have one, which makes you a blogger! And you don't need to apologize for the frequency of your posts, nor for your comments policy. You're doing us a favor by writing anything at all, and no one is forced to look at your blog.

Is it truly a blog? I'd rather think of it as a public music diary with occassional add-ons (totally free, but still high in quality). But hey, that's just one opinion :)

Oh, and btw, I really appreciate the idea of your musical hints, because they again widened my own musical horizon to some really wonderful jazzy pieces from long before I was born :)

Since I am still in my twenties, I have been born with hip-hop, techno pop and punk rock, but never experienced the era of 70/80's Funk and Disco and earlier.
So, to me, the music alone was a win-win situation :)

Hey, Aeon, Max, thanks for your comments. Admittedly, all those music entries sure do make it appear as if this is a music diary. Not a bad hobby, I think. :)

Aeon, thanks for the vote of confidence. I do get so many requests for my views on this or that, and many requests to post more frequently on political topics, and also many requests to open up my songs to discussion. I just wanted to write a general comment for the blog, addressing myself to these many requests. Now, instead of answering each request, I can just point people to this link. :)

I appreciate the sentiment, of course; and, of course, you are a blogger too! L&P is a better place for it! (And Notablog is always a better place when you comment here...)

As for "My Favorite Things": You're right, it does not have any dated entries. But, damn, I really must update it! It's Version 2.0 as of now; but Version 3.0 is calling me. :) Well, at least, Version 2.5 ... just to update a few links.

In any event, I do like your concluding thought very much: "You're doing us a favor by writing anything at all, and no one is forced to look at your blog."

Thanks!

Cheers,
Chris