Sunny Days in Heaven
Spiritual/Political/Philosophical Blog on the Nature of Truth and Falsehood and Heaven

Monday, February 21, 2005  

Speaking of Love

All right, I'm going to now (?) sound like a first class jerk in the business of casting stones, but does it strike anyone else as a little bit compulsive when people are so driven to blog that even when loved ones are in dire circumstances in the hospital, the show must go on?

I don't just refer to Glenn Reynolds whose wife is recovering from heart surgery. There are others, too.

I caught a clip of Glenn on Charlie Rose. When asked how much time he spends before the computer and answered he spent all his (free) time glued to the screen.

I realize that blogging is a good income stream for him and a source of fame and respect, but he has a good income from teaching. I blog because I haven't got a life, my daughter is grown, and my marriage is pretty routine - and even then I don't even try to equal the output of the Instaman although I have more than enough time to do so.

I think blogging, in many respects, is an antidote to loneliness. Not in the sense of desperate longing for someone to be with or talk to, but in a more social sense that it is the only way to have conversations with our neighbors which we once used to enjoy on front porches, at church picnics and dinners, at the Elks' Club or in bars and taverns.

I once used to have dinner parties for my church friends and then we'd have a little show afterwards where I'd read a story, make some music; but I gave it up because my friends didn't seem to care that much.

They would marvel at how unusual the event was in this day and age, and that the food and entertainment was great, but they never came up afterwards and said, "I can't wait to do this again."

And I must say that the conversation at dinner was not what I hoped for - completely ordinary chit chat.

The problem, I believe, is that having to engage each other in the manner I presented was much more taxing than watching a movie or TV. The TV or theater screen doesn't ask for a response or challenge one to contribute, participate, entertain, or be interesting (and interested).

And so I gave up entertaining at home even though I enjoy cooking for others and performing for them. I have lots of fine material I would have liked sharing, but since it didn’t seem to matter much to them whether I did or not, why go to all the expense and trouble?

For example, I have composed about 50 brief piano interludes which are quite good, and I would have hired a good pianist to play them for a small group after dinner except that I don’t think I could find enough people who really love music enough to care if they heard something good or not.

Let me put it this way, I don’t think I could find ten people among all those I’ve met in my life who would care if I had Glenn Gould play Bach at my house after dinner.

So where am I going to find people who would care? Maybe online. And that’s what I think all those millions of other bloggers are hoping for, too.

Yet, I think it’s more than just a search for like minded people with common interests, although that is probably the bulk of it. It is also wanting to have a voice in one’s country.

Anyway, I pray that Glenn’s wife and mother do well and Captain’s Quarter, Ed’s wife will be well, but I do offer than a mild admonishment - forget the blog for awhile and just be with your loved ones.

posted by Mark Butterworth | 11:26 AM |