2015-11-12

Further Reading In The Inevitable Decline And Expiry Of My Blog

To recapitulate on a long-standing theme: I read a number of blogs, and they are all written by experts in various fields, most typically economics, philosophy, and psychology. The blogs are interesting because the information is interesting, and the authors themselves are capable of writing interesting blog posts, because they are the ones who possess the information. By contrast, I am not an expert of anything except, perhaps, putting my child to bed without a lot of fussing.

Think of it this way: When you're watching a television documentary about penguins, it's extremely interesting because you're getting that information from a team of penguin experts who know how to tell a good educational story about penguins. But then you go to the local zoo, and there's some smart-ass 5th-grader loudly explaining to her mother that penguins eat fish, mom, they catch them from under the icebergs and the dads keep the babies warm by marching in a circle all winter long, and and and... and you almost wish a penguin would hop the fence and peck the tongue right out of her mouth because you're just trying to enjoy the penguin exhibit and this little girl has to announce every fact she knows about penguins because she got a 10/10 on the penguin quiz, last year.

Or maybe it's just me. But anyway, there's a difference between hearing a bunch of penguin facts from a team of experts narrated by Ed Bagley, Jr. and hearing the same facts from someone just parroting stuff they heard elsewhere.

And to be clear: In this metaphor, I'm the eleven-year-old girl.

Well, there's no accounting for taste. Just because I like to read blogs written by experts about their chosen area of expertise doesn't meant that everyone else likes to read blogs written by experts about their areas of expertise. For example, I know a lot of people who like to read blogs about food and decorating, written by housewives who demonstrate no particular expertise in either. Maybe there's a whole contingent of people out there who like to read about, well, nonsense, written by, well, a bloviating nincompoop. If so, that contingent is in luck, for my blog lives on.

But if, on the off-chance you stumbled upon this blog as an unsuspecting victim of Google's proprietary algorithm or something, read a few sentences of the aforementioned nonsense, and thought to yourself, "What in the holy hell is this?!" then I should probably clarify that there are actual, legitimate reasons why I blog.

One is for things like reader "Draw Knob"'s recent comments on this old blog post here. I did some good, solid bloviating, someone intelligent stumbled upon it, and poof! The result is, I learned something. So getting my own thoughts out there, even (or especially) when they might be wrong, is good way to gain much-needed criticism and a pointer toward better information. This actually puts me a step or two ahead of that proverbial 5th-grader, because I'm not just looking for a pat on the back from mommy, I'm happy to learn as I go.

Another reason is because I have a terrible fear of succumbing to some diabetes-related comorbidity long before I am ready to shuffle off this mortal coil, and in particular before my child has a chance to learn anything about who I was and what I thought. In that case, each subsequent blog post is an electronic record of all the torture I would have subjected her to at the dinner table during her teenage years. If I pass before she ever gets the chance to hear me bloviate, her mother can give her the keys to Stationary Waves, and she can learn something about her old man, maybe, in the process, also learning something about herself.

That seems unlikely to me, but blogging makes me feel better about it, anyway, and that's the important part, right?