Sunday, August 02, 2009

and in your soul, they've poked a million holes

How have you and your blog been getting along lately? Are you still getting that rush that you used to jolt you when you first started your relationship? Have you settled into a comfortable but mundane partnership? Or have you (gasp) been flirting with younger, sexier social media?

I've always subscribed to the notion that a blog needs to be tended, needs to have regular attention, needs to be pruned and tweaked here and there, needs a well balanced diet to flourish. And I have been a rather poor partner in my relationship with my blog lately.

It started off innocently enough, miss a day of posting here and there, miss day of visiting other blogs now and then. And then when the world didn't end, it became easier and easier to leave the blog wilting in a cramped pot of parched soil for longer periods, only to return with a vengeance, all remorseful, and cram it with daily massive tomes that anyone but the most hardy of masochists would find too long to read. Seriously, if that last bout of folk festival posts don't belong in the TLDR category, I am sure I don't know what does.

Of course I can justify all this. It's always easy to justify something, isn't it? Travel, events, life, they are all excellent excuses to both neglect the poor maligned blog and alternatively to smother it with content.

Fresh start time. Like that pile of unread newspapers that I have finally decided is no longer news and which I will now put directly into the recycling bucket instead of making futile
attempts to catch up, I will let go of those half-formed blog posts that have been purcolating inside my skull. They are only fit for wrapping fish in at this point.

But if you thought I was announcing the demise of this blog, sorry, you can't get rid of me and my blatherings that easily. You just get a reprieve from the last month or so of reading every thought that I have ever had.

Except for this -
Top Five Good Songs that are the Wrong Length:

Rise - PiL (too long)
Black Sheep Boy - Tim Hardin (too short)
All My Little Words - Magnetic Fields (too short)
Oh Comely - Neutral Milk Hotel (too long)
Drive on Driver - Magnetic Fields (too short)
In my humble opinion only, of course.
What songs do you think fit into this list?


Joe said...

Great post!

I've noticed that there seems to be a wave of changing bloggery in the past few months. Some of it is attributed to Facebook and Twitter, sure, but some of it is just the passage of time I guess.

Remi said...

That's the strange thing about the Magnetic Fields - Merritt crafts short pop songs because that is what pop songs should ideally be - short trifles. Unfortunately, he does them so well that you want them to go on and on.

Wandering Coyote said...

I am always flirting with younger, sexier social media. Current obsession: Man, best $3 I ever spent.

Charlie said...

Unfortunately, blogging is losing out to Facebook and Twitter, the latter of which I've never figured out.

I think, sadly, that it's a trend of the times. People don't want to think or talk, so they twit and text message instead.

But those too will fade, and we'll be back to cave drawings. Except I can't draw worth a crap.

mister anchovy said...

Although I have days and even weeks when I don't blog a lot, I've enjoyed looking after the creature more than ever lately. I think about things like the rhythm of the blog, the balance of content, the length of posts and so on. I like it to evolve with time, and when I look back a couple years, I can see that happening.

I'm still not sure why anybody else goes there though, what with the cheesy accordion videos and rants on municipal politics, but I'm fascinated that some folks keep coming back for more punishment.

Barbara Bruederlin said...

I think summer is to blame for some of it as well, Bubs. For some reason, people would rather go camping or something.

Oh you are absolutely right, Remi! I find I need to replay Magnetic Fields again and again just to be satisfied. The man is an evil genius!

That must explain your absence from BLIP, Wandering Coyote. You shameless flirt!

I'm sure your cave drawing will have a delighted naive simplicity tinged with an irreverence that will make them worth millions, Charlie. I don't get Twitter either. You can't even play songs!

I always appreciate the length of your posts, Mr Anchovy. They are not too hot, not too cold, just right. You evidently put a lot of care into them, despite the accordion videos (which have their own charm).

Allison said...

I'm having a love/hate relationship with my blog at the moment. I have lots to say, but it seems there are few there to read I'm painting and taking pictures instead. Also its the nature of summer, things are slower.

I want 'A New England' by Billy Bragg to be longer. Two mins is not enough. :)

Barbara Bruederlin said...

Good choice, Al. Although I have to admit that A New England feels rather complete to me at that length.
Painting and photography are excellent uses of your slower blogging season time. It's such an intensely visual time of year that the shift from words to images seems very natural.

kelly said...

It would get tough for me to do much less than I do now, blogwise I mean. But you have been prolific, always amazed how you could type so much

Mariella said...

I'm Afraid of Japan I - Final Fantasy (too short)

See, that whole updating lapse thing is why I keep expectation low to begin with...WHYH has NEVER been a regularly updated blog. XD It's something of a running gag, actually. *grins*

By the Way, Final Fantasy is back on Sept 28th @ Knox United Church, if you didn't know...I'm leaving for Lolla in two days, but I'll be there and at Dinosaur Jr. in November! XDDDDD

Sean Wraight said...

So many interesting points in the post Barb... First, I agree that our beloved blogs do indeed require said pruning, love, fertilizer and in my case the occasional prescribed burn. You are correct too that they do suffer neglect in the summertime. Maybe that's a good thing though. Allowing us time to reconnect with families, friends and even ourselves to a certain extent. I think in some ways its those connections which suffice to form the very content of our writing and is therefore almost necessary.

So those younger, sexy summer romances that are Twitter and Facebook are what they are. We know we'll be back in the Fall perhaps a little more informed back to the more serious business that our blogging can be. A season of memories to inspire us through the darker months.

And lastly, yes... The Magnetic Fields are far too short as is every Guided by Voices song I have ever loved. Ah yes, and the Mountain Goats, songs as fleeting as summer.

Good God I'm getting sentimental.
It must be August.


Barbara Bruederlin said...

always amazed how you could type so much - I concur with the meaning I read hidden between your words, Kelly - it's not thinking, it's typing!

Nice choice, Mariella! Hmm, yes, I have noticed a dearth of postings on your blog, tsk tsk. Nonetheless, have a fantastic time at Lollapalooza! I would love to hear all about it at your return.
Still trying to see how I can possibly make it to see Final Fantasy at Knox United (I love that venue!), especially since he is bringing Timber Timbre with him! Argh! Life!

Of course you are right, Sean, and once again not only giving me justification to go out and have fun instead of writing, but pointing out that it is crucial to the very act of writing itself. No one writes in a vacuum, else all they would write about would be the vacuum.
I am starting to believe that the key to writing a really great song is to make it too short, leave them wanting more, as it were. Like summer. Now you've got me all wistful for a summer that's not even over yet, must be the rain.

bloody awful poetry said...

Being young and sexy myself, I admit that flirtation with young, sexy social media is inevitable. But I am pretty terrible at maintaining a proper blog; I post myabe twice or three times a month for a stretch, and then I go mad and post 12 or 13 times. It must be deeply traumatizing for my poor blog. Especially how looong most posts are.

As for song lengths, I must say that Devotchka's "How It Ends" is far too short a song. It could easily go on for another 7 minutes, no? And I say this because that song is where you got your post title from. Do I get a prize?

Gifted Typist said...

Yes, it does seem that blogging is dropping off. I've been taking some vacation and haven't had time for writing /visiting as much - other years I always made the time .. but I still come here ;)

Evelyne said...

Haven't blog in a while, maybe because it's the summer, but that would not be a valid excuse for me! Busier? Maybe? Easier to just post pictures and status on Facebook... But for the last few days I've been wanting to write something, so maybe that my blog will have a new life.

Anonymous said...

I think that Oh Comely's length and content make it an experience at a level above the standard song.

I think Crutch by Pinback is far, far too long and Paranoid Android dithers about in the "rain down" section far longer than could be deemed neccesary. Remmidemmi by Deichkind could be longer, and digress a little more and so could Holland, 1945.

well. that's what I think.

kelly said...

there was no hidden meaning, honestly. the typing directly corresponds to thinking...i think

Barbara Bruederlin said...

You subscribe to the time honoured feast or famine method of blogging, do you, BAP?
And oh yes, you get the greatest prize of all for ID those lyrics, my undying admiration. Nations have gone to war over less. (and yes, How it Ends will always be too short)

I am so grateful that you still come here, when you could be off having fun, Gifted. Do I still leave that money in the sames spot?

It's the fault of those damn pictures that are convinced that they are worth a thousand words, Evelyne. Good to have you back, though.

Spoken like the only worthy Neutral Milk Hotel in the room, Nick. I should be ashamed of myself, really.
I really like the "rain down" part of Paranoid Android, it could go one longer as far as I am concerned. But yes, Holland 1945 is far too short.

It sort of freaks me out when you try to be nice, Kelly, I have to tell you.

kelly said...

yeah....I'll have to watch myself

Gifted Typist said...

yes, just leave that money where you've always left it and i'll be back ;)

Johnny Yen said...

And you didn't think you'd get rid of your readers so easily, did you? Yep, didn't think so.

Barbara Bruederlin said...

I appreciate the effort to maintain normality, Kelly.

We'll just stay the course then, shall we, Gifted?

The good ones always come back eventually, Johnny Yen.

Johnny Yen said...

I too found myself slacking in the blog department too. It wasn't just the fault of Facebook; my summer school class was enjoyable, but grueling, and I trying to finish the final arrangements to start nursing school in a couple of weeks.

A lot of Tim Hardin's songs were curiously short. He was a late-life discovery. Every time I hear someone else's cover of "Reason To Believe" it makes me rush to my laptop to play the original.

Barbara Bruederlin said...

You at least have a very legitimate reason to be non-blogging, Johnny Yen, probably the best there is.
It's so true about Tim Hardin, he's a late discovery for me as well. One of those where you must ask yourself where the hell you have been?