A few weeks ago Kottke pointed to some people rediscovering the fun of just blogging.
Back then, we’d had a ton of stupid fun linking to each other’s blog posts for no other reason than that they existed and that it amused us greatly. Who wouldn’t want back in on that?
[…] But this is not primarily a promotional undertaking, because that would suck. I’ll also blog about restaurants, travel, the South Street Seaport, the great city of Charleston, the great state of Maine, ephemera, nonsense, whatever. My hope is to relearn the practice of daily blogging, which used to be the most effortless thing in the world for me but now feels terrifying.
When I was a kid, seven or eight years old or thereabouts, I used to make copious lists of things I liked and didn’t like. I don’t remember why. I think some of it was about asserting identity and defining myself by those likes and dislikes. I remembered it a few months ago when I was skimming Susan Sontag’s notebooks and found an entry from February of 1977 where she did exactly the same thing as an adult. A sample:
Things I like: ivory, sweaters, architectural drawings, urinating, pizza (the Roman bread), staying in hotels, paper clips, the color blue, leather belts, making lists, Wagon-Lits, paying bills, caves, watching ice-skating, asking questions, taking taxis, Benin art, green apples, office furniture, Jews, eucalyptus trees, pen knives, aphorisms, hands.
Things I dislike: Television, baked beans, hirsute men, paperback books, standing, card games, dirty or disorderly apartments, flat pillows, being in the sun, Ezra Pound, freckles, violence in movies, having drops put in my eyes, meatloaf, painted nails, suicide, licking envelopes, ketchup, traversins [“bolsters”], nose drops, Coca-Cola, alcoholics, taking photographs.
Sontag would have been about 44 when she wrote that. (I too like the color blue and dislike baked beans, but I had to Google to find out what a traversin is, and I must confess: I am ambivalent.)
Since reading that, I’ve been mentally composing lists of things I like and dislike. I should write them down.
And (via) to Fred Wilson:
There is something about the personal blog, yourname.com, where you control everything and get to do whatever the hell pleases you. There is something about linking to one of those blogs and then saying something. It’s like having a conversation in public with each other. This is how blogging was in the early days. And this is how blogging is today, if you want it to be.
When I started blogging here at AVC, I would write about everything and anything. Then, slowly but surely, it became all about tech and startups and VC. It is still pretty much that way, but I feel like I’m heading back a bit to the personal blog where I can talk about anything that I care about.