Saturday, 12 March 2011

A pub bore apologises, a pretty picture (well, strictly speaking two) and a complaint

This blog has been going through something of an minor existential crisis these past few days. I mean: what is it? It started out as just another, digital way of keeping a diary/commonplace book and was that for some time. It still is that to a certain extent, but more recently it has done nothing by resemble a rather corpulent gent in late middle age and no longer quite sober (‘sobre’ for my American readers - the first rule of blogging is ‘don’t confuse your reader’) leaning against the bar and delivering a series of platitudes and threadbare observations. And to be honest, I can’t as yet see a way around that. Added to that was my growing addiction to the ‘stats’. Every day I would look at the ‘stats’ to see how many people had readmy blog, what entries they were interested in and what actually brought them to the blog. (Mandy Rice-Davies knocks them into a cocked hat, incidentally. The number of visitors who have found there way here because they were looking for more information on Many or, more likely, wanted to see a picture of her in her heyday, is quite startling. So here it is again.) It then got to the point where I was beginning to feel obliged to make an entry. At the back of my head was the niggling thought ‘they’ll be visiting today to see what else I have to say about the world and its foibles’. Well, how stupid is that? There are many ways of describing ‘a fool’, and most certainly one very good way would be ‘the kind of man or woman who takes themselves seriously’, and I can’t deny that I crossed that line recently, or even not so recently. So from here on in, I shall try to bear that in mind.

. . .

On loyal reader (who in his way sparked off the above confession) has alerted me to another blog. I visited it and came across this picture, which I have nicked. It reminds me of a young Evelyn Waugh. Oh, and if you were tuning in here to read all about the horrible earthquake in Japan or the West’s dilemma over ‘what to do about Libya’ (makes it sound like parents wringing their hands over their youngest son who they know is a spendthrift, promiscuous, gay and an alcoholic, but who cannot yet admit it to themselves), fuck off and watch it on TV. I’m in a bad mood. You won’t get any more platitudes here for at least another two days.

. . .

One of the more infuriating aspects of the internet is that however useful it can be, it is not always useful. Time and again while trying to track down something - a service, a product or, as now, a list of railway stations in Italy so that I can find out trains serve which towns around Lake Garda - you are merely directed from one long list of websites to another long list of websites, and from there, blow me, to another long list of bloody websites, without actually being directed to one which can give you the information you want. They say it’s better to travel hopefully than to arrive, but ‘they’ were probably not trying to find out about railway stations serving the various towns around Lake Garda.

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