Since I started
“I’m a writer by profession and it’s totally clear to me that since I started blogging, the amount I write has increased exponentially, my daily interactions with the views of others have never been so frequent, the diversity of voices I engage with is far higher than in the pre-Internet age—and all this has helped me become more modest as a thinker, more open to error, less fixated on what I do know, and more respectful of what I don’t. If this is a deterioration in my brain, then more, please.
“The problem is finding the space and time when this engagement stops, and calm, quiet, thinking and reading of longer-form arguments, novels, essays can begin. Worse, this also needs time for the mind to transition out of an instant gratification mode to a more long-term, thoughtful calm. I find this takes at least a day of detox. Getting weekends back has helped. But if there were a way to channel the amazing insights of blogging into the longer, calmer modes of thinking … we’d be getting somewhere. I’m working on it.”― Andrew Sullivan
This is published post #1000 for me at this blog. That’s a lot of words, and that’s not even counting my chatty responses to the comments that many of you have been generous to leave here. As I thought about what to say and how to mark this milestone, I kept thinking that it’s time for someone besides me to speak. I choose you!
The quotes, of course, are my attempt to bring other voices into every post, as are the comments and even the photos from others that I began to feature here. Today’s quote is maybe the longest one I’ve published, but it captures so perfectly how I feel about blogging, though I can’t claim to be a professional writer. All of us who enjoy reading and writing face the same dilemma Sullivan describes here, the same need for balance between our online lives and our non-digital existence, the one that does not depend upon any video screen.
But for now, here we are online, and in celebration of this milestone, I thank you for making it possible. I would not have continued this blog if not for the amazing community of friends I discovered here. If you are so inclined, please leave a brief comment — or a long one, I like those even better! — and let me know you are out there. The other day in a store as I was chatting with someone standing in line with me, I realized that I really, truly have always believed (in most cases, anyway) that a stranger is only a friend I haven’t met yet. If I haven’t met you yet, I’d love to! And for those of you whom I’ve had the pleasure to meet here, once or many times, welcome back to our virtual Verandah. The weather is lovely; it’s a perfect day for an iced tea, or hot tea, or coffee or lemonade. Bring whatever snacks you like, and let’s chat. And thanks for being here!