Want to help with this week’s 508 show? Make a short video (3 seconds to 3 minutes) that has to do with Worcester, Christmas, the holidays, or whatever is preoccupying you this week. Send it to me. I’ll edit the ones that go best together into a show, and link to the rest.
The video will be posted to the net and cablecast on WCCA TV13.
Shaun Sutner, investigative reporter for the local paper, tells me there’ll be an article about local blogs on Thursday*.
This got me thinking about this blog, and about why I write here so rarely these days.
Some of my blogging energy has gone into 508 and my Facebook account. It’s like Cory Doctorow says: “. . . Twitter is siphoning off all the stuff we used to put on blogs that really wanted to be a tweet.”
Mostly, though, it has to do with lifestyle. There have been times in my life when I was doing things, and learning things, that I wanted to share with the world, whether to brag or to help people or to help accelerate those things through publicity. For some time now, and certainly since I returned from DC, life has been a little quieter, with much lower-profile “doing” (with the exception of hosting a TV show), and with “thinking” that’s more focused on the roots of things than the day-to-day news.
I’ve always wanted the entries on this blog to reflect the lives of those who write them, and in my case that seems to have happened. I think it’s a good thing.
This reminds me of the question I’ve heard a couple times this month: “Who will replace Jeff Barnard?” If “Jeff Barnard” was a job description, and Wormtown Taxi the result of someone’s plan, maybe the question would make some sense. But it doesn’t.
Update: Talked to Shaun on the record this morning.
I think when people ask “Who will replace Jeff?” they mean “Who will be the influential, prolific online critic of the Telegram and City government?” It’s those three factors, influential + prolific + critical, that define Jeff in these people’s minds.
I wish I could ask Jeff, “When did you become influential?” Because I think even Jeff Barnard didn’t become “Jeff Barnard” by this definition until he’d been blogging a good long while.
(* Note: Didn’t run on Thursday.)
The New York Times Magazine interviewed Garry Wills:
You’re an observant Catholic. What are your thoughts these days about Pope Benedict XVI?
I think he’s irrelevant.
Irrelevant to what?
To religion; to the Gospel.
As it happens, this Advent I’ve been trying to listen to the audiobook of the Pope’s Jesus of Nazareth while reading Fr. Raymond Brown’s Birth of the Messiah. The Pope begins with Jesus at 30, so there’s not a lot of overlap, but every time he dips back into the “infancy narratives,” I experience a surprisingly distracting cognitive dissonance.
There was a time when I’d read James Ellroy and Tom Swift books at the same time, switching back-and-forth at the end of each chapter. It could trick my brain into finding bitter humor within Chow’s latest slapstick, or leave me totally unprepared for an Ellroy character’s double-cross. Not sure I’m getting any of those benefits with my Advent reading. It’s just making it harder to stay with it.