Forms and substance are like the dew on the grass, destiny like the dart of lightning -- emptied in an instant, vanished in a flash.
-- Eihei Dogen, A Universal Recommendation for Zazen
Infrequent commentaries appended to some of these dreadful blog posts, few and far between as they are, have begun resonating, somewhat indistinctly, down in the more obscure nooks and crannies of my rather threadbare psyche. There’s this slight buzzing, an almost audible vibration, right below what is presumed to be the hard surface of my conscious mind; whether the direct result of polite criticism of my unforgivably hidebound cynicism, or perhaps the unwholesome side-effects of mixing too much black coffee with allergy medication -- or if it’s something more fundamental that transcends these pathetic considerations of mere ego -- is an open question. Something strange is going on, in any case.
I don’t mind criticism, since I’ve spent the better part of my life committing plenty of offensive and/or ridiculous acts that should be criticized. What’s significant here, at the moment, are a number of ideas that have germinated in some of the more robust heaps of critical fertilizer -- as it were -- that have been gently trowled on this monument to anonymity. By the way, you all who’ve been thoughtful enough to leave comments on this blog know who you are; no disrespect whatsoever is intended by the use of the word “fertilizer” ... I just wanted that said.
The first notion, and perhaps the only one that really matters, is wondering why in the hell I, or anybody for that matter, would bother with this sort of thing. What do we hope to accomplish? Seriously. In a virtual world thoroughly dominated by a handful of bloated monstrosities, grown arrogant and dictatorial as they preen and pose on their domineering pedestals, operating like Frankenstein’s digital traffic cops to keep all us faceless nobodies in line -- well, you get the picture. We haven’t a chance; the big dudes, whether by luck or perspicacity or technical savvy, or by virtue of seeing the potential that the blogging phenomenon truly had and getting in hugely right at the start, have created a hoggy heaven for themselves. The rest of us are just the toiling millions, who are (I suppose) expected to be content with the crumbs of obscurity and anonymity dispensed so magnanimously by the Koses of the world.
So, again: why do it? There are surely as many answers to that as there are bloggers out there, madly pounding away on laptop keyboards in every coffee house and brewpub on every corner in every town and country ... I can’t speak directly for anyone but myself, of course, but my reasons probably have at least some sort of universal application, being as they are spawned from an overactive imagination and an overwhelming sense of loathing and frustration, which are common currency these days. Since there’s absolutely no hope (or really any desire) for something like “commercial” success with this thing, there’s no reason whatsoever to tailor the material to anyone’s sensibilities or expectations. It is what it is, if I may be forgiven for using one of the blandest cliches ever coined. I read and walk around and look at things; I sift and I chew and tear shit apart -- the result is, well, this blog. I realize that, at times, it would seem that I’m about to snap my cap, that the over-taught rubber band that holds my psychological equilibrium together is getting ready to break. I began this blog primarily to prevent such unhappy occurrences.
Well, before we return to our regularly scheduled program of foul-mouthed, despair-curdled iconoclastic bullshit, let me add just one thing: if the chuckleheaded human inhabitants of the earth didn’t need to have a new one torn once in awhile, there probably wouldn’t be any blogs at all.
Does any of this make sense? Anyway, thanks for the comments, my friends.