Wednesday, August 03, 2011

A quiet quinquennial

Five years ago today I started this blog. This, according to my powers of pretext detection, justifies cake.

But it’s obvious that my heart’s not been in it lately:

I don’t exactly know why the decline. Probably a whole bunch of things.

For most of these five years I’ve been expressing my opinions faster than I’ve been forming new ones, so eventually I was bound to feel I was running out of fresh things to say.

My work has been more demanding lately, leaving me less mental energy for other things. Oh, and I got a new widescreen TV with more channels than I could ever have dreamed of. My IQ drops 10 points when I’m even in the same room as it.

My main subject matter, politics, grabs me less than it used to. I’m still interested enough to read, but not usually enough to chew things over, to chase up some background info, and to write.

The biggest issue these days is how the government’s plans will affect the economy, but economic prediction is a mug’s game. And even once we’ve waited and seen what’s happened, it can damned tricky to untangle what caused what. So all most of us have are our broader views on different fiscal doctrines. And mine are not nearly as well-informed or lucid as plenty of other people’s.

More generally, the novelty of the coalition has faded and the novelty of Ed Miliband’s leadership never quite managed to arrive. I find it hard to care all that much about the supercilious progress of the Tory campaign to disguise power as necessity, or about Labour’s fitful drifting between trying to find a way to be noticed and trying to find a way to be. Balance requires that I also mention the Lib Dems here.

And then, of course, there’s the Blogger’s Ruin, luring so many of us away from the precious paragraphs we once took such earnest pride in researching and sculpting, Twitter. (That said, I’m taking this week off Twitter, so it’s possible that in a couple of days I’ll crack and post 3000 words here about Syria or something.) (I won’t.)

But I’m not quitting. I’ve noticed that bloggers who announce they’re quitting are often back, a few weeks later, as prolific as ever. Maybe I should try that? No, I can’t trick myself if I know what the trick is. So I’ll carry on, posting bits and pieces when the mood takes me. But I can’t promise my former regular readers – I’m no longer a regular writer, therefore I can’t have regular readers any more – the kind of output I once produced.

Either way, thanks for dropping by.


jams o donnell said...

Congratulations on making it to five years Tom.

I know what you mean about running out of steam. If it weren't for photos I would have little to post.

It does seem that the blogosphere is shrinking. A lot of fine bloggers have dropped out.

Robert said...

although I do not post much I enjoy having a read.... so do not give up.

Anonymous said...

Please don't give up - promise yourself annual cake every August?

Niall Smith said...

Why not make it a test match special style cake event?

We could send a cake to the PO Box of your choosing.

Anyway, I've been following this blog since you started it I think and have probably read all of the posts.

I really enjoy what you have to say mainly and, perhaps more importantly, I can wait.

snowflake5 said...

After reading your post I went to check my anniversary - and I passed five years in June 2011 and didn't even realise it.

I too have stopped posting as much. I think when you are new to it, you are full of energy and you are trying to make a difference. But then you get tired, and there are other life priorities and the posts dwindle.

I now post only when something has really worked me up - and these days that's only about once every two or three months! I tell myself I'm saving my energy, LOL.

Keep posting when you can, it's always a pleasure to read a left perspective and there arn't many of us left!