Monday, April 10, 2006

Nepal

All hell has broken loose in Nepal. People are being killed left right and center. It breaks my heart.

I’ve been to Nepal twice and both times I was impressed by the generosity, helpfulness and just plain “niceness” of the people there. And now this.

Now you have the king on one side who has come to the decision that, opposition be damned, he’s the king and what he wants goes. On the other side you have the opposition and Maoists who have joined forces. Admittedly, this is a very simplified version of what's going on. Nevertheless, the whole country is on strike, there are demonstrations, tear gas bombs and, of course, the deaths of innocent protesters.

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I haven’t really had the time, inspiration or inclination to blog recently. This morning, reading Danny Gregory's blog I got to thinking/wondering about why I do this. It used to be that journaling was basically something one did for oneself. You either eventually destroyed the journals, or some descendent pulled them out on a boring rainy day (thank god I didn’t reproduce, it would simply have made a boring day that much more boring in my case).

Blogging is different. Blogging is putting yourself out there to the whole of cyberspace. Question is why? Navel gazing? The feeling that your little life is interesting enough to publish? In this era of stupid memoirs à la “A Million Little Pieces”* and show-all reality TV (i.e. people eating each other’s tonsils and more on the latest Quebec RTV show Loft Story), what pushes us to “publish” our day to day minutiae on the web? What makes us think that this stuff is actually interesting?

For my part, I don’t really know. I know my brother and sister and a couple of other people read this. I know there are several bloggers I read daily, and mostly I love the minutiae of their lives, to the point that I am disappointed when they disappear for a while. (Aside: To all you people who live in my computer** – I need my fix dammit! Entertain me!)

As Gregory says:
“Our culture has also become increasingly about individual achievement: the star athlete, the maverick CEO, the non-aligned President, etc. Despite a brief window of collective focus after 9/11, it’s not about community any more; instead it’s about self-absorption.”

It’s about self absorption… In that light blogging seems a bit, well, tawdry (I never thought I’d manage to use that word in a post!).

One thing I have noticed since I started this: I take more notice of what's happening around me, of overheard conversations, of things I see etc. I seem to be more interested in the world in general – which never happened when I simply journaled, probably because my written journal is really all about me and my whiney little self (again, a good argument against reproduction in my case). Often as I walk down the street I end up seeing something that prompts me to write an entry in my head – I have become much more aware. Perhaps that’s reason enough to do this.

*Which turned out to be nothing but a big lie or at any rate a highly exaggerated and imaginative version of what did happen.

** An expression I admit (again) to stealing from
Wee.

2 comments:

Paramendra Bhagat said...

Nepal: Interim Constitution, Revolutionary Parliament

Hageltoast said...

I wrote a comment, but it got so long I am posting it on burnt toast instead. xxx