Sometimes I just feel like doing it
… writing an editorial, that is. As for that other thing (for you folks with dirty minds) sometimes I feel like doing that too. Mostly I write an editorial when it dawns on me that I haven’t written one for a while. This time around I had a sudden urge to do an editorial.
The trouble, of course, is that I have no notion of what it is that I am supposed to write about in this editorial. I expect that I shall make something up – after all I always do. I note with some displeasure that some of my recent editorials have been too serious, too trendy, too attuned to the issues of the day. F*** the issues of the day, say I.
Highways & Byways
The thing about our culture, the world culture of modern humanity, is that it is incredibly complex and diverse, much like the biosphere. There is too much of it. As the song in The Lion King says, “There is more to see than can ever be seen.” We humans are simply too small, too limited, too finite to take it all in. One of the responses to this state of affairs is The Canon, a list of the essential works of literature, works of art, tourist sites, media events, and other bits and pieces that a well educated person has seen and absorbed.
People buy into this shuck. The world is filled with tourists criss-crossing back and forth, visiting the “must-see” sites. The bookstores hawk the best-sellers which are bought and read because they are what is being read this season. People under the illusion that they are educated read the works on the sundry lists of most important works of all time.
What does this have to do with highways and byways? Take a look at a road map. There are the major highways that everybody travels on and then there are lots of little byways that are mostly traveled by locals. Now if all you do is travel on the major highways (except for the byways in our local area) you can get the impression that you have “seen it all”. You haven’t, of course. The major highways are a tiny part of what there is. They let you go from here to there in a hurry but they don’t have any “there” of their own. Most of what is going on in the world goes on in those blank spots on the map where the byways run. You’ll never see but the slightest bit of what there is or what goes on regardless of what you do. To get a balanced picture you have to spend more time on the byways than you do on the highways.
Me, I’m a byways kind of guy.
What is this all about, anyway?
This web site has approximately 1700 pages. About 500 of those pages are collected jokes, 700 are pages in the reincarnation game, and 500 more are, well, stuff. That is one hell of a lot of crap.
The amazing thing is that people read this stuff. According to the ISP daily logs the site gets about 10000 hits a day. Most of the hits are in the humor section (people like to laugh) and in the darwin awards section (people like to laugh at other people) but it all gets read. Weird.
I suppose people read this stuff because it is there. This site has been active for over five years. That’s practically an eternity in web years. The whole dot.com boom came and went while I was chugging out crap. One of my readers came up with the best reason I’ve heard yet – there are a lot of raving insomniacs out there.
But what is the soul, the essence of this monumentally pointless effort? Damned if I know. I just write the stuff, package it, and put it together. It’s whatever happens to catch my fancy. Like I say, I’m a byways kind of guy.
I just noticed that this is appearing on Friday the thirteenth.
That’s auspicious. I think I will go visit my cousin and play
with his black cat.
This page was last updated July 13, 2001.