You need a certain amount of chutzpah to undertake the production of a regular blog on today’s Internet. You have to believe you have something to say. And it takes time to realize what you are really doing. You are pitting your ego against those of super egos. I often take a quick run through the liberal-oriented accumulator progressivebloggers.ca to a) make sure my daily blog is there and b) see what the super egos are talking about. It hardly keeps me modest when I realize maybe three of us are the only real progressives.
But it also teaches me to stick to my knitting. With more than 60 years of politics behind me, that’s my milieu. Not that people from all parties do not, sometimes, react aggressively to what I write. Particularly when I have trampled on one of their shibboleths. It doesn’t matter whether I have trashed O’Toole, Singh or Trudeau, I will get some scathing e-mails promising to never read Babel-on-the-Bay again. I never know how to reply. They’ll be back.
It really impresses me how Google Analytics can show me new heights of readership during elections. It is also nice to see that I can still outguess most of the pollsters. They are stuck trying to understand their raw data where I am analysing how Canadians are reacting on a real-time basis.
One of the things I marvel over is the readers of Babel-on the-Bay around the world. I think I might be helping keep more than a few consular people up to date, though I know one regular reader in Germany is an old friend. I was surprised by the number of daily readers in China until a friend pointed out that the particular city had large numbers of classes in English and they might be using blogs, such as mine, as a daily exercise.
The one thing I have found is that I enjoy writing these commentaries on a daily basis but I resist the urge to do more than one in a day. And despite the advice people give neophyte bloggers, a blog of more than 400 words had better be damn interesting or you are just wasting your time. Some blogs remind me of the remark by an ancient writer who apologized for writing a long letter because he did not have the time to write a short one.
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