Monday, November 2, 2009

Away for three months, to restore myself

My dear family, students, friends and colleagues,

You who follow my blog may have noticed that I have not been posting every Sunday, as I promised. For example, my last post was on 4 October, that is, four weeks ago.

A few of you have called or emailed to find out if I have been unwell. Thank you for your concern. I have not been posting regularly, because I have been pre-occupied with a personal assignment that takes a lot of my thinking time and energy.

Writing is strenuous. Moreover, since I expect that my own work be an example of what I preach and teach in class -– writing with nouns and verbs, NOT with adjectives and adverbs –- writing drains me.

But life in the blogosphere is even more tiring. When I started blogging on 2 October 2008, I found the Blogger software convenient. The template was easy to learn and use. And so I enjoyed myself. I still do.

But gradually, I got sucked into mediocre junk, the way children get seduced by fast food.


In his 1959 revision of William Strunk’s Elements of Style, E.B. White added a Chapter V, “An Approach to Style” (with a list of 21 reminders). Reminder 9 says, “Do not affect a breezy manner.” Here, White refers to a poem, “Spontaneous me”, and argues that “in his innocence”, Walt Whitman, “let loose the hordes of uninspired scribblers” with their “uninhibited prose”.

When I read newspapers today, there is so much of breeze, wind and hot air, printed on their pages! No need to comment about the fluff and hype on TV.

For me, writing and reading as well as speaking and listening are two sides of the same coin: thinking. So blogging is not only about writing “Against the Tide”, but also about reading other blogs. And that seems to have taken a severe toll of my senses.

In my early exuberance, I read all the blogs as I strolled along, the way a child grabs at any toy within its ken. But I have realised I was straying into mediocre junk.

Sadder but wiser over the last year, I have decided to halt by the wayside. And slow down for the next three months. While I restore myself – with a personal assignment.

I shall, however, respond to ALL emails and messages on facebook. And like a street rag-picker, I shall scrounge through a few of your careful blogs, searching for …??? And when the urge takes hold of me, I shall post – but rarely.

Keep in touch. Resist the tide. Take care.

Your support is my strength.
- Joe.

Pune, India, Monday, 2 November 2009.


Journomuse said...

Take care of yourself Joe, :) but do keep reading our blogs and scribbles. Your comments are invaluable.. We need our teachers to keep correcting us at each step. By the way, I have been attending IDS seminars ( i was sure you will be happy to know)



अब्द abd said...

Hmmm. . . Knowledge is rare. It has become a habit to visit your blog atleast six days a week. How can I change the habit? But still, there is a beauty in the rarity.

Discovering M said...

hmm i havent been reading much of other blogs - just a few regular ones that I follow hmm.. well i guess when you say blogging - it means posting and also reading other posts and commenting etc.. :) let me stray away from my usual blogs and see if i find interesting ones :)

Gauri Gharpure said...

As i said, i am missing the Sunday reads.. But your saying 'away to restore myself' sounds so good, rare. wish we all could will ourselves to snatch out time exclusively for the self.

i hope the three months are fruitful and we get to learn a lot after the break.

The Cloudcutter said...

Happy New Year to you and your family, Joe!
May 2010 be fulfilling in every way. Take care and come back soon.

Sushant Kulkarni said...

Joe Sir, I am missing your posts.

अवधूत / Avadhoot said...


Journomuse said...

A blogosphere tag game had me piqued enough to give it a shot and make a pick of my favourite blogs and why they are my favourite...I chose yours and I want to you to know why...So do hop over to my blog to read the rest...

Sharmila said...

Am glad I found your blog ... am still going through all your posts. :-)

Sanand said...

This is my first visit here but I felt it was a genuine voice that was reaching out to readers. I hope that you will continue blogging more often so that we, as a young nation, can learn from what you have to tell and share with us.

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