While I was away…

Dervala suddenly returned to her blog. I really enjoyed this post.


Lissa Harris, one of my favorite writers from the heyday of the Weekly Dig, started a blog called Women Do! which is just scathing and wonderful. It’s dedicated to finding and skewering examples of the “Women Do!” type of newspaper feature story:

Not every story about women–not even every story about women doing things–is a Women Do story….

Every proper Women Do story has three hallmarks, and they are three, and these are them:

1. Irrelevance. The true Women Do story is not about medical issues, or gender discrimination, or anything properly related to women qua women. Oh no. It is about the shocking spectacle of women doing stuff that people generally do. At its heart is typically an earth-shattering revelation that some women, for instance, like to drive motor-cars or eat ice-cream. The reporter sets about tackling this topic with all the barmy innocence of a two-year-old child, a Betelgeusian anthropologist or a time-traveler from 1769.

You should read the other two as well, but to do that I’m going to make you actually go read it yourself.

The sad thing is that when it started, I thought she was going to run short of material immediately. Sadly, this has not been the case. So far, women have become morticians, farmed, robbed banks, and much much more.


While I wasn’t paying attention my friend Abeer has become quite a writer. You should read her published stuff. And her blog.

A return to blather

So, things have been pretty quiet here at the ol’ blog lately. The usual busy-ness and business are probably to blame. But there are always times for the things you feel compelled to do, right? And lately I think my internet exhibitionism has been getting fulfillment in Facebook and Twitter. (I use Twitter as a front end to Facebook status updates, and since my Facebook network is huge and my twitter network tiny, it’s on FB where I get most of the comments).

It’s a junk food kind of internet exhibitionist experience.  I know a lot of people think it’s great to force your thoughts into 140 characters, to have a constant stream of what’s going on right now.

But a lot of the things that are going on right now aren’t really going on right now. They’re slow moving things that need more context than you can get from the faster moving currents near the surface. Things that need more than 140 characters. (Hence my most recent tweet).

It’s all a pre-packaged kind of Internet presence, and there’s some value to that, but sometimes it’s also nice to get off the paved roads. I resisted blogging for a long time because that felt a little too readymade a format, and now in comparison, the blog feels like a huge blank canvas.

Anyway, I have been craving doing some longer writing, so I’m back, at least for now.