Sunday, November 25, 2007


Long ago, in another life, I took a walk round the office corridors and thought about what lay behind the closed doors: quite a number of men of around my own age (then 55-60), grey-haired, grey-suited, grey-faced. Some of them weren't any too well. I decided it was time to go. So I did.

I retired from full-time employment. After which, of course, I had all the time in the world. Ha! If you only knew. First law of the universe: everything takes longer than you think.

Anyway, at some point thereafter I started blogging. Which took up an increasingly large amount of time, albeit in a most enjoyable and interesting way. Then, back in February this year, I gave notice here on the GOB that I was no longer going to be blogging on a regular basis. Why? Mainly because of the need to do other things, things which were either equally or more pressing.

Move forward a few months and it so happens that I have been able to blog fairly regularly once again. Now, however, I find that there are, also once again, numerous family and personal commitments which really do have a much higher call on my time than the blog.

What I found back in Feb was that it is all very well in principle, saying that you're going to do less; but if you do anything at all, then people assume (not unreasonably) that it is business as usual. So they write and ask you to review books, or they mention interesting things that they've seen on the web, and so on. And for all of these requests and pieces of info I was, and am, deeply grateful. Because I've found some amazing books and essays that way. And it is hard to disappoint people by ignoring what they say; it makes you feel bad, and it annoys the people who've taken the trouble to write.

So, the only sensible thing to do, I feel, if the quart will demonstrably not fit into the pint pot, is to stop blogging altogether. Which is what I intend to do, at least for a while. Call it a sabbatical. I hope -- and even intend -- to be back one day. But it will probably be a year.

As I also noted back in Feb, I am not the first blogger to recognise this problem. See Mad Max, Miss Snark, Poddy Mouth. And if you look again at Mad Max's last few posts, you will begin to suspect that the pressure of blogging on top of a more than full-time job did indeed make him a little mad. I'm not in that position, fortunately (or so I kid myself). But I do have other things to do which are undeniably more important than tapping away here.

In the meantime, the blog will continue to sit here, as a resource. There's well over a million words on it now, and if you wonder whether I've ever mentioned so and so, I probably have. Use the search instructions in the top of the right-hand column. For the moment, however, I won't be adding anything new.

Thanks for visiting, see you sometime, and best wishes for now.


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