I think I may as well wrap things up here. Seems like I’ve come to the end of the line and don’t have too much more to say about books and music and stuff. It’s been a good run and it’s been great fun. The best thing was feeling that I’d gained an audience (however selective) and the interaction that goes with that. Thanks especially to Paul (Froog), and King Tubby, and Darren, clear winners in the replies stakes. Any good blog should be a dialogue and you guys had a lot of opinions and conjectures that were fun to read.
The main snag preventing me writing more seems to be the increasing narrowness of my focus. The stuff I love, I devour. I could happily listen to the Beatles, watch Star Wars (the original trilogy, obviously) and read Philip Larkin for evermore. But as I grow older, the stuff that I once thought was worth at least trying palls so badly. This isn’t just the inevitable sifting of time, as you figure out that Pulp, and DH Lawrence, and Siouxsie and the Banshees, and later Baudrillard, and Oliver Stone, just aren’t really much good. I mean the emotional range of my cultural appetites has shrunk markedly. I went off metal in the mid-90s, but more recently I just can’t be bothered with new films or new books or new music. I just don’t have the intellectual energy. And something gets my back up about bands of young men with beards, or films with no ability to create atmosphere or narrative flow (why have they been lost?!?), or books with their oh-so-black-humour-negative-take on the modern existential dilemma of man. It’s all hipster pish. (Ironically, my favourite bands from the 90s and 00s, Belle and Sebastian and Animal Collective, are both achingly hipsterish bands. But there you go: don’t expect a logical argument here, boyo). Frankly, I’d much rather be watching Singin’ In The Rain or Seven Brides For Seven Brothers these days, or listening to some Dixieland jazz. But who cares about the atrophying cultural tastes of a white suburban dad? (Not that anyone cared previously, but you see my point).
In point of fact, I seem to have become a staid, middle-class and near-middle age git. This isn’t so bad: I always kind of felt middle-aged anyway. I’ve listened to Radio 4 since I was 14, and read most of the great authors at a young age. But my drives have changed from cultural endeavours to something more political. This is where I see myself heading. I don’t know what that means in terms of blogging. I’ve previously tried political blogging but found I wasn’t creating anything of value: I was just taking whatever news story of the day then waffling about it. But there has to be some fresh perspective, an angle. One of the things I find most annoying about political discourse in the UK is how bad it is – how it’s led by opinion and pontification rather than analysis and data, how it so consistently fails to give anything like a rounded context to any area of discussion, how it so instantly falls to a repeated sequence of shouted debating points. We need something more, something better. This is what I’m going to try to puzzle out in the near future.
Thanks for reading, one and all. You’ve made it all worthwhile.