04 July 2012

Blogging About Blogging

I know.

"How jejune!" You say.

Or, maybe not. Maybe you are now saying, "Jejune. Hmmph. I hate it when people toss out obscure words to show how smart they are—so how about some words of my own, like 'juvenile,' 'insecure,' or just, plain, 'lame?'"

But "jejune" is a great word. I only just learned it, and it applies to blogging about blogging.

Here's a cut and paste from the dictionary built into my Mac: The New Oxford American Dictionary.

jejune |jiˈjoōn|
1 naive, simplistic, and superficial : their entirely predictable and usually jejune opinions.
2 (of ideas or writings) dry and uninteresting : the poem seems to me rather jejune.

jejunely |dʒəˈdʒunli| adverb
jejuneness |dʒəˈdʒun(n)əs| noun

ORIGIN early 17th cent.: from Latin jejunus ‘fasting, barren.’ The original sense was [without food,] hence [not intellectually nourishing.]

See? Great word.

I have noticed that in American English, the words that generally sound sophisticated are those with the French derivations. (Yes. I know "jejune" is Latin, but it sounds French.) One suspects that somehow it was British working class culture that laid the strongest linguistic foundations in what was to become the U.S., and at the time of the American Revolution, there was even less love lost for the French than now, so they purposely eschewed French derivatives as the pretentious affectations of the aristocracy.

Just a theory. And there's me nodding to Independence Day on this Fourth of July post.

Spending most of my career as a working class guy, I've always had to watch this sort of thing. On the job site, you really gotta dumb yourself down. Every once in while you would meet another who really liked to read books and genuinely enjoyed words and wordplay.

But I forget myself. This is a post about blogging.

I suspect that by now you will have perceived that I say that with droll self-depreciation.

Let me say, however, you've done it. I've done it. We've all done it. Every once in a while it is necessary to talk about what you are trying to accomplish with your blog, the things you've learned, and the process of blog creation. I'm right, aren't I?

And sometimes, you have to publicly admit when you have been wrong.

Like now, I realize that I was wrong about a lot of things.

I have always had this anti-capitalist, anti-commercial, anti-mercantile, anti-establishment, anti-status-quo chip on my shoulder. (I told you I was a working class guy. It's true.) I have seen those forces just cast me and my brothers and sisters in the scrap heap because we no longer served their little piggy interests of the micro-moment. I never had to read The Communist Manifesto to acquire a burning hatred for any philosophy that put profit before people.

Let me interject right here that I am most emphatically not making a pitch for Herr Marx. Everything is all about class struggle? Pfft! Maybe if the guy had spent less time in the library and more time taking care of his family, he would have seen that the history of humanity is not reducible to such a stupid axiom.

But I forget myself. This is a post about blogging.

I was about to admit where I had been wrong. I was wrong about the true attitudes of the American middle class, and I know I was wrong because lately I have been moving in different circles.

I have been moving in the art world.

And believe me, that is a capitalist, commercial, mercantile, establishment, status-quo world.

So I find a capitalist who is almost single handedly revitalizing downtown Fresno by proving cheap, beautiful space for artists!

And I find merchants who are just barely hanging on because it is more important to support the arts than it is to get rich.

Then I find retailers who buy me lunch and coffee because they know I'm broke.

Finally, I see that the status quo has every bit the same sense of righteous outrage at the ill treatment of the poor as I do.

[edit: I forgot to mention some cool politicians and lawyers.]

But what does that have to do with blogging?

Everything. "Content," they say, is King.

For by getting out and meeting people instead of staying home and working on the computer, I see a different world. I see myself changing. I see that I'm making the transition from a bohemian outcast to the cool cat in the tux having a blast at the art show. I have different things to say because I am seeing different things.

I had a similar experience working for the US Army as a civilian in an educational post. I saw that the officers, men, and government service civilians were some of the most conscientious and duty oriented people I had ever met. The media portrays them all as drill sergeants and sociopaths. But that is just not true.

Now I am finding out a similar fable has been spun about the movers and shakers in the arts.

I decided to take the chip off my shoulder.

You can expect, now, my posts to be at least a little more entertaining.

In that spirit, just for grins, tongue firmly in cheek, I thought I'd post a picture of a cute cat. This is my kitty Kiki. Yesterday, while I was out taking pictures of my sculptures for my web gallery, she followed me everywhere.

Kiki, the cute cat

Isn't she cute? I sure do love my Kiki.

And, oh! Yes! Speaking about blogging about blogging? I forgot to mention that I changed the header of this blog yet again. I have been "advised." My name is my "brand." OK, OK! I get it!

(I still smell pork. Guess I always will.)


Beth Franklin said...

Well, Bo-hem-ian outcast or no, I think that Kiki will still follow you everywhere you go, all over the universe. Looks to me like a new caste of Bohemianism never before seen is about to be launched by you. Besides, people love surprises!

Richard G. Crockett said...

:) I'm not so sure I'm unique at all that way. In fact, I'm absolutely sure that a lot of the "movers and shakers" are pretty rebellious. I saw Steve Jobs in an interview one time who commented that doing something like "riding a bicycle through China" prepared someone for "business."

As an example, the guy who is pumping all that capital into artist's habitats here in Fresno spent years traveling around the world, in places like Tibet and such, looking at art. His family was wealthy, but he did not want to be a real estate mogul. Then, one day, he figured out how to align his higher aspirations with the family business.

I'm hoping to interview him and do a blog post.

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