Thursday, October 25, 2012


On the fourth birthday of this blog, I raise a glass to the prickly chap who inspired it, and makes occasional contributions. I raise another glass to all those who have read it at some point, and a further glass (it’s ok, they’re only small ones), to everyone who has taken the trouble to comment.

Last year at this time I attempted to reflect on why I blog. I didn’t arrive at any firm conclusion, except that I like doing it. I can’t add much to what I said then. I sometimes wonder why I spent hours writing and re-writing a post intended to crystallise my thoughts on some more or less profound topic, when it might be read by fewer than a hundred people and not receive a single comment.

It’s my graffiti wall, I suppose. I can scrawl whatever I like here, I can choose my crayons freely and let the ideas flow, and I can choose whether or not to argue about what it means or if it was worth it.

So having little to add to last year’s musings, I raise yet another glass to some people who have played a role in shaping, in some way, my little sandbox:

I thank NickM, of Counting Cats, for teaching me not to be afraid of the recursive asterisk.*

I thank Vincent, the Wayfarer, for regularly pointing out my lapses into negativity and intellectual laziness. The lesson still isn’t entirely learnt, but I now construct posts with a greater awareness of who might be reading them. And a clearer idea of why I write them in the first place.

I thank Dr. Rao, who thinks I’m a Professor of Indology and still sends me updates on research into the Indus script which I am, to both his and my disappointment, not competent to evaluate.

I thank CNN, for linking to me about three years ago as a supposed expert on Bolivian politics and sending my readership numbers through the roof for a couple of days (all I’d done was read a selection of the Bolivian press and turn it into a report for the Anglo-Saxon public, something you would have imagined they would be doing themselves).

I thank an anonymous user of reddit for linking to my recent post on Heikegani and also sending the stats through the roof. (Note to self: find out what reddit is and how it works).

I thank Charles Crawford for accidentally getting me into the Independent in rather confused circumstances

I thank Mark Wadsworth for teaching me the little I know about money, and for patience in the face of stupid questions.

I thank Tim Worstall for taking the trouble to answer my economically innocent questions in an intellectually meaningful way.

I thank the world, for being interesting enough to think and write about

*I would also thank him for teaching me to write fun and interesting posts**, but he has been unequal to the- extremely difficult- task.

**Not that he knew he was trying to do it, of course.

4 comments:

Sackerson said...

Happy blogday!

How is Crispulito? Any new pics?

CIngram said...

Thank you.

I'll put some up. The poor lad hasn't shown up here much lately.

Sackerson said...

I think they will eat tinned cat food. Ours would run off with a slice of bacon, back legs slipping on the end of it.

CIngram said...

I'm not sure if we've misunderstood each other here. He hasn't disappeared, I just mean that I haven't mentioned him much lately. I let him write an article sometimes, and I think it's about time he had a voice.

He eats mainly cat food in pellet form, chicken and rice is his favourite, and he likes it hard and oily (there's a supermarket brand that seems to satisfy). And he'll eat cat patés quite happily. We buy them as treats. Normal tinned cat food would do fine, I'm sure, but he's a spoilt hedgehog and demands a bit more substance.

He likes chocolate and cheese, as most animals do, and nuts, ham, chicken, anything crunchy with fat or sugar in it. And apples. And insects, of course, which are in theory his staple diet. We buy crickets or collect beetles on the farm.

He's never pinched a rasher of bacon, but I know exactly would you mean. It's what he does with socks- run around with them until he steps on the other end and falls flat on hs face.