Wednesday, December 07, 2005

The Prisoner's Dilemma

…or the trouble with self-awareness

In cultural theory there’s an idea called the Panopticon, which is a (metaphorical) prison cell where people can see you, but you can’t see them. Which is a bit like having a blog, really. So further to my existential crisis at the weekend, I’ve been thinking far too much about all the people that are currently seeing me without being seen. A motley assortment of individuals that includes, but is in no way limited to:

[frantic snipping noises]

Needless to say, paranoia is rife in the panopticon.

When I originally started this blog, the idea was to document the impact of technology – apparently as represented by Telewest – on modern society, or so it says in my very first post.

[snippety snip, tum-te-tum...]

...The show must go on, and everything. So I might as well pick up the original theme again.

So, things you can expect to be hearing about include:

1. Lots of really wanky stuff about the way technology is changing our general existence. Apparently they are calling this phenomenon Web 2.0. They bloody would as well.

2. Other pretentious rubbish, possibly relating to music and stuff.

3. The lost language of the Picts.

What you won’t be hearing about includes:

1. Anything remotely interesting.

2. Anything remotely funny.

3. Anything remotely scurrilous.

If this is what you’re after, then I strongly advise you to Step Away From This Site, perhaps by clicking on a link to one of my admirable blogging friends in the sidebar there.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have fingers to gnaw, dark imprecations to mutter, and a chair to rock back and forth in.

ALMOST INSTANT UPDATE: Shopping. I might still write about that. Also, interiors. Oo, I feel better already.

FURTHER UPDATE: There, I'm sure the edited version still makes almost as much sense...


Pashmina said...

You had me a bit worried up till the last bit. So business as usual, then...?

GreatSheElephant said...


1.3 presumably she does now then?

why can't you be funny about all the things you plan to write about? Why? Why?

Pashmina said...

Pat, you seem to have gone offline again. Is this deliberate?

Wyndham said...

You appear to have a Blue Pencil cypernetically implanted into your hand at the moment.

patroclus said...

Just one of those days, W. Again.

Note to everyone: if I go a bit wobbly occasionally, it's probably best if you just pretend not to notice. Or actually don't notice. I love my blog, me, so you can bet that however much I want to delete the whole bloody thing and disappear off into the, er, whatever the opposite of ether is, I'll always be back within a couple of hours.

Thanks for all your messages of concern, though. It's much appreciated.

cello said...

So, if I've understood you correctly, you just won't be talking about shagging.

surly girl said...

my brain hurts. are we staying here now, then?

patroclus said...

cello: good lord, most certainly not.

surly: yes, it seems that way.

Anyone fancy a cup of tea?

Kellycat said...

Can I give you a bit of advise from the ballroom guru Len Goodman?

Apparently the problem with Darren Gough is that he's thinking too much about what his hands are doing, so they don't look natural and therefore, a bit wrong.

If you worry too much about what you're blogging about, then the quality of your blog might suffer, and more importantly, your head will probably implode.

If any of that makes sense, please let me know...

Kellycat said...

Sorry, that should be "advice".


patroclus said...

Sound advice, kellycat, thanks. And duly noted.

Blog-induced paranoia is one of the things that are starting to interest me a lot, however, which in turn makes me want to write about it. But for all your sakes, I'll try and keep the paranoiac navel-gazing to a minimum. Or at least intersperse it with stuff about Johnny Depp and, I don't know, cupcakes.

Pashmina said...

Message received and understood, P.

Got any Earl Grey?

Kellycat said...

Oooh cupcakes.

You have to eat the icing off the top first, then the sponge, then all the little bits of frosting that are still stuck around the edge of the cake cup.


Tabby Rabbit said...

>> I'll try and keep the paranoiac navel-gazing to a minimum>>

No, don't do that. You just need to drink more at lunchtime*

*Are we allowed to put up stuff like that? Or all we all being censored?

james henry said...

My only concern is for any of your readers who may have epilepsy, and are therefore at some risk from the blog's current on/off/strobelight condition.

On the other hand, there has to be some way of thinning the herd.

Juggling Mother said...

Damn, missed the unedited version this time:-(

If I get bored, I'll go away, don't worry:-)

It's obvious that some of your commenters know you personally, but I have no idea whether you're really a 6" tall heavyweight gay boxer or a 12 year old stroppy net-chick, so in that way blogging is not like Panopticon.

Say what you want & don't worry about all of us idiots out here in the blogosphere.

Kyahgirl said...

I agree with Mrs. A.
I like to pop in here because you are interesting, even when you think you're not being interesting!
navel gazing is also an interest of mine so I relate quite well to your angst.
Now, if you're worrying about strangers trooping through your blog and you don't know who they are, I will tell you what my footprints look like. You will always see me at either interbaun in Edmonton Alberta, or in Midland Michigan, depending if I'm checking from home or, er, some other place.

the Beep said...

I lurk here sometimes too. I find the thought of being lurked upon paralising/paralysing. So I try to ignore it. Along with worrying about spelling (is that how you spell paralysing?). Hello, and, er, indeed, au revoir.