Sunday, May 28, 2006

Patroclus Gets All Confused. Again.

Settle in everyone, it's going to be a long story.

Right! I've just spent a highly instructive evening in Hammersmith's dingiest pub with my good friend the lovely S., and during the course of the conversation it transpired that while I've been merrily blogging away like some tedious Saturday supplement columnist about gigs I went to and showbiz lunches I had, there have been piling up around me in the 'real' world some Huge and Weighty Problems.

And in my usual 'oh, everything'll sort itself out eventually' kind of way, I have more or less completely ignored them in favour of blogging merrily away about gigs I went to and showbiz lunches I had. But as it turns out, these things probably won't sort themselves out without some kind of actual determined intervention from me. And possibly leading an increasingly escapist online existence isn't the kind of intervention that's required.

Which got me to thinking on the way home, with things being how they are just at present, is it really a good idea for me to keep this blog going at all? It's got to a point (and don't we all regularly get to this point?) where I can't write about any of the things that are actually on my mind, for fear of annoying, worrying or otherwise upsetting some or more of my lovely readers.

So I thought about starting again somewhere new, under a new name, where I could perhaps witter on at length about all the things that worry, annoy and upset me. And then I thought 'perhaps PP had the right idea after all, and I should just write it all in a book'. And then I thought 'maybe I'm just drunk and emotional' - but then I remembered I'd only had half a glass of red wine.

Right, er, now I'm not sure what the point was. Perhaps just to observe that what you read in here is not necessarily an accurate guide to what actually goes on in the World of Patroclus. Not that I'm assuming you were all that interested. I was going to say 'I might go away for a bit', but the last time I said that I was back within 24 hours, and that was when my marriage fell apart. And as the stuff happening at the moment isn't *quite* of that magnitude, it's safe to say I won't be going away at all, really.

So, er, there you have it. Patroclus: some issues, but not going anywhere.

Well, I feel better for that, anyhow.

You've been a lovely audience. Thank you and good night.

32 comments:

soph said...

oh! i feel there should be a sort of ceremony to mourn the passing of yet another brillant blog...

Tim Footman said...

1. Please, please, please (man, I sound like James Brown, if only in my own head) DON'T STOP. Whoever said your blog had to be an accurate representation of your life? Jesus, there are all sorts of real-life traumas I don't blog about. Slow down, if you like. Post less. But keep this one going, or I'll whup your butt, missy.

2. If you want to post your problems on this blog, go ahead. You've got a lot of fans who think a hell of a lot of you, even the ones who don't know you. There will be oodles of loving support, even if there's little practical help.

3. If you want to set up a separate blog to work things out, do that.

4. If you just want a good one-on-one moan, you know where to find me; I'm OK at that sort of thing, for a boy.

5. Return to 1, and start again. There are too many good bloggers jumping ship. It's getting like the end of Beverly Hills 90210. Um... so I'm told... by people who watched it... ahem.

Aimee said...

Oh goodness me. Things keep passing me by, I keep cottoning onto them too late recently. I sincerely hope things go well/better for you.

Wyndham said...

DON'T YOU BLOODY DARE, woman!







(Go away, that is. You can write a book if you want.)

Dave again said...

I seem to face a similar conundrum every week. People who actually know me read the blog now, so some personal issues are more difficult to air. Even when I think I have some good news, I daren't say too much.

Doesn't stop my finding something to write about though.

After all, we have a moral obligation to our loyal readership, don't we?

So don't give up.


Plan B: swap identities. Get a guest writer in, whilst you go and guest-write their blog but don't tell anyone. Folk may become a little confused when you start writing about cricket matches you've played in, but I'm sure no-one would dream of complaining.

Interpreter Pavlov said...

Just make it up, anything. You're the plug that keeps the water in. (Bet you've never been called that before.) Look what happened to Prendergast when Doubts kicked in. We're all right there behind you.

james henry said...

People always go funny on Bank Holidays.

Too much time for thinkin'.

prolix said...

I know I read your blog for the writing style and the humour, not necessarily the content of the posts. You could blog about almost anything and I'd read it. But then, that might say mroe about me than you.

I'm not quite sure what point I'm trying to make here, I should probably have considered that before fingers hit keys... To sum up. Don't go!

Betty said...

Why not start a number of blogs to cover all the areas of your life - for instance, the Patroclus Showbusiness Blog with all the stuff about going to see the Shortwave Set with Steve Mangan, the Patroclus Paranoia and Procrastination Blog, the Patroclus I've Given Up Smoking Blog and the Patroclus Secret Blog which no one else can find, and where you write about your innermost worries while accidentally revealing your real identity to yourself.

Anyway,don't give up. To paraphrase my great hero Justin Hayward, my life will be forever autumn ... IF YOU'RE NOT HERE.

Annie said...

Nooooo - don't stop now, I've only just found your blog! I agree with Tim - and everyone else. I think we all need a bit of escapism, blogs are there for escape or for whatever else you want... feel free to spill the beans, or not spill... Hope your real life stuff is not getting on top of you.

patroclus said...

Gosh, thanks everyone (also welcome, I believe, to Soph - all the way from New Zealand, too!). It's all very much appreciated. Er, I'm not going anywhere (apart from 'a bit wobbly'). And neither will I start regaling you with tales of my real-life woes. The world already has one Liz Jones, I understand, and from what I gather it probably doesn't need another one.

Betty: disappointingly, out of those four the smoking/not smoking blog would be the one with the most action. So I'd probably better just stick with the one.

rockmother said...

Oh no - I've only just found you and it would be a shocking waste if you stopped now. Sometimes you need to stop for a bit and then get back on the blogging horse again. I've done that several times.

Also - don't forget - your blog can be a different space at different times in your life so don't worry about it. My best friend died last year. I nursed her for her last month and my only outlet was my blog. I don't know what I would have done without it.

re-consider. Pleeeeaase?

patroclus said...

Hello rockmother and welcome. I am so sorry to hear about your friend. I agree that blogging can be an excellent outlet for/escape from things - and sometimes it just induces paranoia.

I'm not giving up (apparently giving up blogging is 'so 2005') - I was just griping, really.

On another note I may be able to assist with your wireless broadband troubles - feel free to email me with the details at quadrireme@googlemail.com.

rockmother said...

Cheers. Just sent you a long warbling e mail re: my wireless stupidity.
Re: blogging - sometimes I feel it's a bit like homework so I give up for a bit and start comment-whoring on other sites just to give my brain and the rest of my two readers a rest! Oh well, being soooo 2005 is much better than being soooo '90's. Bye for now.

occasional poster of comments said...

Very glad to see you're not going anywhere.

And good luck with the "real world" things.

[Mutters] pesky "real world"...

Pashmina said...

I thoroughly recommend getting a secret blog for the purpose of banging on about things inappropriate to the public blogface. It's *very* 2006.

surly girl said...

blogging crisis? check.

secret other blog? check.

ooh! i'm fashionable!!

patroclus said...

I love it - so we *all* have secret 'other' blogs now? Suppose we meet each other in secret blogworld and don't know it's us? Intriguing!

Wyndham said...

Right, I'm going to get one. But I have no idea what to write on it. All suggestions welcome.

patroclus said...

W, just thinking, you don't actually need one. All you have to do is *pretend* you've got one - who's going to know? Then you can go around saying "of course, all my real blogfriends* are on my secret blog", and entire new levels of paranoia will set in.

* Who probably include Imogen Quest and Count Cincinnati.

Wyndham said...

Righto.

*wyndham winks*

I completely forgot. I do have one. Of course I do.

I just thought you were talking about something else.

rockmother said...

I've thought about that but haven't quite got around to it yet. Hmmm...you've got me thinking.

Sean McManus said...

It all depends what you take as your frame of reference: Nobody expects the writers in Wired or the NME to write about their private lives, for example. Nobody should be expected to suffer for their art, but I'm hoping you continue to enjoy writing it so we can continue to enjoy reading it for some time to come.

patroclus said...

Ah yes, the frame of reference. I like to think of bloggers as being pioneers on some crazy new frontier, and therefore sadly lacking in any sort of established parameters and guidelines. Which is exciting, but at the same time a bit scary.

If I had to borrow a frame of reference from the 'proper' media, I'd take Wired over the NME any day. Unfortunately, I occasionally develop a terrible urge to indulge in the Liz Jones school of confessional 'journalism'. The more people that stop me heading in that direction, the better all round, I think. So thanks for that Sean!

shoppersaurus rex said...

blogging about the personal stuff - do you want to do it for the feedback or just for the sake of writing it down? If the latter,what's wrong with going all old media and keeping a secret diary?

shoppersaurus rex said...

and what's this about surly having another secret blog? where?

patroclus said...

Neither, really, GSE. I suddenly came over all paranoid that the blog wasn't a reflection of the 'real' me, which in turn made me feel like it was a tissue of lies. Concealment in my mind is tantamount to lying, and I don't like lying, in fact find it almost impossible. This is why I hate having secrets - they make me feel incredibly guilty.

shoppersaurus rex said...

concealment only really equates lying when the information being concealed is relevant to the situation. So concealing you are a child beater on your application to be a social worker is lying. Concealing it on your application to be put on the Manolo Blahnik mailing list is not.

I can't see anything here that says that this blog is meant to be a full and unvarnished examination of the real you. So if you choose not to raise particular topics that aren't relevant to your major themes of music and social media that isn't lying. Or even really concealing. It's editorial policy. Or indeed being mindful of the privacy of others.

So stop feeling guilty.

Anyhow, tell me about anti-folk please.

patroclus said...

Anti-folk? Now you're asking. I believe it's a sort of punk-folk hybrid, but Dr Snackspot is the resident* expert in the genre. Or at least he once pronounced cello-driven Quinquireme favourites Matson Jones as belonging in that category.

Failing that, here's the fairly definitive-looking Wikipedia entry on the subject.

* Where by 'resident' I mean 'occasionally lurking'.

shoppersaurus rex said...

how do you decide if something is anti-folk or folk or new country or whatever?

At least with stuff like tango or salsa there are some clear musical rules.

All these classifications confuse me

patroclus said...

Me too, GSE, they don't really mean anything. I mean I suppose musical styles are all mixed up now, so you get all these hybrid categories for when people have mixed two or more styles together.

Like Tunng get called 'folktronica' because their songs are lyrically and melodically similar to traditional folk songs, but they also have electronic blips and glitches in them.

And I suppose 'alt.country' is anything that's quite country-and-westernish in terms of melody or lyrical content or vocal style or instrumentation, but also has elements of other types of music in it. Like Wilco have samples and electronic bits, and Calexico incorporate bits of dub/jazz/waltz and so on.

But some of these labels are quite rubbish - like the stuff I'm listening to now sometimes gets called 'idm' for 'intelligent dance music', but you really, really couldn't dance to this - it sounds more like a soundtrack to a spooky Japanese computer game.

It's all a big mess, really. I like some of the genre names because they're nice words (I especially like anything with '-tronica' on the end), but in the end it should really just come down to whether you like the music or not.

For more silly music-genre fun, go and look at the tags people are creating on last.fm. It's a whole new world of genre theory waiting to happen...

Urban Chick said...

secret other blogs? yes, got them (one is even on my blogroll...ooh, the intrigue)

but hey, i like your footer - don't go!!