Monthly Archives: November 2008

The 11 lamest blogs in the world

If you check out PCWorld’s list of lamest blogs you might have noticed that Mr Walker’s Dullest blog in the world cam in at number 6.

Actually I think Yorkshireman Displaced can be pretty dull reading at times. As well as turgid and badly written. I feel cheated out of a place in this league table. Especially since all I’m blogging about this evening is other peoples blogs. Maybe this is turning into some kind of metablog, where all I blog about are other peoples blogs like an endless hall of mirrors.

The human need to categorize information

I was pondering earlier. Specifically I was pondering the cost of information in terms of distribution, storage and accessibility. Back in Roman times, information storage was relatively expensive. Stone tablets had to be made to store the information, stonemasons were needed to carve the tablets, the average Roman citizen would not be able to read or afford such tablets. Paper cheapened the cost of information but it was really the invention of the printing press that meant that information was easily reproduced. These days, those of us who live in the majority world use google as often as tap water. 

 I think if I had to pick a human characteristic that defined us as a species it would be information storage. Chimpanzes communicate with one another but they (as far as we know) don’t record hunting grounds, neither do dolphins or wasps. To quote Cory Doctorow “Human beings build encyclopedias like termites build mounds”. This is why we blog, because blogging is the royal jelly of the internet, cultivated by worker drones living humdrum lives and quietly categorizing the world around us into something meaningful.

Remembrance day

A friend of mine had the tricky job of explaning remembrance day to her four year old daughter recently. This involved explaning what guns were (girls are apparently less interested in high calibre firearms at that age than boys). To quote my friend, a gun is a a machine you hold in your hands that makes pieces of metal fly towards other people at high speeds. I think my friend missed out the bit about what happens when aforementioned high speed projectiles reach those other people, because her daughter’s response was “Why would anyone want to do that?”.

 To be honest I can’t think of an answer to that question. At least, I can’t think of an answer that would please a four year old.

My current reading list

Presented as uncritically as possible.

Never let me go – Kazuo Ishiguro

Watchmen – Alan Moore

The Alchemist – Paulo Coehlo

McSweeneys No. 25 (see if you don’t know what it is)

I list because after breathing, categorizing things is a human being’s most basic activity. The list is the most basic form of category. I’m not going to tell you if I think any of the above are good or not as a deliberate act of postmodernist metacriticism.

 I have too many caffeine molecules in my bloodstream right now to make the slightest bit of sense. 

Good day/night, where ever you may be.

Hot blogging action has been resumed

Firstly a big “thank you” to the hard working boys at wibsite hq for their overhaul. Everything on the wibsite looks spiffy (if you only ever read my blog then check out the main site).

Yorkshireman Displaced is still ekeing out his nomadic existence in the shadowy world of his friends’ spare room. Soon though he should have some sort of bachelor pad in the bohemian part of town where he can discuss Neitzsche and drink tea until 4am without upsetting housemates or neighbours.

When I’m not describing the finer points of my existence in some sort of third person narrative I’m still trying to get my multimedia business off the ground, attempting to draft a novel as part of NaNoWriMo and office temping to pay the rent.

I’ve been writing bits of two novels actually but I don’t know which one to try and concentrate on the most. One of them is about all the things Buddha was before he was the Buddha. I don’t believe in reincarnation but I thought it could make any interesting plot device (Buddha the velociraptor anyone?). One of them is about daydreams and the places they can take you (and maps and tea and photography).

If you had a choice which book would you want to read? I’m going to write democratically depending on what you reckon.