Thursday, 31 May 2007
All That Dutch Philosophy Must Have Rubbed Off
I was flattered and delighted when Thomas Hamburger Jnr nominated me for a Thinking Blogger Award. The time spent in the Hotel de Filosoof must have paid off. My only regret is that I cannot put the award on our mantlepiece for all to see; still if it was on the mantlepiece it would need dusting, so it's not all bad. This evening I think we shall have our little award ceremony, the sort where I get drunk and everyone else fawns after me.
As part of the acceptance process it is my solemn duty to select five people that I think also deserve the nomination. It is quite timely for me to think about other bloggers I like, having just tidied up my blogroll. Let's see...Nurse Myra? She certainly gets me thinking, I'm just not sure it's about the right sort of thing though; and I can't usually think too deeply for laughing in any case. I'm sort of reluctant to go straight for the obvious bloggers that spring to mind because they are so good, in my view, that they don't need the extra readership that might come their way if I choose them. Yet others I might have chosen have already been nominated. Hmmm, I think I might just have to be straightforward and go for the obvious anyway.
First, I choose David B Dale and his Very Short Novels. David is a fabulous writer who, in each post, creates a perfectly formed miniature novel from 299 words. Each one has the essence of a much larger piece of literature distilled with finesse and skill into this tiny word count. He makes me think about word economy and each one has a theme that is often deep and frequently disturbing.
Next I choose Ruby Soho; Aaryan, who writes this blog in San Diego USA, is another stunning writer; she should be, she actually gets money for writing too - can you imaging that? I love her posts about being a mum to her adopted daughter together with a refreshingly anti - republican political stance. She makes me think that, just maybe, there is a future for politics in the US and its adopted island state, the UK.
Third is Bill Blunt, I'm sure someone must have done him already but I haven't seen it. Bill is a journalistic legend with a scything wit and an astute eye for a story. He is a blogger who deals with issues in an almost frivolous manner whilst ensuring you are tapped in to the more serious underlying story, a true professional.
The trick of writing engagingly, in my view, is to do what the great artists do: simply apply paint to canvas using the palette of superficial colours and washes then produce something that, when you stand back, is much more than the sum of the contents. My fourth choice is someone who does just that. Urban Cowgirl moved to New Zealand from the UK some time ago and writes about the joys of discovering her new country whilst regretting the loss of the old. Her posts regularly raise thoughts about what home means and make me question values in the UK that I take for granted.
Finally, I choose Life and Times written by Jonathan. This was one of the first blogs I read and Jonathan's wide ranging posts cover everything from IT and computer games to adoption and society's ills. The beauty of his writing is in constantly being fresh, thus keeping interest and generating thought.