Noise

I had a piece I was going to finish for today about Marvel’s Avengers and the NHS but I think I’ll leave that for another time or perhaps no time at all. My morning was taken up with writing a piece about Professor Trump’s lecture on the medicinal benefits of bleach and I have lots of things I intend to do with the rest of my day. I also wanted to write about Twitter and coming back to blogging after all these years.

I think it was a mistake.

Did I really expect much traffic? Well, I hoped for a little. Ten to twenty visitors a day might have felt like a reasonable return for my efforts. I thought I might be able to contribute to this lockdown by providing a little commentary, a few funny cartoons, and anything else I might be able to throw on here. I had grand ideas about streaming some of my drawing sessions, or, at least, a few sped up videos. Perhaps I’d record the odd podcast. I don’t know. I thought maybe I could help others through this lockdown and, in the process, help myself.

Except that clearly isn’t working. I post links to this site and though I get a few likes and comments, the stats don’t lie. People probably think that I can’t possibly know that they didn’t visit but they’re wrong. When your stats read a big fat zero, there’s no mistake. Nobody is clicking on my links, despite what they say.

Which made me realise that, really, social media isn’t even skin deep. It’s the thinnest form of engagement; a rolling timeline of momentary interests which encourage us to live in one long protracted moment of “NOW” rather than to pause, look deeper, and read words written in the lonely contemplation of what has passed.

I might be a creature of a world that no longer exists. I like to think but the world is lost to feeling. The only thing that matter is what’s to come, rather the things that have been. It’s about being yourself and prolonging the sense of anger, alienation, and angst. Nobody wants to change their minds, engage in debate, or simply enjoy a different point of view. They want more Toby Young (other partisan hacks are available) confirming all their worst prejudices but phrasing them in increasingly outlandish ways. Hate everybody and love yourself. That’s all that Hitchens and Young write and those on the left are rarely much better. There’s always a target for the bile, the spite, the latent violence. There’s always somebody or something that represents another way of living. It means Labour are traitors or it’s the Tories, the Lib Dems, the Europeans, the Americans, the Jews, the Catholics, the Protestants, the Arabs, the Chinese, the police, the doctors, the protestors, the businesses, the capitalists, the socialists, the preachers, or the scientists. It’s futile even trying to disengage from all that. Noise is where all the fun is to be found, so perhaps I’ll just stay silent.

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Why Dunciad.com?

It’s a cool domain name and it was available. Yes, I know. Available. Crazy, isn’t it?

Really?

Yes. It also helps that it’s also my favourite satire written by Alexander Pope, one of the most metrically pure English poets who also knew his way around a crude insult or two. If you’ve not read it, you should give it a try.

So this is satire, right?

Can’t deny it. There will be some. But it’s also an experiment in writing and drawing, giving work away for free in order to see how many people are willing to support a writer doing his thing. It’s the weird stuff that I wouldn’t get published elsewhere in this word of diminishing demands and cookie-cutter tastes.