“It is long since I first trod the deck of this terrible ship, and the rays of my destiny are, I think gathering to a focus. Incomprehensible men! Wrapped up in meditations of a kind which I cannot divine, they pass me by unnoticed. Concealment is utter folly on my part, for the people will not see. It was but just now that I passed directly before the eyes of the mate; it was no long while ago that I ventured into the captain’s own private cabin, and took thence the materials with which I write, and have written. I shall from time to time continue this journal. It is true that I may not find an opportunity of transmitting it to the world, but I will not fail to make the endeavour. At the last moment I will enclose the MS. in a bottle, and cast it within the sea.”
Edgar Allan Poe MS. found in a Bottle
Note: I wrote the following 6 years ago, when I first got the idea of starting a blog. Since then I kept postponing because I didn’t seem to be able to sit down and write; in the meantime I realised I belong to the peripatetic (from Greek peripatetikos “given to walking about” (especially while teaching) from peri-patein “walk up and down, walk about”) school, so I started recording my thoughts – hence the peculiar format of this blog.
|The ghost ship
For a long time I thought that writing a blog is a pretty narcissistic enterprise; now it turns out that I’m not that different after all.
30 years ago people would write about themselves on a piece of paper, with the same motivation, but in that case it was for the purpose of leaving a record for those who come later, to say
For us moderns, whose sense of time is completely warped, topsy-turvy, we want to be read instantly. For the smartphone generation, there are many opportunities to feel that our existence is paper-thin superficial.
Have you noticed that whenever our eyes meet, we both seem to feel embarrassed. It’s not like we did something wrong, but for some reason we felt guilty.