Among the folk arts, blogging ranks somewhere between scrimshaw and tatting. Practitioners are harmless folk, furtive and deficient in social graces but trainable with patience, understanding and a firm hand. Some are gainfully employed and support families. Others remain editors and minor humorists. Five years ago today, in my first post at Anecdotal Evidence, I wrote:
“Literature is sustenance, best enjoyed meal by meal, in the company of comparably hearty fellow diners. An ornithologist once shared with me his conviction that birds often sing for the sheer arbitrary pleasure it gives them, not merely to defend turf or attract a mate. An aesthetic capacity, he speculated, has evolutionary value. Who can conceive of a life lived without beauty, whether making it or enjoying it? Come, join us at the table.”
The invitation stands. Some have taken a seat and claimed it as their own. Among my generous guests – collaborators – are Gary Baldridge, Roger Boylan, Buce, Guy Davenport, Elberry, Roger Forseth, Mike Gilleland, Cynthia Haven, Joe of New York, Jonathan of British Columbia, Melissa Kean, Joshua Kurp, Ken Kurp, Ann Lugg, Dave Lull (“—mon semblable,—mon frère!”), James Marcus, Fran Manushkin, David Myers, Nige, Stephen Pentz, Helen Pinkerton, Bill Sigler, Levi Stahl, Jay Stribling, Susan of New York City, Terry Teachout, Eric Thomson, Frank Wilson and others slipped from fraying memory.
Today’s post is number 2,021. Some have been trifling. To most I lent all the seriousness a minor humorist can muster. If a day were to pass without a thought worthy of nurture, I would be a sorry writer. Arranging words in pleasing shapes, like a folk artist snipping tin for a weather vane, is what we do. As one of this blog’s tutelary spirits puts it:
“There is no use in indicting words, they are no shoddier than what they peddle. After the fiasco, the solace, the repose, I began again, to try and live, cause to live, be another, in myself, in another.”