Today's "stats" tell me that there have been 238625 views of this blog since its first day out! There have been 525 comments made (on-line) and thankfully many more "off line"!
I have been doing this now since July 2008. It seems quite a while. The least number of posts I had in any month since then is one and the most, fifteen. Some have been quite personal and others shamelessly "borrowed" from YouTube or other sources but all, I hope, with some degree of purpose.
Why? I suppose that's a key question. I like to think it's because I believe in communication and, since a lot of my life's energy goes into communication, it seemed a natural way of trying to reach out to people - known and unknown to me. Maybe too it's about wanting to have something of a voice. Maybe it's vanity! Yeah, that too is a real possibility and one that I don't easily ignore or enjoy. I hope it's more than that - I really want to have something to say.
Some of what has gone into this blog has been very personal to me. Real, painful and life-changing. I think especially of sitting at a keyboard and typing "my mother died ....." those words were important to me and the words that followed helped me put some shape on that truth. My father's funeral, followed a week later by my uncle's, brought me to a place of deep searching too as I saw life change before me and knew that home, though always welcoming to me, would never be the same again.
Moments and events have shaped much of the content of this blog. Donal Walsh's interview with Brendan O'Connor made me want to write, to remember and re-echo his courage and determination. Other moments too have made me want to say something - to add my voice and maybe lengthen the conversation a bit. Lighter moments too - concerts attended, songs heard, YouTube videos watched combined to make me want to share them with people.
I like the blog. I tried Facebook for a while but don't fully get it. I know, to its credit, that it reaches so many people. Indeed when I recently re-printed a piece I wrote around the death of Fr Andrew Finan, I was amazed at the number of "hits" received around those days and the wonderful messages received from some of Andrew's past pupils. I realised "Facebook" was the reason and that someone, or maybe few, linked my post on their Facebook page and it went from there. That said, I don't fully get it and chose quite some time ago to discontinue with Facebook (now I don't think that had any negative impact on Facebook's ratings!!) and focus on the blog. To date, I'm not sorry about that.
I've been trying "Twitter" too but wonder how far anything I have to say there goes. My "followers" are few and re-tweets infrequent but there's something very addictive about it. Despite myself, I find I check it a lot and generally find some comment/tweet of interest and that makes it seem worthwhile. That said, maybe I can't say what I want to say in soundbytes and, for that reason, this journey continues.
I'd love more interaction with people, where possible, through the blog and I suppose that's the reason for this post!
Thanks for listening ....