Monday, September 6, 2004

Weblogs and Partners

Anja Rau (Flickwerk) raises a very important point about weblogs.

Most ideas are half-baked when they turn up first. Communication is a good antidote. But who'd be willing to play advocatus diaboli to your inklings at the drop of a hat?

One answer, of course, is that journals and weblogs are perfect.

Another is suggested by the opening line of the post; your partner can usually be relied on to read and respond:

Talked to N. about blogging again. It seems that another benefit of the blog is that it gives the writer a format to write *and think* into.

But it doesn't always work that way. My father and my mother were both writers, and they had a pretty good relationship for a very long time, but neither could read the other's writing with any sympathy at all. And, sometimes, the page and the World are simply better listeners than someone with whom you're living.

Anja takes Die Zeit to task for a letter that characterizes Swedes as blonde women who live in red houses. I read this as a response to Jill's plaint on gendered metaphor in computing. Gender is part of language.

But then again, my wife has a treasured 19th century photograph of her great grandmother, doubtless blonde, standing in front of a tiny farmhouse, doubtless red. Her daughter had died young, her son-in-law wasn't sure (according to family memory) he could handle three little girls, and so the children and the old lady would soon head for the farms of Long Island.