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why these musings?

Why do I keep an online journal? There are three main reasons.

a journal is a scratchpad

The first reason is that a journal of any sort is a scratch pad where I can work out and unravel problems that face me. These problems can come from anywhere. For me right now, the most intriguing problems are those connected with my relationships with various people. I enjoy watching people deal with their own problems, and I enjoy seeing how my position in someones life affects them. Being somewhat experimental, I often do things purely to see how people will react.

a journal is art

But unlike a scratch pad, I cherish the legacy of the dissection of my problems. I see my musings as helpful to me on some future day and helpful to others as well. I like to think I am enriching human culture with my musings. Thus the second reason to keep an online journal is that it is a means of making permanent creations.

a journal is a soapbox

I kept a journal on paper from 1983 until 1990 and then started keeping a journal using a word processor. After 8 years of devoted work on my journal, I stopped keeping one. It had become too much of an ordeal for the amount of satisfaction it provided me. You see, a journal that exists on paper or on a non-networked computer can only speak to me and perhaps a few others. And I've grown to be an exhibitionist. I want people to live my life with me, to experience it with as much of the vividness as I can convey. Thus, for me, the final reason to keep an online journal is that it allows me to express myself to many people at a minimal price.

why not?

Perhaps it is arrogant to focus so much on myself when people are more interested in their own problems than in mine. But what else do I have to work with aside from my own life? The world is a dark cave and what we know of it is what we can see with the flashlight of our experience. These musings are what I see in this light. It would be impossible for me to say anything beyond this. I could say less, I could distort the truth. I could tell fictional stories, and they would only be good if they were based on my experiences. But I'd rather just write these musings; it is my compulsion.

The people mentioned in these musings are occasionally offended by the things I say about them. This is understandable, since I don't always treat people here with the respect I accord them in real life. As much as possible, I try to tell my readers the whole story of the lives of me and my friends. Some things are left out for legal and social reasons. But there is a lot here that probably shouldn't be. Read and enjoy because some day I'll have the sense to live a more private life.

method to the musings madness

For well over a year now, I've managed to create an entry for every day. I don't want to feel chained to this pattern, though the feeling that every day "must" have an entry has been a powerful motivating force. I don't always write about a day the same day that it happens. Back when I had a night job at Comet, I would write about weekdays in the wee hours of the following day (while I was at work). On the weekends (then and now), because of social craziness, I typically develop a backlog of two days, and I update during the daytime. Entries can be as large as 32K of text, though typically they are around 6 to 11K. I compose entirely on the computer, though occasionally I take note of interesting events on random scraps of paper and use the notes as the basis for subsequent entries. I often revise grammar mistakes in old entries, and I have been known to delete, censor or "encrypt" passages retrospectively because of complaints lodged by VERY CLOSE FRIENDS who dislike what I've said about them. I have done this only a few occasions and in all cases intend to restore the text to the original state on some future day (heroin-addict friends take note).

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