Monday, August 11, 2008

looking up, forecast,diaries

Posted by PicasaIt occurs to me that one day there will be no chimneys or chimney stacks on our skyline as open fires give way to insulated houses kept warm by central heating, fired by condensing boilers, wind-powered electricty or solar panels . All the more reason to get up there on the rooftops where I have been camping out with my camera for the last few days.

My mistrust of the weather forecast is confirmed today, August 11, at 12 noon, when I read the forecast on the BBC homepage, which promises that we can expect sunny intervals on Sunday, ie yesterday.

More thoughts on diaries prompted by comments gratefully received. Four hundred years ago, on August 11 1688, Samuel Pepys wrote in his diary, in anticipation, one might suppose, of Barrett Bonden's blog Works Well"...and thence at the office all afternoon till night, being mightily pleased with a little trial I have made of the use of a Tube-spectacall of paper, tried with my right eye." Pepys wrote his diary in an easily decipherable code (using, in some accounts of his bawdy encounters with chamber maids and the like, a mixture of French and Spanish words, which seemed to him more appropriate to describe his goings on), and left the manuscript in the care of Magdalene College, Cambridge, almost certainly with posterity in mind. Diaries written by politicians during their term of office, and usually regarded by their authors as a form of pension, are clearly written for others to read. But there remains an idea, quite contrary to the theory and practice of blogging, that diaries should, for a time at least, be secret, a constraint which, is reinforced, for a time, by the laws of libel. It seems to me, meanwhile, that one aspect both of blogs and diaries is the therapeutic benefit and the creative satisfaction which it brings to those who produce them.


Anonymous said...

Love all your chimney posts. Here, they are so ordinary and plain, just rectangular or square.

Blogs as therapeutic and creative endeavours I can agree with!

Roderick Robinson said...

Yes, I accept the theory of temporary secrecy with diaries even though temporary might well involve decades.

Such delay carries risks - eg, diaries subsequently destroyed by the over-protective spouse? As with Richard Burton, the traveller. I suppose the answer is simple: book destruction can never be justified. Or can it? A question for the evening institute ethics class. Together with: What are the implications of a book unread by anyone?