Document

If a blog has its own identity then this one is in an existential crisis. I say this because 1) it’s an exercise in free will, and 2) I’m wondering what the point is. To put it another way, I’m considering committing blog suicide. Ending it, putting it out of its misery, sending it off to the big sleep.

I’ve been in Korea for two years and eight months. I’ve had this blog for all but four months of that time. I’ve used it primarily as an opportunity to share my impressions of living in this culture. I have a particular audience in mind when I write, that being my family. Actually, when I write, I usually have my mom in mind, because I know she reads all the time and I know she enjoys it. But there are two reasons why I think it’s time to end it…

First, my readership has plummeted. This is partly my own fault. I don’t blog as much as I used to. Still, there were times in the past when output has lightened but readership stayed somewhat strong. Something’s different now. The major blow came from the bastards at Pusanweb.com. They used to link here via a blogroll and I’d get tons of hits. But they changed their policy for some stupid reason and now never link here.

I think the PIFF thing is what really depressed me. During last year’s PIFF festival I’d get about 150-175 hits a day. A quick look at my traffic for PIFF week this year, and it’s down to about 40 hits a day. That’s a serious reduction in traffic. And it’s a drag. I spent a lot of time working on coverage for PIFF because it’s a brilliant festival and a great time to be in Busan. I post observations and reviews hoping that maybe, with a little readership, people might be able to search and find information on these lesser-known films and on the overall experience. But c’mon… 40 readers a day? If no one’s reading, why make the effort? Comments have also ground to a halt. I like the idea of blog posts as an opening for discussion, but that doesn’t happen anymore (unless I’m bagging on the Pope).

My second reason for wanting to end it might actually be a contributing to the first reason. Maybe, after two and a half plus years of being here, I have nothing else to contribute. I don’t look on my experience here with nearly as much wonder. I still have strange and interesting things happening to me, but I’m not surprised by them. When I come home, I no longer feel like I spent the day in a virtual reality world. In a way this has me feeling nostalgic for the crazy early days of Korean life, when everything felt unknown and exhilarating, and writing therefore became almost compulsory.

So the well’s run dry I suppose, at least in regard to documenting observations. I continue to meet new and interesting and creative people, I’m fully involved in music projects, I spend an hour or so every day studying Korean, I prepare for classes, I do academic research (not as much as I should), I work on expanding my understanding of sound design (my new thing is modular synthesis and sampling), I have at least one new collaborative film project coming up (probably more like three), and I’m making preparations for future endeavors. It’s life. It’s interesting to me, but probably not to anyone else.

I don’t know if I’ll stop posting. But I probably won’t feel compelled to keep it going as some form of necessary document. When I take a trip to a new temple or a new village, when I travel, when I see an interesting movie — when I have something I feel is worthy of sharing, then maybe I’ll share it. But I think the times of two or three or four times a week are over. Probably more like once a month. We’ll see.

Incidentally, I should also bounce this back to Tharp’s blog, because he’s saying a lot of the same things as me (although mercifully, with more brevity). He didn’t inspire this post, but he did beat me to the punch, as he often does… the bastard.

Anyway, if you enjoy what I write, I thanks for reading. That’s kind of the point.

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4 Responses to “Document”

  1. czechmate Says:

    I forbid you to abandon your blog totally. Reduce it to once a month if need be. But your blog is your running account of your life in Korea. Those entries you make have meaning and purpose and historic value. What you have written about over the last two plus years will never happen again.

  2. Mom is still reading and looking forward to entries.

  3. Don’t do it! There’s too much to live for!

  4. Hey man don’t do it! I love reading your blog…

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