Posted by Ian
My colleague Dom has challenged me to write something that is upbeat, the insinuation being that I have been filling this blog with entries that are almost entirely to do with moaning.
I know that’s not what he’s really implying (or at least I hope not!), but he does have a fair point. Most of what I write here is undoubtedly somewhat serious, at worst po-faced. It must make for joyless reading going through the archives. If it’s not complaining about the media’s coverage of the disappearance of Madeleine McCann it’s complaining about Facebook or complaining about how people seem more interested in Big Brother than Gordon Brown.
By contrast just look at Dom’s last entry: in praise of the diary. Or Laura’s last update: why this summer’s not a wash-out. There’s a pattern emerging here.
I’d hope that one of the strengths of this blog, and indeed the homepage itself, is that its editors are people with different personalities who each bring something different to the site. Our respective characters and traits do, I believe, complement rather than conflict with each other. There’s nothing wrong with a bit of light and shade. Indeed, the more of the latter, especially in hot weather, the better.
Yet I suppose what, to me, seems like healthy scepticism and blunt rationality can sound, to someone else, like relentless doom-mongering. At least with this blog if you don’t like the tone of voice of one entry, another one will be along shortly striking, most probably, a totally different stance.
Do I want what I write to appeal to all the people all of the time, some of the people most of the time, or a few hardy souls day in day out? In the words of the ethereal Harriet Wheeler from The Sundays, though I can’t be sure what I want anymore, it will come to me later.
In the meantime, here are five wholly good, upbeat and worthwhile things to cherish and, yes, praise:
1) The Thick Of It. Currently the best thing on TV.
2) The songs of Paddy McAloon.
3) Curb Your Enthusiasm. "What about the ‘trick’ threat? No treat = trick! Trick or treat, bang bang!"
5) A steaming hot, freshly brewed mug of tea first thing in the morning.