Why bother writing stuff here, in a backwater of the Internet? Only a few people will read it, and they almost always are those who agree with what I write even before I write it. Why keep preaching to the choir?
One answer — pompous and smug — is that the choir needs constant reminders. Closer to the truth is this: the preacher needs to keep on preaching. Why? Because that’s what he does.
All this came to mind this morning as I sorted through old notes, and found a copy of a letter written almost two years ago. It was to a friend who sends the sort of thing I often post; his comment on one piece had been, “might as well keep trying.”
And this is what I wrote back to him.
What’s the point of doing anything, really? Revolutions, more often than not, are horizontal, not vertical; the masses don’t rise as kleptocrats and oligarchs descend in shame, or better yet, in chains; what appears to be a transformation is a transition — the metaphor is a revolving door.
And yet we keep on hacking away at it, as if we really might make something happen. And we do: We antagonize friends, lose sleep, grow ever more cantankerous, learn to live on bile and frenzy. I haven’t yet begun snarling at strangers in the street… I don’t think I have, anyway.
I rouse myself to semi-literate broadsiding now and again, but make contact only with the converted. Why bother with any of it? Why not sit in the sun and watch TV and sign up for Facebook, or whatever the nonce technowhizzery is? I’d surely spend more time in the back yard and less at the VA clinic.
But we do keep on.
Because we’ll go even crazier if we don’t.
Frustration is better than despair.
So, not because you need it, but because I need it, SOG will rise again.