A critic at heart (I wrote my first movie and music reviews at 16, arch, snobby, and badly spelled), it occurs to me to that there’s no real “review of blogs” available, or at least that I have happened on. (Perhaps it’s because blogging is already so navel-gazingly self-referential that that’s just too meta?) But fear not, I’m going to try to write up a blog of the week (or the fortnight, month, moon phase, or which ever capricious and totally arbitrary chronological interval fits.)
To start, one of my favorites: Spitalfields’ Life, a daily blog of photographs, local history, stories, people, and idle chatter from East London.
Instead of an “About This Site,” it has this promise from the gentle author:
Over the coming days, weeks, months and years, I am going to write every single day and tell you about life here in Spitalfields at the heart of London. How can I ever describe the exuberant richness and multiplicity of culture in this place to you? This is both my task and my delight.
Let me disclose to you the hare-brained ambition I am pursuing, which is to write at least ten thousand stories about Spitalfields life. At the rate of one a day, this will take approximately twenty-seven years and four months. Who knows what kind of life we shall be living in 2037 when I write my ten thousandth post?
He has kept the promise, stylishly and with charm. (Successfully too, a book has come out, perhaps the ultimate feather in the cap for a blogger). I’m perhaps unfairly biased, as 1) I love London 2) I love quirky local history, and 3) I love people’s stories. There’s also something appealing about using blogs for the kind of content that might have been in the pages of a small-town daily paper a 100 years ago, or perhaps on a broadsheet 200 years ago. A sign that the web’s ability to eliminate distance doesn’t mean it has to extinguish a sense of place.