I HAVE A PIECE OF INTERNET (now what)

As Word Press kindly suggested to me, Hello World! My name’s Devon, and it is my pleasure to welcome you to my little tiny piece of the internet. I’m not sure what I’m going to do with it yet. Oh! I know! I’m going to justify the text. Watching the text go on to the next line and leave a gap at the side was painful. All better now.

As you can see, reader,¹ I’m not particularly skilled in the art of blogging. Most problematically, I have to figure out what to do with all the little discontinuous asides that want to go on the screen; if strung together in this post, they would result in entirely illegible writing. So I’ve decided to footnote them when I think they’re worthwhile.

Since I’m new to this medium, I suppose I’ll take a moment to consider the fact that I just typed ‘screen’ and not ‘paper’ or even the suitably ambiguous ‘page’². I also just used the term ‘typed’ instead of ‘wrote’. The former was a conscious decision. I knew my asides were going somewhere relatively tangible, and that tangible location was a screen. However, the second word choice, ‘typed’, is more interesting. In fact, I think it is a bit telling of my character – a little bit old-fashioned and pedantic at times. Old-fashioned because when I think of writing (not in the sense of composing – see below), I think of the honest-to-god shaping of characters with my hands, using an implement to physically trace their form onto a fully tangible surface (though I don’t think my definition extends to engraving.) Typing is an action by which I tell a machine which letters to put where by pressing keys.

As I finished writing the above paragraph (the reasoning behind my word choice will become apparent in the next sentence), I realized that I had just been a touch too pedantic. ‘Type’ was the wrong word to use. When I see the term ‘type’ being used, it almost always refers to a mechanical process – devoid of semantic intent. When I wrote ‘screen’, there was very definite semantic intent. In fact, enough semantic intent that I used three sentences to discuss it.

Anyway, this has been an incredibly self-referential post filled with stream of consciousness. Hopefully I’ll write more interesting stuff in the future, but at least now there is stuff on this blog. Also, I’m getting sort of sleepy.

Footnotes:

1 Note the singular. Unfortunately, English doesn’t have morphology for less than one noun.

2 Speaking of words that are beautifully ambiguous: aþecgan, and Old English word found in the mysterious Wulf and Eadwacer poem, means either to ‘provide care for someone’ or ‘to kill someone’, and was once beautifully translated by Stanley Greenfield as ‘to take care of someone’. Hence, I’ve always imagined Eadwacer’s family as the Corleone family.

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4 comments on “I HAVE A PIECE OF INTERNET (now what)

  1. The S I says:

    It’s things like footnote 2 that make me want to learn Old English. Even if it’s just to use to extra letters.

    • :) Old English is cool. It is also a really good way to gain perspective of how much of our every day language consists of words of foreign origin. Ex. if Old English had carried on developing unhindered by French, we might be saying “The Holy Threeness” instead of “The Holy Trinity”.

      Also, I was hoping this post would remain hidden in the depths of the internet :P

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