March 1, 2010

Notes

Roughly six weeks ago, I told a friend and reader of this blog that I had roughly zero interest* in JoS, but I sure hoped my attitude changed when spring training began.

* A couple of days ago, Laura posted "Is [wmtc] falling apart?" and, in comments, I mused: "Should I write my 'it didn't bother me so much in january but now spring training has started and I am still meh about my own blog' post now?"

And my attitude has improved ... somewhat. Right now, I feel like there is a fog between me and the team.** I can see them, but I can't focus and concentrate and engage with them very well. I'm not sure why.

** Also, I can tell that I'm connecting digging for info on the team in the middle of December and blogging. If I was reading everything I could about the team, then I guess I'd probably be posting about it. Although I stayed informed through the winter, it was almost exclusively via SoSH and not actual media sites and I had little desire to blog about any of it.

After 2004, my intensity level re individual games dropped considerably. Losses annoyed me, but for mere minutes, not hours and days. I discovered the pleasure of relaxing and enjoying my team play. Every game was no longer fraught with urgency, because what if we lose and then miss the playoffs by one game, and then it's yet another fucking year with no championship and I'm getting older and are these shitheads ever gonna win it all? I did not plan for (or even expect) that change, but I really like it.

So: Is my brain planning another shift in perspective? I have absolutely no idea. Have I merely lost most of my interest in the minutiae of the off-season and spring training? I guess I'll find out soon enough.

Example
The W-L contest is right around the corner -- and I am stumped for a prize. Any ideas?
Example
There were several books that I should have reviewed last season. Since I did not want to write about them during the winter (when readership is low), I've waited until spring. So I hope to get those out of the way this month.
Example
I'm still making my way through Infinite Jest, but the JoS group read pretty much fizzled right out of the gate. Alas. I have also been thinking a lot about an IJ-related writing project, despite the possibility (probability?) that I'm fairly unqualified to do it. Thinking about that might also be using up some of my attention that I would otherwise be directing towards Fort Myers.

26 comments:

buffwarrior said...

JOS is one of my favorite blog reads. I think it's natural to have you're own spring training of sorts with blogging. How do you get excited about Boof opening up at Northwestern or whatever college he's pitching against? The excitement will return just as certainly as the first games start. Don't beat yourself up.
This is one of the few sites where the Spankie fans haven't vomited their contempt and lack of intelligence for the beloved Sox. Those sites where intelligent comments are far and few, but good naming calling sparring occurs. There's not much to write about yet..we could talk about Cameron's sore hamstring..but I rather not. Thanks for making this blog site such a clever, witty, intelligent and entertaining blog site. Sign me a quiet fan for a few years.

johngoldfine said...

I doubt I missed a game from 1969 to 1980 or so, mostly on radio, not always the whole game but most of them. And Sporting News and digests and Who's Who in BB and books and so on and on.

I insisted that my school supply a TV in class for Opening Day and Patriots Day. I took my kids from Maine to Fenway. I brooded. I cursed. I raved. I dragged my wife along with me into a folie a deux.

And then my long infatuation just tapered off and eventually disappeared and I became a not-very-informed-but-always-fannish sort of guy.

I have no idea why the heat cooled. Not drawing a parallel with you: I doubt you are merely infatuated with the RS, not from your comments on game threads, which seem to be the comments of a lover, a serious man, not a flirt.

Zenslinger said...

It might suck for the rest of us if you put less effort toward this blog, but it is your life. I didn't like giving up on IJ, but...same deal.

We dig you either way.

L-girl said...

It might suck for the rest of us if you put less effort toward this blog, but it is your life.

That's what it comes down to. You can't and shouldn't blog out of an obligation that you've created, or to meet the expectations of your readers, or because you've done it this long, so you think you can't stop or change directions now.

A friend and long time wmtc reader said:

Just remember, you don't owe us readers anything. The only person you owe anything through this blog is yourself, and that includes maintaining a blog you're pleased with

I think that includes not blogging at all, if that's where life takes you, or putting the blog on hiatus while you focus on something else.

L-girl said...

I doubt I missed a game from 1969 to 1980 or so

If that's true, that is incredibly impressive. I try my hardest to never miss a game, but find it's pretty much impossible to watch or listen to all 162.

I don't do all the other stuff that is supposedly connected with loving a sport - don't read sports stories or blogs (other than this one), don't try to follow what's happening around the league, at least until later in the season - but I'd prefer to never miss a game, ever.

Btw, when I say "if that's true," it's not that I question your truthfulness, John - only that memory distorts. I would say I never missed a game from 1996-2002, but can that can that really be true? I did have a life, so somehow I doubt it.

FenFan said...

Blogging takes a lot of effort; I did it regularly for a few years but in the past couple of years my efforts have tapered. Whether it's because my 9-to-5 job has become more involved or that I'd rather spend my free time with my wife and three kids, I cannot say.

I've always admired the work that you have done at JoS. It is one of only a couple of blogs that I read on a regular basis, i.e., at least once a day.

If you taper off your posts, I'll still have had the good fortune to enjoy the ride here for all those years... and I'll be back if and when it resumes. :-)

L-girl said...

If you do want to put JoS on hiatus, we can gamethread at another forum - revive Threadsox or create a new blog only for gamethreads. The core group would come along, and it would build.

Just an idea, since gamethreads must be a factor in your thoughts about the blog.

L-girl said...

The W-L contest is right around the corner -- and I am stumped for a prize. Any ideas?

Winner gets a free ticket to JoS2. Transportation not included, but ticket is free.

L-girl said...

PS I realize JoS2 (assuming there is one this year) will be held before the W-L contest is over. So maybe it's more like a refund than a free ticket.

James said...

I don't post all that much, but I do read this blog pretty much every day, and will continue to do so. Absolutely my favorite blog, and though I've never met any of you I harbor a real affection for all of you. That said, it's always easy to tell when someone who used to loves something starts doing it out of a sense of obligation. No one is going to be upset with you if you have to shut it down.

accudart said...

I think everyone is telling you the same, do it for your enjoyment. I love the blog, but if you write less it might feel like more of a treat for you to write, who knows. The only comp I can come up with right now would be Howard Stern. If he comes back only part time with Sirus, I would keep paying the fee.

westcoastsox said...

As a former blogger myself, I totally understand the burnout. And I have to say, I have no desire to go back. As much as you say to yourself it isn't an obligation, it really does feel like one. Just know that whatever you do, all of us regulars (or "irregulars," like me) appreciate all you have done.

I might have to actually beg for a SoSH handle if you quit, though.

redsock said...

I'm totally not looking for praise or anything like that, but thanks. It just seemed big enough to mention.

I hope to watch Wednesday's BC game (or some of it, anyway) and I cannot imagine not being pumped for G1 against the Nazis.

***

Oh, yeah, JoS2! Forgot to mention that.

redsock said...

This is one of the few sites where the Spankie fans haven't vomited

That is by design, by as you know. If comments were totally open, this blog would be ruined pretty quickly. I'd never want to hang out at a place where morons yelled back and forth, so ....

And then my long infatuation just tapered off and eventually disappeared and I became a not-very-informed-but-always-fannish sort of guy.

I found I could not root for the Sox while I was writing 1918. I tried forcing it, but it was pointless. Accudart can vouch for how weird that was (I think it was 1995 when we were on the phone during the playoffs). Thank Pedro they did not win until I was back on board.

johngoldfine said...

Btw, when I say "if that's true," it's not that I question your truthfulness, John - only that memory distorts

Memory is very unreliable, it's true, and I spent a lot of time dealing with that very truth when I was working on my historiography and methodology in grad school.

And, sure, there was that trip to NJ for a week before my son was born in 9174, and there was another trip or two to visit my mother in Truro and no way was she going to listen to the radio (she was at Fenway the night Tony C got beaned but said later she was putting on lipstick during his AB...) and there were some West Coast games that I fell asleep on. And so on.

But what I remember first is night after night, saying: Are they at home? When does the game start? And driving out to Pushaw Lake trying to pull in a Sunday game on the VW bug radio. Or stopping typing as the crowd roared, pulling my attention away from my work. Or sitting on the porch in the dark in Old Town trying to beat the heat with Ned and Jim. And making all my seventh grade class watch the Patriots Day game as part of a lesson on their New England heritage. And the regular opening day festivities at home when my kids were little (Fenway franks, bats and gloves hanging from the ceiling, etc. And the schedule cut out from the Globe taped to the fridge, with each game marked W or L. And my daughter's first words of English (apart from 'Suzy's bad' [Suzy the dog who ate my Albert Payson Terhune]) were ones she picked up her first summer in the US from my mutterings as I listened to the game: 'C'mon, c'mon, come onnnnn!'

Anyway, I agree with accudart and westcoastsox and the others who offer you praise unmixed with anything less and who will be fans of JoS and RS, whatever 2010 brings.

redsock said...

Nothing will be changing for 2010.

Jere said...

"I found I could not root for the Sox while I was writing 1918."

I'm not following you here...you mean you couldn't spend your time paying attention to baseball, or you wanted to make sure the book still had meaning or what?

L-girl said...

A, re Jere's question, perhaps you will post that old essay you wrote on the topic.

It was a strange time, indeed. It's also why Allan and I never had problems over the rivalry, back when I was on the other side. First there was all those years NYY sucked, then when they were competitive again, A was writing his book.

And then my conversion in 2003.

Allan not cheering for the Red Sox was very strange. But I'll hold off, he should explain it himself.

L-girl said...

John, nice memories. I have the same kind of experience for the years I mentioned above, especially 1998. Plus that fall I went through a bad time emotionally, and I felt like baseball saved me. It's amazing, the emotional attachments a season can have.

Ish said...

We can definitely have a spot just for game threads. There doesn't even need to be anything more than, "G1 Gamethread team vs. Red Sox, starting pitchers." And then let the comments section or whatever it may be take care of itself.

Twitter will be interesting this year for Red Sox games. I've met many Bruins fans through Twitter from live tweeting during games.

This has always been my go-to for Sox stuff and you are all my first choice to talk Red Sox with. Nobody else knows who Flo is.

redsock said...

Although I prefer the message board format for threads, 2010 will be the same as 2009.

redsock said...

Except we will win the WS this time!

redsock said...

And Derek Jeter will admit that he has been the sole distributor of steroids to MLB players for the last decade.

9casey said...

redsock said...
Although I prefer the message board format for threads, 2010 will be the same as 2009.



Sweet.......

Redsock, I can see how this blog can get to you, we as commenters as well can get on your nerves after awhile, but it still remains, with Jere's, the only blogs about the Red Sox I read.

Keep up the good work , we appreciate it, very much.

There has been some good times on here, some good arguements, some happy times, some really funny times, but most of all a comfortable place to be educated and entertained about all sorts of things..

Some topics aren't for me, but I read them anyway, I can't say I do that very often, except on here..

L-girl said...

There has been some good times on here, some good arguements, some happy times, some really funny times, but most of all a comfortable place to be educated and entertained about all sorts of things..

Wow, that's lovely.

I bet that's the first time someone called a 9Casey comment lovely!

I will add to Casey's list my attachment to all the commenters. Our community.

Fragile Freddy said...

I took about 9 months off from my blog starting early in 2008. I found it pretty relaxing but after awhile I realized two things;

- I still had things I wanted to say
- I didn't care about doing it in a formal way

I had allowed the structure of the blog to drive the topics rather than the other way around. It began to feel like an obligation. Taking time away allowed me to come back and do what I wanted to do, the way I wanted to do it.

Write what you want, don't write what you don't want. You have a lot of fans but I think one constant theme I see in the comments is that people here genuinely like you and would prefer you to be happy. Your first obligation is to yourself and your loved ones, never forget that.