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On blogging and evil January 5, 2007

Posted by BiB in Uncategorized.

Having given up on the idea that he is going to hassle me into stopping blogging, the Russian has now decided that he must somehow add a spot of torture to the experience for me. It can’t be all play, this blogging, without even a hint of suffering in it. No, you want to get some rules in there. A bit of discipline. 10km of blogging before breakfast, then a starvation diet, then 15 seconds of sleep before getting up and doing the whole thing again the next day. That’s more like it.

“You khev blogged today?” the Russian asked yesterday.

“I have, actually, yes.”

“And yesterday?”

“Erm, no.”

Consternation and disbelief on the meaty Slavic visage. “But you must blog every day!” Which I sort of half-agree with, in a way, but it does make me worry that the Russian thinks the blog has become my job.

So here I am, doing my spousely duty and blogging. Bugger all to blog about, of course. But that’s never mattered before. It might have to be some blogging about blogging… Now I know the Russian’s main objection to (my) blogging is probably really a time-thang. Here I am, pissing around writing 500 words of nonsense, when I could be applying for or even doing exciting jobs like translating a contract, but I think he secretly thinks there’s something devilishly naughty about the whole pursuit. And I’ve heard Lucy Kellaway, whom I normally sort of like, and plus her husband is the editor of Prospect Magazine, which makes me think she must be nice, harping on about pointless blogs and pointless blogging. But I think we’re lovely, charitable types and if we can’t all colonise Pats’s pad in the south of France, I think we should go and colonise some nice big island – like Australia – and live in blogging heaven there, blogging each other our shopping lists and blogging our hearts out.

But never one to miss a chance for a bit of self-doubt, I’ve been examining myself and my fellow bloggers for signs of evil, just to make sure. Now the two bloggers I knew before blogging existed (in my internal world, at least) display no overt signs of wickedness. Admittedly, I haven’t seen the latter since he took up the habit, but the former visited last year and seemed no wickeder than BBE (before the blogging era). I’ve met a gaggle of bloggers from Berlin (and further afield) too and B., for example, doesn’t even bear a passing resemblance to Myra Hindley.

So I think the Russian and Lucy Kellaway should probably shut up.

But do let me know if you’re wicked in any particular way.


1. bowleserised - January 5, 2007

“B., for example, doesn’t even bear a passing resemblance to Myra Hindley.”

That’s just because you’ve never seen me with blonde hair.

2. pleite - January 5, 2007

Christ, that was quick! Do you think we’re wicked and should be deleting our blogs immediately?

3. bowleserised - January 5, 2007

Yes, I’m a little hungover today, and the hair board where I normally fritter my time away has been hacked by some nasty slavs, so, *flexes fingers* shall we break you comments record?

4. BiB - January 5, 2007

Vot? You mean you are not vörking? Go and vörk! Frittering time away is a great sin…

I am not hungover. Alas.

There’s some lovelily bitter writer on Desert Island Discs. Get onto Radio 4 immediately.

5. Annie - January 5, 2007

I had not heard of Lucy Kellaway but had a quick look at the link – so she’s a ‘managment columnist’. And apparently recent articles include ‘poking fun at management fads and jargon’ and ‘celebrating the ups and downs of office life’… ‘I did a silly thing at our office party’ ‘Lucy Kellaway analyses your workplace woes in her fortnightly “Agony Aunt” column’ ‘That Shell company song – an award for Company Song So Awful I Was Positive It Was a Spoof’… If only we could write on such weighty, important issues on our pointless blogs.

And I am pure undiluted evil. I shout at small children in my day job and make them cry. Then I blog about it. Bwahahahahaha!

6. pleite - January 5, 2007

Annie, I refuse to believe you are wicked for a single second… But can you choose what to give your children to read? It’s http://www.anthonyhorowitz.com/ on Desert Island Discs and he’s a gripping listen, so I imagine he could be a gripping read, and he writes for children. Can it be your good deed for the day to introduce the little ones to him?

LK has a slightly whiney voice. I’ve got a feeling the point of this post might have indirectly been from wanting to have a little bollock of her for bollocking blogs. And instead I end up bollocking the Russian more. You see! Told you I was wicked!

7. bowleserised - January 5, 2007

His books were all the rage with der kids when I was working in a bookshop.

8. pleite - January 5, 2007

B., are you wicked in any perceivable ways? Or does blogging make you so? You don’t seem it, I must say. And I repeat. Not even a bit like Ms. Hindley.

I’ve decided to instantly have a crush on Mr. Horowitz, which I expect to have forgotten about by this evening. Anyway, he’s married with children, so the crush is unlikely to be requited, and my face hurts, so I wouldn’t even be able to give him a sneaky kiss without having to howl in horror, which he might find difficult for his first, gayish kiss.

(My god, Radio 4 is brilliant. There’s a programme about money on now. I quite feel like never working again.)

9. bowleserised - January 5, 2007

Have you got mumps?

Am I wicked? Well, that’s all a matter of opinion.

10. pleite - January 5, 2007

Fuck, mumps. I hadn’t thought I might have a nameable disease, although I rather like the idea. That should get me sympathy galore. Yes, let’s pretend I’ve got mumps. Is it contagious? I’m meant to celebrate Orthodox Christmas tomorrow. Or is that one of those diseases one gets only once? I might have had it in my childhood. I need to go and google it for symptoms. Mine are sore, stiff, puffy face. And sore, stiff, puffy knees, although that seems permanent.

OK, I’m going to go and force myself on the public and see if I turn any heads, for all the wrong reasons.

11. MountPenguin - January 5, 2007

In thirty or so years time, Indian or Chinese social historians will be writing books with titles like “The Downfall of the West” explaining how phenomena such as blogging (both writing, reading and commenting thereof) led to a chronic collapse in productivity, forcing destitute bloggers to finance their addiction by begging Renminbi and rupees from incoming tourists at major airports – tourism being the only remaining economic activity in Europe, apart from the call centres of several Indian banks, which had been outsourced to Newcastle.

12. bowleserised - January 5, 2007

I hope it’s not mumps. I think that makes your nads swell up and drop off if you’re a boy.

MP – you think China’s energy policy is going to ensure this planet is habitable then? Let’s blog while the earth burns, nothing we can do about it at this rate…

13. BiB - January 5, 2007

Gosh, Penguin. I hope the pension age will have been reduced to 50 by then. Or do I need to start studying Hindi or Mandarin to make myself employable? You’ll be laughing!

(B., this may be Jerome-K.-Jeromish of me but I’ve looked up mumps and you’re spot on. I’m convinced I’ve got it.)

14. MountPenguin - January 5, 2007

I had mumps twice as a child, and have not noticed that any bits dropped off, although I had to have the hunchback surgically removed.

How about “scarlet fever” for a romantic sounding disease?

As for the Chinese, they are working on a national plan which involves the entire population stamping on the ground at pre-arranged times, which will subtly alter the planet’s orbit away from the sun and reduce the incoming heat.

15. Marsha Klein - January 5, 2007

Oooh, that does sound awfully like mumps! Yes, it is contagious and, I think, it’s one of the childhood diseases with particular implications for young men.

Am I wicked? (Actually, am I allowed to play this game, as I’m not a blogger at the moment?) Assuming I am allowed to play because I might be a blogger again soon, my answer would be, depends on whether you mean wicked in an “undiluted evil” kind of way or a hip’n’happening “down wit da kidz” kinda way”!! I tend more towards the former despite striving to be the latter, as witnessed by, for example, my activities last night when I watched a TV special (written in part by Patro’s lovely new boyfriend, both of whom I would link to except I don’t know how!) in the company of several 16 year-olds, whom I was trying desperately to impress with my “insider” (ie gleaned from the internet) knowledge of the show! By the end of the night my own daughter wanted to strangle me (probably).

Radio 4 is indeed brilliant. I plan to spend today ironing while listening to EVERYTHING that’s on.

16. Annie - January 5, 2007

I share your crush on Antony Horowitz, he definitely looks cute, but might be a bit over the heads of the kids at this age – they are more at the ‘3 little pigs’ stage. I applaud the Russian’s reverse psychology! Cunning Russian!

PS: hope you don’t have mumps. How about consumption?

17. bowleserised - January 5, 2007

I think I must be quicked for implanting the idea that you have mumps

18. Daggi - January 5, 2007

I won’t need to bother meeting B. then, if she doesn’t look like Myra Hindley. Which is a shame; and it also makes it more difficult when trying to spot her in Helmholtzplatz cafés and roundabout. My headteacher at school looked like Rosemary West though.

11.58 and the fucking post office weren’t there. I bet they’ve just sneaked a bit of paper in the letterbox containing an invitation to pick it up (with passport, Anmeldebescheinigung and residence permit, yes, that’s what happens if you decide, stupidly, to buy a very cheap mobile telephone via the internet) in Wilmersdorf.

I think I’ve got the flu coming on. Or is it mumps? And where I work, nobody’s ever bought anything by Horowitz. I’ll have a wee listen-again listen before I leave for my graveyard (and seeing the numbers of people who turn up late, and then what they look like, it’s an appropriate description) shift.

19. bowleserised - January 5, 2007


Not quicked

(I tried to post this and got this notice from WordPress:

“You are posting comments too quickly. Slow down.”)

20. Daggi - January 5, 2007

It might not be mumps. Look at NHS direct. You’ll be convinced you’re dead already within 5 minutes, while, confusingly, being advised it’s not important enough to hassle a GP with – a nurse in a call centre will do fine.

21. Daggi - January 5, 2007

IS this too quick too?

22. Daggi - January 5, 2007

Evidently not. (But this was). 5 seconds too quick, 10 fine.

23. Daggi - January 5, 2007

For rights reasons Desert Island Discs is not available as a listen again item.

24. BiB - January 5, 2007

Penguin, phew. I suppose I’m quite attached to my man-parts, in a way. Although didn’t Ranulph lose bits of himself on his last Antarctic expedition? Hasn’t done him any harm. (Is he still alive?) And I think that Chinese plan is awfully cunning. I’ve mentioned Burns from The Simpsons over at RFM before. He invents something that blocks out the sun so people will use more power. Nothing unethical in that, is there?

Marsha, I can’t link unaided either. And of course you can play. Though, as an ex-blogger, you are presumably less and less wicked and evil by the minute. And your wicked-and-evilness levels will soar the moment you reinstate the blog. Which is not to be discouraging, of course.

Annie, yes, it must be consumption. I have lived in St. Petersburg after all and have an almost Russian soul. (Did your -sky ancestors come from Russia?) But I’m not in pain, really, and, thankfully, am not coughing up blood, even though I now haven’t smoked for five days. (Are you still off ’em?) But if it’s not mumps, scarlet fever or consumption, it must be St. Vitus’ Dance (I now see, otherwise prosaically known as Sydenham Chorea).

B., I liked quicked, and was happy to accept it was a word I didn’t know. It’d probably be worth a fortune in Scrabble. But nothing wicked about suggesting mumps. I’m happy for it to be my illness. I shan’t darken a doctor’s door, of course, so will never know, unless it really does get to the droppy-offy stage, in which case I may consider consulting a quack.

Daggi, does even Radio 4 do spite? I thought it was the perfect world, in a way, though I have temporarily switched it off as I wonder about whether to actually leave the house. And while I know it’s baking outside, it’s not actually as warm as being snugly indoors, is it? And I am ill. Sort of… Has your phone turned up yet? (And does wordpress really have a speed limit?)

25. Beaman - January 5, 2007

Maybe you mentioned it in an earlier post but has the Russian ever been attracted to the idea of his own blog?

26. pleite - January 5, 2007

Beaman, hello! I wouldn’t be surprised, as he likes fiddling around on the net. But he’d be writing in Russian, of course. Also, if he did have one or – shudder – DOES have one, he wouldn’t tell me about it. In fact, I can’t remember how he found out about this one. I must have come clean in a rare moment of harmony and candour. Madness.

27. Annie - January 5, 2007

yes indeed – in fact my ancestors were very popular in Russia, the Cossacks used to like chasing them on horsebacks with flaming pitchforks. Probably. Well done for not smoking! I have taken it up again, so you see the balance has been restored.

28. pleite - January 5, 2007

I’ve just had a quick google of the name – in a non-stalky way, I promise! – and there aren’t many references to the “real” Russian version – Сламинский – although spellings often end up getting changed through emigration/time/mistakes etc.

Sorry about the smoking. I’ve only accidentally sort of not-on-purpose given up, and I’m sure I’ll falter the first time I’m in a social sitch with booze and a smoker within a 12-kilometre radius, which could well be tomorrow. I don’t WANT to give up, really. I love smoking. Booze troubles me more, in a way, but then life would be TOO gloomy if I had to give that up too.

29. Beaman - January 5, 2007

The trick is to never have put a cigarette in your mouth, ever. Then you don’t know what you’re missing. I’m pretty sure I would have tumbled into the smoker’s world if I had taken a few puffs at some stage in my teens. Sorry, not very helpful advice at this stage of your smoking career, not that you want to give up.

30. dree - January 5, 2007

You’ve got to blog somewhere! I am, in New York!

31. BiB - January 5, 2007

Beaman, quite right to never have smoked. I was an utterly uninterested-in-smoking youngster, and had to force myself to want to smoke so hard, for the sake of impressing, of course, though I don’t suppose it impressed anyone. I took to it like a duck to water eventually though, having pretended, bonkersly, throughout my fag-fuelled life that I’ve never really been a smoker at all.

32. BiB - January 5, 2007

Dree, hello! Yes, quite right. Blogging is a must. Screw the anti-bloggers. And I’m sure New York must be a good place to be doing anything, not just blogging. With two Amsterdams in your life you must be spoilt for inspiration choice.

33. Daggi - January 5, 2007

Did the phone turn up? Did it fuck.

11.58 and the fucking post office weren’t there. I bet they’ve just sneaked a bit of paper in the letterbox containing an invitation to pick it up

Leave for work at 1pm and find Benachrichtigungsschein – not in the letterbox, that would have involved walking into the house and Hof – and I would have seen him – but stuck it with a bit of sticky tape next to the entryphone doorbell thingy. “We were there at 8.25am.” Off to Wilmersdorf it is then, tomorrow morning.

Funnily enough (actually, not very funny when you think about it, considering it costs 12ct/min to phone them from a landline, which I don’t have, so it costs me about an Euro a minute) everytime I’ve phoned DHL to try and find out where the parcel is, I seem to have “been randomly chosen to take part in a customer satisfaction survey”. Your opinions are important to us. After sorting out what rubbish you have to talk with us about, plebs, don’t hang up. Hang on the line for much longer while you tell us about how crap you find us, we pretend to care, and laugh while we rake even more of your money in! Hahaha, DHL, part of Deutsche Post World Net Rip Off Motherfuckers.

Needless to say, I haven’t yet been daft enough to stay on the line for even a microsecond longer than necessary.

34. Valerie in San Diego - January 6, 2007

I’m definitely wicked in countless ways. But sadly, they have nothing to do with my blog. Perhaps I should change that… but perhaps no. I pretty much detailed my personal wickedness to the Internet twenty years ago, in a way likely to garner far more readers than a boring blog.

Speaking of which the number of comments here rather indicates that your blog is not boring.

35. BiB - January 6, 2007

Daggi, any telephone transaction is far more wicked than anything to do with blogging. Remember how I bonkersly tried to convince you last year that I’d found that great deal: 2 2-year mobile contracts and a laptop thrown in? Well, of course if I’d done even a bit of elementary arithmetic, I would have realised I could have provided $100 laptops for everyone in Africa for the same sum with enough left over to irrigate the continent while I was at it. An enormous initial fee. Ludicrously high bills. Utterly crap phones. The laptop does still at least work, with only a year to go of the contract, inspite of British airport baggage-handlers’ best efforts to smash it to bits. And gmx clearly likes these 2-year things. We recently agreed to speed up our internet connection from speed of light to speed of sound (or other way round). We agreed to sacrifice our internal organs should we try to get out of the agreement within 2 years… and, having ignored us for two months, they then told us our area isn’t capable of speed-of-light internet… but fuck off and ner, ner, ner, ner, ner for another 22 months anyway… I hope you are now, at least, in possession of your shiny new mobile.

Valerie, hello! I shall get researching your wickedness immediately. 1986/1987… What wickedness was happening then? Did YOU personally unleash the hurricane on the south of England? NO! You don’t mean it! CHERNOBYL! I’m much more boring than my blog, by the way, but that is logical because nice folk like you and all those others visit and make the blog more interesting. Thank you.

36. Welsherella - January 6, 2007

Ooh, no! Your blog is definitely not boring! I am very wicked, as I have been doing too much of that studying crap to allow me to properly follow your blog for weeks. Am I not incredibly evil?! However, now I’m back again, and despite this being in the wrong comments box really, please will you let me be one of the female medical staff you talk about?! I promise to be convincing, if not actually any good at my job. Oh, and I would take evilness lessons if that would make my CV more appealing?!
Happy new year, by the way.

37. pleite - January 6, 2007

And a blwyddyn newydd dda to you too, which I’m sure is wrong.

YES! Please tend to me. I’ve actually given up smoking (till tonight, I’m guessing, between you and me), but I might still shout for wine and fags anyway, out of pure nastiness. And how can a nurse be wicked? Nurses are the embodiment of goodness (until they start killing all their patients). As long as you can change a drip and fasten handcuffs, the job’s yours. I’ve just got to find that house by the sea… Ooh, I hadn’t thought of Wales. A nice blustery bit of the Llyn Peninsula might be nice, but will I instantly be burned out of my home for being an English imperialist interloper wicked person?

38. David (TEFL Smiler) - January 7, 2007

From a long time ago, here’s how evil I am. If that helps.

39. pleite - January 7, 2007

David, I am, sorry to say, angelic, apparently. (I need to fiddle with wordpress. Anything with an attachment keeps going for moderation.) Which isn’t true. But hopefully I’m not actually evil either.

40. Welsherella - January 8, 2007

Probably. But then so will I because while I adopt every accent I come into contact with, I absolutely refuse to adopt that horrific twang they have in North Wales. (Apologies to anyone from the gogledd; I’m sure you hate the south accent in the same way).
I can change a drip, although do tend to spill things a lot. Hope that would be ok?

41. pleite - January 9, 2007

Oh, spillage is fine. And I’ll hardly notice as I’ll be tripping on oxygen.

I’m a terrible accent-adopter. The only place I couldn’t manage it was New Zealand, as any attempts at enzedising myself made me slightly Australian. So I went for a Prince Charles while I was there instead. The locals loved it. “You sound SO Brutush!” (Not brutish. That was an attempt at enzedising British.)

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