Bratz Boyz Interlude

The Bratz Boyz are "the boys with a passion for fashion.... and the Bratz!" This is London Punkz Cameron. Posted by Hello


Cultivating a Renaissance in the Garden

Having recently purged roughly 220 entries from www.gardenofashes.blogspot.com, having recently scrapped the original moniker “Man of Feeling” and replaced it with “Siege of Derry,” a brief explanation or history seems in order.

I claimed this URL in the fall of 2002, intoxicated by the novelty of the blog format and encouraged by a group of new-ish friends who were similarly enthusiastic about the budding form. The blogs fostered and fed my relationships with these friends; the links on the sites mirrored and traced our connections, our associations, our growing understanding(s) of one another. My boyfriend Kenneth and I also had lots of fun communicating with one another and chatting about the public statements of our friends. It was a little dishy, a little flirty, a little dirty and a lot of fun.

For better or for worse, this circle of friends fell apart after a while, rather suddenly, speedily and untidily. Kenneth continued his blog with increasing success. His witty, astute and crisply written entries generated—rather organically—a readership, a new circle of friendships and connections based more in cyberspace, though with a significant anchor in Madison reality.

I had a tougher time. I continued to blog somewhat steadily, in great part because I knew a number of long distance friends checked in on me here. But the site lacked purpose and often scuttled itself with idiosyncrasy and obtuse antics. When I discovered that some grad students in my program had blogs, I hoped that this new circuit might renovate and re-innervate the blog; however, through no fault of theirs (they have great, inspiring blogs), I failed to rise or revise to the occasion.

Things came to a head at the end of the Spring 2005 semester: the director of English 201 ("Intermediate Composition," the course I taught at the time) organized a read-in for all the grad students teaching the class. I decided just to grab something off of the blog—something light and fun but reasonably crafted. To my astonishment, I found only one, maybe two, entries that I liked enough to share with my peers, and both of these appeared in the first few weeks of the blog. For the read-in, I delivered my 10.22.02 entry to great effect. I also began to question whether or not I should keep up the project, which had degenerated mostly into memes and quiz results (for the record, I’m a BCBG clutch).

Over the next couple of posts, I aim to outline the new goals for the blog, which I hope will become a more satisfying endeavor for myself and for my few kind, patient readers. The 10.22.02 post will set the standard for now. Check it out if you have a sec and haven’t hit it before.