Wednesday, November 10, 2010
This, the control panel tells me, is my 199th post to The Valve. It will also be my last, and rather than simply drift into silence I thought I’d mark the fact by saying goodbye. Like Rohan, I’ve decided it’s time for me to move on. I began a contributor here in Jan 2006; signing off towards the end of 2010 has a nicely Presidential-termish ring to it.
And it is long enough, I think. A forum like this needs to renew itself periodically, and would grow stale indeed if the same old voices simply churned the same old and the same old over and again. Not that I haven’t had a blast, because I have. Were it not for this Literary Organ I would never have met some of the smartest critical minds it’s been my pleasure to know. Writing here, and for this audience, has stretched me (in a good way), stimulated me, brought me a great deal more pleasure and insight and joy than contumely—though, of course, there’s been a fair bit of that too. But above all it has taught me an immense amount. I’m very grateful. Thank you everybody: I don’t know half of you half as well as I should like; and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve. Which is my cue to put on the magic ring and slip, invisibly, away.
Well, I won’t say goodbye to Adam, exactly, since I read both of his other blogs. Thanks for all the posts here!
But I think that this is pretty much it for the Valve. Not to disparage the people who are still posting, but a critical mass of the contributors are gone, and the two editors haven’t shown up in a while. There now isn’t really any reason to post on the Valve rather than one’s own blog. I think that this was coming for good while now: Holbo started the blog with a specific plan for what it was going to do, and the Internet and the blog platform and academia all turned out to not really work that way. Also, the conflict over Theory, while disparaged by various lovers of civility, was good for everyone involved. Without conflict, well… a series of disconnected readings of works again has no real need for a group blog.
Thanks to everyone who has written in comments here. I’m sure that I’ll still be around for whatever remains, but really, I think it’s pretty much done.
To fully signal the end of an era, let it be stated that I agree 100% with Rich.
Hey Adam, thanks and it’s been fun! I think it’s still possible that some new folks might coagulate around the good ol’ place. No reason not, although Scott and I are sort of out of the game. (We’ve had a bit of email chat about this possibility - I don’t mean just Scott and I, I mean all those currently on the author list there.) I don’t think it’s at all unnatural for a blog to die at the ripe old age of 5, or however exactly long it’s been - if it indeed comes to that.
I do think the Theory stuff has aged tolerably well, and I’m glad Adam K. apparently feels the same.
Like folk music, bebop and break-dancing before it, The Valve has a natural life-cycle; its (eventual) endpoint gives it definition. If the Valve Archive is still available ten or twenty (or 150) years from now, Psycho-Archeologists will have a pretty good glimpse of the second movement of the Bush2 segment of the jagged arc of Imperial decline… and the pressures it exerted on its sensitive intelligentsia…
(still can’t bring myself to use a smiley emoticon)
Sad to see you go, Adam. I’m sure I’ll check in at one of your other blogs now and then.
I’ve enjoyed your thoughts and books a great deal, Adam. You’re One of the Good People.
Wait. Is this blog closing down, or just one author’s participation?
As a writer, I’d hate to lose the Valve.