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Saturday, June 24, 2017

Five hundred thousand pageviews

Eleven years.

It’s been quite a journey.

And I have reached this milestone without ever posting smut, or gossiping about cricket and shopping, or advertising snake oil, or stoking pointless quarrels which sound like the most important thing on earth for two weeks and then sink without a trace. Takes some doing, I can tell you, especially in an age when even someone who arranges for cabs via the internet briefly becomes a superstar. An age when like old Diogenes you have to search with a lantern even under a blazing sun to find one sensible man.

This is a time to congratulate and thank  my regular and long-time readers, too. There are occasional and one-time visitors aplenty, I know, but there must be at least a few hundred of the other sort.  It is them I keep in mind whenever I write a new post. Every now and then I am pleasantly surprised to hear from someone or the other who, without my knowing, has been following my blog for a long time, and gladly admits to having been influenced by the way I think. They invariably bring to mind those who pretended to be, sometimes very plausibly for a while, and have fallen by the wayside ages ago…

Indeed, over a very long working life spent observing people, I have come to decide that the vast majority of them are merely vulgar (khelo in Bangla sounds somehow more apposite to describe the type) and a not inconsiderable minority is stupid and often downright nasty. I am toying with a project now – one by one I shall describe how scores of individuals, pupils and parents, have dealt with me over the years and decades, and what exactly about their behaviour have led me to the above conclusion: me, who started out on life determined to love his fellow human beings. I have been dealing in generalities for a long time, now I am going to deal with specifics, and though I shall name no names, those indicted and people close to them will be left in no doubt that it is them I mean. By God, that will be a catharsis.

Writing a blog is akin to writing a diary. But my daughter recently pointed out one fundamental difference that has come about lately – earlier people wrote diaries in secret and got angry if others managed to pry (I am not talking about poets and suchlike, who perhaps wrote to gain posthumous notoriety); these days people write diaries (or miniature diaries, as in twitter) and get angry if others don’t read them. It was a salutary warning to me.  I would be dishonest if I claimed that I didn’t want readers – why would I be writing publicly, then? – but it would do me a world of good to remember that a genuine diarist writes primarily for himself. If he gets some earnest readers, fine, but that should not be the primary aim, for that way lies prostitution of the mind. Ever so slowly, lured by the possibility of quicksilver fame, one begins to stop being oneself and pander to the (mentally-) unwashed masses. To care overmuch about what others may think is the surest way to triviality.

So, for the next 500,000 pageviews, this blog is going to become more consciously and unrepentantly personal. Writing – and I am not talking of tweeting and journalism here, those pathetic refuges of failed authors and wannabe page three celebrities – in this day and age is the most elitist of hobbies. And you write to keep your mind alive. If you don’t, you will be shopping and pubbing and gossiping instead… what a horrible way to spend your youth! What an utterly ghastly way of spending your old age!!

P.S., July 03: I have updated the medical bulletin. Scroll down if you will. 

8 comments:

Saikat Chakraborty said...

Dear Sir,

Congratulations on the milestone and more power to you. The pen (or rather the keyboard) when used rightly, can still be mightier than the sword in the age of tweets and attention-hungry journalism. I will be looking forward to your posts, personal or otherwise.

With regards,
Saikat.

Swarnava Mitra said...

Dear Sir,
Congratulations for the pageviews counter of your blog has crossed the 500000 mark. On 29th February, 2016 it had crossed the 400000 mark and in almost a year it has got 100000 views. Your noted in March this year that you can now consider yourself a serious blogger. May this blog continue to enlighten us.
Yours faithfully,
Swarnava Mitra.

Sreetama said...

Dear Sir,
Congratulations!
Your thought provoking blogposts alongwith the numerous links you keep referring to provide at least one good reason to be grateful to internet aka Google in the way it empowers us, if correctly handled.
The comments from your readers as also the blogs linked in your page, particularly your daughter's, are really icing on the cake.
Thank you Sir.
Regards,
Sreetama

Adwitiya Halder said...

Dear Sir,
Congratulations for this huge success.May your blog and its amazing writings,gets more page views in coming days.
With regards,
Adwitiya Halder.

akash ganguly said...

Dear Sir,

Kudos to you. I began reading your blog six years ago; I was in class VIII when mother told me that I was going to be joining your classes the following year- as she had done many times before- and on a whim I decided to search your name on Google. And it has been an amazing journey. I still remember the time you first declared to the class that you have a blog and many people gasped in awe and you went on to joke that you were just as 'modern' as we were and perhaps even more so.

Be it your take on something or someone, recollections, reviews, travelogues, etc. I always look forward to reading your blog. Adding to what Saikat Chakraborty has said, in a world of Facebook tags and WhatsApp groups, it is indeed a delight to read your blog. And I know for a fact that creating and maintaining a blog is no easy task, and you have come this far. May you prosper.

Regards and best wishes,
Akash

Subhasis said...

Dear Sir,

I want to congratulate you on reaching 500000 page views . It is really some achievement considering the quality of writing and the topics you generally write about.
I must have contributed to that counter in a small way as well.so it makes me happy too ..

I look forward to that counter reading 1000000 views.
Writing a blog is in many ways akin to story telling (except that the listeners are silent and feedback is regulated) ,so your strengths play perfectly to writing and keeping up a blog. May the stories long continue !!

Sincerely,
Subhasis

Subhanjan Sengupta said...

Dear Sir,

Five hundred thousand page views is a significant achievement in today's world where, unfortunately, frivolous social media content is the most talked about content. This reassures the fact that there is still an audience out there which willingly wants to devote time and energy in reading content that truly matters. More importantly, there is perhaps a very small number of people across the world, like you, who are serious bloggers. Three specific expressions in this post has caught my attention - "a diarist writes for himself", "prostitution of the mind", and "write to keep your mind alive". I am sure, I would retain those expressions in my mind for the rest of my life.

Yours Sincerely,
Subhanjan

Debasish Das said...

Dear Suvro-da

surely this has been a memorable journey and through your blog we
learnt so much; at least I did. I am sorry for the recent updates
regarding the health of your father and prayers for his recovery.

with best regards
debasish.