Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Dear Diary...........

So how many times will you write 2008 and then go.....offs it's 2009 !!!

As I don't write the year very often, it usually takes me till mid March.  The checks in my check book still say 1998 as that's when I last wrote one. Actually I don't remember when I last wrote the date on anything.

And every year at this time I tell myself......"self, you should keep a diary next year".

I start with the best of intentions but my life is so dull that by mid January, more and more pages are being left empty until I give up completely.  

A few years ago I tried it on the computer.  Brilliant.  No empty pages as there were no pages.  If something worthwhile happened one day, I'd mention it.  If nothing else exciting or noteworthy happened for a few days, it didn't matter as it would still be the next entry anyway.  

No gaps. 

Sadly not much text either as, once again, the muse left me early in the year.

And yet I do have some almost full diaries from the more eventful years of my life. Well a couple anyway. Ok sod it, just the one.

It was 1970. Christmas was declared a federal holiday in the US, compulsory education started in England, France declared war on Prussia (don't ask !), somebody called Lenin was born and Charles Dickens died.

Oh wait, that was 1870.

In mid June 1970 Mungo Jerry were No.1 with the first rendition of "In The Summertime" and I left school forever.  The two weren't entirely related.  I was 17 and the world was my lobster. A few days later I flew to London which is somewhere in England. It was my first ever flight.  I was alone.  I was in London alone.  No place to stay.  No job.  Nada.  The things you do at 17, eh !

I'd kept a 'page-a-day' diary from the start of that year as I just had a feeling it would be an important year for me.  I'd filled every single page up until I left (Catholic boarding) school - even though most pages held exactly the same information about the time I woke up, what I ate for breakfast, how my lessons went, who bullied me that day, which priest came to 'see' me in the evening and so on.  The usual stuff and not very exciting really, although I often think the diary could be used as evidence if I ever wanted to get my own back on a few people and get some hush money from The Vatican at the same time.

But moving swiftly on................

The print I'd used on those pages was huge.  I had a full page to fill up each and every day and, as I said, I'd sod all to fill it with.  It was like writing your 30th postcard when on holiday.  By that time you just want to say "hello I'm here and you're not, so bollocks to you" but you've a whole card you feel the need to fill up and so your printing looks like it was done by a myopic idiot who stopped being a savant a long time ago.

But on that day back in 1970 when I left for London, that all changed and the diary page wasn't big enough to hold everything that happened to me. Only someone with a jeweller's eyepiece can now read what I wrote. It was worthy of one of those people who can write the Lord's Prayer on the back of a postage stamp.  It was worthy of your first postcard on holiday. I used both the margins.  I even put a little arrow and went up to the top of the page where the date was and still needed more room.

It was no good.  Half the page for the following day had to be commandeered and if anything, my writing got even smaller on that page.

This continued for a few weeks as a LOT happened to me and only ended in October when I started at college and then, sadly, I'd no time to keep a diary.  It was my best effort to this day though and apart from a few months in 1972, I've never kept a paper diary since.

But now I have this blog.  And the log in blog's a sort of diary.  Of course no one cares what time I wake up each day and what I have for breakfast but now and then, something just might be interesting enough to write about.  I started blogging on May 4th 2006 and this will be my 319th post. That's roughly one post every 3 days and that's not bad for me.

I'd still like to keep a 'proper' diary though and I might try that for 2009. It'll be on the laptop of course and there won't be an entry every day but we'll see how it goes.  If I'm still doing it by April, I'll be in uncharted waters.

Well except for that diary back in 1970.  It's fun to (try and) read it now so hopefuly diary 2009 will be fun to read in the future. 

What about you ?  Any dedicated diary writers out there ?  Any wannabe diary writers ?

I'm no Samuel Pepys but one will do one's best for 2009.


Jennyta said...

I did as a teenager but, sadly, those diaries are long since gone - a shame as they would have set the world alight if they were around today. ;)

Daphne said...

I have kept a diary from time to time but have always become too busy, got behind with it, and given up. My blog's more of a diary of what's going on in my head (stop laughing, now) than of what's going on in the world! My best record of previous years is my photo albums, which I used to always label very carefully and I'm grateful for that now.

Katherine said...

I have kept a daily diary each of my four Trips To The World. ie 1966, 1979, 1996 and 2005. They are treasures to me. Unfortunately the first one was done in pencil and it almost unreadable. I must transcribe it some day soon or it will be lost forever.

Your first few weeks of escape in London would make some good posts, do you think?

I don't like the sound of those evening priest visits ...

Katherine said...

Happy New Year Silverback!

Milo said...

Like Daphne, my blog is more of a diary these days. Sheridan has kept a diary every day for 10 years.


rhymeswithplague said...

Yes, a blog is definitely a diary of sorts. It just has a bigger readership.

I agree with Katherine; I don't like the sound of those evening priestly visits one bit either.

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