The Manchester bombing, the London Bridge attack, now the Grenfell tower block fire: as always, the world seems to be going to hell in a handcart. I don’t know what the bloggers’ etiquette is about commenting on these things. It belittles what we do and I don’t see how we can usefully contribute in print. Asked to write a poem about the 1st world war for some publication, a poet (Yeats?) replied something like “about some subjects the poet should remain silent.” I feel we should perhaps fall silent. Of course, in the lived world we must help out, embrace the victims, but I don’t think it is our place to force our way into other people’s grief online.
But I guess (I hope) there must always be other discourses and maybe they could provide relief from such irreversible tragedy just by being about something else. The internet isn’t the world – it’s just a medium of communication. But communication is good. It fosters empathy. So hopefully it is ok for people like me to continue to chunter on bellyaching as normal. (As you can tell I’m feeling guilty and trying to justify it to myself).
Being severely anorexic protects you from all this monstrous, threatening gloom. You’re too bloody hungry to concentrate on it. You are going to talk about making soup and you don’t bloody care if that makes you seem selfish or boring. You have reduced yourself to a fierce, feral, bewildered little mind, a primitive, snarling creature, and other people are just vague shapes in the fog. This may make you seem pretty independent, but that’s just a complimentary way of saying “unable to engage”.
So I think my “Male Anorexic blogger” persona is, by necessity, self-absorbed. I’m trying to illustrate and explicate a condition that protects itself from a threatening world by retreating into an urgent form of self-absorption that demands upkeep. I hope there are many, many different aspects to a life but the blog isolates and abstracts, and then cultivates that one aspect. It’s my USP.