DeLine Online

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A Place for My Stuff

Published in Blog.

This past week I’ve tried numerous times to write, and re-write, a post of introduction for []. Each attempt aimed for a witty or informative explanation, but each attempt subsequently failed. As such this is my fourth or fifth try at coming up with something that is both appropriate and makes sense…leaving me with a bit of a mountain to climb, especially so considering that those are two things I haven’t historically been known for.

One version of the draft included a drawn out point/counterpoint between the meaninglessness of celebrating my twenty fifth birthday (today is my birthday) and celebrating the fact that I’ve somehow managed to not die in the past three hundred and sixty five days. Another draft related some of the first time experiences I’ve had this past year to the idea that twenty five is but a stepping stone in life rather than some sort of plateau or milestone. And yet another draft was driven towards defining the changes that have occurred in my personal life recently that have essentially granted me a second chance at…well…life. At least with that last draft I thought I would get to use a few really sharp quotes to help establish and emphasize my story (such as Henry Miller’s “Until we lose ourselves, there is no hope in finding ourselves”). But ultimately I couldn’t convince myself into believing that oversharing a choppy, skimmed over depiction of a dark period in my life would be a good thing; so that too was nixed. Each introduction I wrote failed to speak with an honest voice, furthermore each failed to really identify the purpose of adding yet another blog to the already oversaturated “market”…so I scrapped the whole thing.

All history and dramatic build-up aside, the point of this blog is to act as a home for the ideas I have that don’t really fit in anywhere else. If I write something music-related chances are that it will still land over at Culture Bully, or on some other sort of music bloggery-type site. But if it has to do with something else, be it a wacky “life experience,” a comment on something I’ve read, or just some general thoughts on the state of things – I thought it’d be nice to have a place for me to expand on some thoughts from time to time.

Why sftfcs? One of the things that consistently made its way into each of my failed introductions was a bloated explanation of the term “soft focus” and what it means to me. Simply put, soft focus, as I’ve come to understand it, is the idea of primarily concentrating on the moment without burying yourself in the overwhelming thoughts that come from our minds and environments. That’s not to say that being mindless is the goal, rather the goal is to simply give less significance to the static and appreciate what’s really going on in our lives. Hopefully this site will come to reflect such an appreciation.

But… while yet again attempting to bring closure to this I had also been needlessly trolling my RSS feed, stumbling onto something that influenced my now-yet-again-questionable introduction. In an entry written by 43Folders‘ Merlin Mann, the oft-mislabeled “productivity guru” describes the process of feeling forced into disengagement by, essentially, his own environment.

In the article Mann outlines the process of becoming disillusioned as a result of some of the increasingly common side effects of Web 2.0, “What worries me are the consequences of a diet comprised mostly of fake-connectedness, make believe insight, and unedited first drafts of everything. I think it’s making us small. I know that whenever I become aware of it, I realize how small it can make me. So, I’ve come to despise it. With this diet metaphor in mind, I want to, if you like, start eating better. But, I also want to start growing a tastier tomato — regardless of how easy it is to pick, package, ship, or vend. The tomato is the story, my friend.” Not to suggest that Mann is guilty of any of these suggested e-crimes, but historically his commentary has unintentionally spearheaded a pack that occasionally is; unfortunately I must include myself in such a pack. I’m guilty of having wasted countless hours wading through digg and not really reading a thing while spending days “reading” article online. And likewise, with the content I was creating, I had become less and less concerned with quality, honesty and originality – focusing more on simplicity and link bait (also, I can relate to the idea of “fake-connectedness,” but I’ll save that for another post). To move on in a similar fashion as Mann, with blog as with life, would only be logical; so hopefully this blog can fit somewhere into the context of feeling good about life, feeling good about what I put in, and feeling good about what I take out.

While I occasionally can’t help myself from posting the occasional hilarious video, I’m hoping that sftfcs becomes a place where I can work towards figuring out what my voice is. It’s a place that I’d like to try to be honest with myself. It’s a place where I can point my friends to when I have something that I think is valuable enough for them to spend their time on. And it’s a place that I hope comes to validate the countless hours I continue to spend interneting. At least that’s what I’d like to see when I read the site’s content, and as the site’s only reader at this exact moment I figured that I have no choice but to cater to myself.