I get funny about my notebooks. I have a journal, for one thing, and then I have a smattering of other notebooks which originally had a purpose – one for writing generalised stuff in that didn’t really count as a journal because it was usually literally about how I was feeling and didn’t really recount things that happened to me except in passing, another which was lists of all kinds of things, pure organisation, nothing more, another which I took everywhere to act as useful notebook on journeys and such, with doodles, journalising, lists, train times, organising-y stuff, and random one-liners scrawled across whole pages in a variety of pretty calligraphy writing-styles, when I had nothing more to say except that I was feeling happy or sad or something momentous had just happened or whatever, and a sketchbook.
Now that latter category of notebooks has kind of melded into one – interchangeable notebooks filled with a whole plethora of just stuff. The problem of the mixed-up notebook thing is that none of my notebooks is ‘safe’ – ask me for paper from one of them and I’ll have to rip it out for you myself just in case you see something I don’t want you to see, some emo ramblings from years ago or a half-arsed stab at being poetic from a few days ago, whatever, it’s all in there, and I am ridiculously protective about it. My journal never leaves my room. I don’t hide it, but I am always aware of where it is in relation to people who might notice it and pick it up out of vague curiosity with no idea what they’ll find.
Thankfully the A4 refill pads I take into lectures have no more than the odd random sketch, and I know they’re bad, you know they’re bad, and it doesn’t matter. It doesn’t accidentally let slip in writing something you probably already knew.
But it strikes me that this obsessive recording of everything that happens and everything I think is not what most people do. I’m just terrified that I’ll forget, somehow, someday, how it felt to be me, now. That I’ll forget what happened to me and some day I might need to know. The thing is, on the rare occasions when I do pull out journals from a few years ago, I frankly couldn’t care less how I felt then. It doesn’t interest me as such, the emotions I was going through seem irrelevant to me, now. Interesting, a curiosity, yes, but they’ve lost whatever power they once had. If that’s becuase I’m a bad writer, I don’t know, but I think it’s more because truly none of those things matters much any more. So why I keep on doing it I honestly have no idea.
I guess this blog is just another example of that obsessive record-keeping impulse in me, and frankly, who cares? Although Shine wrote a very interesting post today about why we all blog. I wrote a huge comment, but I still don’t really know the answer to that question.
Meanwhile I finally discovered the brilliant site Texts From Last Night, which is exactly what it says on the tin.