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De-junk your life - shadows of echoes of memories of songs
j4
j4
De-junk your life
I finally unsubscribed from JunkList. <sigh>

JunkList -- more recently known as [niddle] -- was originally the mailing list for Oxford University's "DougSoc". DougSoc was originally the Douglas Adams Society, but had long since lost all but a nominal connection with Douglas Adams and his works, devoting itself instead to general acts of intellectual silliness. When the society disbanded, the list remained as a forum for like-minded people to talk to each other.

I've finally realised that I am not, and will never be, of a like mind with these people, or rather with what they have become. I'm tired of the double standards persistently displayed and applied by the list's heavyweights, whereby the "in" crowd are allowed to be as clueless as they wish while those who aren't "in" are criticised and sneered at where possible, and otherwise ignored. I'm tired of the smug, self-satisfied, Guardian-regurgitating predictability of the political opinions expressed on the list, and the indulgent smirks (there's a feeling of "goodness, that wouldn't happen in this common room, dear boy") with which the mere possibility of alternative viewpoints are met; I'm tired of the whole Mornington Crescent whose-gerund-is-it-anyway small-laughing-and-less-grief Radio-4 clever-cleverness.

I'm saddened, more than anything; I remember these people being witty, interesting and intelligent when I was an undergraduate, but the vast majority of them seem to have become hideous caricatures of themselves, like something from the dark side of the Looking Glass. They move round the table to give a semblance of progress, and loudly berate the newcomer for breaches in some unwritten etiquette, but nothing actually changes. I'm saddened, too, that I once wanted to be like that myself.

There are still a handful of people who post to JunkList whom I like and whose opinions I respect. Hopefully they know who they are (and most of them read this journal). Fortunately I have plenty of other means of keeping in touch with them.

Current Mood: weary

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Comments
wintrmute From: wintrmute Date: November 19th, 2003 09:44 am (UTC) (Link)
Sounds like a good synopsis of just about every long-running list that i've been on.
From: kaet Date: November 19th, 2003 10:14 am (UTC) (Link)
It sounds like lots of places I find myself, to be honest. I can certainly see where you're coming from.
jiggery_pokery From: jiggery_pokery Date: November 19th, 2003 02:17 pm (UTC) (Link)
Sometimes I fear that it's just a matter of time before we'll end up making similar posts about our recently-abandoned LiveJournals. Admittedly you can change your readership and readeeship on LiveJournal slightly more easily than you can the constituency of things like mailing lists or newsgroups, which is a definite plus, but it's a human phenomenon at heart, not a technological one.

There are tons of other posts I could make (and, in some ways, am uniquely qualified to make...) about this whole thing, but life's too short and it's all in the past. *hugs*, Janet, I'm sorry it didn't work out.
From: scat0324 Date: November 20th, 2003 03:46 am (UTC) (Link)
They don't have anything better to do, they're very vain and they want
to appear wittier and more sophisticated than they actually are. Ignore
them, and maybe they'll go away. Don't respond, as it just makes them
feel important.


A truth for all time?
jiggery_pokery From: jiggery_pokery Date: November 20th, 2003 06:32 am (UTC) (Link)
It's gratifying that some people still remember my angry-young-man rant and that there may be some truth in it, but let's move on. :-)
From: scat0324 Date: November 20th, 2003 06:45 am (UTC) (Link)
Better a grumpy old man than an angry young man. At least, it's now what I aspire to.
j4 From: j4 Date: November 20th, 2003 07:58 am (UTC) (Link)
People are people, and things which are said about people tend to remain true...
j4 From: j4 Date: November 20th, 2003 08:09 am (UTC) (Link)
Admittedly you can change your readership and readeeship on LiveJournal slightly more easily than you can the constituency of things like mailing lists or newsgroups, which is a definite plus, but it's a human phenomenon at heart, not a technological one.

True, but I think the real problem is staleness -- people get into such ruts, and once in them, it's very hard for them to climb out of them. Obviously that's still a risk with LiveJournal, because it's always going to be a risk with people; but I think the fact that it's easier to change things should mean that Mailing List Decay will take longer to set in.

I can but hope, anyway.

The thing is, I worry that the real problem is me. Maybe I should be trying harder to fit in. Maybe I'm too intolerant, too impatient. I don't know. I do worry; but I can't just ask the people in question because they're just not capable of having that kind of conversation, or at least not in that context; they don't want to analyse themselves, they certainly don't want to talk about (whisper the nasty word) emotions.

But then why should they? They're under no obligation to confront the things that scare them. The prevailing mood of the list just isn't one that I can fit into; why should it be? The people who pissed me off certainly never claimed to care about me; there's no betrayal there.

Really, I just wonder why I wasted (a portion of) 3 years of my life trying to talk to these people.
jiggery_pokery From: jiggery_pokery Date: November 20th, 2003 08:26 am (UTC) (Link)
Part of me says "it would be a better world if someone were try to change the status quo", and part of me says "this way only madness and ingratitude lies; you're better off without them, if you can do without them". It's a call for you to make, but it sounds to me like the latter of the two is winning.

This is resonating very strongly with my own experiences.
addedentry From: addedentry Date: November 19th, 2003 01:43 pm (UTC) (Link)

They're playing my song

smug, self-satisfied, Guardian-regurgitating predictability

Where do I sign up?
j4 From: j4 Date: November 20th, 2003 02:19 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: They're playing my song

Sorry, you do not qualify as your post displays excessive self-awareness.

Have a nice day.
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