Thursday, December 12, 2013

Comment response guilt, and 52

Natalie just posted on the matter of infrequent blogger's guilt.  I am not afflicted by this in terms of the (in)frequency of my own blogging, since that's no better or worse than it's been for a while, and I tend to think over-frequent posting might be as much of an imposition as the lack of it might be neglect, but I do worry a bit about my neglect of my friends' blogs, and also about my slackness about responding to comments; Tom was quite shocked to learn, as was I to reflect on it, that I haven't replied to a single comment in the threads of the last three posts.  This is a funny one, since it seems to me people who are very conscientious about regularly replying to their comments get a lot of people tracking back and conversations growing up, and other people never reply to comments and no one expects them to so everything's clear, but  with people like me who sometimes do and sometimes don't, it's not quite certain what should be done.  A couple of times over the years, when replying at great and thoughtful length to several people in one of my own threads, I've asked if anyone's actually reading and tracking these responses and answer came there none, but I know there are some who are very assiduous about returning, and a few good chats have taken place in my comments. I do try to reply if anyone asks a direct question.

Whatever, I just wanted to thank everyone for the nice comments I've had, they are always treasures and my non-response is not down to  any lack of appreciation!

Today is my fifty-second birthday.  Not a particularly significant number as far as I know.  We had plans for going out somewhere, either up the coast to Erquy to look at the sea and eat oysters or over to Dinan to mooch and eat curry, but I have developed the mother of colds since getting back from Mayenne, the same cold that my brother picked up from a nurse in the hospital who really should not have come in to work and breathed over already sick people.  So I don't feel very outgoing and eating out would surely be wasted on me, as nothing much tastes right anyway.  But I have various small but hopefully satisfying plans for the day, which may or may not include putting my supplies of knitting wool into the lovely seagrass hampers that I had for a present, and will fairly certainly involve watching Patience (After Sebald) which Film4 has kindly laid on today, and which seems the perfect thing, melancholy and wintry and reflective, a sad tale's best for winter, and a birthday and a cold are sure enough excuse to sit and watch an afternoon film, a thing I can't usually comfortably do. And Tom says he cook me a nice hot potato curry which should help clear the tubes.

I am wearing clothes I like although they are quaint and unflattering and I probably wouldn't wear them far outside the house; I have had a couple of phone calls, a couple of treasurable e-mails, lots of nice cards and a fab book from J called Knit Your Own Zoo.

My brother described my current mode of life as 'Gnitting for Stay-at-Gnomes' which I thought would be a good title for a knitting blog (which I'm not going to set up), though I think I would make it 'Gnitting for Gnostic Stay-at-Gnomes'.  I found this which I thought would make a good header:

She's not, of course, staying at home, but that could be figurative.

I also rather like this chap:

The sofa and a film awaits, thanks for being around.


Lyse said...

TRès heureux anniversaire Lucy. Tom devrait te faire un bon gâteau !
Reste bien au chaud , en attendant Noël!
Pas de tricot pour moi, mes rhumatismes, se sont réveillés dans les doigts, difficile d'articuler les pouces!
Meilleurs santé

Ellena said...

Une fleur sur votre Coeur et un baiser sur la joue avec des voeux de bonheur.
My gift to you. You may leave me out when you feel guilty.
I enjoy reading you a lot and only make a comment when I don't need to think much about how to phrase it.
I had forgotten my knit bathing suit. It was light blue. Thanks for this dear Lucy.

Les said...

Happy Birthday, Lucy! So 52 is significant - you're now playing with a full deck! Hope you feel better. My feeling is you get to be as self-indulgent on your birthday as you want to be, whatever that entails.

As for comment responses, the fact that you sometimes respond seems enough to me, especially as you are generally welcoming here, and especially since you also occasionally comment on others' posts. I do find myself not commenting much on those blogs whose writers almost never respond - unless to the one commenter they seem to deem sufficiently brilliant to warrant their response (I realize this is likely my own projection!). I've come to understand that blog etiquette does not require a response, although it does feel personally to me a bit cold. But I wouldn't expect a response if all I said was "hey, I liked your post!" Anyway, as I said, I find your comments section perfectly welcoming. :-)

Jean said...

Happy Birthday, Lucy! The Sebald film is intelligently lovely, low-key and blissfully slow - enjoy.

Nimble said...

Oh Mr. knitted shorts made me laugh, thank you! Happy birthday, enjoy the film and the curry. Hope the tastebuds come back online right away. One of the worst parts of having a cold.
I worry about responding to blog comments too quickly and scaring folks off by my jack-in-the-box appearances. Heh.

the polish chick said...

happy birthday, dear lucy! enjoy your day in and don't worry about the comments or lack thereof. it really doesn't matter - i come back because the pictures are always gorgeous and the tone meditative and calming, and that's all i need.

The Crow said...

I sometimes remember my 52nd year; mostly, not.

I hope your celebrations are fitting for the occasion and that you enjoy every minute of it.

(Re: the knit swim trunks - when I was in USN boot camp, we were required to pass a swimming test. That I didn't know how and was terrified of drowning took back seat to the humiliation I felt when my Navy-issue knit one-piece suit, which fit skin tight when I put it on, sagged in a most revealing manner when I climbed out of the pool. I didn't have to take the test again that day. On my bunk when I returned to barracks that evening was a new suit, also skin tight, but of a non-sag material.)

Happy day, Lucy!

Unknown said...

If someone reads my blog I am glad of it. But guilt shouldn't come into reading or not reading other people's blogs. It should be a pleasure rather than a duty.

Happy birthday Lucy!

marja-leena said...

Happy Birthday, Lucy! So glad to have you still writing and posting lovely photos. Much pleasure always to be found here including in the comments. Have a lovely lazy day and get over that cold, eh.

Natalie D'Arbeloff said...

I'm late, Lucy, your birthday has come and gone but hopefully the joy continues and the rhume du cerveau recedes. Why is it only in French that we get a cold in the brain? It's true though: the brain is what a cold fogs up (to use the F word politely).
I trust you enjoyed your day all the same and that the curry helped clear the fog. The knitted shorts are hilarious - I have vague memories of wearing something like them, dark blue and sagging, on a French beach, aged about 6.

Natalie D'Arbeloff said...

Mon Dieu, I've just noticed that it sound as if I'm saying your post was brain-fogged! No no, I didn't mean that. You are perfectly lucid, Lucy, comme toujours!

Sabine said...

Happy birthday, happy knitting and sofa resting. Speedy recovery.

Rouchswalwe said...

♫ ♪♪ Herzliche Glückwünsche und 'n Prosit!!

I've been fighting off something all week and finally feel lucid today. So sorry to be late, but the birthday wishes are full-hearted and the ale I am toasting you with is Samuel Smith Winter Ale.

Love Knitman!

Lucy said...

Thanks all, for the birthday wishes, and the words of reassurance about the guilt thing! I really had a very nice day, both the film and the curry hit the spot.

Glad Mr Knit-Trunks was such a crowd pleaser, as well as provoking some less that pleasing memories of knitted bathing suits. I think he's lovely and such a good sport, to wear his wife's creations with such proud aplomb, they must itch terribly; I love the way he has to wear a belt with them.

Francesca said...

Happy Birthday Lucy. 52 is a very fine age, and I am sure you will enjoy it!
I am assuming that a belt is needed with knitted swimming trunks because of the inevitable stretching when wet!

Roderick Robinson said...

Wasn't some of the above prefigured in the thousandth blog? Viz:

I know full well I simply don't put the effort into reading and commenting on other people's blogs or even replying to comments on mine...

I'm not sure one should be too reliant on strokes from others for one's moral and spiritual well-being.

I took this to be a sort of verb. sap. warning of gradual or accelerated withdrawal. It was followed by one or two days of silence and then the fact that there'd been family needs in Mayenne. Slightly blurring the issue.

I was left in a quandary. I'm not given to single-sentence comments and I'm well aware my 500-word epics can rest accusingly in the recipient's comment box, likely to form an unwanted obligation. The best solution seemed to be creeping insubstantiation.

52 - a wonderful age to be alive. The mind still active, the body still improvable, still capable of allowing you to do something foolish - and survive.

Lucy said...

Francesca, thanks, I'm quite sanguine about being 52, I think.

Robbie, you're right, I repeat myself. I just felt especially ungrateful and ignorant about not even acknowledging comments for so long. Absence in Mayenne only partially excused this, since I wasn't there all that time, and when I was, wasn't deprived of internet access. I shall try to be more conscientious or at least stop whingeing about it! I'm glad to think the body is still improvable, and have no doubt I shall continue to do foolish but survivable things. :~)

Sheila said...

Belated happy birthday to you, Lucy! Re. age, I've been saying I feel like an old lady lately….having to have people do things for me, unable to, e.g., open a safety cap bottle, having to be careful bout bending over. Then I realize that this is all due to an injury and really has nothing to do with age.

I found a book last year that I loved, called Younger Next Year. You might enjoy it, I don't know. Oh, I didn't know this when I bought it, but there is a version for women, and that is what i would have gotten, had I known. The original book was definitely written with men in mind. Kind of funny to read it as a woman!

I do like the Wordpress option of being notified of follow-up comments to comments and wish Blogger had that option. (Or maybe it does and I don't know it?) I always have appreciated the way you respond to comments but have never viewed it as an obligation. Sometimes I come back to check; sometimes I don't--especially in recent months, when I'm always commenting on older posts.

Anyway, thanks for your comment on my recent post, and I'm happy that it resonated with you. It was truly a magical sort of thing, magic in the best sense.

And I love the knitted shorts picture! Hilarious!

May this be a year of great joy in your life.

Love, Sheila

Marly Youmans said...

Oh, I think I must have missed your birthday--though I'm at the age to forget that I didn't! Look forward to seeing your version of knitted shorts...