HOW COULD I, dear P.R., be so inattentive to this blog? To you, dear Pretend Reader… have I really been so lackadaisical in posting my latest thoughts? It is unconscionable to have left you to your own devices! And here I sit – so much to write – so much to share! Oh! – for that time returned! Nevertheless, as I am not one to revisit the past without direct and irrefutable purpose, I hereby recognize my failures -- even as I pledge to move forward – ever looking to the next post and the next – not backwards to that which might have been, but, most regretfully, was not. Onward!
Indeed, in an effort to discourage this sort of irresponsible and reprehensible blogging behavior in my future, have imposed a penance upon this “lusty picaroon” who writes before you --- I do this, neither out of wantonness or cruelty, but from the best of motives; and therefore, I shall make myself no apology for it when I return, fingers weary from the tap, tap, tapping of the keys: -- yes!; damn the cost, I shall “catch” you “up,” dearest reader on all that has transpired since last we interfaced. Though it will, undoubtedly, take several posts (written in the coming days!), in a quest for clarity and transparency, I shall attempt to outline for you [should you find yourself desirous of skipping past those stories which hold no sway], -- in this fine post, those details and adventures I will share in diatribes to come. So, if we are agreed? -- let this entry serve, as it were, as a “taste” – a pleasant “peek” at what will follow. Guilt, 'tis true!, is a passably fine motivator, when one lacks for a better reason to write.
To begin, I will share with you, in its rich and full-bodied detail, my latest journey: a trip I began with my long-time writing partner, a charming man by the name of Mr. Gilbert Blythe [one, you may recall, I spoke of, fondly, in a previous post] attended a large academic conference in, of all lusty places for a picaroon to find herself! --- that den of iniquity, that nexus of evil, that soulless pit of degradation and moral turpitude, that glorious locale of drinking and dining and pleasures of the flesh!:
Forgive me while I pause to rebuke a vicious taste -- one that has crept into thousands besides myself, -- that for reading straight forward -- as though reading were a mere skill!, reading more in quest of the facts, rather than for a deep erudition or knowledge with which an adventure of this sort will be cast. After all, our stories are "books," of sorts, are they not? Might we all agree that if one “reads” well, reads people and our stories over as it should always be, we would infallibly impart to our “readers” something that is more valuable than a trove of Blackbeard’s riches? It is in storytelling [and the listening!], I have concluded, that we retain our humanity. ---- But, lest we forget, it is equally true that the mind should be accustomed to make wise reflections, and draw curious conclusions as it goes along; the habitude of which made Pliny (the younger) affirm, “That he never read a book so bad, but he drew some profit from it.” But, I digress.
In addition to a story or two that emerged from our week of debauchery and academic prowess in NOLA, I will, also, take one of these "future moments" to tell you, yes, forthwith!, about my latest “editing” project. Though it, naturally, speaks little to my own artistic pursuits, I have recently been credited with some small degree of “responsibility” (dare I say “credit”?) for its creation. I’ve been told I am the catalyst, and while that may surely credit me, in my own mind, with far more involvement than I deserve, I accept this smallest and most limited position -- that of part “muse” [part “editor” – part “sponsor” – part “fan”] with, one can but hope!, a measure of grace and dignity. Yes, this latest task has been handed to me by my writerly soul mate, my life-long friend, B.F., my own “Mr. Freret” – he of that worldly and infamous Internet sensation, “The Adventures of B. Freret.”
------ But look here, my fair P.R.! Have you yet read over and again this blog’s previous posts, as I desired you? -- You have not? Oh, but I rely on your diligence, dear reader!: upon your second reading of previous musings, you will find yourself up-to-date on my state of mind; you will recall the personage of whom I speak herein: you will observe the passages, upon a second reading, which admits the inferences regarding B.F., Mr. Blythe, and more ---- we will bridge the gap that exists betwixt us, -- but this will require your dedication to the cause as well, dearest P.R.; for, I proudly admit, not a passage exists upon these pages that loves or lives or breathes without purpose!
A suggestion: when you are finished with this day's blog-reading, be pleased, and ponder well [again] the last line of this post, where I will admit that, "It was necessary I should read before I write.'' So, I urge you! – nay, I beseech you: – read! – muse! – think! And, then when you return “home” to these pages, look closely to that most recent post; it will be that one which illuminates the soul and discloses much of my "true" nature (at least as much as it conceals my true person). Until we meet again, dear P. R…. I remain...
In the Cause!
Dr. T. Shandy