All worlds organize themselves into hierarchies, including worlds that only exist in the very abstract, like the "classical" music blogosphere. It is a world explored by a self-selecting group of people, and, with the exception of e-mail, the local weather, YouTube, and a news website or two, it is where I spend the most of my internet time. I keep this blog for my own sanity, and, perhaps, for the sanity of readers I do not know who have some of the same concerns and interests that I have. The things that matter to me are, for the most part, rarefied. Every once in a while, for example, I click on my profile links with the hope that someone else in the blogspot blogging world has a serious interest in Maurice Maeterlinck. It has not yet happened, but, in this world of infinite possibility, it just might.
Every once in a while I come across a post that ranks blogs that come under the umbrella of "classical music," and every once in a while I find this blog somewhere towards the bottom of the list (I believe it was 47 in a list of 50 for a while). The ranking, of course, is a quantitative one: how many "hits," how many "links," how many "feeds," or how a blog is ranked by a search engine. Because I don't use social networking tools like twitter or facebook, or any of the other icon-like things that I see floating around on various blogs, I imagine that in the giant "cafeteria" of the internet, the relative popularity of this blog will continue to fade.
But I will always try to keep the content interesting, I will do my best to use the English language well, and I will never use this blog for any kind of commercial advertising. I interact with a rarefied bunch of people in my non-blogging world, and popularity has never really been something I have sought out. I am often impressed with people who do seek it out, and by doing so manage to have the world reaching out to them. I have learned that I can never be one of those people, partly because I do not know how to be one of those people, and partly because I do not want to be one of those people. The gift that keeps on giving after turning 50 is the realization that what you see is what you get: 50 years of being a certain way makes a good precedent to continue operating by the same set of balances that keep me happy and productive.
I feel like this free and ever-changing blogosphere, however, is fragile. Perhaps it will no longer be free in a few years. Perhaps some entity will find a way to profit from the self-expression and community-creating that it allows, and then everything will change. Until that time, I really appreciate the ability to play in this "playground," and to share my particular quirks and interests (and gripes, and criticisms, and music) with the people who care to read about them here, even if they just drop in by chance.