Putting Pen to Paper

Over the last ten years I have emptied my head from time to time into the pages of a paper notebook. I remember buying the first one – a Moleskine, because that’s what everybody seemed to be raving about at the time. I had recently bought my first Macbook, and was actually putting effort into the whole “blogging” escapade.

Ten years ago I was working in London for four days each week – commuting four hours each way aboard a succession of trains. I read books, listened to podcasts, and wrote vast quantities of forgettable nonsense in the pages of journals. I would arrive at Paddington Station in central London half an hour earlier than I really needed to, buy a coffee from the cafe looking out over the station concourse, and record the succession of strangers passing by.

I still can’t believe that was ten years ago. A decade. Everybody I worked with will most probably have moved on to different jobs. Some of them will have families now. I wonder what became of a few of them – the perpetually grumpy project lead, the predatory girl at the Christmas party, and the quiet young lad that looked like a magazine cover model. I guess life has probably happened for them too.

There is a line of moleskine notebooks on the shelf – filled with introspective drivel. I have never picked any of them up to re-read their contents – I can’t imagine they will be at all insightful or interesting. Many of the better fragments were written into blog posts at the time – stories about people dragging trolleys through underground stations, or the sea of perfect people in the city, led by stepford girls working in the financial institutions.

I’m not sure how I fell off the “writing in a journal” horse. I just did. I suppose the blog took over entirely. Even though the blog is far more filtered and processed than the paper journal, it still tells largely the same story – just without the incendiary rants, or the soporific contemplation of the mundane. Ok. Strike that. That’s kind of all this blog consists of – the soporific contemplation of the mundane.

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