About 10 or so years ago I used to do a weekly show on pirate radio in Dublin. A lot of it consisted of me ranting about whatever was going through my head, interspersed with playing whatever bits of music took my fancy. It being a pirate station, it wasn't like we conducted regular audience research, and apart from a closely-written postcard accusing me of being an 'English cesspit', the only feedback I remember receiving was comments coaxed out of friends, telling me that it was 'quite funny', 'not quite as funny as that other time' and asking me where I'd got that track from, the one about mescalin that went dum dum THUMP dumdum THUMP THUMP THUMP....A lot of the time it felt a lot like hard work without much more than its own reward.
By comparison blogging is a walk in the park! I mean, hopefully one of these days something I've posted here will be picked up by one of the web's countless equivalents of 'The World's Stupidest Home Videos' and eternal recognition and boundless wealth will be mine. But for the moment I'm really happy with the response that this site has generated, mostly thanks to sites such as the Peking Duck, Simon World and Asiapundit identifying with what I've written and encouraging others to drop by.
Over the last few months the site has served as a kind of out-tray for my reflections on what I see around me here in China and the things I read that help me make sense of it. Now I'm leaving China my intention is to continue with the site, but obviously as time goes by my theoretical in-tray will contain less China-related, er, files (?!?), and more things related to where I am in the future.
Nevertheless I've now got a huge list of books that I want to read which I haven't been able to get hold of here, beginning with Jasper Becker's The Chinese and Jung Chang's Mao book and also including Mr. China, China Inc and lots more. Partly for this reason, China will occupy a large part of my thoughts for some time to come, as well as influencing how I think about other places and issues. So if you have been dropping by this site in search of China-related stuff, don't stop doing so just yet. I will continue to post regular but more occasional China material on it.
In the longer term, well, I don't know exactly what to expect. More things related to teaching, Spanish, Latin America, globalisation and whatever is going through my head.
And in the shorter term you may well find some species of semi-coherent stoned ramblings occupying this space!