Blog Folly, Day 92: The First Day

January 1st, 2011

One of the things I used to love about reading Homer, especially “The Odyssey,” was the sense that the world was brand new.  Uncharted island after uncharted island, and each of them so clean and new it might have been the first day.

Beginnings have their own enchantment.  Miranda, in “The Tempest,” looks at the first people she’s seen (other than her father) since infancy, and says, “O brave new world/that has such people in’t.”  She is, of course, looking at the very people responsible for casting her and Prospero away on the island to begin with, and her father’s response is one of the greatest pieces of under-writing I know.  He says, “‘Tis new to thee.”

2011 is, of course, an illusion, a convention. It’s the same ragged world it was yesterday.  It’s new only in the sense that we’ve agreed informally to see it so.  And the same is true of our lives.  We woke up this morning in the same tangle we were in when we went to bed last night.

But, like Miranda, we can look at it on New Year’s Day and think, O brave new world.

And that’s a beginning.

(And in honor of the new year, I’ve given this project a new title.  I’m wide open to alternate suggestions.)

9 Responses to “Blog Folly, Day 92: The First Day”

  1. Phil Hanson Says:

    “I’m wide open to alternate suggestions.”

    No! No, we’re good on the name change. What surprises me is that you didn’t do it sooner.

    Happy New Year, Tim, Munyin, and all the readers of Tim’s blog.

  2. Beth Says:


    : lack of good sense or normal prudence and foresight?

    a foolish act or idea?

    I can understand that you feel the definition applies when you have to fulfill the commitment you made to the readers of this blog. But I very much doubt that any of us who read it daily think of it as foolish. It is interesting, informative, and funny.

    Perhaps you should label it “The Grand Plan Blog”. After 365 days of Tim Hallinan’s great writing, those who have followed it will be rushing to Amazon to purchase all those JuniorBenderPokeRoseSimeon ebooks so we can continue the daily fix.

    If we run out of new Hallinan writings, I, for one, am happy to reread. I’ve been doing that anyway.

  3. Lil Gluckstern Says:

    I like the new title-I thought of the folly that is in a garden, flowers and bushes, surrounding a building of some kind-whose only function is to provide respite from the world. I also like your images of discovery which is probably what makes life the adventure it is. I’m glad that you have at least one recognition that Queen was a great novel. It certainly felt like that to me. Perhaps, that’s why Childs’ book felt so “spare” to me; I did enjoy it. But I won’t seek it out. This is truly a matter of personal taste, and what I enjoy reading. I am not reading only Hallinan, what will I do when I run out? I am not as good at re-reading as others. Besides, I just on impulse ordered “The Recognitions” which should keep me busy for a while. Maybe you could speak more about that book in some future blog?

  4. Debbi Says:

    I’m almost tempted to suggest “The Odyssey.” 🙂

  5. Laren Bright Says:

    A Blog for All Seasons?

    Fun with Blogging?


    H. & R. Blog?

    Writer’s Blog?

    A Sure Cure for Writer’s Blog?

    The Hallinan Post?

    Running Out of Tim?
    Tim’s Running Out?

    The Tim Machine?

    The Frozen Blogger (You have to be a 60’s folkie to get that one.)

    The Bloghead?

    The Blogapalooza?

    The Daily Tim?


    Timly Musings?

    Priming the Pump?

    That’s all (for now) folks!

  6. Robb Royer Says:

    I don’t know about any of the rest of you but I’ll never run out of Hallinan because he writes faster than I can read.

  7. Suzanna Says:

    Hi, Tim

    Yes, I think you’re right to rename your blog because Blog Folly is slightly less self-deprecating than The 365 Stupid Project so that’s the spirit. Does it also imply that the blog will go beyond 365 days? Just wondering, no pressure or anything.

  8. Timothy Hallinan Says:

    One last time — HAPPY 2011, everyone.

    Phil, from what I’ve heard, both here and on e-mail, the new name didn’t get people running for their chisels so they could inscribe it in stone. So I’m looking at a bunch of suggestions, including Beth’s, Debbi’s and Laren’s above.

    Beth, both definitions of “folly” apply precisely. That’s sort of the direction I was going in. I also liked the (woohooo) assonance of the two “o” sounds. But the people have spoken and I, as their leader, must follow.

    Lil, I liked it, too, but you and I seem to be alone in the world, if you don’t count Phil, who never liked the first title. And thanks for calling QUEEN “great.” I could definitely use more of that. I hope you like THE RECOGNITIONS. Gaddis can be dense and sometimes infuriating, but it’s a truly great novel. It’s about God and art forgery (of religious art, but also of virtually everything, and I suppose one of the questions underlying it is, If God made humankind in his image and likeness, is is possible we’re a forgery?

    Let me know how you get on with the book.

    Debbi — that’s a great title. “Blog Odyssey” even maintains the assonance I liked in “Blog Folly.” I’m just nervous that people will think this is a serious enterprise instead of something I’m doing basically for fun.

    Laren: You’re the brainstorm champion of the world. I love “Priming the Pump” (and so does Munyin) because that actually was why I started this whole thing, and it still gets my fingers moving in the morning.

    Robb, I only wish I wrote five or six times faster. I look at all the books I want to write and then I look at the time each takes, and I despair. Well, maybe “despair” is overdramatic. But I get a little ootsy.

  9. EverettK Says:

    Robb: It helps if you don’t move your lips…

    Tim: Don’t despair about having too much to write and not enough time. Just consider it to be “job security!”

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