Monday, November 16, 2009

Rumours of murder in the global village

Oh dear. Oh dear.

I'm strangely upset and quite a bit weirded. Out.

Those of you who have been with me here in Blogoslavia for A Very Long Time, may remember that two years ago (almost exactly, in fact) I wrote a post on a character in the neighbourhood I once lived in, in London. Over time, I've had rather a lot of visits based on this post (yes, I do look at my stats and my "recent keyword activity". It's interesting, k? Even when one is sometimes totally unable to even come to one's own blog, let alone say anything there). I thought, at first, that this was because of some morbid reality-TV type enjoyment people were getting from laughing at this poor character *. Then, two days ago, my stats suddenly went quite wild. Instead of the handful of faithfuls (and I love you all - seriously. And your every footprint on my stats is appreciated), I was getting literally hundreds of people, and not just Londoners - people from elsewhere in Britain, too (Glasgow, Maidstone, Manchester) as well as from all over the place (Dublin, Pennsylvania, Perth, Andalucia, Abu Dhabi - I kid you not), searching for the name of this poor hapless simpleton and landing on my above-mentioned post.

So I had to investigate.

Using my extra-special search techniques (secret, MI5 issue), I followed the tracks of one of these (silent, unknown) visitors, and landed on a Facebook Appreciation Society (I'm sorry but I don't understand these things - I'm middle-aged) for this very person. That such a thing should exist is peculiar in itself, and while it feels a little bit like mockery, the introduction to the page assures the reader that it is, in fact, *not* mockery, it is appreciation. But. But but.

The top of the chat thread on this site suggested there was a rumour that this person, whom I did not know personally but whose life, clearly, had been marred in some way, by someone (even though he was known as someone almost always happy and polite), had been cornered by a gang of youths and stabbed to death.

It is, obviously, a hideous thing. A hideous, hideous, tell-tale sign of our times, perhaps, or of human nature, its inherent cruelty, something or another (if it's true, obviously).

And, whilst not meaning to take away from the impact of the hideousness of this rumour, on a completely different level I find the fact that these people (and there have been 129 of them today, k? From all over the place) who, in all likelihood, do not "know" each other - and certainly not me, or indeed, the poor innocent in question, perhaps - are online, looking for facts of his alleged demise - I find it. Something. Strange. Compelling. Almost moving, yet horrible (is this the road traffic accidents on motorways syndrome, only an inch or so away from the "let's laugh at people when they are humiliated on television" syndrome?).

I don't know. I really don't.

But anyway, hence the global village. And I just didn't feel like I could keep quiet about this.

* and I'm avoiding mentioning his name, because I don't want to cash in on the interest and trawl for traffic, under these - or indeed, any - circumstances.


trousers said...

Yes, most unsettling and not a little eerie: terrible and tragic if it's true, too.

Anna MR said...

Hei housut. Yes, unsettling and eerie (and the other things you mention). The fact that the (original) post attracted interest has annoyed me, off and on, and I've even considered deleting it (shame on me, for I have, as you may recall, a strict no-deletion policy). The fact that people were clearly coming after this guy and landing on my site, and later, coming after this guy directly from Facebook, didn't feel nice at all (even before I heard the rumour). But when I went to investigate, I reread my post, too, and, well, I kind of liked it, you know? So I knew I couldn't hit delete (and besides, there's the strict policy).

And yes, as you say - tragic and terrible, in the big and small way, you know what I mean?

Thank you for visiting here, housut.

Ruth said...

This is a very strange world. These bits of information go out, and we never know who will turn up looking for them. What are we about here anyway? I don't think I can keep up with it, what is happening.

In fact I stayed home from work today, just answered work emails from home. Even after a weekend home I wasn't ready to go back. Yet I spent nearly the whole day here on this thing.

(My dear, I will not have you panic-struck. Please don't participate in the How I Named My Blog thing (even though I love the name of your blog) unless you just have to, because YOU want to.)

Oh dear! Word verification: obblite

Anna MR said...

Ruth, how lovely to see you - and lo, look: I was just synchronised with you, for as your comment came through, I was actually writing my entry for How I Named My Blog. Try that for eerie. For yes, I will participate (and as I'm totally feckless most of the time, it's best to be prepared now while I have my feck about me, for a moment).

The bits of information thing, people coming looking thing - yes. Too strange. I really cannot tell what this thing called Blogoslavia actually is. My very dear friend Reading the Signs and I and a number of other people had a convoluted conversation thread here and there, spanning months, over the pros and cons of Blogoslavia over RL (=Real Life). I think our consensus was that Blogoslavia is as real as RL. That still doesn't explain what it is, right enough. But then I don't think we know what "Real Life" is either. ("This thing" that you spent your day on - not my blog, surely? Surely just Blogoslavia/the internet itself?)

Anyway, it's charming to see you here. And please, don't worry about my panic-struckedness. I like to use hideously big words like that to describe my personal ridiculousness(es). I find it funny. And what a delight! You seem to care for word verifications, too. Most excellent. Over at yours a bit earlier, I had first comer and then preepin (and I know this, because I actually collect them these days. Shhh).

I guess it's afternoon over in Ruthlandia. It's really rather late here in The Northern Lands, so I should and must and will go now. Lovely seeing you, though. You are nice, Ruth.


Ruth said...

Ahh, I'm relieved at that eeriness, that you wrote while you had feck. I'm like that too. I worry worry worry about some upcoming event because it is so worrisome. Then I just DO what is needed, et voila!, no worries.

As nice as Annalandia is, this is not where I lurked all the day yesterday. I'll be posting about it tomorrow (calm yourself, I know it's exciting!!). It just felt so well deserved, to sit and read absolutely anything I felt like. I went from one thing to the next, without editing myself. "What do I feel like reading now?" and off I'd go down a path of light.

I'm so happy you and your blog pals agree with me, that this place is REAL! Sometimes it feels more real than RL, and then I have to get some balance and take my friend to Sindhu for lunch. But yes. There is this uncanny thing that happens sometimes (like how I feel here right now) and I am instantly nestled into the cushions as if I've known you and this house long before.

Did you make an ice lantern yet?

Here's one I made earlier said...

Hei again, Ruth. How lovely and pleasing that you feel instantly at home here. That is the sort of spirit I hope to cultivate - and it is massively helped on by the lovely people who visit here (in fact, they might be more or less entirely to thank for it. Thank you, all).

Would this be the Sindhu which has a great Indian lunch buffet for $8 (all you can eat)? For I think I might be tempted to leave Blogoslavia for a wee while, for that.

Sadly, our snow has gone again, to be replaced with a muddy darkness and sub-zero rain. Typical of this month, really - but the climate change does actually effect our weather already (close to the Pole and all that), evident for example in the fact that what we used to suffer through in November (the aforementioned grim total darkness and cold rain and cetra) can now last the whole of the winter through. It is very, very depressing, Ruth, both to live through and to think about (as in that this is what we've done to the world, within my lifetime - and what horrors does the future hold?), but last winter was (thankfully) more like a proper winter, and I'm sending messages to the guy who may or may not be upstairs listening (aka the God of all agnostics, as He is sometimes referred to on these pages) that this winter would hold some snow, too. And ice, naturally. But here is a lantern I made earlier (much earlier - I had to dig it out of a post in January 2007, but it's a nice lantern (I find), even if a bit blurry (challenging light conditions, she claims)), and I hope you enjoy it (click on where it should say my name, please). If and when there's some new stuff to make ice and snow things with, I'll be posting photies...

Sitting and surfing online when one really feels like doing so can be totally blissful, like having a wonder holiday of miracles. Very glad that you have managed such a lovely day out, Ruth.

Here's to many more to come.

Anna MR


Reading the Signs said...

Spooky, spooky, but I read it as being overwhelmingly auspicious, seeing as it manifests here on the lovely ground of FomP - and circumstances (Fomp and Circumstance, yess?) being what they are: for Ruth is the name of the protagonist in my story. And spookier still, I was sitting in the community cafe the other day, and the cook was called Ruth, there was a book on the shelf with Ruth in the title and then someone came in with a new baby girl in a buggy, and the baby's name was Ruth. That is three Ruths in quick succession, and now also manifesting here. Hello Ruth! I'm glad you are enjoying Annalandia - you seem, somehow, kindred.

I shouldn't be here at all but am in dire need of Blogoslavian distraction on account of, you know, RL and its incessant contradictory demands and, well, I like it here.

I remember that story, Anna. Re-read it. Still moving. And I think, but couldn't swear to it, that I used to see him when I lived in Finchley. There must be a place where these stories, and Horace, are welcomed and celebrated, crowned with whatever it is that is due to the lovely innocents who give grace to this fallen world.

Amen, Sees, for otherwise I don't know what, and the lights go out. So it is a matter of necessity (for me, that is) to keep the faith.

WVLs say etenads, which means "lux eterna" - for they know of what we speak, and that I have recently sung in Mozart's Requiem

Studious Anna, diligently studying said...

My dearest Synchronising the Ruths, hei. No, you should not be here at all, girl sees - my eye is on your stats. They are amazing and I'm so rooting for you from here to there and back again. Go go *go*. (Still lovely to see you, though. As well you know.) That is one mighty fine Ruth-run you have come up with there, and I agree - it must be auspicious. (You do know that Ruth here has a lovely blog called - wait for it - Synch-ro-ni-zing? Kind of adds to it, what-what?)

But no, you shouldn't be here and neither should I, for that matter. In fact I'm not, as you can see. I'm reading through the 1000+ pages of Giddens I have to sit an exam for on Monday. Oh yes verily.

A place to crown the innocents with their due love and, well, I don't know, whatever it is they're due, yes. A resounding yes for such a place to be. Amen to that from these parts, too.

And now I *must* be gone, before I catch myself studying a bit less diligently.

Be seeing you, sees. Resounding mwahs (I'm glad you still liked the story. Very glad. Thank you.)


Reading the Signs said...

Right. I am not here, and neither are you. I go, swifter than arrow etc. Roots in your direction, and we are both bonkers, obviously. Amen. Giddens? Just looked him up on Wiki - nice face.

Reading the Signs said...

Sometimes there is so much Id, I wonder if I even have a Super.

Anna MR said...

Can't say which is worst. Both as bad as each other, I'd warrant.

Or would, if I were here. Naturally enough.


Anna MR said...

No, wait. For God's sakes. I failed to praise you for Fomp and Circumstance. Too good. Too good altogether. Sheer brilliance. You're on a roll.


Ruth said...

That was a pretty, glowing lantern, Anna. Thank you.

Yes, that would be the Sindhu. Please come, and we'll drink mango lassis and eat naan dipped in dal. Yum.

I think the God of agnostics should be He when we have complaints and She when we have praise. What say you?

I am going to try to make my surfing days a once a month ritual.

Hello, RTS, nice to meet you. Thank you for also making me feel even more welcome here at Annalandia. I feel I came just at the fullness of time, Ruth time, and the synchronicity is fine (I will explain Dec. 1 the difference between synch-ro-ni-zing and synchronicity).

I think you are all sleeping now, maybe, if not studying. Here, let me put you to bed. I'm leaving for poetry group in a bit.

Anna MR said...

Sleep, oh Ruthie, is for the weak. Or lucky. (Yes, studying. Trying to study. Pretending to study. Thinking about sleeping. Never doing it.)

Do please enjoy the poetry group, and let us know what it was like.

Ruth said...

Well I trust you slept, eventually.

Went back to poetry group after a few months' hiatus. I remembered why I stopped going. Lovely women - but I am very bad at analyzing poems. I sit there like a stump and listen to the others say insightful things, rearranging stanzas and "getting" it first reading. Don't know why my comprehension is so poor, haven't been a great reader of anything, but I am getting better, happy to say. But it was lovely anywho - guess what! synchronicity - the hostess, my poetry mentor, ordered Indian from Sindhu!!!! I smelt it and said, of course. A little red wine, a new baby, and I was all set (late for me though, I'm not like you, sleep is my great comfort).

Hope the studying went well.

WV: ovenit (which means put it away and let it cook)

Anna MR said...

Well that sounds like a lovely meeting, Ruth, and the Sindhu food just figures, really. I have taken part in a writers' group here on a couple of occasions, but I don't seem to suit that sort of thing very well, either. People are knowledgable and clever and I'm just me, and, well, there you have it, really. (Besides, I only write blog entries - and the odd comment, I suppose too, yes - and would therefore always be having a free ride. Of course, these days I also write essays, but they are dreadful and I'd never show them to anyone apart from the poor lecturer who has to mark them, but they get paid for reading them. Let them suffer for their money, is what I always say.)

I slept eventually, yes. And now I have sick leave today on account of my pink eye. It makes me feel a little guilty - I have been ill with various things on three occasions already, this autumn. But it was doctor's orders, it's contagious and me promising to keep my mitts out of my eyes during the working hours was not enough for my doctor. He is one of the good guys, clearly, especially for a specimen of the medical profession, and I'm not ashamed to say I really rather like him. He will actually ask me how I'm doing otherwise - head, back, all the other complaints I've brought him, and together we'll slag off the idiocy of the new rule of no handshaking anywhere under any circumstances (due to pig flu), when he will have to examine his patients anyway, and I will wipe the noses and, let's face it, bottoms of my clients, if and when needed, and comfort them with hugs if and when they weep (I guess he'd do the same with his clientele, actually, as he really is a nice guy). So there you have it. I am on my way out with my dog girl, Ruth, and she is the most beautiful lupine dog girl you're ever likely to see, but when I'm back, I just might post some photos I took from my balcony this morning.

Hoping today is all lovely for you - although it may well be not quite today for you yet, as today starts from when one wakes up, not from midnight as technocrats would have one believe. No. Yes. Verily.

Hei and a


Ruth said...

Very nice doctor. Very nice dog girl. I'm off to read about pink eye and stare at the mist and fog images.

WV: alliter

I thought it said "atelier" which is my favorite place on my farm.

Anna MR speaks the truth said...

Alliter is actually Scots for an atelier, did you know that, Ruth? Weird and uncanny, and not just any old atelier, either, but an atelier which is located outdoors - on the fenceposts surrounding Highland fields, for instance.

And it just gets ever uncannier ("Uncannier and uncannier," said Anna), for when I visited Scotland in the very early days of the year, and was still quite unawares of my broomy destiny as well as of your existence (impossible as these things now seem, yes), I felt a strange and unstoppable compulsion to leave a little broomed landscape art piece there. Now I didn't visit the Highlands - I was only in bonnie Scotland for a few days, and Edinburgh was wonder-lovely and trying to take in any more would have just wasted what I could take in - but I made do with the topstone on Arthur's Seat. Illustrated for you under my name, Ruth of Truth.

Hope you enjoy.


Ruth said...


WV: weallpno

This is uncanniest because my husband's family - and mine now too - says "weallp" when something is silly, a very long good one if it is extraordinarily silly" WEEEAAALP. So this you see is quite good: weallp no.

Anna MR said...

Hmmm. That sounds very good, Ruth, and all in order ("weallp", or even "WEEAAAALLLP"). Maybe just a tiny itty-bitty bit *too good and in order*. Now I'm just reduced to worrying whether you're reduced to lying as heinously, I mean, speaking at authoritative length and with considerable gravitas on something which you just made up on the spur of the moment, as it were.

However. Here are some Good News: this freshly in tonight from someone who calls themsleves "sillycow", posted on the orginal page of my H*race story...

and I quote...

"i have been to sainsburys north finchley today [Friday 20th November] and met up with horace he looks well so whoever started the rumour they should be ashamed of themselves

So there. That would certainly be good news. As long as it's true.

I am mighty, mighty pleased that finally someone who was about here only and solely on the rumoured death of H*r*ce, actually said something.

I need to sleep.