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Dreadful Nonsense

"I've read your blog. it's really funny. you should write a column." - Jon Ronson

I had been threatening He Who Only… with the prospect of going shopping with me for some time. I have it on good authority, backed up by all that I’ve seen on both American and British sit coms, that boys do not like shopping, and so I have been flashing this threat about the place for a short while in order to keep He Who Only… in line. By Saturday, I had worked up a list of important things which must be bought (these included socks, the Harry Potter book and “some shiny things”) and so we jetted off down the road in his mother’s car, remarking to each other how long it’s been since we’ve traveled by car (late night taxis don’t count as cars).

Less than an hour later, we were already worn down by the sheer shopping of it all. We’d wandered around a book shop staring at the 3 for 2 offers and pointing out to each other which ones we’d buy if we had the bookshelf room and the finances to do so. I gazed lovingly at the new Mark Gatiss novel that will be in my hands within the next two weeks, and then He Who Only… bravely hefted up the heavy load that is the new Potter novel, bought it (for me, I hasten to add – he refuses to read it or any of the others on the grounds that they are children’s books), and we retired upstairs in the book shop for coffee.

Book shops that sell coffee! What is this, New York? Madness! The brilliant thing about the book shop we went to it is that it also appeared to sell bicycles. And inflatable globes. And toys. And some sweets. And a frightening variety of Manga cartoon books that include a frightening variety of frightening sex scenes. Not that I looked. For very long.

So there we were with our new books and our pints of coffee and I spotted a Guardian magazine and raced for it so that I could read the Jon Ronson column Out Of The Ordinary. In it, he usually talks about his wife Elaine or his son Joel, and has the astonishing habit of making himself sound like a completely unlikeable moron, which endears me more and more to him every week.

It’s a conundrum that I’ve come across in the blogging world time and again, and something that continues to puzzle me on every level. My thoughts go like this:
- It’s your own blog / column
- You can write about what you like
- You can make the outcome of your stories as you like
- You can give whatever impression you like

And yet so many people continue to make themselves sound like thoughtless, talentless, ignorant, boring, self obsessed idiots.

And that is why I love Jon Ronson’s column so much. The difference, obviously, is that the printed word rather than the on-screen word, still holds more power to influence and impress. Yes, you think, he is a fool. But he’s a published fool.

You may well be wondering about the point of this post, and I shall explain the point to you here and now. Jon Ronson googles his name on a regular basis. Jon Ronson has visited this site before when I’ve said nice things about him. I wanted to let Jon Ronson know that (a) he’s brilliant, (b) I think he’s brilliant and (c) if he ever decides to leave (or is thrown out by) his wife, my email address is at the top right hand side of this site for ease of contact.

Many thanks.

*Note to He Who Only…: This is a joke.
**Note to Jon Ronson: I’m not kidding


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