“A murderin’ we will go, a murderin’ we will go, Heigh-ho the Derry-o, a murderin’ we will go!”
(Please read on. Things will hopefully become clear.)
As per the usual Sunday a.m. habit, I checked the blog this morning, decided to do some cleaning up and discovered that yesterday’s rant about Canadian politician, Justin Trudeau, and Canada’s Prime Minister, referred to here as “The Harpy”, was Elegant Bastard post number 50! In all, about 70,000 words are now “out there” where they are hopefully prompting smiles or discussions and I’ll admit I am sitting here grinning into my coffee. I hadn’t thought I could do that. I think the major reason (other than ego ) that I managed to do so was the on-going flood of comments, “likes”, “shares”, “tweets”, encouraging noises – and topic suggestions – from so many of you.
And now there are changes coming. “The Hedonist’s Diaries” and “Letters to a Young Teacher” will become more important. I want to try some major style departures in “Rants”. Wine tasting notes will reappear. Public education is about to become a focus. And the first 50 posts will be edited and reorganized around a few key themes (and some one-off responses to long-past events will be taken down.) A previously unmentioned goal is to make “The Elegant Bastard” one of several tools friends and I can use to create a new scholarship designed to assist a largely ignored group of young people. More about that later and NO, you will never be asked for money. (But you will occasionally be asked for input.)
Yesterday I received three more letters asking why the blog is called “The Elegant Bastard”. That brings the total up close to 500 queries so it’s time to answer. Two years ago when the idea was born, some friends helped look for the appropriate name and some brave French wines sacrificed themselves to the group effort. “The Curmudgeonly Chronicles” was rejected, as was “The Grinning Reaper”. “Elegant Bastard” finally emerged as a near perfect choice. Its nature prompted a fascinating question, one that has taken a while to answer. Why not “The Elegant Bitch”, “The Elegant Bugger”, The Elegant Liar” or “The Elegant Whore”? In an upcoming post, I will explain why “Bastard” mixes with “Elegant” in what I consider to be a profound way while the others create impossible pairings. The name that gave us the most trouble was “The Elegant Bitch”. “What”, one person at the table asked, “is the essence of bitchiness?” Good question. And so, Dear Reader, I am asking you to feel free to send me your definition, either here via “comments” or at Facebook or Twitter. And yes, I’m am serious. Just remember we are encouraging philosophy, not porn!
Again my thanks to everyone who has encouraged, cheered, commented and helped launch this little project. You even helped me see the humour in the badly spelled “death threats” that have arrived so please, please keep the encouragement coming.
And one other thing has happened because you have made me think it possible. For years and years, I have wanted to write a murder mystery. And for years and years I have made excuses for not doing so: too busy, no time, not an appropriate hobby for a “teacher” and so on. In fact, it all came down to a fear of failure and your responses have helped me get past that. The plot summary is done, the characters are sitting here looking at me, the first murder has been committed – I had to kill the victim three times to get it right – and it’s time to launch the boat. Murder, mayhem and mirth are my goals and the target is September 1, 2014. When I ask for editors, please volunteer.
Cheers, thanks and if you missed the Trudeau post – it went up late yesterday – it’s at http://wp.me/p3cq8l-7k