Modifying old blog posts

The wife and I have both spent the last day of 2014 consolidating our blogs. I’ve imported my posts from the two other blogs that I’ve been writing for the last couple of years – and The plan is that rather than having a dispersed voice across blogs, I’ll integrate everything here. As part of that exercise I’ve made some personal blog posts password-protected, and made some others private.

Of course there are some “arbit” posts that are still visible, and when I do end up putting my name on this blog they’ll come to be associated with me. But then I consider them to be part of my character – if you strip away the arbitness from my body of writing then it might as well have been not written by me. Impersonal writing is just not for me.

Anyway so while I’ve been consolidating my blogs and taking some posts private, the wife has been doing something similar. Today she started what she says is her eighth blog – she calls herself a “compulsive blog starter”. As part of the consolidation process, she has imported her posts from her seven previous blogs into this one.

Now, some of these seven blogs are old, really old, and contain posts that she is not currently particularly proud of. And she has spent a considerable amount of time today editing and deleting some of these posts – most of which had been written as far back as in 2006. She says that some of the stuff she had written back then is not consistent with the person that she is today, and hence it is worth deleting. I’m not so sure.

I think a blog is like an online diary. Among other things it’s a record of your thoughts at a particular point in time. Going back a few years to someone’s blogs helps us understand what that person was like at that point in time, and perhaps do a comparative analysis of what they were then to what they are now.

While the wife has been modifying and deleting some ancient blog posts, I’ve also been dealing with some old blog posts, but in a different way. I’ve been reading them. And reading my posts from 2004 and 2005 have helped me understood my thought process in those years, and what my life was like then. These posts help me understand some of the decisions that I had made then which I have subsequently questioned.

Of course there is more than a fair share of cringeworthy posts from that period, but my logic is that while they may not be consistent with the person that I am today, they need not be. By updating those posts to make them consistent with the person that I am today, I’m making them inconsistent with the date tagged to the posts!

Nothing is permanent, and that includes a person’s frame of mind and way of thinking. It is almost a given that one is likely to find one’s old writing (irrespective of how old it is) cringeworthy on some front or the other. That however doesn’t mean that a person goes back in time changing one’s thoughts to make them more contemporary! For doing so destroys information that is embedded in the post as it is!

So I must mention that I’m not particularly in approval of the wife’s updation and deletion of her old blog posts. While I’ve done something like that (taking some posts private) I haven’t destroyed any information nor changed them in an irretrievable fashion. Modifying old blog posts is like rewriting history!

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