The leftward and other blatherings of Span (now with Snaps!)

Saturday, October 06, 2007

So long and thanks for all the fish

And so Spanblather ends, and I think I ought to explain some of the why.

The slow down here started because I simply did not have much time or health to spend on blogging. When that situation improved I found I no longer had the inclination to write here, or indeed anywhere, as Span.*

The simple fact is that I'm just not Span anymore. Span was a part of me rooted in my student activist days and I've been slowly evolving away from that person for the last 18 months.

Several events have led me to conclude that there's no longer much Span in me these days, not least the impact of a disclosure of rape that was made to me last year by someone I love very much. I feel that the writing I have done here on the issue of rape and sexual violence, even before this disclosure, was not something Span would really have understood, certainly not something she would have been able to write about when she first took form in the late mid-90s. Sure, Span was involved in a radical feminist group for a while and felt strongly about the issues, but she could never really identify with them personally, it was always in the abstract. That's changed, for good or ill.

Similarly, my witterings about s59, motherhood, and sex were areas the original Span would probably not have ventured into - she was too busy running around campus because walking anywhere was just too slow, focused on the game-playing side of politics, rather than the day to day realities of life. The future always seemed like it would be glorious and full of radical activity. Span was a person who was always going to be young, in many senses of the world. The early Span would never have found domesticity at all fulfilling, or interesting. Sleeping was a resented task that would be done only when strictly necessary, and any second not spent doing something, anything, was a second wasted. Even when I had CFS that Span mentality still existed within the parameters of life dictated by the illness, which may be one of the reasons I was sick for three years.

Other parts of my life have changed too, and I'm happy with the new person I'm becoming, as Louise L Hay as that sounds. I feel constrained by Span now, instead of liberated. This pseudonym limits me rather than allowing me a forum to write about whatever I want without fear of being judged by those who know me in the real world**. Certainly I enjoyed surprising people who discovered my real identity when this blog was reasonably new, in particular those who had assumed Span was a man. Span was in many ways a sex-less entity, but that certainly hasn't been true of my writing over the last 18 months (partly because of the emergence of Capitalism Bad, which has inspired me in many ways).

Enough with the odd third person wankery. Thanks so much for reading and commenting and emailing and debating. For the most part I've found it stimulating and enjoyable. I'm particularly glad that there are now several excellent NZ lefty women bloggers out there writing about feminism and politics, notably Maia, Deborah, Tze Ming, jo and Anna. I look forward to reading their stuff and will probably still comment around the traps, albeit not as Span. Good luck to them, and also to my other imaginary friends; Idiot/Savant, Aucklander at Large, Just Left, Ghet, Make Tea Not War, Joe Hendren, those funny folk at Brain Stab, and the dear Frank Stupid.

I'm not going to delete this blog - I'm too vain about the good writing I have done to send it to trash. I'll allow comments for a while longer and then probably switch them off or put them on moderation - I'd hate for this site to become a spam farm. My spanblather email won't be cleared much, so those who use it may want to get in touch in the next week or so before I start ignoring it, so that we can maintain contact through other avenues.

And, because I can't end this last post on the banality of email addresses and spam, here's a quote from the wonderful, ineffable, DNA:

And, in an astonishing reversal of normal practice in the conduct of such matters, everybody concerned lived happily ever after.

There was a point to this story, but it has temporarily escaped the
chronicler's mind.


* I admit I have been sorely tempted this last fortnight with all the National gaffes.
** Or stalked, or losing my job, or having people assume I am a puppet to my partner/party/employer/whoever when I clearly am not, or suffering any of the other ill effects that sometimes seem to affect the woman who blogs about politics under her real name.

(Pic Via)


Deborah said...

A beautiful post, Span. I will miss you. All the very, very best, and drop by sometimes, if you feel like it.


George Darroch said...

I have to say I feel likewise, the internet does feel a bit empty without you here!

It's also been interesting seeing the change on this blog in the last while, since I got to know you when you truly were student activist 'span' - I was blogging under a pseudonym about that time too! The last year or so has seen some interesting and inspiring blogging. I hope you put your intellectual energies into some public forum. I have little doubt you'll continue to make an impact!


Byron said...

So long Span, have enjoyed your writing the past few months I've read this blog.

Make Tea Not War said...

Take care and keep in touch! I know I owe you an email.

Apathy Jack said...

I'd say something pithy about how I'm going to miss you, but that's not entirely true: I'm planning on inviting myself round to your house for dinner or cards sometime in the immediate future, but I will miss your writings...

Anonymous said...

You will be missed and have been already
Your thoughtful left wing,feminist writings are unusual in the blog world

weka said...

Cheers Span, and thanks for keeping feminist space in blogland. Best wishes for wherever you have moved on to.

kakariki said...


Funny reading that, was so similar to reading my own story. Starting off as bloggreen was very similar to your student activist roots, although in a slightly different forum. As I've evolved, so has my website.

While I've kept the name, the new site feels like such a more natural environment for me. I brought a lot of the old content over but left a lot of that 'youthful frivolity' behind.

Span, you've been fabulous to share cyberspace with and I will miss this site immensely but I'm happy to hear you're doing what's best for you. It's always the best decision!

Ma te wa


Cathi said...

I think a continually modifying, evolving outlook is healthy and natural. It can be challenging but I get a kick out of observing changes in myself over twenty-five years of adulthood. Heck, even over two years of blogging I can detect shifts in my position.

I think it's a pity you feel you have to kill Span off, but of course that's your choice. Will Span reincarnate I wonder? and how will we tell?

Idiot/Savant said...


Lewis said...

Sad to see you go. All the best!

Terence said...

Oh. That's a pity. I'll definitely miss your blog.

millsy said...

moving on is one of life's inevtiabilities, and it is something we all do from time to time, whether it is because circumstances in life have changed, youre older, wiser and your outlook on life is different, or you just want to do something different for a change. I have read your writings since your posts on the messageboard back in 2001 - feels like a life time ago now - so it is sad to see you are departing the web, and I assume, moving on in life to which I hope are bigger, better and brighter things.

Good luck in whatever endeavour you have instore next in your life, and I hope life treats you well....

che tibby said...

all the best span.

i know what you mean by no longer being the student self!

good luck in your "next life".

Ghet said...

I'll miss you too, and your near-unique ability to combine passionat belief with reasonableness and the ability to listen to other points of view. I do think you've offered something which those other lefty women perhaps don't so much - because no-one's ever someone else, no matter how well they are themselves.

So, yeah, I hope you find a new form you're happy with.

Frank Stupid said...

I think everyone would agree that we hope to see you again in a new incarnation sometime in the near future. I'm sure you can't resist the calling for long ... and besides, whose going to keep us mooks in line without you?

Martha Craig said...

Thanks for your writing, and point of view.

Jarrod said...

Sorry to see you go, Span. The intarwub will be stupider without you.

G7 said...

Farewell, best of luck with all future events.

Tim said...

And just when I have time to read it! How typical is that?

Best wishes and good luck.

Span said...

Thanks so much everyone, I have been really touched by your comments.

millsy - I don't even really remember writing on, but I think I may have once or twice? Otherwise you may have me confused with someone else!

As to my evolution, I agree cathi that personal change is healthy and natural. I just feel that what I've become is no longer commensurate with what Span is in my head, and my heart. I'd rather stop pretending to be Span and do something else than try to bend Span to fit me now.

To be honest there is also the constraint that some of the things I want to write about I am not comfortable with covering here, not because of those who have commented on this thread, but because of The Toxic People who have also read and commented here in the past. It may be that I keep those witterings to a journal, or maybe I will set-up a fresh blogging identity somewhere new, I'm not sure yet. I'm happy at this point just to see how the next few months go and what I feel like I want to do by the time I get to the end of the year, and the time off that comes with January.

Thanks again everyone for your kind wishes - I'll still be watching many of your blogs from the sidelines, throwing in the odd anon comment, and I am glad that I'm leaving now with no bitterness, but with goodwill instead. Thanks for being a part of that.

anarkaytie said...

Hey Span,
I haven't been checking as often, so nearly missed the window on this.. having same challenges with CFS & lifestyle myself.

I found your blog only this year, and have loved it.
If you decide to post under another identity, msg me! I'd hate to miss a truly mind-altering piece of journalism, because so little really is anymore.

Good luck with the new you, it's a feature of womanhood that we have to keep re-inventing ourselves every few years to keep sane. ;-)

Anonymous said...

Isn't this the fourth or fifth time you've 'left' the blogosphere? You'll come crawling back.

rob davies said...

Thanks for the insights and laughs, Span. Good luck with the next phase - and congratulations! ;-)

Span said...

anarkaytie, thanks for commenting on this thread, I wish you luck with your CFS, as I have largely had with mine :-)

Anon at 1.07pm, I took a long hiatus from Feb to July last year and wasn't sure if I'd be back (partly I stopped cos I was going overseas travelling, but mainly I was pretty over the NZ pol blogs). But other than that break it's been reasonably continuous blogging here since June 2004 when Spanblather started. Interesting that you have chosen to comment as you have though - given that the tone of your comment gives the impression you'd rather I stayed away from the keys for all time ;-)

rob - cheers, feel free to email me spanblatherATgmailDOTcom if you want to let me know what you are on about :-D

Cheezy said...

I'm late on the scene as usual, but I enjoyed your blog, Span. Best of luck for the future.

Bomber said...

Well done and well said, the hat is off to you.

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Nancy said...

I will miss you. Do consider coming back some time later.

All the best!!

This is Nancy from Israeli Uncensored News

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