15 February 2015

Flock


"Byrdes of on kynde and color flok and flye allwayes together." 
- The Rescuing of Romish Fox, William Turner (1545).

That is the earliest known printed appearance of the well-known saying - "Birds of a feather flock together". Ornithologically, many bird species  will of course literally flock together for there is safety in numbers. Transferring the idea to human activity, people who are similar will also tend to flock together - for security, well-being and self-affirmation.

Why am I pondering upon this saying? Well, I am thinking about blogging. When I set out on my blogging journey ten years ago, I never imagined that I would find myself heading down an avenue that was reserved for "the mature blogger" and I am not sure how this happened.

However, when I look down a list of the bloggers I have come to associate with I find that they are nearly all "mature" - like ripe cheeses and past fifty. Where are all the twenty somethings? The thirty somethings? Perhaps they peep at blogs like ours and are repelled by our fusty, old-fashioned interests, the way we use language, how we see the world.

Okay I know there are one or two youngsters who call by this blog such as The Librarian With Secrets who at forty seven is almost a schoolgirl skipping merrily to work in her white kneesocks and there's Senor Brian over in Tortosa, Catalonia who still has a catapult in his back pocket and enjoys playing with Transformers. But on the whole everybody else is "mature".

There's "mature" Adrian still on the loose in Scotland. He's in his mid-sixties like The Brisbane Babe - Madam Helsie. Lovely Carol in Cairns is past fifty and Graham in Lewis is way past sixty. Lee in Queensland is also closing in on seventy and Mama Thyme in Colorado is sixty seven - round about the same age as Jan The Chicken Lady in Sloughhouse, California. Mistress Hilly in Washington State is a youthful fifty five while legendary blogger John Gray is fifty two - about the same age as Tom Gowans in Angola. Father of us all is The Oracle - Bob Brague in the middle of Georgia USA. His age is beyond comprehension.

See what I mean? These are all people who are oozing maturity. So mature it sometimes hurts. No signs were ever put up saying "Young Bloggers Keep Out!" or "Reserved for Mature Bloggers Only!" And yet young bloggers appear to have shunned our corner of the blogosphere.

To draw some of them in maybe we should start discussing hip-hop music, urban graffiti, recreational drugs, the latest computer games, "Candy Crush", Lindsay Lohan, Reality TV and dating techniques. And we should start using a more cool, modern form  of English - know wha I mean? Innit? That'd be wicked dude!

Have you got any theories about why we are blogging on Mature Avenue? Or is it Old Git Lane?

39 comments:

  1. Face Book occupies the younger ones. I know it's not the same as blogging but it's their sort of technology. ( I quite like it too for keeping in touch ). The other thing is time. We oldies have plenty of it..... Well those of us who no longer go off to work on a regular basis.....and no kids at home helps too !

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    1. Thank you Helen. Two explanations for the price of one. I am sure you're right but surely somewhere there are a few younger bloggers who enjoy the medium.

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  2. If my ripened memory recalls correctly YP, you have blogged about this previously. I do read some young bloggers from time to time ~ they are out there. Young bloggers generally prefer Tumblr to Blogspot. The young bloggers I read from time to time are very savvy and are not backward in seeking sponsorship to turn a buck or offer competitions. They usually blog about things like food, fashion, mummy blogging, interior decorating and travel. I will send you some links that you might enjoy ~ they are young photography bloggers.

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    1. You're right Carol. I did touch on this before back in August 2013. As I am an old git I had forgotten about that.

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  3. I think there are many factors which influence our various blog worlds: different interests; time (as Helsie said); immediacy; research; and thought processes to name but a few.

    I know young friends who blog about travel and their particular interests (for example their art or music) but they usually use different platforms: Tumblr and Travelpod. Facebook is really for a different purpose although some of my friends used it extensively for discussions and point-making during the Referendum. Many of your posts are informative and interesting and some are argumentative. I have quite a few young readers (although only a few comment on the blog and some are more likely to comment on Facebook (where it also appears) or text or message me. My blog was, however, originally set up to tell friends and family what I was doing when I was in the 'other' country rather than be of general interest.

    I have, by the way, now reached my three score years and ten (which is, in itself, unlikely to be understood by a very young reader).

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    1. Thoughtful reflections Graham - thank you. As I have never owned a mobile phone, I guess I am out on a limb and not really tuned in to all these other channels. Three score years and ten? Does that mean you are forty?

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    2. Very droll.

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  4. Glad to see I got into the Youngsters' Group, though just managed to moan (bad back, bad leg...) past my 48th birthday this week! I agree with Carol and Helen. Firstly, many youngsters don't blog or have the time for blogging or reading blogs. If you have 6 million things going on at once on your mobile phone, how can you spare the time and attention that reading a blog takes? Most youngsters I know, their social networks - Instagram seems to be the fave now, taking over from FBook even for most teenagers - consist of a photo, a smiley face, a few acronyms and move on to the next thing.
    I do watch out for a couple of bloggers in their 30s or early 40s who, as Carol says, have very specific (and well-followed) blogs on food - but even so, their readers usually can't be bothered to write a comment, they just read it, tweet it, and move on. Same here, quite a few people locally say they "look" at my blog but few can be bothered to actually spend the two minutes it takes to write something! If you do hope to find a younger generation of readers, you'll have to start plugging your blog on some of the other social networks - or do a bit of streaking at the next Hull match..

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    1. Thank you Brian. I can't believe you are forty eight! Belated birthday greetings sir and thanks for your thoughtful reflections re. Instagram etc.. It all seems so swift and very temporary before the next tweet or bleep. No time to stand and stare.

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  5. There are plenty of young artists blogging but they tend to put a blog onto their own website.
    I suspect Blogger is for old fogeys like me that can't be bothered with Tweeting, Instagram etc.
    I'm happy with it as I tend to use it as a diary to keep my life in some sort of order.
    There are also the various software forums which are full of bright young folk. I can't join in as they speak a foreign language and I would look dafter than I already am.

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    1. Yes Adrian. It's the same for me. I also tend to use my blog like a diary. Apart from anything else it has become a record of my life passing by and one that I can refer back to to see what happened when.

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  6. I'm 39 and I read your blog everyday! Of course, I'm hanging on to my 30's till the bitter end....I turn 40 next month!! Haha.

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    1. I should add.....growing up as an only child, without even cousins my age, I always seemed to make friends with people much older than me. Also, my husband is 16 years my senior!

      One of the benefits of hanging with an older crowd is that I still feel like a kid! :)

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    2. Thirty nine... Jennifer? I am delighted to have a young lassie like you visiting my blog from time to time. Would you like a glass of milk and a cookie before bedtime?

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    3. Yes, please! LOL!

      Am I the youngest here? If so, that makes me feel good, as I've been dreading The Big 4-0 next month and being the "youngest" anywhere makes me smile. ;)

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    4. Yes you are the youngest! Come and sit on my knee and I will read you the story of Little Red Riding Hood. Have you brushed your teeth? Now snuggle up and don't cry when The Big Bad Wolf appears. It's only me.

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  7. Ahem... I am not 47 just yet (or did I say that somewhere?), I am stil 46 and my birthday is towards the end of March. But, give or take a few years, I am certainly what is generally regarded as "middle age" and not young.
    As for blogs from younger people, I do know a few but honestly am not too interested in what they (esp. the girls) write about - I love fashion (as anyone who knows my blog knows), but I couldn't care less about brand names or whether this spring's lipstick colour is coral or peach, whereas a lot of the younger ladies seem to feel topics such as this of the utmost importance.
    I don't have kids, never had any, never wanted any, so I am not in with the "Mumsnet"-blogger type, either. So, for me, mature blogging is what I like most - I actually don't think about how old or young my fellow bloggers are, just how much I like their writing, their topics and their pictures.

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    1. Please forgive me for mistakenly declaring you to be 47 and not 46! I can feel the heat of your annoyance across the miles between us but I hope that my heinous error will not irrevocably fracture our blogging friendship. I am so sorry.

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    2. What's a year or four among friends? Don't worry, that heat was not anger but came straight from the mug of broth I was having. Funnily enough, every now and then I really have to think twice before replying to questions about my age; I tend to make myself older than I am.

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    3. I like your point of not thinking of age but rather he ideas they write about.

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  8. You're ALL children. Am I the oldest? at 78 (79 next month)?

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    1. Hell Mary - even Bob Brague is a child next to you! In March 2016 you will be eighty! Imagine that! Thanks for calling by and making me feel like a child again.

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  9. I was just recalling yesterday how the lads I served with at Templeborough fortress used to say Aves ad sibi similia congregantur when Fluvius and Octavius went skipping to the baths hand in hand. Pity we never wrote it down.

    Today's yute are all on Instagram and Twitter because they can't handle more than 140 characters at a time. Watching America/Britain/Uzbekistan's Got Talent has turned their brains to mush. Their mums and dads hold forth on Facebook. Give me the mature blogging crowd any time.

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    1. forsan et haec olim meminisse iuvabit

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  10. I'm 18!! .............. in a 53 year old body! As for blogging! I started a blog to connect with like minded people and to keep an record of events. I never had the staying power to hand write a diary whereas I do manage to write a blog post.

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    1. Hey snap MaC! I am also eighteen but by some mischievous quirk of Nature, I find myself in a 61 year old body.

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  11. When I look at young blogger blogs , I find it hard to find something interesting. If I don't follow their blogs they probably won't follow mine. Our genre is old. Our followers respond. I find many other blogs too dressed up and fancy. They have web sites that professionals construct. Now that you've mentioned it I will go looking for younger bloggers.

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    1. Good luck in your quest for the interesting young blogger Red! Might be like looking for a crock of gold at the end of the rainbow.

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  12. Hmmph. I am intrigued to discover that you believe ME to be roughly 67. I am more than a decade younger than that. I have always loved old people, old ways, old ideas, old places. Things of the past have always spoken to me. Many people, especially younger ones, don't seem to be interested in anything other than the moment. I read blogs that interest me - can't say I pay much attention to how old anyone is. I'M ONLY 55. (I guess that upset me just a smidge...)

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    1. What kind of fool am I? Sincere apologies Hilly. I don't know where I got this wrong idea from and I shall amend the blogpost accordingly.

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    2. Apology accepted and I can now happily traipse off (once again!) to the beach for clamming! This amazing, unseasonal sunshine here on the west coast is making us CRAZY!

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  13. Blogging requires an original thought now and then, on Facebook the young can just pick up someone else's idea and "share" it, no originality required. One doesn't even have to be literate, which appeals to an entire generation that has difficulty (even before tweeting was popular) writing an actual paragraph. I do have quite a few young friends on FB, it's always fun to make comments like, "Do you have personal knowledge your statement is correct?" "How did you come to that conclusion?" Political and social issues are especially fun to contest. I love to correct their spelling. I have no idea why some of them don't unfriend me. Their response, if one is given, is usually "lol". There is a whole generation out there just laughing their butts off at nothing.

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    1. They probably tolerate your quaintness - caring about such weird old-fashioned things as reasoning, spelling and morality. How cool is that?

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  14. 55 in an 80 year old body. When I was younger I lived by the maxim that if I wasn't living life on the edge, I was taking up too much space, My trouble was I kept falling off. Ah well... better to burn out and die than fade away I suppose.

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    1. Like they say, life is not a rehearsal...but who stole my script? And when does the performance start?

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  15. Well, you got the age right, Mr. Pudding. But, I do not yet believe that I have matured. Nor do I want to. Not if maturing means sitting in a chair watching TV, complaining to others about all your aches and pains and things on the body that are falling down. Just let those young folks try to keep up with me!

    I am told that not only do most of them not blog unless they have a specific special interest to talk about like food or craft or books, but most of the under 30 crowd are also moving on and away from Facebook.

    I think I enjoy blogging with and reading blogs of mature adults is that they speak the same English language as I do!

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    1. Good job we can't hear your accent Mama Thyme. You probably sound like Jane Fonda with your American drawl! By the way when I was a camp counsellor in Ohio there was more than one occasion when I had to explain to American college students that their language was English and not American! That's education for you!

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  16. It's abt how long cn u concntrate?+ wots ur vocab like and stuff lk that.
    My kids abandond FB becos me and my age went on to c wot they we're up to.

    No, I'm so, SO happy here in this world of relatively articulate thought, carefully considered and appropriately illustrated and apostrophe'd, with a dash of sophisticated humour, shared between those whose foibles I know and love so well.

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  17. PS "Why is it that as time goes on I find myself wearing this increasingly older body?"

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