It’s been roughly 11 days since 2DT announced that he would be leaving the aniblogosphere. For a blogger who’s been on the scene for less than 3 years, his retirement must have been a bit of a shock to some bloggers. It’s hardly fathomable that such a famous blogger, and arguably a pillar of the aniblogosphere, would ever retire from the scene, having embarked on ambitious new posts like podcasts.
Then again, as I’ve learnt recently, good things don’t last forever. Everything comes to an end. Everything we know and love will eventually be sucked up into the great void of death, the black hole of time, and eventually cease to exist. Nothing can go on forever. That being said, when do we quit blogging?
Surely the prospect of blogging about anime forever is impossible. We have to move on eventually. We can’t possibly blog until we die (unless you die really, really young, of course. Not that that’s good.) As we age, the number of duties we possess increase as well: from having to do well in school, to having to find a job, to supporting a family and whatever else that may be more important.
2DT, in his final post, seems to possess these sentiments as well (regarding quitting, not Yosuga no Sora):
“Anime can be a second reality. It can be an escape, a reprieve, a haven away; Door Number One is the geeky stuff, Door Number Two is everything else, and ne’er the twain shall meet. I think that’s easy enough to do. It’s much more difficult to live in both worlds at once.”
So we quit when we can’t handle having to juggle our lives and our hobbies, right? How more simple can the question get? Yet it’s hardly that simple. At which point do we drop our hobbies to focus on our lives? When we run out of time for blogging? It’s not like we don’t know anyone who blogs only once in a blue moon, yet remains alive and kicking on the ‘sphere. (I’m looking at you, Baka-Raptor.)
And it’s not like the blogosphere consists solely of nerds without jobs or commitments hiding in their parents’ basements, or some other ridiculously offensive metaphor. We see people with families to people still going to university. We see people from almost all walks of life. We know ourselves better : what commitments we have, how we spend our time, et cetera. We don’t really just decide all of a sudden: “Yes, I’m going to close door number 2.” We even find ways to fit Door Number 2 into our daily lives, without it being too much of a problem.
What about stopping when we stop watching anime? That seems like a good gauge, for it means that we’ve probably stopped like anime altogether. But how likely is that going to happen? How difficult will it be to squeeze in half an hour (15 minutes if you’re fast) of anime time every week? CyborgCommunist addresses this in his own post on his watching habits: how he watched anime slowly over the course of two weeks, to his marathoning and how he , as a busy student who has many things to juggle, would go straight for ‘anime binge watching’ from time to time. How likely will it be for someone to have so little time to watch any anime at all that he or she would lose interest in it altogether? And even if one watches little anime, when does he or she choose to quit blogging?
At which point does the precious balance between our lives and our hobbies tip in one side’s favour? At which point do we finally decide: “Yes, this is enough for me, I’m out forever?” Blogging is like a hobby, not a duty, to most. When does one finally lose interest in blogging as a whole, going so far as to quit it altogether? Is the question about time management? Or is it something else altogether?
If you asked me today when I would quit blogging, I couldn’t say. Even with National Service coming up for me in a few year’s time, my absence from blogging couldn’t show conclusively that I would quit aniblogging as well, what with the young ‘uns and dames hopefully alive then. I couldn’t , and can’t imagine when I would ever quit blogging. What I would do, what I would say.
Blogging has become a facet of my life that I can’t simply trim and cut away. It’s become part of my system, like it’s always been there. Having to quit blogging would be like losing an arm, but more painful for me. As bloggers, I’m sure we don’t want to face the reality of having to quit eventually, yet it is a truth that shrouds itself in shadow. For when we quit is an enigma, one that we might never be able to solve, until we enter that period itself. I suppose I’ll never really know why and when to quit blogging. I think I’ll just have to wait, and let nature take its course, and eventually, close the gates on AOIA when the time comes.