No, its not vain self-aggrandizement or a pathetic attempt to build readership one person at a time. Rather, its because I've shared thoughts and opinions about various topics in this public forum -- and prefer not to repeat myself.
In a radio listserv discussion recently, someone asked about Tom, the new Charlottesville station. Instead of writing out my opinion about it and all the supporting arguements again, I simply referred to my post about it.
Two weeks ago, someone who travels infrequently to Washington, DC remarked that WETA had returned to a classical format. He asked if I knew about it. Oh yes, I said, and rather than run through the whole story again, referenced my posts:
From time to time things that I've been familiar with for a while bubble up into the awareness of the general public. Claiming I've known about something for months when the subject comes up always seemed to me a bit pretentious -- especially if it was unsubstantiated.
Blog entries, though, provide clear documentation of exactly what I thought (or knew, or thought I knew) and when.
While perhaps not always evident, I do put time and effort into these posts, and try to provide as much documentation as possible. And that's really why I prefer to refer. Because all the links are here, and the reader can check my sources and judge for themselves whether or not my conclusions are sound.
As Omar Kayyam wrote:
The Moving Finger writes; and, having writ,
Moves on: nor all thy Piety nor Wit
Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line,
Nor all thy Tears wash out a Word of it.
Well, I'm not so sure about the last part (although I generally don't revise blog posts once they're out), but now that my thoughts about various subjects are publicly available, this finger's free to move on.