If for some reason you’re interested primarily in me rather than in Running After My Hat, you might want to see any or all of these pages at the site:
- About Me: Where I Came From (and When)
- About Me: What I Do for a Living
- About Me: What I Write (and Have Written)
- About Me: Where I Live (and With Whom)
Now, about the site…
At one time, I thought the blog might act as a “launching platform” for an experiment in electronic publishing. (For more details, see the page called How It Was: Getting the Books.)
It doesn’t have much to do with that anymore. (Write anything for long enough, apparently, and it will turn out to be about something else.) These days, it mostly has to do with music, rumination, poetry, everyday life, and writing. Feel free to explore the list of categories over there on the left. If you’d like more detail about finding what interests you, you might also try the Navigating RAMH page. (Note that that page is likely to change — to get cleaned up — in the short to middle term, as of August 2011.)
It does not have to do with politics or religion or any of the other things which people find to argue about, especially on-line. This (plus the vagueness of what it does have to do with) probably explains why its population (such as it is) remains small but apparently loyal.
If you don’t have another email address, feel free to drop a message to me at runningaftermyhatATjohnesimpsonDOTcom. And, as the observant among you will have noticed — see over there on the left? under the category lists? — I’m also on Facebook, Twitter, and most recently Google+. I don’t spend a lot of time in those venues, however.
Why “Running After My Hat”? In his book All Things Considered, G.K. Chesterton included a chapter titled “On Running After One’s Hat.” Here’s the key passage:
…there is a current impression that it is unpleasant to have to run after one’s hat. Why should it be unpleasant to the well-ordered and pious mind? Not merely because it is running, and running exhausts one. The same people run much faster in games and sports. The same people run much more eagerly after an uninteresting little leather ball than they will after a nice silk hat. There is an idea that it is humiliating to run after one’s hat; and when people say it is humiliating they mean that it is comic. It certainly is comic; but man is a very comic creature, and most of the things he does are comic—eating, for instance. And the most comic things of all are exactly the things that are most worth doing—such as making love. A man running after a hat is not half so ridiculous as a man running after a wife.
Now a man could, if he felt rightly in the matter, run after his hat with the manliest ardour and the most sacred joy. He might regard himself as a jolly huntsman pursuing a wild animal, for certainly no animal could be wilder. In fact, I am inclined to believe that hat-hunting on windy days will be the sport of the upper classes in the future. There will be a meet of ladies and gentlemen on some high ground on a gusty morning. They will be told that the professional attendants have started a hat in such-and-such a thicket, or whatever be the technical term. Notice that this employment will in the fullest degree combine sport with humanitarianism. The hunters would feel that they were not inflicting pain. Nay, they would feel that they were inflicting pleasure, rich, almost riotous pleasure, upon the people who were looking on. When last I saw an old gentleman running after his hat in Hyde Park, I told him that a heart so benevolent as his ought to be filled with peace and thanks at the thought of how much unaffected pleasure his every gesture and bodily attitude were at that moment giving to the crowd.
Hope that helps!