Image of Strange Attractor from Sprott's Fractal Gallery
"Could 77 million blogs be a symptom of some ailment that separates our 21st-century souls instead of connecting them?"
The Short Answer
Well, sure, I guess so.
Or, maybe, could it be they open our minds to whole new dimensions in communications and connection?
Could they be one of those blanket-toss/down-the-rabbit-hole experiences, that show us everything we take for granted could, in fact, be otherwise?
You know? You hang out in the blogosphere long enough and you start to think stuff like, why shouldn't books make noise?
And, when are computers going to add in textures?
Why can't I send soup over my phone?
Pretty soon you get to wondering other things, like--oh, I don't know--maybe, What did Jesus smell like?
(I never thought about that till the other day. The answer that came to me was the smell of a sun-warmed burlap bag, dusty with oat chaff. I asked Bink and she said lavender growing by the sea, and salt.
While I didn't think about this while online, nonetheless blogging has helped shake my brain free of the rationality I practiced in publishing for the past four years. Though I think my use of commas remains generally spot-on, eh?)
So, no, I don't see blogging as a symptom of an ailment. I find it more like a doorway to new connections. Like a girlhood pink plastic diary--the ones with a little lock & key--on LSD.
[I moved my "self-indulgently" long ramble in response to the question to the comments.]