His name is Batocchio; his blog is titled “Vagabond Scholar.” His posts are often lengthy, well-researched, and evidence of an intelligent, inquiring mind. They cover, his blog states, “politics, film, theater, poetry, literature, history and what-have-you.”
I found one of his recent posts, “The Graveyard of Democracy,” essential reading.
I was delighted to receive an invitation to contribute one of my posts to the roundup, for both 2020 and 2021. I’m setting aside for now the gargantuan question of how–in this universe of zillions of talented bloggers creating multi-zillions of superb posts–one can arrive at such a list.
The explanation appears not far below.
Here’s some background from Batocchio about the Jon Swift Roundup:
“This tradition was started by the late Jon Swift/Al Weisel, who left behind some excellent satire, but was also a nice guy and a strong supporter of small blogs.
“Lance Mannion, who sadly passed away earlier this year, provided the definitive description of our endeavor:“
“Our late and much missed comrade in blogging, journalist and writer Al Weisel, revered and admired across the bandwidth as the ‘reasonable conservative’ blogger Modest Jon Swift, was a champion of the lesser known and little known bloggers working tirelessly in the shadows . . .
“One of his projects was a year-end Blogger Round Up. Al/Jon asked bloggers far and wide, famous and in- and not at all, to submit a link to their favorite post of the past twelve months and then he sorted, compiled, blurbed, hyperlinked and posted them on his popular blog. His round-ups presented readers with a huge banquet table of links to work many of us had missed the first time around and brought those bloggers traffic and, more important, new readers they wouldn’t have otherwise enjoyed.
“It may not have been the most heroic endeavor, but it was kind and generous and a lot of us owe our continued presence in the blogging biz to Al.“
Batocchio is cognizant of the self-limiting nature of this endeavor: “As always, my goal is to find the right balance between inclusive and manageable.”
He has a welcoming message to those who weren’t a part of the 2021 roundup: join in by linking your post in the comments and/or tweeting it with the hashtag #jonswift2021.
“You can still join in.” That explanation responds to the gargantuan question of post selection.
He adds this encouragement from Jon/Al’s 2008 roundup:
“I’m sure you’ll be interested in seeing what your favorite bloggers think were their best posts of the year, but be sure to also visit some blogs you’ve never read before and leave a nice comment if you like what you see or, if you must, a polite demurral if you do not.”
I hope you’ll visit Batocchio’s post/blog to learn more and check out the links from this year’s bloggers.
You can also follow links via “the Wayback Machine” to posts by Jon Swift/Al Weisel, and to more recent work by Lance Mannion/David Reilly.
I am most grateful to Batocchio for linking bloggers and blogs past with those of us blogging in the present. And the future? Will the Wayback Machine provide access to our musings too?
A personal note…
I found the search for my “best” post of the year difficult, but I decided on this one: “Winning Over White Supremacists–One Hater at a Time.” I explain why in the roundup.
A few of my other children/posts that I considered were “’The Enemy Is Within’ (An Acrostic for Nancy Pelosi)” and “So My Anthropomorphism Wasn’t Totally Off Base!“
I welcome your responses!
And fellow bloggers: how would you single out the blog post that represents your “best” effort for this year? Batocchio invites you to append the link to your favorite post to the comments on his roundup post. Please feel free to do the same in the comments section below.
As this will be my final post for 2021, I wish you–and us all–a more sunny and cheerful 2022, with the pandemic on the wane and (one must always hope) greater kindness, understanding, and tolerance among us…in a world that encourages the healing of Planet Earth, its people and other living beings, in more urgent and significant ways.