Friday, June 4, 2021

The 17th Anniversary of A Shroud of Thoughts

It was 17 years ago that I first started writing this blog, A Shroud of Thoughts. In the early to mid-Naughts, blogs were a bit of fad, and a lot of people were launching their own. In fact, it was a lady friend with her own blog who inspired me to launch A Shroud of Thoughts. It looked fun, so I decided to try my own. I have writen A Shroud of Thoughts longer than any jobs I have had, so it has become my life's work after a fashion.

In the mid-Naughts it was fashionable for blogs to have titles containing the word "thoughts" or synonyms thereof. I then took the phrase "A Shroud of Thoughts" from Lord Byron's Childe Harold's Pilgrimage canto iii stanza 113 (I won't quote here, as over the years I think I have quoted it enough). Given A Shroud of Thoughts has always been devoted to pop culture and nostalgia, if I had to do it all over again I would have chosen a more appropriate title. a name more fitting for a blog dedicated to pop culture and nostalgia. Had I known about the word retrophilia at the time (which Collins Dictionary defines as "a strong liking for things from the past"), I probably would have named it that instead. At any rate, by the time it occurred to me that the blog should have a better name, it already had a following. A Shroud of Thoughts it has then remained.

Of course, A Shroud of Thoughts is not the only blog that has been around for awhile.  Immortal Ephemera is older than this blog, dating to 2002. Inner Toob is about a month and a half older, starting in April 2004. Both The Stop Button and Laura's Miscellaneous Musings go back to 2005. The Rap Sheet dates to 2006. My friend Raquel started Out of the Past in 2007.  Blogs older than a decade are rare, but they are not as rare as some might think!  By the way, I strongly recommend that you visit all of these fine blogs (they've lasted so long for a reason).

Sadly, the past year has not been a particularly good one for A Shroud of Thoughts. Not counting 2004 (which was only half a year), 2020 boasted far fewer posts than any other year. Some might think that it was because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but that actually had a minimal impact on my emotional state and my desire to write. What fouled my mood for much of last year was the Los Angeles District Attorney Office's report on Vanessa's death released in March (curiously, the day before the Los Angeles District Attorney election). As anyone who knows me or who reads this blog knows, I was (and still am) both angered and disappointed by the report (if you are wondering why, read my post "Justice for Vanessa Marquez" listed below) and it affected my mood for the rest of the year. A writer's tools are their mind and their heart, and if those fail them, they can't write.

One problem I have faced the past year is the sheer number of celebrities who have died. It seems as if the year 2020 and now the year 2021 has seen more famous actors, musicians, writers, et. al. die than usual. As I like to eulogize those artists who have had an impact on me, this has meant I have been writing more eulogies than usual on the blog, so much so that some weeks on the blog are nothing but euologies. Of course, this means I have less time to devote to posts on other topics. I fear we have reached a point in history where every week is going to see the death of some beloved movie star, TV star, or musician.

Anyway, it is my custom at A Shroud of Thoughts to list my favourite blog posts from the past year each anniversary. Because I wrote fewer posts last year, I also have fewer favourites listed this year.

 "Dimension X," July 8 2020

"Justice for Vanessa Marquez," July 30 2020

"The Mary Tyler Moore Show Turns 50," September 19 2020

"The TV Show The Odd Couple Turns 50," September 24 2020

"The 60th Anniversary of the TV Show Route 66," October 7 2020

"The Paul Lynde Halloween Special," October 27 2020

"Department Stores at Christmas,' December 18 2020

"The 52nd Birthday of Vanessa Marquez," December 21 2020

"The 80th Anniversary of Captain America," January 2021

 "Sounds of the City," February 19 2021

"Joan Collins in 'The City on the Edge of Forever'," March 9 2021

"The Wild Wild West, 'The Night of the Murderous Spring,'" March 20 2021

"The 20th Anniversary of the BET Television Movie Fire & Ice," April 7 2021

"An Appointment with The Wicker Man (1974)," May 21 2021

"Mayberry, Everyone's Hometown," May 22 2021

"Nancy Kwan, More Than Suzie Wong," May 25 2021

"Anna May Wong on Television," May 28 2021


Laura said...


Best wishes,

Realweegiemidget Reviews said...

Congratulations Terence! That's an inspiring milestone.

John L. Harmon said...

Happy anniversary to your blog!

I hope mine last another 9 years!

Mitchell Hadley said...

Congratulations Terence, and many, many more!