Greetings, my gentle snowflakes! I realize that it has been a long time indeed since we last met, but be anxious no more: for I have returned.
The first order of business is to inform as many of you as have heroically withstood with the merciless passing of the seasons that this blog’s name and look have changed. Allow me to introduce you, then, to Bouncing into Graceland.
As long time readers might recall, not only has this blog featured the above “Graceland” header image from its inception in 2007, but for as long as it was hosted on Blogger it also carried a subtitle taken from the homonymous song by the great Paul Simon:
There is a girl in New York City
Who calls herself the human trampoline
And sometimes when I’m falling, flying
Or tumbling in turmoil I say
Whoa, so this is what she means
She means we’re bouncing into Graceland
These are surely some of the greatest American lyrics of all time, and the Graceland sign with the upwards arrow was specifically chosen to match them. “The Voice of Stefan” (which, incidentally, I first used for my short-lived Vox journal in 2006) was only meant to be a provisional name until I found something more satisfactory; however, I then started to blog in earnest, and the provisional name stayed almost by default. So the new name really isn’t new, after all, but in fact picks up on a theme that has been present here from the beginning. But more on that later, when I finish that one post I started to write back in 2008 (!).
Of course, those of you who also read Nick Norelli’s blog were already aware of the name change. As noted in his announcement, Nick did provide a number of suggested alternate names at my request, and he even listed some of them. I feel, however, that he left out of his partial list some of his better suggestions, which I therefore now share with you for your edification.
- “Maybe, something like, ‘Radical Orthodoxy, Only Less Radical.'”
- “Anything with some interesting foreign letters in it would be cool. Something like a Spanish Ñ or a Norwegian Ø in the title would be awesome.”
- “If you wanna go something more classic how about ‘Irenaeus is Awesome’ or ‘Machen Kills Liberals’? Both have a nice ring to them.”
- “‘Garfunkled’ could be cool. You could end every post by saying, ‘You’ve just been Garfunkled.'”
The first two are just fun. “Garfunkled” would have made for a splendid name (and catch phrase!), and indeed one with precedent in the Paul Simon oeuvre:
I been mothered, fathered, aunt and uncled
Roy Halleed and Art Garfunkled
I just discovered somebody’s tapped my phone
However, naming my blog after Art Garfunkel probably would have haunted for the rest of my days.
I must admit that I very nearly went with “Machen Kills Liberals.” I even envisioned an image of Machen holding a copy of Christianity and Liberalism, with the words “This Machine Kills Liberals” etched around the border (after the model of Woody Guthrie’s “This Machine Kills Fascists” guitar). This would have been spectacular. I ultimately passed on it, but only with deep regret.
In the end, I decided that my traveling companions would be poorboys and pilgrims with families along the way—so, my gentle snowflakes, welcome to Bouncing into Graceland. I hope you’ll be my traveling companions too, and that we all will be received there.