I wonder if this was the first Blog.
I found the following in a novel called The Way Things Are (published 1927). The heroine, Laura Temple, is visiting her neighbour, Lady Kingsley-Browne, who has been badly upset by the behaviour of her wayward daughter Bebee. Bebee has caused a huge scandal by moving in with a married man and his wife.
"I must tell you that Bebee, poor darling child, has taken up quite a new line." [said Lady Kingsley-Browne.]
"Oh, what?" exclaimed Laura, her tone of dismay betraying her conviction that any new line followed by Bebee must necessarily be a disastrous one.
"She is leaving him - in fact, she already has left him. She has - it seems a most extraordinary thing, I know - but she has taken up religion. At least, I suppose you might call it religion. Do come nearer the fire, Laura. I wonder if there any scones, or anything hot? . . .
"Thank you. But do please go on-"
"It seems as though Bebee has so much personality, poor darling, that she has to express herself in ways that might, in anybody else, seem almost odd."
"It seems she has met a man - I'm sure things would have been just the same had it been another woman-"
Lady Kingsley-Browne paused, but as Laura felt equally sure that whatever "it" might be, things would not have been the same had it been another woman, she made no reply.
"It just happens to have been a man - Ernest Blog is his name, but Americans so often have names that we think odd - well, he has discovered, or invented, a tremendous new creed, and he has quite converted Bebee to it. And the really bright spot is, that they are on their way to England, to - to try and spread it. . . I can't tell you how ardently she has taken up this new creed."
"What, exactly, is it?"
". . Mr Blog lays down just one or two broad principles. Nothing sectarian, you know - it rather reminded me of the Women's Institute movement . . . sort of guiding lines, that makes life simpler for all of us. . . "
"I should like to hear some of the - the Blog principles, if you can remember them. I am not laughing, really and truly. It's only the name that - just for the moment - "
"I know," said Lady Kingsley-Browne forbearingly. "It has a quaint sound, I am bound to admit. But the principles seem very simple and beautiful. She enclosed a sheet, with some Rules of Life written on it, put together by Mr. Blog. Nothing dogmatic, you know. Just: It is Better to Speak the Truth than to tell Lies, and Kindness is Right, but Cruelty is Wrong. Things of that sort. I liked all that part of it."
"Was there another part, as well?"
"Two other parts. One was about diet, which always seems to enter tremendously into any new kind of religion. . . His - Ernest Blog's - idea is nothing cooked. Only things that have ripened in the sun - and, of course, in this country, that would limit one a good deal. But anything in the way of drink, and as much of it as one likes. Prohibition, you see."
"Not in England."
"I know. Perhaps he'll modify that part of it over here."
"And what else?" said Laura.
"Free Love," said Lady Kingsley-Browne, as one accepting the inevitable.
Later on when Dr Ernest Blog appears he is described as being "exactly two foot high".
So that's the proto-Blog or the Ur-Blog. Short, American, cranky, and advancing platitudes as daring originality. However, you can't really object to the principles of Truth being better than Lies and Kindness than Cruelty - though you can find plenty of writers, on and off blogs, ready to do so.
The first Blog follower was an egocentric air-head and flake.
(Extract from Chapter XVI of The Way Things Are by E M Delafield, whose Diary of a Provincial Lady has never been out of print. The Way Things Are is republished by Virago Modern Classics.)
E M Delafield on the cover of Life.