The Joe DiMaggio of bloggers

For years, one of my first stops every morning after cranking up the computer was Dustbury. There would always be something new and worth reading. The proprietor, Charles G. Hill, a self-described “generalist and occasional wiseguy,” was intelligent and insightful. He was witty and clever, too, very good with bad puns, and an unabashed brony. He was always a pleasure to read. One of the few things I looked forward to on Mondays was his weekly survey of search terms leading to his site, with a wisecrack for each item. His familiarity with obscure popular music rivaled that of the Professor, and he had a healthy appreciation of fine stemware.

Dawn Eden and Charles Hill at an Oklahoma bloggers’ meet-up in 2005.

It wasn’t all wisecracks at Dustbury, though. Hill struggled with depression all his life. During the past few years he faced worsening problems with health and mobility. His “Vents” were often painful to read, and other posts could be disturbing. Although our interaction was limited to occasionally leaving a comment at each other’s site, I worried about him.

Charles Hill passed away yesterday from injuries received in an accident.

Dusty Sage

If there is such a thing as a “national treasure” on the internet, it’s Charles G. Hill’s site. The text deserves to be printed on acid-free paper and available in libraries for ages to come. I hope someone capable steps up to preserve Dustbury, as Pixy Misa and J Greely did for Steven Den Beste’s sites.

When perusing Dustbury, be sure to check the tabs at the top of the page, as well as the main blog. There you will find much else of interest, such as his profile with Norm Geras:

What would you do with the UN?
I’m not quite sure, but I expect it involves dynamite….

Do you have any prejudices you’re willing to acknowledge?
I shun anyone who can speak the word ‘multicultural’ with a straight face.

Update
Tributes to Dustbury: Roger Green; Steve Lackmeyer; Rob O’Hara.

(The post title is from John Salmon; the picture of Dawn Eden and Charles G. Hill is from Michael Bates.)

18 notes per second, with a grin

What is the greatest guitar album ever recorded?1 Surfing with the Alien? Performing this week … Live at Ronnie Scott’s? The Return of the Hellecasters? Something by Danny Gatton, or Roy Buchanan?

How about The Lightning Fingers of Roy Clark? Clark may have had the persona of a hayseed clown, but he could play guitar. Here’s a sample:

It’s not as easy as it looks. If you have any interest in guitar music, you need Roy Clark in your library.

Clark died yesterday at the age of 85. Wonderduck has more.