THE DAILY BLOG – AN AGATHA CHRISTIE MYSTERY
So there we were. It’s late. The dogs are sleeping. Garry and I are watching “The ABC Murders” on the BBC Poirot series. Poirot is reading an article in the newspaper, supposedly quoting Captain Hastings. Hastings says “I say, Poirot, I really didn’t say that, you know.”
“I know,” says Poirot. “But perhaps this will help us. The murderer, he sees what I supposedly said in the daily blog …”
1. A website containing a writer’s or group of writers’ own experiences, observations, opinions, etc., and often having images and links to other websites.
2. A single entry or post on such a website: She regularly contributes a blog to the magazine’s website.
verb (used without object), blogged, blogging.
3. To maintain or add new entries to a blog. Verb (used with object), blogged, blogging.
4. To express or write about on a blog: She’s been blogging her illness for almost a year.
Origin of blog
1995-2000; shortening of weblog – Related forms: blogger, noun
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
Blog? He used the word blog? This show was aired in 1992 and the story is set in pre-World War II England. How far back does the word “blog” go? These BBC productions are generally considered accurate renditions of the books.
Web + log.–
None of these definitions would be used to describe a newspaper article or column … or even a published rumor. Except — this BBC TV movie was released in 1992. And the word “blog” in a form and meaning we understand is there, where it can’t be because the word did not yet exist.
But it did exist and it meant basically what it means now, except applied to a daily newspaper, not something on the Internet.
I can reach but one conclusion: My accurate sources are wrong. The word did exist at least as early as 1992. If they are wrong about this, what else did they get wrong? Did Agatha Christie use it in the original manuscript? I’d need to have a searchable copy of “The ABC Murders” to do a word search. I don’t have such a book at the moment, but I’ll try to find one. There may be one available as a Kindle and they are searchable. I’ll let you know.
Meanwhile, I can’t find any source that admits any evidence that the word “blog” existed in its current form and usage prior to 1995 (most say 1997). All sources agree on this. The word “blog” comes from “web log.” Except obviously, that’s not true.
It’s a mystery worthy of Dame Agatha herself.
How many other things I know are true, are wrong? Makes you wonder, doesn’t it?
UPDATE: Dateline Uxbridge, 1:22 PM, EDT
After much checking in by helpful readers and friends, the word (given the heavy fake French accent …) might have been one of these three words:
Blood (which is what the transcript of the show thinks it was)
Blab (mebbe, because with the accent, anything that is a single syllable and starts with BL and is followed by an “aw” or “ah” sound could sound like blog
Blah, as in “blah, blah, blah” which had during WWI (around 1918), come into common parlance to mean the same thing it means 100 years later.
If anyone has the book, it would be interesting to find out what Dame Agatha actually wrote, as opposed to what the BBC production used in the script. The show is available on Netflix. It is first show of the 1992 season four. “The ABC Murders” is a movie length feature and very well done. It will stand alone as a single viewing.