Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Blogging on blogging

He gave me a wink
And he said it was funny
How mortals would pour all their blood, sweat and tears
Onto tape, onto paper
Or into the air
To be lost and forgotten

Outside of his kind employ

                      -Joe Jackson, "The Man Who Wrote Danny Boy" 
When I first started this blog, I had no expectation that anyone would read it.  I felt like I was just tossing words out into the ether that would probably be lost and forgotten.  Well, I knew Al would read them.  After all, it was in our marriage vows: “I, Al,  take you, Deb, to my lawfully wedded wife, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, and to read your blog, as long as we both shall live.”  Al has always made good on his promises.

I have been writing daily for over three weeks now and have a few observations.

  • Al does read my blog.  Sometimes, I ask him to read an entry before I even post it.  Just in case it is really lame.
  • I am really surprised (and flattered) that other people are reading this. Thanks!
  • I write the blogs in Word and copy them to the blog site.  I always think that I have completed the writing and editing process before I post, but I always spend at least another 20-30 minutes futzing around once they are posted.  They read differently in the blog format and once posted, they just cry out for revision.  Once in a while, I’ll even make a change several days later.
  • The act of posting to a blog site magically separates the writer from the words.  The entries are about my perspectives on things but once posted, they exist independently.  I think this paradoxical.  I may have put the words ‘out there’ but they come into your home on your computer and at that point, they are yours more than mine.  I am oddly disconnected, no longer part of the process. 
  • I think it is because of that separation that there is a strange freedom inherent in blogging.  People who have known me for a very long time are finding out new things. Similarly, I know many faculty who teach online classes find that students are much more open in online discussions than they are in traditional classroom discussions.  This type of communication is infinitely more public, but seemingly more anonymous.

Another 'blog'-- the old fashioned way.
I still ask myself why I am doing this blog.  Well, ok, I know why I am writing for the month of August.  It began as a lark and a challenge to myself, but now that people know I am doing it, I feel strongly compelled to finish the job. (My greatest fear is failing publicly.  It is a very powerful motivator.)  But, in a more general sense, I am not sure why I spend so much time writing.  Maybe it has something to do with  the ‘malformed mess of creative ooze’ that I wrote about the other day.  Or maybe I need to get a life. Probably the latter.

Today I am grateful that Al is willing to pick up and dispose of all the dead mice and moles that our cats have been catching and leaving at the back door.   However, I am not grateful that the cats have decided to engage in nightly rodent murder rampages.

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