(artwork by Dean Morrissey)
Something happened to me on the way to the Blogosphere. I actually started caring about you idiots — and I find this a little weird. I started this enterprise for totally selfish reasons. I wasn’t writing anything at the moment and I wanted to amuse myself. Besides, not having a blog by 2005 was like not having a color TV set by 1978.
Hilary was the first commenter that I added to my blogroll, mostly because she explained to me what the blogroll was all about. Then I began to read her links and steal her links, and then read and steal the links of the links. Soon it became incestuous, like the hillbilly family in "Deliverance." One night, I’m following this link from Hilary to Gooch, and I see Leese has a comment there.
"What the hell is she doing there?" I wonder about my new pseudo-friend who I don’t really know. It was if she was my wife and I caught her having an affair. That is, until I remember that I found her link through him.
Kid Sis mentions feeling jealous when two of her links become buddies.
I never thought I’d be name dropping like this, actually mentioning other blogs. I feel a little bit like Ebenezer Scrooge who has had a transformation and now feels sorry for the pathetic Tiny Tim. Who the hell are you people and why am I caring about your measly lives?
Maybe Fun Joel, the screenwriting expert, can explain Aristotle’s idea of "catharsis" — where an audience member purges his emotion through the characters in a play. All of you have such interesting lives: I really want you to get a husband, get laid on Saturday night, overcome illness, get that job with Sony, stop fighting with your brother, divorce your wife already, stop eating junk food, and write that novel you’re too afraid to start. I remember feeling very upset when I read Jack‘s post about his wife’s purse being stolen.
But I constantly say to myself, "I don’t really know any of you."
In real life, I would fight with some of you about your crazy political ideas (some on the left and some on the right). Some of you seem like real jerks (but you write so well that I can’t stop reading you).
Some of you I have linked to, but you haven’t linked to me (who’s kvetching now, Esther?). What can I do to improve my blog so I can win your approval? Or are you just playing hard to get? You know, it’s working. I now care more about you than the ones who have already linked to me. Bastards.
Sometimes I try to visualize what you look like. I imagine Michael Blowhard as a professor type, sitting at his computer while smoking a pipe. I visualize my female readers sitting by their laptops, wearing nothing but the mouse in their hand. I don’t know why, but I’m always imagining female bloggers as blogging in the nude. Is this true or is it just a fantasy?
Again, I don’t really know any of you. If one of my blogging pals broke his foot in Atlanta, Georgia, would I fly out to help?
I started "Citizen of the Month" feeling disdain for you other bloggers. Why are you wasting all your time online? Now, I care about your stupid lives. I feel like one of the Tripods from "The War of the Worlds" sent to Earth to destroy you, but who decided to just hang out and listen to some "Grateful Dead" tunes with you instead.
It’s all your fault.
It’s ok we love you too.
Ok, time for a group hug. I understand the sentiment. One of my regular reads and a commenter on my blog (psychotoddler) called blogging targeted socializing and I think that he is on to something.
Blogs provide an intimate look at some people which allows you to get a sense of whether you like them.
I say sense because I go back and forth about just how well you can know someone from reading their blog.
Hmm, I might have to blog about this. Got to run now.
That’s what happens when you start this thing as a skeptic–it sucks you in. I know. It happened to me too.
Plus this whole thing makes the world slightly smaller. I’m not sure if that’s a good or a bad thing. But how else would you get to read about a nerdy gradstudent from the eastcoast? And how else would I get to know about a fancy film-type from LA?
If commenting on other people’s site is cheating, that makes me the resident slut of Blogosphere!
Like you, I started blogging purely for selfish reasons. But then I found Other bloggers found me through the comments board. Before I knew it blogging wasn’t just about posting on your own site anymore. You gotta make your rounds, comment on everyone else’s site, and then post often so you don’t lose readership.
And I know some people would say they blog for themselves and don’t really care about whether other people read them or not. In that case, why have a weblog then, instead of just a traditional journal?
Ok. Apparently I’m the resident HTML idiot too.
That link was supposed to be for Tj’s Place. It was written by a guy named Kevin. He disappeared last year while watching the Olympics, then made a brief reappearance back in August.
‘What can I do to improve my blog so I can win your approval?’…naked chicks (for those who read comments I am being totally tongue in cheek here)
I know what you mean as I often feel the same. I just want people to drop by and leave a comment, like every other blogger (pretty much) out there.
That’s ok MQ. You didn’t have to mention me. I don’t mind. Really. It doesn’t bother me at all. Unless I’m one of the jerks you write about. Then I mind. Because I am that thin-skinned.
*sniff sniff* …planned on taking him off my bloglist anyway!
I should tell you that I often fix your spelling errors so you look better to your peers (and so others think that I have a higher class group of readers than I really do). How many other bloggers do that for you?
Please use the names of French philosophers and the word “paradigm” more often in your comments, please.
I blog in a see-through negligee. gets a little weird when i blog from work, but whatev.
Well, as Foucault would tell you, the whole blogging thing has presented a new paradigm of communication in this post-modern day and age. (Just trying to give a little back, Neil!)
In all seriousness though, I’m in the minority, I think, in that I specifically started blogging largely out of selflessness. I’m HOPING that I can help some people who are starting out in screenwriting. I’m not going to lie and say it is a totally selfless act. Sure, I realize it is good PR for me, and hopefully can increase some of my business in some small measure. But the truth is, that I HEAVILY doubt that I will make enough more money from it that it will be worth the hours I spend blogging. It’s just fun and hopefully enlightening.
I don’t care about making money or anything else. More comments like Alley’s is reward enough for doing this. I knew it!
I don’t care about any of you. Go ahead, get a parking ticket. Or break up with your girlfriend. Or put up a photo of your kid.
Oh, who am I kidding, I can’t play the indifferent, hard-to-get blogger.
I love you ALL too!
Hey, Pauly, hands off. These are my readers. Get your own blogging friends. That’s for all of you. I don’t want to see any of you posting anywhere else. I’m a very jealous person. And that means no emails, or little IMs to each other on the side, or even “accidentally” hitting on a link.
Here’s what I meant by “targeted socializing”:
When a real, living, breathing person comes to visit me…
Hold on, nobody comes to visit me.
When a real, living, breathing person comes to visit my wife, I find that most of the time I just tune out of the conversation. There is like 99% of it that is completely uninteresting. But there may be 1% that I would like to discuss.
But if I get really excited about that 1% (say, the last episode of Battlestar Galactica), then the “friend” visiting my wife will KNOW that I’m a real spaz (as opposed to just ASSUMING it).
Or I could just post something about it on my blog and attract people who actually SHARE some of my interests.
And who almost CERTAINLY know I’m a spaz.
I called you MQ. I must have been reading his comment as I was typing. Still, it’s an unforgivable blogging error. To make up for it – I will tell you that I am not wearing any underwear. I hope we are square now.
Actually, Brooke, I thought MQ was some new internet phraseology like LOL that I wasn’t hip about. (My Queerness? Minor Quirk? Much Quackery?) I was going to ask you about it, but I didn’t want to look like a dork. And now I’m glad I didn’t.
Omigosh, this is perfect! I just found your site today, through a comment on Anonymous City Girl’s blog… and your entry is absolutely hilarious. It’s a weird little cyber-world, so addictive, so connecting, so disconnected…
Anyway, you totally cracked me up with this…
And here I thought Brooke was addressing her comment to MovieQuill! Brooke, I’ll mention you if it’ll get you to be my friend! 😉 Hey, I AM originally from NJ after all!
I blog in a yellow bathrobe.
Remember the post from a couple of days ago — about what it would be like to be the opposite sex?
Well, ladies, Joel’s sudden interest in Brooke’s “blog” after her comment about her “unique style” of writing is what being a male is all about. Thank you, Joel, for helping us out with that very clear demonstration of a male’s true intellectual interest. Screenwriting, my foot!
(Liz, a yellow bathrobe is alright. But I guess I just expected something more from you.)
Wait a sec Neil. Are you suggesting, by using quotes, that Brooke’s “blog” is not actually a blog?
And yes, I live to serve as a visual aid!
Welcome to a community that you’re part of – whether you like it or not. Glad you’re here.
And in a continued spiraling inwards of the blogosphere — I know Rabbi Fleischmann from my NYC days. He was/is good friends with my then-roommate! Aloha Rabbi Neil! 🙂
Strippers and rabbis in one week! What more can a blogger ask for?