Every Xmas for about the past eight Xmases, I have lost my mind to holiday gift-making (there was one exception, 2005 when I just plain lost my mind).
Now, as anyone who had met me briefly or seen me from across a city block can tell: I am crotchety. I have ALWAYS been crotchety. I was like a crotchety eighth grader. My holiday craftiness is less out of some kind of cheery holiday spirit, more from some weird deep-seated need I have to Go Above and Beyond in a totally baroque, nearly perverse fashion. It verges on self-flagellation. I am waiting for the holiday season that Werner Herzog shows up with a camera crew to film it, and I eagerly anticipate his finished documentary with his dry reserved German narration of my yearly insane folly:
"Now, at 3:00 AM, she is overwhelmed with despair when she realizes three of her four different varieties of savory quick bread mini-loaves are slightly more dry than she would ideally like. They will not survive ground shipment. She collapses at her table in a heap of sobbing."
So about a gajillion years ago, Deborah Ng tagged me to write about why I blog. And instead of just like writing it, I made the mistake of THINKING ABOUT IT, which of course made the whole thing much more perversely baroque in my head than it would ever need to be. So then I didn't just write it because my meager store of attention span was all taken up by day- and nightjob. And THEN it just sat there, accusingly, on the mental to-do list.
So whatever, I don't know why I'm such a nutbag about this stuff. Here's my answer. I will have to tag other blogs later as I have been a bad blogging-community-member of late and am barely checking anybody else's, so gots to go see who hasn't done this one yet. But baby steps, at least I can do the answer.
Blogging, for me, has been like a relationship. It started in a sort of frenzy of enthusiasm. I found myself constantly e-mailing my gay husband and some other friends with the ridiculous resume or cover letter of the day. And then I thought, well, I of course find all this endlessly amusing, but my friends might just be smiling wanly at it. Eventually, they might even find it kind of annoying, which will make them reluctant to open the e-mails I REALLY want them to read, like the ones with the pictures of the shoes I want to buy.
So I thought I would go ahead and start a blog.
And it was like fun! Like instead of getting aggravated and hating my dayjob all the time, I was feeling actually engaged by it, waiting for the next person to do the next annoying thing because I could get a post out of it. It sort of made the day go by faster.
Then we settled into a sort of groove, a nice little groove, and some people were reading the blog, and that was cool, and my little Profile View counter was going up and I felt special.
Then it stopped being special. And it sort of became work. And days would pass and no one would comment. And the Profile View wouldn't move. I had to squeeze in this time to write these posts and they weren't even being appreciated at all. And then the blog called me by its ex-writer's name at a very inappropriate moment, and we were just fighting all the time, and I was seriously like, I don't even NEED a blog anymore.
And that's when I got into the whole Zen of Blogging. As I've mentioned before, I think it's like meditation, if I may not only change metaphors but also tone, from silly to sincere.
Now people throw around the word Zen all the time and it bugs me a little. Like it's in commercials and stuff and I know it's not exactly, truly, precisely a religion, but it's some serious stuff and I don't particularly appreciate it being used to sell paint. So please know when I talk about the Zen of Blogging, it's not some facile appropriation, I actually have owned a zafu.
And blogging is kinda it, man. You do it at first for some kind of satisfaction or attention or as writing practice and then it exists and you just do it because you do it. And if the counter goes up or the counter stays still and if someone comments or if even your friends forget the web address...still you sit down (semi-)regularly to do it.
I'm not a very disciplined person to do things on a regular basis. I'm more a fits and starts and once-a-year-sprints kinda lady. If I do have any discipline, it always for something where I can clearly see "What's in it for me?" and even then I can generally only get motivated to do the things I MUST do in order to stay fed and clothed and housed. But this? There isn't really much in it for me. I can't even put my name on it.
So I blog because I blog. And there you have it.
Thanks, Deborah! Here is her answer to the question. I will tag others at some point.