Stepping Back

My comfort level on this blog has steadily grown over the years. Originnally most posts were food for thought. I also wanted to express who I am, but it leaked out slowly over time. Spaced out enough that someone who was not a regular reader would need to be diligent and motivated to really put the whole thing together. And at the beginning I knew it was meant for strangers. Along the way I made friends with others out there online and also let in some close friends and family members. And it’s easy to become more personal when you know there are only friends, family, or perfect strangers watching. They either know you very well or not at all. For strangers, you are just another face out there.

But it becomes muddy with aquaintences. People who know of you and maybe a portion of your life, but not the whole story. This article delves into that a bit more. Not that any of us have anything to hide, but it just feels weird when you read that your co-worker Johnny was out drinking all weekend. And there are numerous photos posted about it. Sometimes you want your different circles to stay separated.

Now, I’ve generally written about fairly tame subjects in the past. I’d occasionnally say some things about the current US administration or some other topic that might illicit strong words from others. But it would only be because I felt strongly enough about the topic to mention something. I’ve steered clear of hot topics since I’ve seen how the anonymity of the internet has allowed people to make malicious comments and personal attacks in the name of proving their point (being right). It’s harmless I suppose, but I’m not interested in attracting that kind of attention and it’s not a part of society I’m interested in dealing with.

This is why I have deleted two posts I’ve recently written. My comfort level had reached a point where I’ve often thought I was writing only, or at least primarily, to my regular readers. Not those stumbling in through searches. A few malicious comments were left under pseudonyms that did not correspond to the bogus email addresses provided. I don’t need that. So I deleted the posts in order to keep any other “hate mail” traffic for making it’s way here. I’d rather have traffic from people with genuine interest and pleasant demeanors. And the people I had intended the posts for had likely already read them and commented on them.

To a degree it has left me wondering how much I want of myself out there. It’s really left a bad taste in my mouth. I had planned to slow down on this front anyhow. But even as I’ve been considering that I’ve seen how strong the feeling is to continue to write. There are still too many interesting topics out there to add my two cents to. Even if they aren’t hot button topics. So I may not be around much for a while, but I’ll likely be back.

~ by Frank on March 23, 2008.

9 Responses to “Stepping Back”

  1. “So I may not be around much for a while, but I’ll likely be back.”

    Er, can I help with backing vocals and harmonica on this one?


  2. Would you stop shopping somewhere because another customer stepped in line in front of you? I think it’s just the nature of the beast. There will always be m$%*er f*$&3ers lurking. Best to ignore them.

  3. Dommage!

  4. See what happens when one doesn’t check the site everyday! Now I am all the more curious what got the ax. Blog on.

  5. I must agree with tornwordo. Someone told me a long time ago when something I wrote for publication caused a longtime subscriber to cancel his subscription, that I must be doing something right to get that kind of reaction.

    If you are only writing to be agreed with, then perhaps you should rethink why you are doing this. It’s like the obnoxious people on the tollway who think they own the road. They make life miserable for a few minutes and then everything gets back to normal once they have moved on. Don’t let the turkeys get you down.

    If you can ban those turkeys based on their IP address, that will help keep it to a minimum. It has always amazed me how some people who would write that kind of misery online wouldn’t dare say something like that if they were in the same room with you. So carry on, dear cousin. Write for those you originally intended to write for, and as your own Dr. Seuss quote says, “Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind. -Dr. Seuss (via my mother)

    Game on.

  6. Everyone: Sorry about this rather poorly written post. That first paragraph in particular is likely difficult to understand. I’ve gotta stop writing posts like this full of complaints. That’s not how I want to be.

    un.slaked: Maybe we can turn it into a blues medley. I realized afterward that I’m becoming a bit of a broken record by keep repeating that I’m throwing in the towel to certain degrees. Y’all are going to start thinking I’m a blogging drama queen.

    torn: Thanks for the encouragement. The post you wrote a week or two ago kinda brought me back to realizing the worth of these. I’ll keep writing, though I’ll still avoid topics that will bring on the hungry dogs. I think of it more as avoiding places you know you could attract unwanted attention. There are more than enough places to have a good time.

    Sofy: Don’t worry. It’ll likely just be a slowdown. Not a shutdown.

    mrne: It was the pair about purchasing an SUV. A couple seagulls came in and shat all over the place.

    cathy: No, I don’t strive to be agreed with. Though it seems to happen often. It’s quite possible it’s subconscious. I found that one of the commentors seems to make a living going around chatrooms attacking others. I still don’t understand those people. Yeah, I noticed the quote again after I posted this.

  7. I’m often clueless, is “seagull” a euphemism for nasty lurkers? Or maybe you literally mean the avians messed your pretty new drive. Either way. I found the SUV reflections very interesting. That is pretty much the case with all your reflections—you are a photographer showing us the world through your lens. Don’t stop writing. I realize you have a full, busy, wonderful life and so it is understandable you have some time constraints (who doesn’t—on top of everything else, I’ve officially begun the dissertation process)—but keep writing, and as Oscar Wilde said, “Be yourself, Everyone else is already taken!”

  8. hey there. thanks for setting up this blog. i’m a midwesterner as well (living in DC which sucks ass) and i’m moving to Montreal with my Quebecoise fiancee in 2 months. i just stumbled onto your site and i can see already that it will give me a much better perspective on what to expect when i get there. take care, z

  9. Thanks, Mrne. Seagull is a euphemism for those who come in, eat what you have, make alot of noise, crap all over the place, and leave.

    Z: Glad that it could be helpful. It’s one of the great things about the internet. I really should publish Montreal related tidbits more often.

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