You’re tired of seeing your name all over the Internet. It’s a badge of honor but you don’t like paying for the crime of being liberal. All your friends in the real world think that the Internet is a surreal world filled with slime, people with secrets, people who have things to hide, people who are trying new identities, and people who belong nowhere.
You disagree but lately it feels as if you haven’t been living your life for you. There are always people who want to exchange e-mails, people who want you to communicate with them. People who keep an active interest in your blog. A very active interest in your blog. They confuse the person in the stories with the person who is writing them; they honestly think that they know you. They don’t know what you left out or how you laugh or why people love or hate you. You’re not getting paid for any of this; you have reached the saturation point. They confuse amount of comments received with other things that are more important to you such as well, writing.
Over the holiday weekend you just wanted a weekend away from Internet intrigue because frankly it’s draining, and more often than not tangential to your goals. You received an e-mail accusing you of all sorts of things, and first you tried to understand; now you’re just angry that your weekend was interrupted by writing in your blog and doing blog related things you didn’t want to do.
When you first began you made a pact with yourself to be honest. That doesn’t mean to divulge the most intimate details of your life–so you have no idea how the cow–not an e-mail–something you ran across–would know if you faked orgasms or not. Actually that was funny. No you’re not angry about that at all.
You’re angry at something much more basic. The false sense of intimacy the Internet or blogging sets itself up for. You tried to be friendly with a person who asked for your friendship based on blind faith. That is, you were supposed to divulge details of your life, and this person after a try out period of god knows how long might divulge details. At first you misunderstood. You’ve always been good at reading people, but in life, not on a false blank screen where people could be whoever they want to be. And you’ve always given people the benefit of the doubt.
But one night this person IM’d you. It had been a long day, and the person didn’t even ask if it was a good time–it wasn’t. Then the person asked if you were on medication because you couldn’t keep up with the scattered stupid conversation nor did you want to. You thought that the person was turned off to you, or you hoped so.
Then you went on vacation that turned into ten days of hell; trying the entire time to breathe, for the first time in your life you were honestly scared about your health. When you came home you were sicker and found out that you have a form of asthma. You were exhausted. On your vacation you checked your e-mail at least twice a day despite a laptop that was on life-support of a sort. You wrote four posts because it was Terri time and that’s something you have professional expertise in.
You should have taken the sick computer as a sign and not rushed to replace her. But you did; and that person came running back into your life accusing you of ignoring e-mails that you had honestly not received. He/she/it sent you accusatory e-mails, but you replied and that too was stupid. It’s as if this person is a child and believes that if he/she isn’t included in everything, nothing is happening.
Or how could you not be in touch when you don’t have a spouse or kids? To this person you have no excuses; no life; no obligations outside an Internet centered life–when in fact it’s one aspect of your life. Sometimes since you’ve been on the Internet you think it is a sick medium that leads people to think that your life is the words you put down on paper. Words are subject to much interpretation; can need nuance; can need balance; can need an objective balance; can need so much more than the keystrokes show. You’re good with manipulating words, but you’re fallible. To be human is to be imperfect. You have never pretended to be anything else.
Yet it seems as if this person has read every word you’ve written in your blog. Your blog is for public consumption. Your blog reflects certain feelings you feel at the moment; your blog is about certain parts of your past; certain parts of your present. But your blog is not you. Your blog purposely doesn’t talk about certain people who have been important to making you, you. It doesn’t talk about certain activities that were pivotal to your life. Your blog is not a living breathing person.
Most of your life people have put you into categories you don’t want to be in. You used to feel like the bride atop the wedding cake–all perfect to look at and show–but the cake will melt or be eaten; the showpiece will lose an arm, get mangled and someday be lost unless perfectly preserved–and even human technology hasn’t allowed humans to do that yet. You are glad about that.
Now the person sent you a venomous e-mail you’ve already answered in large part in other posts. But who does this person think he/she is? there was the–“you used to be popular and now you’re not. I get X-Y amount of comments a day and you don’t.” Was that supposed to endear you to him/her?
This person is a functional adult? You know ten year olds with much more maturity. Ten year olds who think before hurting. Sometimes they hurt unintentionally. You hurt people, but never out of venom; never because you want to let the person know how much you hate her. Or want her, which makes you feel even sicker.
You’re not a comment whore. You know plenty of ways that you could get many comments if you wanted to. You could write less; pad comments with your own, answer every comment you’ve received–you want to do that really–but you’ve been overwhelmed. You could spend your spare time visiting blogs and commenting on each one. But that’s not what you’ve been looking for. Honestly lately you have no idea what your blog is becoming; honestly half the time you don’t care. You have other priorities; a life to live. You do wonder why some people take so much interest in your thoughts. You’re not a celebrity; you’ve done nothing noteworthy with your life.
You also feel invaded; it’s one thing for people who are right wingers to do it, though why they would be so interested in you is behind your understanding; but when a person with no political motive does it-it’s called something else entirely.
Your aim has never been Internet popularity; though you have it. Much more than this person knows. Sometimes when you have commented on a post that moved you, you’ve seen this person’s comments. So needy; so come to my house and leave me a comment.
The person then analyzed your writing and how it much it has declined. And this person is__________? You have no idea because the person won’t give any details. No you’re expected to accept things on blind faith and you can’t. Life is hard enough. This was supposed to be fun. It’s not anymore. Out of curiosity you read through your blog. There are posts that aren’t great, but there are some recent ones that leave you a bit in awe of yourself. Very few, but still, they work better than you had thought that they would.
You’ve read some of the person’s posts. They are needy also, begging for comments; begging for people to say “I like you; I like you. No wait a sec, I love you; I adore you.”
You’re tired of the politics behind everything; tired of politics. You want a real vacation; one where you won’t be sick and the sun will be out. You have to navigate everything by yourself because as the person points out you are alone. That’s supposed to make you self absorbed and many other not nice things. The person has written on the e-mail that nothing said should repeated. At the end of the email there is a homemade copyright thing. Hello. Would you ever want to repeat any of it word by word? Do people really think that they can send nasty e-mails and not have it responded it to?
You won’t give this person any power and this post is the if-you-dare-email-me-or-say-one-negative-thing-about-me to anybody outside your family, you (as in not me) will be outed, by you (as in me).
By saying this I’m taking away the power you implied with your words; and your copyright at the end. Is that person so naive as to believe that intellectual property laws are clearly defined re the Internet? Is that person so naive to believe that anything that isn’t on Adobe can’t be copied and pasted?
Not that I have any desire to do that. The words weren’t original. They were threats. And I won’t be threatened. No I haven’t come this far to let some blogger threaten me because he/she saw more than there was in our exchanges and is angry because I haven’t commented on its blog.
There’s nothing left to say. I want off this roller-coaster where roles are still being defined and I’m not sure of mine. I want sun. And the sun is shining; so adios.