I wrote a truly long post because I began as a long winded self-absorbed blogger. I’m going through the blog one post at a time. Not a fun project, but I must do it. Again I thank Cooper the magnificent.
Courting’s undergone and still undergoing major retuning.
Last week I watched Julie and Julia. I’ve never been a Meryl person. I have always appreciated her brilliance but many of her performances have left me feeling nothing. I watched Mama Mia with eyes and mouth wide open amazed that she would subject herself to that role when I seriously doubt she needs money and her kids aren’t in the pivotal ten to fourteen year old range that would love the movie. Abba is a band that has always reminded me of the worst of pop. No it’s not even pop.
Her performance was a revelation. She not just captured Julia Child but made me love her. Stanley Tucci! Wow. He made a little, ugly to be honest, man into one of the sexiest men I have ever seen. I was captivated.
I have read a lot about how Julie’s (Amy Adams) story was horrible but I’m a blogger and in some ways it could have been my story. These are the exceptions: Amanda Hesser of The Times went to her house for dinner. The book taken from the blog turned into a best seller. The subsequent movie was one of the top movies of the year. And she wrote a new memoir about the affairs she was having during that time that did almost ruin the movie for me as she and her husband seemed so solidly together.
Oh yes we have so much in common.
When I began Courting I didn’t realize people read blogs. She knew more, and knew enough to have a theme but at first didn’t know if anybody was reading. When her husband read that she was the third most read blog at Salon, they called the people “fans.” When I became the most read blog at that place we don’t talk about it I called the people who read “readers.”
She felt obligated to post everyday. My readers know my verbal diarrhea though it has tapered off. Somebody from The Christian Science Monitor called her. Somebody called me. You can see we have a tremendous amount in common. She was coming up to her 30’s. I was in that place called “used to be 30something when it was on.”
It’s not that I’m ashamed of my age. I’m just so darn immature that I have a hard time believing I’m going to be 60. Therefore all my friends have been on notice for months they better come up with one giant celebration because it is an age to celebrate.
Julie got nasty comments. Blogs were begun just to diss me. But hey any publicity….Not frigging true.
Unlike Julie I didn’t get a book contract. But my life changed as dramatically. As much as I talked about moving from New York I was scared. I know New York. New York knows me. We went together like seltzer and vanilla syrup in egg creams which contain no eggs, but seltzer, syrup and milk. I have an incredible support system in New York. Yes I had been living the life so many dream of down to the luxe doorman building in the heart of the Upper West Side.
But my dreams had changed. I knew to continue living the life I lived I needed more space in a way less pricey place. I didn’t count on a house. That never entered my radar until I found North Myrtle Beach and realized I was capable of buying, renovating (not with my own hands) and maintaining a house. My house isn’t architecturally significant. I could get a lot more house that has higher ceilings, is fancier, and has more room for much less money just across 17 but it wouldn’t be a five minute walk to the beach or a two minute walk to the center of town. My house has decks, lots of decks and I love decks. It thrills me to sit outside in the middle of the night looking at stars. It thrills me to be able to run to the beach for just a few minutes whenever.
I haven’t been a “good” blogger these past three years and I’m not just talking quality. Too much was happening in my “real” life to seek out new blogs, to make new blogging friends. Julie didn’t have to comment, email, chat up people. I’m not saying that all that is bad. It was difficult for reasons my readers are all too aware of. The problems I had were all interrelated (something I had intuitively known) had a name, and I operated at a level where I had compensated for almost everything.
Blogging brought the problems back. I couldn’t master the computer language of blogging, HTML. I couldn’t blog socialize as much as many people wanted yet I couldn’t set limits. I political blogged long after I knew it wasn’t healthy for me. When I found out about NLD I began to take charge of my life. Yet I had never felt “disabled” before.
Damn I was smart. I had been eligible to skip grades but my parents didn’t believe in that. People always took me for bright. Yes I had gone through this before but blogging once so great for me began to make me feel like a collection of symptoms. It’s not OK to have a space to pour your heart out into, unedited. Since I generally wouldn’t talk about my friends in the present, blogging about NLD filled up space and let me vent. Something I probably needed to do. But will never know if the venting led to feeling worse. I very much believe in the power of positive thinking, and not dwelling on problems, yet….Did it have to be so public? I love having less Google entries.
So I lost readers, didn’t court new ones, and do you know how many blogs have begun in the past three years? Many millions. When I was “on top,” I think there grew to be sixty million. I alone had five.
Yet it was the greatest feeling in the world in the beginning. People read me! People who weren’t classmates or relatives. An illustrator/cartoonist said to me: “you have the feedback I have always craved.” I was shocked as I’ve known him all my life and thought he was a person who shunned the spotlight. And he makes mucho money. But I knew what he meant. There’s nothing like that first feeling of wonder; of going to a from “blogger to writer” seminar knowing I had a higher Technorati rating than the speakers. Yes of course I looked. I was hung up on stats then. I have always resented that title. I was a writer a long time before I was a blogger.
I didn’t know how to handle that recognition. It came out of nowhere and at times, many times, felt undeserved. At times it made me want to jump up and down with joy. Other times I wanted to ask people if they knew who I was. Like they cared. I lived in New York where everybody really does have their fifteen minutes or their best friend did. Everybody was famous for something real. Not having a money losing blog. Everybody was younger and better looking than me. I take that last one back. But I had begun to feel that I was living in a theme park and I just ain’t a Disney or Rouse production person.
My life was unsettled. Maybe I will never have that recognition again but hey, I’m prepared for anythng. I’m settled now. Everything I have done in the past three years has been to improve my life.
So Julie went onto fame and fortune and I went on to home ownership. OK she’s lived my dream. My dream didn’t die. It went on hiatus. The long drawn out saga is over, and the fun’s about to begin. Stay tuned.
My next posts will be at the max half this length. As usual I reserve the right to change my mind.