This blog is pretty weird.
Let’s face it, dear reader: we have latched onto a fleeting trend. Blogging was hot hot hot for a little while there! I wanna say 2009, everybody had a blog. We blogged our outfits. We blogged hairstyle tutorials. We blogged our LIVES! … for like, three years. By 2014, it seems, everyone got tired of blogging? People either morphed into YouTube celebrities or Instagram influencers, or just ran out of time to sit down and put their lives into journals for the voyeurs of the Internet to probe into on evenings and weekends…
Am I sad about this? Yes and no. No, because I don’t blame anyone for this shift: trends fade out, technology advances, the BRANDS came along and pillaged blogs for their ability to $MONETIZE$ well-written, inexpensive content created by a fleet of passionate writers, personalities, and self-promoters. I saw the greatest minds of my generation taken advantage of by CAPITALISM! So yes, I do miss the old days of blogging.
But I keep blogging. Why?
Much like any aging trendster, I suppose, who refuses to stop wearing those old bell-bottoms (they still fit, wear ’em!) or back-combing their hair. I found a trend that suits me, and I’m keeping with it. Why not? It makes me happy, it makes me feel accomplished, it gives me an outlet for that *creative energy* of mine. I blog because I am a blogger. It’s what I do. I blog, therefore I am.
I’ve said many times, I am absolutely a voyeur. I love reality television. Before that existed, I read a lot of books. Growing up, novels were my favorite window into the secret inner lives of strangers. I feel like my discovery of the blogosphere was incredibly serendipitous. Before we had 4,000 ways to “overshare” on social media, we had BLOGS. Facebook was for playing Farmville and sharing blurry Red Solo Cup digital party photos. BLOGGING was where you could really get to know somebody. I actually have, in the past, read an entire bloggers’ blog! Hours and hours of archives, going back years and years. It’s a bit like reading an autobiography like that way — just an ordinary person’s autobiography, in real time, day by day, watching them grow and weather the storms of ordinary, banal life.
And why shouldn’t ordinary people have autobiographies? It’s a very progressive revolutionary idea: rich people have their stories told all the time, so why not tell your own? Make it into existence? It’s important to share your story, especially as an ordinary person! When studying history in school, weren’t we always told that primary sources are the best? Imagine some future generation, studying BLOGS to learn about what life was like in a bygone era? Hey, it could happen. I doubt very much Anne Frank ever imagined she’d become a household name just by virtue of the fact that she told her own story. Controlling your own narrative is a powerful thing. Who else will tell your story?
Of course I always dreamed of being important. Of being someone whose story is worth telling. And that’s the thing about blogging: you don’t have to wait for anyone else to validate your existence in order to start talking about yourself. Wow, is that the most Leo sentence ever written? What I mean is, the barrier to entry is low. It’s “have access to the internet” low. Anyone with a working laptop can have a blog — take it from me, I’ve been doing it that way for ten years. Just by the power of your own commitment and volition, you can have — as I do — an archive stretching back years and populated by thousands of entries on whatever subject you want! At this point, I would absolutely consider my blog “my life’s work.” And I did it myself. Without waiting for permission. As an ordinarily timid person who waits for opportunity to come along in many avenues of her life, this is one thing that I seized for myself because I wanted it. That’s incredibly empowering. This blog is all me because I made it. And even though I weeded out my archives to keep only the posts I’m still proud of, that was my choice. Complete creative control.
Why blog? Why not! It’s my hobby. I BLAAAHG. I love words. I love making the words make friends with other words. I look up to the great bloggers who have come before, and strive to achieve the level of vulnerability that endeared me to blogging in the first place. I acknowledge that the genre has changed, the world has changed. Ten years later, I’m still bloggin’. That’s why. That’s all.