Sunday, January 16, 2005

Writer's Block

I said it.
I have nothing to write.
Nothing, except the Prince Nazi contretemps, has shaken or stirred my interest in writing. I now understand why Dave Barry retired! There are plenty of things I could throw down just to have a post on the blog, but I promised myself when I started doing SS Haggis that I would assiduously avoid the online equivalent of verbal diarrhea; of writing just to see myself write.

I visit a lot of blogs, to see what others are writing, to support fellow bloggers, to see how they set up their pages, et. al, and this is the source of my fear of verbal diarrhea: some blogs suck. My dear coffee connoisseur Nick, in one of his blog posts many moons ago touched on this issue when he said, in essence, that some blogs are painful to read. Amen. His point was that so many blogs become outlets for things that are best left as inlets. Your breakup? Don't want to hear about it unless you have something new to say. Your job? Same thing. Fighting with Mommy? Shut your cakehole unless it's entertaining or enlightening or edifying.

Back in the day, (ie, MY day--because I am so old) high-schooly lovelorn poetry stayed buried in a shoebox till you cringed and chucked it at the age of 32...because its very existence was meant to stay hidden. Today, thanks to the internet, the heartbroken meanderings and noodlings of the adolescent set (and their twentysomething cohorts) are now available online, 24-hours a day, at "blogs" all over the world. This cannot continue, America!!

Can we collectively come up with a new word for these "blogs"? To me, a "blog" is a recurring feature that may tell very particular stories but that has a larger meaning, a larger lesson, a universal element that any reader can take something meaningful away from. A blog is not my own personal therapy session during which I relay the litany of hurts or challenges from my recent relationship, very specific stories about people you don't know and who do not matter to you, or dissect family agonies without any thought to what you, the reader, might be thinking or needing or enjoying. So many "blogs" are basically online diaries that really are best left offline. What has become of our culture that people post their personal events online and call it a "blog"?? It's embarrassing!

We need to restore that thing Colin Powell so eloquently called "a sense of shame" to the blogosphere. How do we do that, you ask? For a quick win, let's say we no longer let online diarists and navel gazers be considered "bloggers." Let's find another name that more accurately conjures up their exhibitionist tendencies, like "high school freshmen" or something.

And while we're at it, I'm going to stop writing now. Because, like I said, I can't think of anything worthwhile to say.

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