Safe in the knowledge that she probably won’t read this (I’m joking!), I thought I’d take something Clare mentioned a while back and see where it lead me. She recently said:
“… come on, admit it, you are a bit full of yourselves sometimes, aren’t you? And you do go on at great length about the most mundane of things (Yup, I know – pot, kettle – well that’s no surprise; I fell into a womb of testosterone when I was a baby). Oh shit. This was a bad idea.”
Note: She wasn’t talking specifically about me, but male bloggers on the whole. I think.
Now I’m fairly au fait with the content of my blog, although not as much as you’d think as I have a terrible memory – quote a post of mine from 2004 and I’ll be left wondering who wrote such wonderfully insightful and beautiful prose – so I thought I’d dissect what Clare mentioned, and distill it down until we get something approaching a possible reason as to why us males do this.
But then I realised that would be utterly mundane and may make me seem like I think I’m important or something, so I won’t bother.
Seriously though, in the midst of all this gentle ribbing lies a very valid point. Of the short list of blogs I read every day, the majority are female, and the majority are written about personal thoughts and emotions. Yet, despite that, this blog, my tiny corner, rarely takes that approach. Why?
When I first started out it was all about me, then I discovered Blogger and it was all about the fact I could post all day, every day and the quality of content dipped to one-liners about the weather. It took me a couple of years to get past that stage and these days, some eight years later, I’ve matured enough to realise that I do enjoy writing here, and I enjoy people reading it. The comments are reward enough, particularly when a post that I value generates a healthy discussion.
With that maturity comes a greater awareness of who I am and, possibly more importantly, who reads this site. Self-censorship becomes envitable and I find myself deliberately focussing away from myself and, by extension, from others. A few recent events in our family have gone unmentioned here, and I rarely blog about “people” in anything except general terms. Admittedly I don’t socialise often these days, so subject material can be thin on the ground. I’m also loathed to comment on recent national news items as others do it so much better than I, and anyway, it always takes me a wee while to get my head settled and my point of view established, by which time the discussion has moved on.
That said I don’t struggle, too often, for something to write about and if I do there is always some good old fashioned plagiarism (also known as “memes”). Mind you, even then I find it easier to dis-associate myself from my self, a trick that has served me well in difficult times in the past.
This is not a plea for help or prompt for suggestion, just a pondering on my part.
My growing inability in this area is thrown into sharp relief when you consider the quality of personal/emotional writing that was (and will be) uncovered by mike’s POTW competitions, with the nominations comprising solely of the aforementioned style of writing and with a focus on personal emotion and experience. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed reading them, but having held up my own output and finding the reflection dimmed and distant, I do feel the tang of envy.
Gosh, this is all getting a bit morose, that wasn’t the intention at all. Not to mention I’m starting to waffle and, by the gods, it’s more mundane than a mondeo.
I’ll stop now, and contemplate this further in my removed self. Feel free to ignore this post. Lord knows I probably will (presuming I every publish it, although this set of parenthesis is going to look jolly silly when I do).