Jack wrote this in December, 2005. I wrote a response to it afterwards which is at the end of the post.
I’m in a mood to muse a bit. The urge comes at a convenient time.
The fact I’m a middling good writer and I use my writing on this blog as an instrument for reflection shouldn’t be taken by any of you as evidence I’m someone you’d want to know in real life.
It just ain’t true.
I enjoy doing this blog. I try to be a straight shooter and never misrepresent what I am, what I believe, what I feel. I do my best not to intrude into the lives of others, get into their business, tell them what to do. Sometimes I don’t succeed in that regard and I overstep my self-established boundaries.
But tonight I’m a bit troubled, a bit rattled, even a bit doubtful whether all this blogging is a good idea.
I’ve said what I am many times on this blog, many of the facets of my character. I’ve tried to offer the unvarnished truth as I see it. There shouldn’t be any reason for anyone who’s read it to think for a moment you want to get to know me better.
I’m just me, blogsters. I like myself a lot and I get a lot of joy out of my own company. I’m happy if some of what I’ve shared here gave you some laughs and amusement, but you’d be entirely wrong if you allowed yourself to believe there’s anything here for you but my thoughts, my words and my best wishes.
I suspect the inclination for folks out there in internetland to feel a connection with you has a variety of reasons. I’ll speculate a little bit.
You are good at describing thoughts and inclinations which we all recognize to some degree, but it’s unusual for some of us to find these words written by someone with an obvious sense of self-awareness as well as a sense of humor. You putting your “unvarnished truth” on “paper” is a far cry from what we read in the newspapers, see on TV, read in most popular magazines, or even on a lot of other blogs. Even if we don’t agree, your honesty is apparent. So we admire you for your talent and identify you as an interesting and unique person the more you write. That’s an attraction. It’s an attraction to an intangible, but still an attraction. Maybe it’s a part of ourselves that we see in you, but keep hidden in ourselves because we aren’t generally working hard to be that honest.
So I’m not talking about whether you have “good” habits or beliefs that we share, I’m just talking about the honesty that is projected in your writing. Reading this is refreshing. And sometimes inspiring.
So we are attracted to honesty. But we still aren’t used to it. We think “Hm… well, maybe he *thinks* he is a flawed individual, but maybe he really isn’t so flawed, maybe he’s just unable to see the qualities that I admire. Most of us can’t.and if most of US can’t recognize our own “goodness” why should he be able to? So maybe he’s not so awfully “flawed” after all. Or maybe I can handle those flaws because they are mine, too. Also, maybe I’d like to get to know him better, because he’s got some qualities I’d like to cultivate, and one of those is honesty. I could learn some things from him, maybe. In fact, I think I’d like to actually meet this person sometime.”
So we jump to conclusions about you. We forget that we can’t see most of the details, after all, you do put a lot of detail in your blog. And because you speak to us with the intimacy of a friendship, we as your readers feel like your friends since we can overlook all sorts of things that would be impossible to avoid off the internet.
So if the occasional individual needs a bit of a reminder to bring them out of the internet world of connections and speculations about relationships and back to a more practical reality, I’d hope you could just continue to be gentle about it and not distress yourself about whether the blogging itself is a good idea. The risks are there for all kinds of interactions and it could be lots worse.
Keep blogging….and thanks for the smiles.