December 04, 2009

Looking in at each other

What are we all doing, anyway? These "blogs?" Who came up with the name "blog" in the first place? Does anyone know? What an ugly name!

We are the first generation of "bloggers" (again, so ugly I hate even calling myself one). We have no idea where all of this is going. Will the words last forever, preserved in cyberspace until the end of the age? Most of us are spending small fortunes getting them printed into books, because we don't trust technology, but even they have an uncertain future. Will our great great grandchildren keep libraries of "blog books" from the generations that have gone before them? Will my children's grandchildren really want to read every word of my life?

And who are we writing for? Are we really writing for the generations to come? Or are we writing to impress our friends? Or to see how many "comments" we can drum up? Or maybe, as in my case, I hope, we are writing for ourselves.

I have recently come to understand that there are people who follow blogs of people they have never even met, for no other reason than they feel a connection to that person. Ordinary people now have "fans," cheering them on in their every day endeavors. Cheering them on as people. So peculiar. So new to human history.

Case in point: here I am, blogging, and here you are, reading it.

The one very good thing about blogging - the one thing that redeems it from simply being a poor stewardship of time - is that the audience holds the blogger accountable. I can't tell you how many journals I have burned over the years, for FEAR that my children's grandchildren would read it. Private journals become a place to slander, to covet, to indulge in self-hatred, depression, remorse, etc. When the furious, or hurt, or sometimes (though never in my case) drunk blogger sits down to write, the 2 or 3 people who might read it force boundaries into the equation. Very nice for future generations, I think.

Blog on.