Wednesday, January 14, 2004

I told my new officemate about my blog. He doesn't really understand blogging, although he thinks it might be a generational difference. There are perhaps 10 years between us and he thinks people today are more voyeuristic. He grew up in an environment where you let your family and maybe your close friends see all your quirks and oddities, but it stays in the family. You keep strangers out.

Anyhow, I don't know whether younger people are more voyeuristic or not. I can see where blogging might seem strange to him; I am putting a lot of myself out here for anyone to see.

I don't really think of it that way, though. I think of it more as a personal exercise. On the one hand, I am exploring myself through my writing. On another hand, it is a tool that pushes me to think more consciously these days about how I live my life. I don't want to feel that I have anything to hide. When I think something or do something and then find that I am uncomfortable writing about it, it makes me think. I question things that I wouldn't have questioned before I started blogging.

Some of my friends are uncomfortable reading my blog. They say it makes them feel like they are eavesdropping on something private. I can respect that. I can also respect the people who choose to read it. I think I'd still write it even if nobody chose to read it, though -- I feel that I write mostly for myself. At the same time, I am not going to hide it, either.

My officemate compared it to windows and blinds.

"Do I leave the blinds open?" I don't always -- if I have a window facing a busy street, I might close the blinds -- but if it is possible to look into my window but less likely that people would randomly come across it, I will tend to leave it open. Part of it is laziness. I love sunshine, and I'd rather leave it open so the sun will shine in the next morning without my having to do anything. Part of it, though, is that I don't like feeling like I have something to hide. I want to always push the boundaries of where I'm comfortable. If I get to feeling that I have things to hide, I want to tackle that head-on and change how I feel.

He doesn't think of it as "I've something to hide", but thinks of it more as "What the hell are you doing looking in? What right do you have to be invading my privacy?" External view as opposed to internal.

Very reasonable. I can respect it. But it's not my view.

Anyhow, as for my blog: this is who I am. I am not ashamed. I have nothing to hide. I'm not going to get my panties in a bundle whether you decide to look in or not; I've left the shades open on purpose. Read it if you like, pass over it if you'd rather -- either way is fine by me.

No comments: