Although it happens relatively rarely, I never seem to react well to someone telling me, “I just went back and read all of the texty texts,” usually followed by some comment obviously meant to be complimentary but that doesn’t assuage my anxiety. (1)
“My life is an open website” I tell my friends who ask obvious questions like, “how have you been for the last three months because you never talk to me anymore?”
Which, by the way, is not the best response if you want to keep said friends.
Anyway, I get really worried when people I know, or semi-know, or vaguely know, or don’t know very well, or have known since kindergarten, go through the archives.
I have things there from 1998. Before college.
Have I maintained narrative voice over the past three years? Is there a coherent narrative structure? Am I the same person I was in 1998? Have I, or at least my character, shown any amount of growth or depth in the past years? Has my writing improved at all? Do I maintain tone and voice?
Does the adammathes brand comic genius shine through properly, or do I come off as a pompous, unfunny bastard? Do I seem oversensitive and idiotic? Does the tiny blue type get hard to read after a while?
Do I seem too neurotic? Am I too neurotic?
Does the reading of my archive provide an actual understanding of the real me? Is there instant intimacy after reading my site, or does that require me to expose myself? (2)
And, most importantly, does this person now think I’m a complete and utter weirdo?
Then I remember that I am a complete and utter weirdo, and that is probably pretty obvious after reading anything written by me, but, if they’re saying something, they are probably ok with that.
It’s the ones that never say anything I have to worry about.
And I like reading entire archives of sites when bored. It’s fun. (3)
Everything is ok. Except excessively worrying about this stuff.
And meta-commentary. (4) That’s bad too.
Texty texts are the long-winded personal essays I’ve written, and in general are more entertaining than the daily entries. Nobody ever says such things about daily entries. In fact, people I know in real life who have ever said such a thing about texty texts then usually complain that I never update anymore, and I say, what about the daily entries? “Daily entries don’t count,” they always say. I’m inclined to agree with them. I should write more texty texts.
See Ben Brown’s daily text for August 10, 2000, in which he has a positive outlook.
I just read the entire damn you maria dot com archives. She is neat. Well, actually, I read it September 8, and this probably won’t be published for at least a week due to delayed publishing queue-action, but yeah. You probably didn’t need to know that detail. Anyway, Fran is wonderful and witty and great and her site is highly recommended, and actually, I started thinking about this stuff because of one of her entries.
I think that was supposed to be a reference to webloglog, but I’m not sure.
PS - I’m using footnotes instead of inline links, in case you didn’t notice, I have no reason why.
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