Now there's ample time to blog.
Before I get started with the real-life accounts, let me just ask: has anyone else noticed that House has gotten way preachy as of late? Wait, is that libel? Slander? Slaughter? It can't be all of the above.
Anyhoo, so I've already told you that I attended the Washington Post DC Blogger Summit
this week. Sadly, despite the weight that the word summit
would seem to carry, the meetup was held in NW Washington rather than Reykjavik and no one with a full-on cranial birthmark seemed to be in attendance. As far as I knew. Given that HB
and I arrived late, due to some Kris health malfunctioning that shall remain descriptionless and Flickrless, we were forced to sit in the front, courtesy of 4/5 of the room grabbing the back chairs closest to the chocolate-covered strawberries and the open Pepsi bar. You know who you are.
It felt nice to be there. It was rewarding to feel that these real life journalists wanted to hear what I, blogger extraordinaire who somehow made it onto a few dozen blogrolls, had to say. Of course, given said health discomfort and the fact everyone else in the room sounded as if they had studied at Oxford either this week or last, I remained mute and instead resorted to writing notes to HB 7th-grade style. At least I didn't steal all the extra blogger notepads from the empty seats. Ahem.
The Washington Post folks were great listeners. And have a genuine interest in how a reciprocal relationship between their online paper and the local DC blogosphere - not just those with a journalist bent - might develop. They want to increase our readership. Profile us. Put us out there in a forum to which few of us would have been exposed. Kinda cool, party people. Very cool.
I left this meeting as I do almost every other blog gathering (not drunk, you asshats, this was a school night): disappointed at the minimal role that personal blogs clearly play in the serious blogosphere.
Please. I have no illusions that I will ever make money off of this blog, or that I'll be discovered by the Simon Cowell of publishing and be whisked away from a life of research to days of stay-at-home feline-ing. But I think the distinction between the serious blogosphere and the writing that just isn't
is a pretty apparent one, even though we don't speak it above a whisper at parties. Do you post? Regularly? Expect people to read you? Spend more than a few minutes of your day on your writing and commenting, refuse to push street-quality Xanax on people via robot spam, and confess to at least once dumping a post as it wasn't quite what you wanted to say? Don't tell me you haven't written something down so you wouldn't forget to blog about it in the morning. I can see your lies.
Perception is, blogs about you just are not as important to the serious online world as any number of other sites are. Political blogs, food blogs, parenting blogs, entertainment sites, relationship blogs, neighborhood and community sites, et cetera and et al and ergo. I just want to pop a gasket that decent writing about the ongoing status of the construction on Route 1 seems to have more credibility than every one of the excellent blogs about LIFE that I consume obsessively every day. Yes, it may be about what she ate for breakfast.
But rather than it being a dry statement about an even drier cereal, it's a post about how she pilfered Froot Loops from a suitemate's care package or an entry detailing how a childhood sans sugared cereal has produced an adult for whom Frosted Flakes constitute a bona fide food group.
Why does that not seem to
matter as much? And when it does, that it isn't just good enough on its own; instead, we have to move it from personal to eight other categories that may describe it (i.e., Southwest DC resident, foodie, mommy, ancient car driver, Republican, divorcee, sports fanatic and bookworm). Why can't her writing not just stay in LIFE?
Interestingly, I'm not sure this holds true in the hard-copy publishing world, as the memoir (is there a closer, more comparable example?) seems to stand as one of the more rich and revered writing genres. I know I'd choose a well-written autobiography over a strictly tech, political, gaming, crafting, religious, cooking or window blind site any day of the week. But that may just be me.