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Monday, April 16, 2007

Thanks for visiting. I am no longer updating Notes to Self. I hope you'll join me on my current website,

Round Up

Chicago Daily News negatives collection, DN073231. Courtesy of the Chicago Historical Society.

I have been bored with blogs and blogging since coming back from my trip. I don't know whether it's just a plateau, or I am being called in a different direction, or what. A lot of things have been on the table for re-examination since I got back. Travel of any meaningful duration and distance does that to me, as it should. The zygote for this blog, a Yahoo! 360 travel diary, was conceived during a month out of the country.

My subscription reader has a mounting number of unread posts. I subscribe to very few—less than two dozen—and the number that I am bothering to keep up with has dwindled down to a select handful. I guess I need to just update my subscriptions. It's like hanging onto a relationship that isn't working anymore, but I'm too gutless to break it off. In most cases it's not the blog; it's me. I've moved on.

In one case, however, it is the blog, and I am confessing it now in order to force myself to make a clean break. It's been an on-and-off thing. Somebody I like recommended it, and I kept thinking it was going to get better. I have removed it from my reader at least twice, and then added it back, out of boredom and curiousity. Everytime I read that blog, I hate myself. And I hate it. It's no good for either of us, and it has to stop.

When I read that blog, I cringe. I wince. I roll my eyes. I wish they would get a therapist, a 12-step program, a spellchecker, a life. I think the commentors are enablers who need to get all those things too. I presume. I prescribe.

I judge.

Obviously, I am not going to name the blog. Relax, it's not yours (yours, I love, and don't you ever stop). It's nobody who I've ever had any exchange with, nobody I would admit to reading in any of my blogrolls, nobody who blogs (in any conscious way) about mental illness, addictions or, for that matter, any of their own demons. All the dramas on this blog seem to be somebody else's fault. They don't even write well. In my books, you get a certain personality handicap factor if you are talented enough. Genuinely gifted people who are using their gifts for good get to be assholes (some of the time). It says so on their artistic license.

See? The judgment?

It stinks. But what I've learned in working with this stinky emotion over the years is that the stench usually marks some buried crap in my own backyard. Why does this person's whining flip my switch like this? What is it about passivity that is so taboo for me? Where do I play the victim in my own life? Is there a situation I need to take some responsiblity for? Why visit a website/watch a tv program/read a magazine about somebody or something that's not my cup of tea? Where's the payoff? Does it make me feel better about myself?

Maybe my reaction is out of fear that I give away too much here on my blog. That the spinach between my own teeth is plainly visible to everyone but me. And worse, that I am also being judged for it.

It isn't them. It's me.

Yesterday, I made myself get dressed and go to church for the first time (apart from Easter) in a couple of months. The minute my behind and the pew made contact, my mind began rearing up like a herd of wild mustangs who just heard the corral gate shut. It was going in a hundred directions at once, and trampling over everybody and everything. I have had truly numinous moments in that same church. There are Sundays where I am practically vibrating with love for everybody. Those are the exception, not the rule. But if the bare minimum I get out of my hour is a sore ass and an uncomfortable awareness of the constant unruliness of my mind, then good work has been done. Because that's what getting up and showing up does for me, at the very least. It corrals my ego long enough that I can get a good look at it and whistle a long woo-eee.

The other 167 hours of the week, my thoughts are off and running. And if it weren't for that time-out, I might not notice where, or over whom.

I'm off to go rein in a few by updating my reader.



Blogger bluebird of paradise said...

it's me isn't it?

2:24 PM  
Blogger squeezyB said...

I feel really guilty when I hit that "unsubscribe" button too. Like I'm in junior high and telling someone I can't be their friend anymore.

4:26 PM  
Blogger Kyran said...

actually, mom, it is you.


squeezyb, i unsubscribed three or four today and silently wished them all the best. yeah, it felt like giving back somebody's ring


5:08 PM  
Blogger bluebird of paradise said...

i knew it was me, how come no one else thought it was them. have they more self esteem than me or are they too chicken to ask?

4:28 PM  
Blogger jen lemen said...

this post is one more reason why i love this blog. i hear you sister. i hear you.

1:44 PM  

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