Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Excuses, Excuses

I see I’m in danger of letting a month slip by without posting anything to this blog.  So I have sat down to record any old crap that comes to mind purely for the purpose of not letting that happen.

It’s not that I haven’t had things swirling about in my head that could have been shaped into decent rants or reports.  But a few tall hurdles have been erected in the path of my artistic process which I haven’t yet been able to circumvent.

First of all, there is the iPad.  It has become my “go to” tool for internet activity.  It is immensely portable, quick and alluringly simple to use.  I don’t want to say I’ve become a touch screen junkie, but sometimes I find my pointer finger heading toward the screen on my laptop a split second before I realize which medium I am actually seated at. 

So I do 95% of my computer “business” on the iPad.  And, as everyone knows, iPad keyboards of every permutation are at best dismal substitutes for the real thing.  My muse seems to expand and flourish apace with my access to a decent keyboard, a word processing program, and easy internet access.  Leave out one of those things, and the three-legged stool tilts useless into the dirt.

Then, there is Facebook.  Ah…what a love/hate relationship I carry on with social media!  Back in the olden days, AOL all but created social media by coming up with “journal land”, onto which I stumbled quite serendipitously eleven years ago.  I believed I was looking for an audience—someone to actually hear the noises that had been rattling around in my head for so many years.  But of course, what I found was community, connection, of the type upon which a socially awkward, introverted soul such as I could actually thrive.  There were kindred souls out there, or so I thought, and I was suddenly able to connect to them using my strongest means of communication:  the written word.  It was magical.  It was addictive.  I loved it. 

Time has passed, and almost everyone in the old j-land has moved on to Facebook, Twitter, other “more advanced” social media outlets.  Which has left me with this split personality.  I need to write, and I need community.  Neither Facebook nor Blogger provides both of those things as neatly and beautifully as the journal community of old.  People don’t go to Facebook to read your carefully constructed essays on The Solutions to Life’s Problems.  They go there to bounce off their hundreds of “friends” and click “like” on pictures of painted toenails.  But at least they DO click “like.”  They ARE still out there.  I cling to them like a barnacle to the side of a ship.  I can’t let go.

Unfortunately, this “moving on” of my target audience for the blog has been decidedly counter-motivational.  It is much more difficult to invest enough emotional energy into an idea to write brilliantly about it when you are 98% certain that you are writing in a vacuum.  I did that—for decades.  But the kind of crap you write when you are writing to yourself is not what I want to put here.  I’ve moved on from that.  I don’t write that desperate, self-analytical shit anymore.  A lot of what I have written here over the past year or so leans dangerously in that direction, and I do not want to go there.

So the days and weeks go by, and the blog sits idle.  Not because I no longer have anything to write, but because I don’t have easy, constant access to the tools with which to write it.  And because I have no idea who I’m writing TO, if anyone.  Having had a taste of what it’s like to write to actual people, I don’t particularly care to write to myself.  That would be going backward.  Better to stay in stasis for awhile than retreat.