Wednesday, February 6, 2008

blog bleurgh

I know that the entire universe is into blogging and everything, but it still weirds me out when I access the site of someone I know in a brick and mortar way (I love this term from Swistle) who has not personally invited me to their blog. It doesn’t make any sense, I KNOW. I should offer the caveat that these are MY ISSUES and MY ISSUES ALONE, unless, of course, you’re just as freaky as me. Rest assured that I welcome any and all visitors here to The Creamery, regardless of how they found me. I love it when I hear from people, period. I know that there are a lot of lurkers out there – and on many blogs, I’m totally one of them. And I don’t have a problem with someone lurking all the live long day. I guess I do sort of HOPE that folks will come out of the dark at least once in a while to comment and show themselves and let me know that they think I have a beautiful, sparkling wit and they just can’t start their day without reading something from here. Or, you know, whatever they’d like to say.

The point is that we write and we share publicly for a REASON and if anyone doesn't want to be public, they can certainly hide their blog or make it invitation only or whatnot. Seeing as I'm not one of those private-y people, I take what I get in terms of visitors.

As far as my weirdness goes, I have this entirely peculiar and funny feeling about reading the blogs of brick and mortar friends when they don't know that I know that they're there (Are we following me? I'm not sure if I'M following me.)

Case in point: Recently, via the site of someone else I know, I stumbled upon a couple of blogs that belong to brick and mortar folks. Folks that I know – folks that I see on a regular basis – folks that I’m friendly with, but not friendly enough to be all – HEY HI I FOUND YOUR BLOG AND I’M NOW OFFICIALLY LOOKING IN ON YOUR LIFE. WOW. THAT STORY ABOUT THE MEXICAN RESTAURANT? I CAN’T BELIEVE YOU ATE THAT ENTIRE BURRITO. I wouldn’t ever say this or any amalgam thereof. Instead, I just go around not saying anything and feeling like a Grade A Prime STALKER. Why is it that I feel this way? Do you go through this ridiculous weirdness? Is it really JUST ME? Why do I feel more comfortable commenting on the blogs of people who I’ll never conceivably run into at the grocery store?

I can't decide exactly what I want to do about this development.

So far, here are the ridiculous and nonsense rules I've made up for myself - keep in mind, as stated before - these are TOTALLY MY RULES FOR MYSELF. I know that there are a lot of you out there (I flatter myself – okay, there are a handful of you out there) who check in on me from time to time here at The Creamery, and you don’t follow Whimsy’s Rules for Weird Blog-Type Stalking In The Case Where It’s Someone She Might Run Into At Random. And that’s okay. As for me and my house:

-- If I keep looking in, I have to comment.
-- I can't wait too long to comment because there is a directly proportional relationship of HOW LONG I WAIT TO COMMENT to LEVEL OF WEIRDNESS. i.e. The longer I wait, the weirder it gets.
-- There are only certain types of comments that I deem to be acceptable for Opening Comment behavior. I have to introduce myself and let them know how I found their blog.
-- I do not out myself as a fellow blogger. If they want to follow a link from my profile or whatnot, that's totally fine. But otherwise it feels dumb.
-- Commenting in any form must be done with extreme caution. It feels very much like I'm butting in on a conversation between close friends who are clearly happy with their group. They have not invited me in. Do I really want to stick my nose in there?
-- Until some form of Cordial Connection has been made with the blog author, I can't comment too much, for fear that they're sitting back at their computer thinking DUDE THIS GIRL IS TOTALLY STALKING ME AND READING ABOUT MY LIFE AND I MIGHT SEE HER IN THE BATHROOM AT CHURCH OR SOMETHING AND THAT WOULD BE VERY CREEPY.
-- Under no circumstance do I discuss details about blog entries when I run into them in the bathroom at church. Or anywhere else for that matter, unless it is TOTALLY APPLICABLE. (Which, by the way, never happens.) This rule, in and of itself, is fraught with issues because how strange is it that I'm commenting on their entry about dog spit on Tuesday and then I see them at the grocery store on Friday and I don't even MENTION the dog spit? See - it's just dumb.
-- The only escape from the rule above is if the blog author brings up the blogging to me - and then we can talk about things in relative ease. It just can't be me bringing it up.
-- If I choose to not comment at all, I have to stop myself from visiting their blog.
-- Then the question becomes: Do I really WANT to visit their blog and read about dog spit? Will this make our brick and mortar relationship weird? Will it change things in a way that makes it embarassing to see them in a public setting?
-- Perhaps I should forget about these new blogs altogether and just go back to reading the stories of random (but TOTALLY FUNNY and TOTALLY WONDERFUL) strangers.

With all of this said – and these particular neuroses shared – what would you do? Do you visit the blogs? Do you comment? Do you mention it when you see them in person? And hey – even if you have no advice to give, I’m officially declaring that you delurk, just for today. Show of hands, tell me you’re here. I DARE YOU.

Now I'm going to take a nap. I'm very tired.


angelalois said...

Nope, I don't comment. I lurk. Feels strange. I "wish" I could comment, but I could only comment if they knew I was reading, which they don't, in which case if they saw a comment from me, they'd be like like "who are you? oh, you're THAT girl. Who invited you into my universe?" I kinda feel like it's eavesdropping! That said, I will click the little "contact me!" button and write them an email every now and then. Seems less weird, more a la "Oh, I had to get in touch with you for xyz reason and your blog so happened to have a 'contact me' button."

So you're not alone. I'm done now.

P.S. I'd comment more often here but the "blogger" comments are blocked at my work. Guess they somehow knew I'd comment all day. I can read blogspot at work though, strangely enough.

angelalois said...

one more thing, so you don't get too offended:

but it's nothing to write home about. yet. i'm working up to it.

andrea said...

hey amy lynn,
i don't know if you remember me or not you remember anderson though right? anyway, you are more than welcome to check out our blog it's
by the way congrats on the upcoming birth of your little girl. i'm sure you guys are way excited!

Artemisia said...

Oh, this is funny. Just to guarantee that this very commet be weird: You and I are having strangly parellel experiences here and there. Maybe we are twins?

Black Sheeped and I know each other In Real Life, and in fact, she told me about her blog. So it shouldn't have been weird that we read each others' blogs and knew what was going on, right? But at first, it kind of was (for me, at least). We'd have lunch or something and catch up about all sorts of stuff, but never mention anything that was on our blogs. Was I afraid I'd sound redundant? A little. Did I think it would sound like I was trying to strangly advertise my LAME-O blog? Maybe. Did I feel slightly stalkerish in a very non-rational way? Yes.

We eventually got over it. I think the weirdness dispelled when she moved away. Then the blogs were excuses to stay in touch and not be so Peeping Tom-ish.

Hi Black Sheeped! You there!?

Anywho - I can't seem to keep my comments within an appropriate length lately. That is all for now!

The Wife said...

Wow. That's a lot of rules, dude.

I don't feel bad...I figure if they have a public blog, it's the risk they took that anyone could meander on. I comment when I have something to say...otherwise I keep my comments to safe things like, "Oh, I saw your blog the other day it was linked by so and so and it's adorable!" That way they know that the chance is there that I might be looking in, I might not...better warned know, not. warned.

Anyway, I digress. I think you might be over analyzing this one just a tad. Don't feel weirded out.

tearese said...

oh my gosh, I completely know what you're talking about. I recently found tons of blogs by people I know in real life, which I didn't know existed previously.
I left comments on a few, but others I felt weird about because we weren't exactly tight.
Also,most of them looked like they were just for family, which I am not.
Then, the ones I commented on....they didn't say anything back. Which makes me wonder if they felt weird about me being there too. So yeah, I know what you mean.

nomadicspud said...

Hello, I found your blog yesterday and have to admit I find it very entertaining. I love how open you are and how you express your thoughts and feelings. Hope you don't mind.

ailene said...

I personally like to read the blogs of people I know... although I am usually terrible about being consistent about it. I usually check it regularly for a couple weeks to a month... then go a couple weeks to a month without looking at all...

As far as the talking about it to someone in person... you already KNOW that I do that... because I do it to you (apparently you think it's totally inappropriate though!!! Oops...). Well, to be honest... I'm a fairly shy person, and and I can never think of anything to talk about when I'm talking to other people. I always feel dumb for not knowing what to say... So, I often use what I saw on their blog recently to start a conversation. Otherwise, I probably wouldn't say anything to anyone at all... unless they were pregnant... then I can always ask "How is your pregnancy going?" You've heard that question from me a million times too.

Pickles & Dimes said...

This is so interesting. I really don't know what I'd do if I found a blog from someone I knew in real life. The closest I've come was when I was back on LiveJournal and I found a blog of someone I knew in high school. I lurked for awhile, but then it just felt weird, so I stopped reading.

Whimsy said...

Based on all your comments and a few emails I've gotten, I've come to the following conclusions:

- Generally you all are an absolutely fantastic and lovely lot, and with a few wonderful exceptions (hello fellow FREAKS!!!), you're perfectly adjusted and have none of my blog hang-ups. Wow - way to go, Internets!

- A few people might have thought I was scolding them for lurking here at The Creamery. Dudes, this is NOT the case. Don't feel like ANY of my weird rules apply to you. These are Rules for Whimsy, and I know that they're INSANE rules at that. You're fine. Lurk away - but just know that you're always welcome to say hello. There isn't much judging that goes on here, I'm happy to say (with the exception of me telling you all the goofy/weird/totally inexplicable things **I** do. Freaks and nice folks and everything in between are all welcome.

- I'm grateful that a few new folks decided to stop in and say hello! Welcome! Come back again any time, okay?

Okay, now I'm off to receive my annual review from my BOSS.

stacie d said...

i can relate to your issues...

i feel like a hypocrite because i complain about people reading but not commenting on my blog - but sometimes i read a blog and don't comment. so i try to leave comments here & there.

i've had people mention my blog in "real life" - that's not too weird to me unless the person is weird about it. for example, i was telling a story to a few friends and one of them basically finished the story for me, based on what she read already on my blog. that was strange...but then i was happy that someone was actually reading (& remembering) my blog!

Chelle said...

Looks like your blog etiquette post has created quite a buzz!

Just wanted to let you know I added your blog to my quick link list - please let me know if you would rather not have it posted.

wandering nana said...

When I heard you had a blog I was excited to read it. You are so fun in real life and in the blogging world. I have also added you to my blog.... I got started because all my girls blogged. Are you going to be able to guess who I am? Talk to me about it on Feb. 16 (here's a hint) since you will be at a shower for you at my house.

Tamara said...

Looks like more "brick & mortar" people have found you out, Whimsy. Don't worry....I can stick to the rules.

Erica said...

Amy, you are a great writer! Although I am definitely guilty of lurking I have only recently lurked on your blog. :)

Btw, I love the reference to "brick and mortar" friends, hilarious.

Julie said...

I comment if there is something to comment on. Actually I like to look for something to comment on, so that I can comment, and they can follow the link, and learn that I have a blog too.
I like to look around and see how many blogs I can find of people I know. Even if I don't really KNOW them.
I think it is a way to get to know them better. Especially because I am terrible about opening conversations with people I don't know.
I'm afraid they don't really want to talk to me, but are just being polite.
Go ahead and read my blog. Even if you never comment. Or if you want to comment, that is fine too.

Sara said...

Even though you posted this almost a year ago, commenting kind of fits in with my Rules. So here goes - I definitely agree with The Wife. I mention blogs the same way she does. And I comment when I feel like commenting. My own addition (and weirdness comeing through) is that since I have a BORING job, I read blogs all day long in between phone calls. So I start in the present and start working my way back into history. Hence a comment on a post a year old. But let me tell you, it has been a lot of fun to read about your adventures with Bean, since I didn't you about your pregnancy before we moved out of the ward (if you were even pregnant before we moved out)! Cheers! - Sara Hammond