Monday, January 16, 2006

Roll Call, Sha-Boom, Sha-Sha-Sha Boom

I have to admit that I was a little anxious about letting people - even if it's just family and friends and Buddy - know about this blog thing. It wasn't that anything was so terribly personal - but when you write stuff down and let people read it, you make yourself vulnerable. There's a little tiny part of me that pictured people reading it and then getting on the phone and saying, "Can you BELIEVE she said that? Well, I've never in my life. I've a good mind to call her up and give her a PIECE OF MY MIND." :-)

On the other hand, several (and by "several," I mean "three") of y'all have called and said, "Gosh, it's like reading your diary." But it's soooo not like reading my diary because 1) I do not have a diary, and 2) if I did, do you really think I would put it on the WIDE WORLD INTERWEB?

I guess I think of diaries as being so personal that you hide them from everyone, and, as my friend NK said last night, you "don't know whether to save them or burn them." The stuff I write about here is stuff I would talk to my friends about anyway. If you were ever in my living room during one of our girls' weekends, you would hear conversations on pretty much these same topics. Marriage. Kids. Church. TV. Basketball (at least for Daph and me).

But the really personal stuff - the stuff that you might only tell one other person in the world and then you would tell it with your eyes closed while you curled into a really tight ball - that's diary stuff. That's the heavy-duty stuff. The I'm-not-sure-I'm-happy stuff. The I-can't-believe-someone-did-that-to-me stuff. And that stuff, at least in my mind, is off limits. So if I'm privy to one of your Deep Dark Secrets - have no fear. Your secret is still safe with me.

So maybe the interesting - and I realize that "interesting" is a very, very strong word - thing about the blog, for y'all, is seeing what's going on with us. For me, the initial anxiety has been replaced with a deep fascination - bordering on obsession - to know who's reading it.

What I did not know when I first started the blog is that I could pull up a list of who's looking at it. I can't see your names, mind you - but I can see general locations on a little map of the world. In other words, I get just enough information to be curious, but not enough to know anything specific. I just know that someone in [insert name of town] has read something. Except for the ones of you who have implemented all sorts of privacy features on your computer so that you're the Stealth bomber of the internet and completely unidentifiable.

This morning Alex and I were out for a stroll, and I was thinking about all the cities that have popped up on my site meter. Wait - that's misleading. I was thinking about the SEVENs of cities that have popped up on my site meter, and Greater Jackson, you win. I have no prize to offer, so you'll have to consider it a moral victory. I think I can attribute the abundance of Jackson hits to the fact that E. can't walk past her computer without checking her email and then checking the blog to see if I'm talking about her. Plus, that's probably where the greatest concentration of my college friends are.

But aside from Jackson, the rest of the places are a real Southern hodge-podge. Memphis, Nashville, Tupelo, Birmingham, Meridian - you get the idea. And what I was thinking about when I was walking today was that each one of those places has an emotional component for me. It's not just a random city looking at a random blog. It's my friends - or my friends' friends - caring enough to stay connected, even if it's just for a couple of minutes while you're drinking a cup of coffee and trying not to scream at your children. :-) For me, that's oddly touching. *tear*

So when I see Pennsylvania, it makes me wish LM weren't so far away - and I know she wishes that, too. When I see Louisiana, it makes me wish B and B would go ahead and move back here already. When I see a city in northern Alabama, I know that it's Daph, and it makes me want to call her and see how the freelancing thing is going. When I see a city outside of Columbus, MS, I think "Is that Beth? I bet that's Beth" - but I don't know for sure. What I do know for sure is that it makes me want to know how Beth is doing.

The blog has also taught me that you people are a BUNCH OF LURKERS!!!!! You lurk in the corners of my blog universe and never say a word. See that little "comment" link at the bottom of the post? That's so YOU CAN TALK BACK TO ME. It won't hurt a bit. I promise.

All in all, it's been a fine time so far. I don't know that I'll continue to post as much as I have the last few days, because at some point D. will be cured of his upper rib fat cancer and we will leave the house again. I also have to, you know, work. But I have no doubt that I will continue to multi-task during my television viewing - you might not realize that it's possible to watch "24" and compose a blog entry at the same time, but I can assure you that it is. It is also possible to write and pull an almost-three year old off of the kitchen counter while simultaneously wiping peanut butter off his mouth.

It not, however, possible to write when the almost-three year old is holding a train up to your ear while the train is loudly playing the Thomas theme song. So on that note, I'm done. For now, at least.

Later, internets.


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