Tuesday, November 16, 2010

rediscovering the paper journal

There are things a person just shouldn't put on the internet. It's different for everybody. For some, fights with the significant other are excellent for driving their blog traffic up, for others it's a secret not even their best friend knows. Some people love calling out people at their place of work, airing their beefs with family and friends in front of the entire internet, and making harsh jokes at the expense of people they encounter in their daily lives.

Those people are brave. Because people have a way of stumbling upon things.

I'm pretty careful on this blog. It seems like the only victims of my writers-rage have been bus riders...and I do hope they have all found what I've said about them and learned that they are total idiots who should not be allowed out without a handler and sedatives.

When things happen that make me angry, I'm talking REALLY angry, or stressed out, like REALLY stressed out, I have to work it out. Usually Ryan makes a great sounding board. From reading Cosmo magazine as a girl I thought I'd never find someone who listens so well and speaks with such a clear head, but Ryan is the best. He'll play devil's advocate, he'll offer suggestions or he'll just listen and give me a hug once I shut up.

Sometimes though, somebody listening still isn't enough.

I'd love to blog all day long about stuff that happens, things that hurt my feelings or rude comments that I can't forget...but it's too personal. I'd also love to vent daily about how much EFFING BUREAUCRACY AND BULLSHIT is involved in paying back my student loans, and how very very very frustrated I am with the entire process. WHY DOESN'T THEIR WEBSITE EVER WORK? RAAH ... I'd love to say stuff about that every single day. And my financial woes...oh yeah! I'd love to bitch about that all the time!

I don't talk about these things for four reasons:

1) They're negative, and I'm really trying to focus on the happy side of the coin. (I'm going to CUBA in a few weeks! My brother is in town! My life is pretty awesome!)

2) They're boring for the reader. Have you ever read a blog that is like "omg I have so much homework." "Ah, bills, they're so hard to pay." It's just a reminder of all the same crap that's going on in my own life. Boring! The blogs I love the most are the happiest, prettiest and funniest ones. Would you buy a magazine full of headlines like "Car payments are expensive" and "my husband watches too much football"? I wouldn't!

3) They can jeopardize my real life relationships. This is the most important one. Have you ever found a blog that disses you? I thought I had once. It was one hurtful sentence that could have been directed at me, until I delved deep into the syntax and found that it was talking about someone with the same job in the same city as me, but in a different shop. But for a split second I was very upset. I don't want to make anybody feel that way except for the jerks on the bus who ruin my day. Because seriously. Yeah. I hate them.

4) I don't want to.

Lately, quite a few blogs I read have mentioned the whole "how much of my life do I show the reader?" conundrum. I'd like to think that people would show us the best parts of it; the happiest moments, the most interesting discoveries, the best photos, the funniest conversations...do your best. It's fun to give a little piece of yourself to the world via blogging...just don't give too much.

And this is where the journal comes in. Ahhh sweet paper journals, how I love thee.

Paper journals are the answer.

You can say whatever you want. And nobody will know. I love working things out on paper. I make lists, budgets, I say really mean things that sometimes get crossed out or torn up, I draw (really ugly) pictures of things, and sometimes just the act of putting that crap on paper can help make it seem more manageable.

Online journals can become messengers of hatred and spite if you're not careful. There's a fine balance between feeling good about what you write and saying what you want. How can a person be themselves on the internet? I don't believe they really can.

But, with the right attitude and a little self restraint, they can show bits and pieces of themselves. Here's what I've been telling myself lately to get out of my little attitude slump I've been having.

Do your best. 

Be thoughtful.

Be kind.

Don't worry, it'll all work out.

Take time for yourself.

Write in that damn journal, not on the internet. 



  1. i LOVE it! you're such a great writer lades. reason 1 with a bullet, how can anyone loose there rosy posey knowing they'll be jetting off to Cuba soon, awesomeness.

  2. Eh, well the money thing comes into effect, know what I'm saying?


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