Saturday, July 21, 2007

Shallow thoughts off the deep end

Now see, there's what I should have called this blog. It's both clever and a bit pretentious at the same time. The kind of title that goes "gee look at me, I can be wittily introspective and self-aware at the same time." Of course, it wouldn't tell you anything about the blog itself, and as descriptive titles go it could well be applied to the majority of blogs everywhere.

Face it, we're all just doing that same journaling exercise they made us do in English class. You know, the one where some of us just never shut it off and just kept writing. Kept pouring out all the inane high school blather about how no one understood us, or that girl (or boy - or maybe both depending on where you went to high school and who you were) didn't even notice us even though we completely GOT them and if they couldn't see that then by God what was wrong with setting a few fires to draw attention to something so obvious we didn't need to carve it into their car but what the heck the screwdriver was there and the shiny blue metal was just SO shiny...

Or was that just me?

My therapist says blogging is good for me, keeps me from wanting to hurt all the pretty things. All the pretty, filthy things...

Seriously, though, I kept a journal in high school. Didn't write in it all the time. Just every now and again. I found it recently, about ten years since the last entry.

The contents were frightening. (That's a line from somewhere, I think.) I threw it out, only because burning it would have lent it more importance than it was worth. Mostly I remember thinking: wow, was I a self-absorbed, self-righteous, pompous, arrogant, asshole. Sure glad I grew up. Then there are those moments when I think, I'm doing it all over again. Except for the parts about scratching the car, of course.

This is not going to be like that. This blog exists here, now, for the sole purpose of getting my writing jump-started. I'd like to add "every day" to that, but I think we'll take it one step at a time. It was either here or MySpace, and frankly, I get enough offers to be "friends" with someone on MySpace as it is - and I don't even have a page. I'm not looking for "company," I'm looking for a place to do the writing equivalent of warm-up exercises.

I am a writer. I have been paid for what I write. I have also been published. The two are not necessarily synonymous, as I'm sure some of you out there realize. And lately I've been looking for a way to keep track of some of those random thoughts I have, or the questions I have about what I'm working on that really are just the kind of arguments you have with yourself. Some people talk out loud when that happens. I do that, too, but I think better when I write it all down. Plus, writing it down is socially acceptable. Talking to yourself - or as I prefer to phrase it "thinking out loud" - is generally not.

There will be almost nothing of any actual personal reference or substance here. No family stuff. I have another space for that (no, you may not, so don't ask). I'm tempted not to allow comments, except sometimes I think some of the things I need to hash out might benefit from the occasional third party.

Lastly, about the title of the blog itself. It was going to be "Insert Something Clever Here" except, well, that IS already trying to be clever. And failing miserably, and not even terribly original. "Fleas of a 1000 Camels " (except NOW I see I forgot the "a" - wonder if I can fix that later?) isn't original either in that it wasn't my thought. Any rate - most of what's here isn't going to be worth stealing, but on the off chance I say something that you might think about using, uncredited, for yourself, there is a curse upon this blog. Plagarize from me, and the fleas of 1000 camels will infest your armpits.

(And Mark, if you're reading this, I'm sorry about stealing your curse. But even after all these years, that off-hand remark in Office Depot has stuck with me. It was a great line, in my opinion, and if I ever make money from it I'll try and give you appropriate credit.)

PS: If there are any typos in this, I'm blaming this interface. It seems I can type faster than Blogger can keep up with. Which, given the speed of my typing, is fairly frightening.

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