Sunday, November 26, 2006

Bloggers: A body of the disembodied

Poor Chaim. Here the Jewish Blogmeister does a whole interview with him, and everyone has fun getting sidetracked in the comments. Here's my own contribution to the cause:

Shira Salamone said...

Chaim said...

Is that the dirty little secret we are all keeping? We blog because our wives don't want to hear us kvetch? :-)"


Nu, what's so secret about it? :) I joke with my husband that I'd bend his ear even more than I do now if I weren't blogging, and he doesn't exactly dispute the point. :)

PsychoToddler said...

If the people I live with found me as fascinating as the blog readers did I would close it in a minute."

One of the fundamental attractions of blogging is that it's literally all talk and no action. We can make our foibles seem funny to our readers, but our families and friends, who have to live with such nonsense, know how truly annoying some of it is. We're never heroes on the home front. That's just the way real life is.

11:08 PM
It seems to me that one of the pleasures of blogging (and, possibly, of writing in general--Sheyna Galyan, Robert Avrech, and other writer/bloggers are cordially invited to chime in) is that we show our readers the best of us, but not the rest of us. Our readers see what's on our minds and in our hearts, but not the nitty-gritty of our everyday lives. They don't hear our husbands complaining that we talk their ears off, our wives complaining that our snoring keeps them awake all night, our children complaining that we're always yelling at them, our co-workers complaining that we're always, well, complaining. It's an opportunity to expose ourselves in the abstract--and how often does a Jewish woman get to expose herself in public without being accused of lacking tzniut (modesty)? :)

On the other hand, being disembodied doesn't work at all for a choreographer. I first posted this on October 29, 2006, and Mark/PsychoToddler and Ezzie were kind enough to comment. But despite the fact that I've updated that post twice since then, adding two more goodies and some fun trivia, no one else seems to have noticed. (Sniff.) And I have yet to receive a single comment to this updated post. I put a lot of time and effort into these updates. Am I supposed to not be upset that no one seems to care?

And you wonder why I wrote The Kvetching Post. Here's Elie's comment to that one:

Elie said...

It's not a competition. This is your personal diary, which you are good enough to share with us. Anyone who likes it, and/or likes you, will be here for the long haul. So forget about "Blogger A" and just keep being you.

Wed Nov 15, 09:23:05 AM 2006

It's not entirely true that I'm just sharing my personal diary. I have plenty of what I call "memoir files" on my computer that will never be published on this blog or anywhere else. When I want to talk to myself, I'm perfectly capable of doing so. But when I publish a post, I publish it in the hope of getting a response. To be honest, I blog both as a means of self-expression and for the ego boost, and I find it difficult to be sanguine about the fact that so many of my posts get no comments at all.

18 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bloggers Anonymous meeting: Hi, my name is RaggedyMom and I've been perusing On the Fringe without leaving any comments. Hi, RaggedyMom! . . .
From one lightly-commented-on-blogger to another: I feel your pain, Shira! I agree that it's not so much a diary thing as a matter of sharing anecdotes that seem like they'll garner some kind of response and discussion. A true diary would be much more blase. That being said, you seem to be
a)A great dancer and
b)A deep thinker
And I look forward to reading more, and pushing myself to leave some comments along the way! Because they do matter to us all!

Sun Nov 26, 04:29:00 PM 2006  
Blogger Shira Salamone said...

LOL! A Bloggers Anonymous meeting--that's what I need. :)

Raggedymom, I, too, harbor the hope that the anecdotes and thoughts I share are actually of interest to people other than me. So I'm an egocentric. So shoot me.

Thanks for your kind words. All compliments cheerfully accepted. :) Seriously, I'm glad you enjoyed my dances.

Sun Nov 26, 06:40:00 PM 2006  
Blogger Jack Steiner said...

I often comment using invisible ink.

Sun Nov 26, 07:46:00 PM 2006  
Blogger Sheyna said...

Hi Shira,

I'm glad you (re?)posted about your dances so it could remind me. I saw the original, wanted to view it when I had more time and no kidlets hanging on me, and then life intervened and I never got back to it.

I'm sorry!

I watched three of your dances now that the boys are in bed (and eerily quiet) and I first want to say kol hakavod! Watching made me a little wistful, missing my Sunday night Israeli folk dancing, which I did for years. I recognized some of your steps, too!

When I next see the woman who teaches the folk dancing class - in addition to teaching other Jewish/Israeli dance classes and competing in international folk dancing conferences - I'm going to ask her if she's considered dancing to this music and I'll give her the link to your video(s) so she can see what others (namely you) have done.

Sun Nov 26, 07:53:00 PM 2006  
Blogger Sheyna said...

BTW, the dance teacher is a friend of mine and very supportive, especially of other dancers! :-)

"It seems to me that one of the pleasures of blogging is that we show our readers the best of us, but not the rest of us."

You know, that was my intention when I first started blogging. Like having one's face on the back of a book's dust jacket, who wants to see the dark circles and skin blemishes and the pimple that appeared five minutes before the photo shoot? No, you just airbrush yourself into Public Mode and start writing.

But then I realized something. You know what happens to books without conflict? The everything-is-fine books? They don't get read. Generally speaking, they don't even get published. I realized that Rule #1 in Writing 101 is true for blogging as well: conflict = interest.

And then I took an Internet marketing class from a nationally respected publishing PR expert who said the same thing. Of authors, she said, "Don't just blog about the book; tell us what you're afraid of, too."

Apparently readers want the dark circles and the story behind it. They want to know that they're not the only ones with blemishes. And they'll fall over laughing about the camera-happy pimple if you tell it right.

Yes, the best of us is good for the blog. (I'm not sure but what my "best" is looking a little disjointed and longwinded as the evening wears on.) But it seems that the nitty-gritty realism can be good, too. Not sure about the longwindedness and lack of organization though...

Sun Nov 26, 08:23:00 PM 2006  
Blogger Shira Salamone said...

Jack's Shack: Another wiseguy heard from. :) On the other hand, thanks for the occasional two-second comment (e.g., "Nice post"), just so I know you dropped in.

Shayna, I'm glad you enjoyed my dances, and I'd love it if you would share my videos. A lot of Mark's/PT's songs make really fine dancin' music.

Ezzie agrees with you that "conflict = interest," by the way: On my "Kvetching Post," he said, "People are attracted to train wrecks." I have no doubt that one of the reasons why my posts don't attract nearly as many comments as DovBear's is not only that I tend to avoid politics, but also that I insist on civil discourse. People do enjoy watching a good fight.

Sun Nov 26, 08:50:00 PM 2006  
Blogger Shira Salamone said...

Even so, my premise holds--we know that DovBear loves controversy, but we still don't know anything about DovBear as a whole person. We don't even know his real name, much less whether he snores. :)

Mon Nov 27, 06:15:00 AM 2006  
Blogger Unknown said...

...and then there's the problem of not knowing what to say that adds anything. :)

Mon Nov 27, 10:16:00 AM 2006  
Blogger Unknown said...

As a note, btw... people don't usually realize when a post is updated. They don't scroll down past what they haven't read.

Mon Nov 27, 10:18:00 AM 2006  
Blogger Shira Salamone said...

Ezzie, that's often true for me too--I can't think of anything intelligent to add.

Good point about people not realizing that the posts have been updated. I added bolded green-text notes toward the beginning of each post reminding people to check further down for the YouTube additions. Maybe that'll help ensure that my videos don't get overlooked amid my usual verbosity. :)

Mon Nov 27, 11:57:00 PM 2006  
Blogger Jack Steiner said...

I know, I am guilty of the two word response. Sometimes I don't have much to say or I am really short on time.

Instead of not saying anything I like to try and leave something just to let you know that someone is reading.

Tue Nov 28, 02:16:00 PM 2006  
Blogger Shira Salamone said...

Jack, you're nicer than I, in that regard. Usually, if pressed for time or for something intelligent to say, I just "lurk" and don't comment at all.

Part of the time-management problem is the "good news, bad news" factor: There are so many good blogs now that I can't keep up with them. In addition, since I tend to publish posts more often than I did when I started blogging, and, therefore, spend more time writing for my own blog, I must admit that I comment a lot less on other people's blogs than I used to. Guilty as charged.

Tue Nov 28, 08:43:00 PM 2006  
Blogger Tzipporah said...

Sorry! I've been lurking a lot with no comments, but I AM reading! :)

Wed Nov 29, 03:12:00 PM 2006  
Blogger PsychoToddler said...

I happen to know that RM and Shira were both at the same place at the same time...

Muahahahahaha

Wed Nov 29, 05:49:00 PM 2006  
Blogger Shira Salamone said...

Tzipporah, that's good to know.

So help me, Mark/PT, sometimes I think the only way all the New-York-area bloggers are ever going to get a blogger meeting going is to converge on your mother's house two hours after the end of your next concert in New York. :) On the other hand, given the frequency of your performances in New York, we'll probably get to see that previously-"threatened" DovBear/Jameel concert a lot sooner. :)

Thu Nov 30, 01:19:00 AM 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Shirah,

I've been reading your blog for about a year now, but haven't left any comments because of Google's annoying captcha system. Now they've instituted an audio version, so I will probably comment more often. Thanks for writing, and keep it up.

Fri Dec 01, 02:07:00 PM 2006  
Blogger Shira Salamone said...

So Google is now providing audio for people with vision problems? Considering the fact that the Americans with Disabilities Act has been federal law in the United States since 1990 . . . Well, I'm glad that they've finally caught up. It's a pleasure to hear from you, Amanda. I'm looking forward to reading more of your thoughts.

Sat Dec 02, 06:11:00 PM 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

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Mon Apr 09, 09:03:00 PM 2007  

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