Sunday, January 14, 2007

Blogging questions...

Jen at One Plus Two had a series of questions about blogging to ask us. They were thought-provoking and quite interesting. It's not the usual fair in "memes" which include fluff questions about favorite this or that. (At my age, one becomes precariously close to not having 'favorite' anything ~ just a series of 'what will probably work most effectively'. :)

Anyway, I would like to see anyone who chooses to answer these questions pick them up and do so. Please leave me a comment though so that I will know to come read your answers.


1. Do you like the look and the contents of your blog?

Not particularly. It is just a standard cookie-cutter template offered by Blogger. If I had the money or the energy, I'd probably come up with something else. For now, it will do. The contents are sometimes okay, sometimes not so okay.

2-Does your family know about your blog?

Hell, no! I wouldn't trust my family of origin with my shoe size, let alone any product of my internal life. As the Thai saying goes, "see sor hai kwai fang". It would be like playing the violin for a water buffalo.

3-Can you tell your friends about your blog?

Sure. In fact, I've given it out more recently to a few people because I am tired of hiding. This is me, warts and all. Imperfections, insecurities, health problems, incomplete thoughts, undeveloped ideas, kindness, compassion, love of all that is Thai, eccentric, reasonably intelligent but hardly Mensa material ~ all of it. I spent a lifetime hiding who I am ~ and it has become something of a personal jihad to become more WYSIWYG and to feel safe doing so. It has also served as a good weeding-out tool. If I meet someone new and he or she can't take the raw honesty I deal in here, we wouldn't be a good match as friends.

4-Do you just read the blogs of those who comment on your blog?

No. I always read the ones of those who comment but there are several I enjoy silently and there are a few who do not allow comments. I probably should leave a comment for the ones I can, at least to thank them for writing.

5-Did your blog positively affect your mind?

Not always and sometimes. There are times when it forces me to deal with old insecurities. There are also times when it seems to be a good growing tool for me. I put out some very private things and don't get slammed for it. I am, as most of you already know, not very confident (Mistress of the Understatement here) in the social world. This gives me a safe way to learn new ways to do things, new ways to think about things. In that regard, even when I might feel negatively, it is still a positive thing.

6-What does the number of visitors to your blog mean?

It means a lot. I won't lie about that. If my readership was very low, I would be disinclined to write.

7-Do you imagine what other bloggers look like?

Hm. Not really. Now that you ask it, it isn't something I think about. I don't care very much.

8-Do you think blogging has any real benefit?

Yes. Blogging is one of our greatest learning tools. I believe western culture has this backwards, that we learn from looking within ourselves. I believe we learn from each other. Like it or not, life is participatory and we need each other. In that respect, blogging gives us an opportunity to learn from others, not just practical things but also to realize how very much alike we all are. We are not as alone or as independent as we might like to imagine.

9-Do you think that the blogosphere is a stand alone community separated from the real world?

No. It is one component of "the real world". People need to be heard, to be validated, to know there are others experiencing similar things in our lives. It helps us discover commonality. Since it is often unsafe in person-to-person, day-to-day interactions for a variety of reasons, blogging is a safe outlet.

10-Do some political blogs scare you?

Sure. Some ideas frighten me.. and when those ideas are expressed in writing, it gives them more power. Words have power. What we say matters.

11-Do you think that criticizing your blog is useful?

Yes. Only in a constructive way. Only in a "what is my real reason for saying this" way. I feel a responsibility to put out only truth as I know it and to practice Right Speech. Occasionally I slip and an f-bomb drops or I express something in an unkind way but that, too, is a learning experience. It is also a good exercise for me to learn to criticize it constructively and not give into my rather obvious struggle with perfectionism and feelings of inadequacy.

12-Have you ever thought about what would happen to your blog in case you died?

Not really. I know what would happen. It would cease to be updated. :)

13-Which blogger had the greatest impression on you?

I don't like to single people out that way or say "this one rates higher than another". I also don't like popularity contests. In fact, I despise them. I'm not big on weighing or measuring value. All the blogs I read impact me one way or another. I read and smile along with someone, or feel compassion for a hard time, laugh at a well-turned phrase or get my brain cells tweeked by reading a new idea. Naturally, I resonate with some people personally more than with others but that only indicates commonality, not superiority, and I don't see any positive result of listing those people here.

14-Which blogger do you think is the most similar to you?

All and none.

15-Name a song you want to listen to?

This morning, I have been listening to Jack Johnson ~ and it seems somewhat right for right here, right now. Tomorrow or later on, it will be something else.

Thanks for the questions :)




Laurie said...

Very well said Chani. Your answer to question 9 was profound, in my opinion.

My Heart Runneth Over said...

Very well put... I loved this. ~M

meno said...

I laughed out loud at the answer to #12.

Good thoughtful answers.

Lucia said...

Chani - I like it that you are willing to so openly examine the why you blog and look at the effect blogging has on your feelings and your life. I usually feel pretty good in the blog world, but I know I'm an uneven blogger. I deal with poverty at work, and some days I want to talk about it and some days I don't. There are days I feel left out in the blog world, and days I feel "in." You've really helped me see what's going on sometimes when you share what's happening with you.

QT said...

As usual, Chani, your ability to be deeply introspective is appreciated. I really like some of your answers.

jen said...

i love your answers, especially 5 and 8. your honesty, as always, is refreshing, sister.

liv said...

I did it! Thanks for putting this out there.

Bob said...

Thanks for this. It is making me think about why I am blogging. Your answers have stimulated some lines of thought for me.

KC said...

Yes, so thoughtful and honest.

These questions really get at the root of who's behind the keyboard doesn't it?

(and I'm obsessed with "Flake")

soubriquet said...

"see sor hai kwai fang". It would be like playing the violin for a water buffalo.

That sums up a lot of things in my life. Thank you for the phrase. Although, I think the water buffalo might be more accepting than the humans I could torment that way.
I'll be back to read in depth.
Was in Thailand in 2001, for a short visit, connected with the thai/burma railway war memorial, north of Kanchanaburi.
I met some people who impressed me greatly, and was ashamed of many of the western tourists I saw, and the ignorant way they talked to Thai people, the disrespect at shrines, and temples, enough, I'll be back, to read more, and look throught your peephole into thailand.