Tuesday, April 19, 2005

The blogging syndrome

I think everyone who blogs will admit that blogging is addictive. I won't say anything sophisticated or deep here (because that's not really me) about blogging, on how it gives a voice to the voiceless, and how freedom of speech is so great that once you get it you can't let go. But I simply think it can be summed up in this quote that I read when I was 16 and don't remember who said it: "I write to know what I think".

Going into three months of blogging now, and surprisingly, I'm still enjoying it. Its taking more and more of my time everyday. You're supposed to blog in the free time you have, but I end up doing everything else in my life in my blogging left over time! The blogger in me is certainly evolving.

There are two people who know who I am in real life (met me in person). The first, is a good friend of mine that I told her of my blog the first day I started it because I was abit excited maybe, and I tend to do stupid things when I'm excited, so I told her. At the beginning we never mentioned the blog in our conversations, but now, she calls me, keeps on laughing, and then we end up talking about the blog. I realized that I don't like mixing my blogging life with my real life. (Yes, I know you're reading this). The interesting part is that in the rare times when she comments here, she does it anonymously, while she's like the only one who knows who I am! The other person who knows me in real life is a girl I met a while ago and went out with for a few times. She was a really fine girl, and I thought that this (us) might turn into something, so I pointed her to my blog. I thought that this is the best (and fastest) way for her to get to know me. Would save us alot of time trying to figure out who I really am, and how I think (would've sure liked it the other way around too). Well, we didn't go too far before she dumped me. I doubt it was because of this blog though, but I think it was abit too soon to reveal my blogging habit. I know she's not reading this anymore (actually I don't even know if she ever did), so I should be fine. This was my best line to her about blogging: "I'm having a problem with spending too much time blogging, so you should help me; by going out with me as much as you can in order to take me away from blogging"! How dull.

As few as they are, I don't really know how many read this blog, and how many like or dislike it (those visitor statistics don't really tell). I'd like to say that I don't care, but I can't help it. I shouldn't care however, because that's not really why I'm blogging, and if I think of who reads it, I might steer my writing for a certain "audience", and I don't want that. That's not why I'm blogging. And Mona, if you're still listening (I doubt it), I still believe that thinking of blogging as a mean to reform the Middle East is taking it too far. I don't think blogging is useless however. Which doesn't mean that most of what I write isn't silly, but its not necessarily useless. Just talking is good, and letting things out is good, and communicating is even better. And sometimes this is a really good mean of communication. Communicating with people you would've never had the chance to meet. Opens up your mind really and brings you new ideas. Its communicating about interesting topics too.

It does feel good however when someone praises what you do. Another journalist whom I like reading her stuff emailed me the other day praising my blog (that was before that sex post though). I thought that was cool coming from someone that I have high regard for.

Having your own blog is not that bad (especially if you don't have many readers), but surfing the blogosphere and commenting on others' is the real killer. I mean, I'd really rather read a good book, and blog about it, then read another blog and blog about it! The most interesting blogs to me are the ones with a personal touch, even if they're political or technical or whatever. This is how blogging creates that separate new life for me. I'm even starting to know those bloggers so well its scary. I haven't met any, and I don't think its a good idea to meet any. Not because of who they are, but because it would ruin my blogging experience. I like blogging in a Black Hole.

I like to control the blog comments I write though. Its too much if I go write a comment that's longer than the author's initial post. If I have that much to write, I'll come to my blog and write about it. That'll make me satisfied, and then I won't have the urge to keep on arguing. Those comment discussions can really become an overkill. Why do many people think they have an obligation to convince those who disagree with them?! I like to say my thing and leave. Usually I'm not clear enough, so I keep explaining my point, but the best thing about blogging is I don't have to convince anyone, and I don't care if everyone disagreed with me. I'm not trying to win anyone over, and I know this will not change the world. So that makes it more comfortable and fun.

32 comments:

Haal said...

Interesting, if you permit me, that you choose 2 females to tell them about the blog.

Well, you are a little intimidating, so dont blame the 2nd lady.

Cant say anything about the first one, probably will be reading this. 'Keep reading. But dont laugh at what he writes. Hamada writes pretty well.'

Mohamed said...

Excuse me Haal, but I thought you are intimidating! and a bit harsh and heartless maybe!

'al Hamada 'al!

Haal said...

Intimidating in a good sense ya Hamada, I mean Mohamed. Intimidating as of having many ideas, and a line of thought, a little too argumentative at times....so not all girls will like that, especially today girls.

Haal said...

Excuse me, are you refering to me as 'intimidating! a bit harsh and heartless'.... really! Hmm.... leah kedda bass.

Mohamed said...

You wanna know what turned her off Hala. All I did in our last outing was criticize myself, thinking that I'll tell her all the lousy things now, and let her figure out the good things for herself!! Why the hell would she be interested after that?!

Orientalism said...

Mohammed
I dont think like you that we will solve the middle east problem here, but it gives me comfort in some way to blog about what i think of the world and about my life. to me, blogging is very therapeutic. I often wonder who other bloggers that i interact with in the blogosphere are in real life, but i guess thats part of the "mystique. anyway ill stop ranting and do it on my own blog, mafeesh had ahsan min had! lol. take care and keep at it, your doing well

Haal said...

No wonder she 'dumped' you at the first corner. Hardly would you find a female who is willing to listen to a guy saying all the bad stuff about him. Unless, she really likes you, she would listen and still be interested.

revealing all the bad stuff about you just take away all the excitement. Kidnapping her from a little cute date feel to 'on the edge' of getting divorce feel.

Mohamed said...

"Unless, she really likes you"

and that's what I was trying to do. To only keep her if she really likes me, I don't want her otherwise. It was just too soon to know me aslan, mesh to like me. Patience, patience.. that's what i should learn.

Mohammed said...

i should try this pickup line
" go out with me please! i'm addicted to blogging! help me! it's a humanitarian cause" :P
but, seriously... I like to meet other bloggers... not exactly curiosity ( although that's part of it) but you feel u know the blogger so well and it's almost like meeting an old friend and you would like to talk to him/her face to face...
gossiping about other bloggers who aren't there is an entertaining thing too :)

Haal said...

Search for the good listener. They are the best type in the market. Rare, but if you find her, just dont let her go.

Haal said...

double M,
This is very superficial. Gossiping is really awful. Then, one more reason why I wont meet other bloggers.

Highlander said...

Haal is right Mohamed, the good listener is the 'gem' it will make weeding through the knockoffs so much worth it .

MohamMed, meeting other bloggers is very interesting, because you at least are on familiar grind as you know what are some of their likes and dislikes and what are their favourite topics ;) ..so when you meet them their status changes from your virtual friends to your 'real life' ones . I'm cool with that..it enriches your life so much ..

Mohammed said...

haal,
it's superficial, awful AND entertaining...

Mohamed said...

I'm sure it is entertaining double M. Make sure to make loads of fun of me next time. I promise I don't mind.

Haal, give the guys a break will you :)

Haal said...

Guys, please. Give me a break. You cant handle criticizm, and people make fun of you. You will take it personally and it will show.

Highlander, the fun part is being 'unfamiliar', and 'not knowing them'. THis way you are free to say and comment the way you want. Otherwise, you will hold yourself from passing a sensitive remark here or there. You become attached, and thus try to please.

Mohamed said...

Really Haal?! If you know us you'll want to please us?! Why do you not strike me as this type of person. If so, then maybe I was wrong when I said intimidating, harsh and heartless.. only the blogging persona then.

But don't stop passing those sensitive remarks, they are fun.

Haal said...

I was talking to/about Highlander. She sounds like a sweet, gentle person. I wasnt refering to myself doing the same.

Highlander said...

Look at the timestamps he he he ! you guys/girls are still talking ? My God it is an addiction ;) - not that I am any better .

Thanks Haal for the compliment *me blushing here* . I admit that it is fun NOT to know the people personally, but there is a certain moment when one does want to know them 'in person' . Now if they can't handle criticism in the 'flesh & blood' , or one is unable to make 'sensistive' remarks; hmmm.. methinks that the cyber-blogger-friends have made monumental errors in character judgment. The whole point is to be oneself when it really matters.

one of the 2 who met knows him in person said...

So you consider telling me about your blog, stupid! Mashee ya Muhammad.

Hellme said...

Another derivative of the way to spell Mo's name.

The Sandmonkey said...

(song like) Looks like some-onnnee is in trou-bbbllllee! LoL

Double M is right. It is scary how well i know some of you guys by now, just from what you guys write and the type of comments you leave. And none of you are alike either, each one of you has a unique mindset and way of thinking. It's rather refreshing.

However, i can't help but wonder if the personality some of of your present in the blogosphere is really how you are like in real life. After all, how we present ourselves-or at least how we come off-on our blogs can be totally different then how we present ourselves to other people, espcially in an appearnce obsessed country like egypt. I also wonder if people are as smart in casual conversation as they are on their blogs; after all, you don't get to edit what you say or revise it or perfect it in regular conversations the way you do on a blog or on a comments page. You know?

Guess there is only one way to find out, huh?

Mohammed said...

hahahahahahaha
i love this...
hamada is in trouble :D
ps: stop calling me double M and i'll stop calling u hamada...

egyptiansally said...

mohamed & sandmonkey:
i think you're thinking about this from the anonymous blogging perspective. i don't blog anonymously. i blog primarily for my friends (who set up my blog to begin with), my parents, and my sisters back home who want to know how my life in cairo is. even people who stumble upon my blog could find out who i am if they really wanted to. so, i think you guys may enjoy a different blogging experience to someone who could be easily traced.

also, jeff and i broke the unwritten bloggers rule and we met up about a month or so ago. as far as i could tell, jeff in person was the same as jeff the blogger. however, this may be simply because like me, he does not blog anonymously.

Haal said...

one of the 2,
I cant believe he dared to embaress you like this on the cyber-space. huh, at least he called you a good friend. The least he could do though.

Mohamed said...

One of the 2, see, this is why I'm regretting it. Everytime we talk about it (like you writing your comment this time), I feel that someone I know is watching me --which is not a very comfortable feeling when you want to write about weird stuff.
I should call you by your name, eih elnickname eltaweel dah! Bass I'll give you lots of credit for not telling anyone about this thing --as far as I know.

Sandmonkey, temoot enta felmashakel! You're damn right though. If people get the impression that I'm smart and entertaining from my blog, they'd be veryyy dissapointed when they meet me in person. Walla eih ya "one of the 2"?

MohamMed, I'll stop using that double M nickname (you can thank Haal for her usual innovation). But just so that everyone knows, Hamada is by far my least favorite nickname.

Sallinette (i love this nickname), to me you're more or less anonymous (except for the few pictures you post on your blog). I think most of us blog anonymously (i actually don't, but just reveal so much of my identity) because we already know so many people in real life that are surrounding us daily. We try to get out of it all, by writing about it, and for me not mixing the two.

Haal, yes she's a good friend. Mesh 7atgebeeha lebarr enty wade7 :) Embaress her eih bass, no one has a clue who she is aslan!

Bedouin4JC said...

Yaa Mohamed,
I just stumbled on this blog today trying to do my research project for my useless AUC sociology class. You're kinda crazy dude but I'm impressed by how you can just let your brain fall out onto the page for all of us to see. Keep on writing. I'm going back to the States in one month after spending a year studying here so I'll need something to remind me of the grit of the streets, the smell of Ta3miya and the lonely call of the muezzin.

Mohamed said...

Man, you'll fail miserably if you use my blog for your paper. Me crazy, everybody knows that (especially my real friends).

The Sandmonkey said...

Ya Mo, it's true. I love Drama. What can i say?

Don't worry about the one of the 2 or whatever. It is your blog. write what you want and what you like. If someone doesn't like it they can chose not to read it, u know?

And Sally, you don't blog anonymously because you don't have to. The content of your blog doesn;t warrant it. Unfortunatly el masreen ghawyeen syasah, so we can;t blog without mentioning politics. And we can't mention politics without fearing that we might get in trouble. So, we do it anonymously so we don't get in trouble.

But you are right about your identity and how people can find out who youa re easily. Are you sure that's a good thing though? anyway..

Is it an unwritten blogger rule not to meet? Really? Cause i ,like, broke it about 4 times so far. So reprecussions or side-effects so far. Hmmm...

Haal said...

Ya SandMonkey, it is the norm around here too to 'pretend' you have a political opinion, and it sure helps when you do it annoymously. Makes you think you have an excited life. Adds to the thrill for sure.

Single M, slow down on your real friend. Makes her feel like she knows the secret of Iran's atomic bomb. 'Watched' eih ya Mo. Take it easy.

Mohamed said...

Haal, you just said on your blog that you're mostly a private person inside. Guess what, I'm like that too. So wala atomic bomb wala 7aga (and hey you're talking politics bardu walla eih!).

Haal said...

You are right. It is totally your call.

Highlander said...

Sandmonkey, you're right never heard about any blogger 'unwritten' rule not to meet either. I'm guilty of the same thing - 'breaking' it he he he..and still planning to do so. These bloggers turned out to be just as genuine as they came across on their blog and have become very good friends.