It just hit me that I won’t be updating at all next week, due to the fact that I’d have to be some kind of a loser to spend even a moment of my vacation in Paris at an Internet Cafe. So it’s a good thing I’ve been updating somewhat regularly lately. Otherwise, you know, I’d feel bad.
I’ve been going on lots of job interviews lately. On a recent interview, I was delighted to find that the interviewer kept a blog as well. (Not that this is at all rare, but still, I thought it was a good sign.) He mentioned that he was going on a vacation soon, and he was afraid of what his readers might do in his absence.
“They get so … mad,” he whispered, looking around nervously, as though waiting for angry anonymous commenters to come spilling out of the paneling and attack him. “They take it personally when I’m not writing.”
This being a job interview, I refrained from saying, “Dude, turn your comments off.” I just nodded sympathetically. It is interesting how exercised people get about other people’s blogs.
I’ve only had two really bad comment experiences so far, and both of them turned out to be personal issues, unrelated to my actual writing. The first was the current girlfriend (or whatever nomenclature you prefer) of a former boyfriend. She felt that I was bashing southern people in my blog, and, furthermore, that I was a bad person with little or no talent and an unhealthy tendency toward self-absorption. Since the former was untrue, and the later is basically the textbook definition of a blogger, I was confused about the whole thing, until I realized who she was. Then I knew exactly what was going on: This particular guy was famous for building up one girl at another girl’s expense, and I figured he was telling her, alternately, that I was a fantastic writer (better than her) and very dedicated to my craft (in comparison with her) and more than usually attractive (especially, that’s right, when compared to her). I’d been on the other end. It can drive you crazy, for sure.
The other negative commenter was a guy who had written me what I like to think of as a I Feel That I Know You, So Let’s Get Naked letter. He was going to be in town, etc., so could we meet for a wink-wink drink. I never responded, but to this sort of person, all I can say in general is: Women. Are. Not. Men. We are not men. Naked pictures of you and promises of strings-free attachments are less likely to be attractive to us than they would be to you. Don’t take it personally. It’s not that there’s anything wrong with that Polariod of your business that you’re thoughtfully scanned and mailed. It’s just a gender difference. No big. (No pun.)
Anyway, all this to say that I haven’t made up my mind yet about comments during my absence, but if you find them off next week, don’t worry: I’ll turn ’em right back on as soon as I get home.