I haven’t been neglecting my blog. I’m just playing hard to get.
The world of blogging can be bizarre at times. The competition is stiff, so writers have to be more than just wordsmiths. We have to be our own editors, agents, and publishers. We do our own P.R. A blogger can hit it big by posting something that “goes viral,” whether that be on the blog or on another site. Kelle Hampton ended up on “Today” with Hoda and Kathie Lee, while Kelly Oxford got Matt Lauer. Based on this anecdotal evidence I have a feeling Mr. Lauer’s other head makes the decisions about which Mommy bloggers he deigns to interview.
I hate when I’m writing late at night like this and it isn’t going how I want. I call it having a T.S. Eliot moment. “That is not it at all./That is not what I meant at all./….It is impossible to say just what I mean!” The failure of language to really convey experience.
Or maybe I’m just not in the groove. The problem is, if I wait around for the muse, nothing will ever get written. Writing means nothing if it doesn’t mean putting down the words when you’re uninspired, when it’s drudgery.
I’m a terrible gossip. Actually, I’m a wonderful gossip. I excel at it. It delights me. I know, I know. It’s a terrible sin. But not all gossip is shit talking. Sometimes, it’s just talking. I love it when people who annoy me get raked over the internet coals. It tickles me pink. Who annoys me? Fakes. Phonies.
I don’t mean “sell outs.” To me, it’s okay to make money off of your art. Even lots and lots of money. If it’s good and you’re lucky, people are going to like it. I would love to make a bunch of money from my writing. But would it change me? Would the quality suffer? Do writers have to be unsuccessful to be good?
GOMI is a website (Get Off My Internets). I’ve mentioned it before. It’s a blog, but the articles published by Alice “Party Pants” are not the attraction, funny though she is. It’s a place for commenters. Commenters rule GOMI. There is a hierarchy, naturally, because humans are hierarchical. GOMI has plenty of Queen Bees and Wannabes. I definitely fall into the latter category. I’m starting to get pretty cozy as a wannabe. It’s a lifelong pattern and now that I’m 40, my skin is starting to feel oh-so-comfy.
There is the main page, and then there are the forums. I’ve been participating in forum discussions on the internet for decades. All the way back to “AOL chat rooms.” Facebook is just an evolution of those interactions. For busy people and awkward, socially phobic people, it’s a way to still have friends and talk to people about stuff.
And yes, people are mean. Some of them are just horrible. Or they seem horrible to me when I disagree with them. For example, I like something, and a GOMI-er hates it. Let’s call her Bacon Doorknob McPlexter. I pulled that out of nowhere, so if there is really a GOMI handle of this name, I didn’t mean you. I looked around my living room, and then added “Mc” and bacon.
Bacon Doorknob McPlexter can’t just say, “different strokes for different folks.” It has to be “How can you LIKE that? You must be a total fucking idiot. People like you shouldn’t be allowed to have children. I hope you get cancer.”
Or similar words.
I feel all bent out of shape for a while, but I get over it. In fact, I will probably see a comment written by Bacon Doorknob McPlexter that I completely agree with or that makes me laugh. Next thing I know: bygones. I’m thinking, “I like that Bacon Doorknob bitch. She’s a bit of alright.”
A while back, Alice Wright posted an article asking why blogs start sucking. The community had answers. I read them with great interest. I’ve seen in happen. I follow a blog because I enjoy the writing and something goes terribly wrong. This happened with me and Dooce. Well, I think it happened with Dooce and everyone, including her husband.
GOMI commenters seem to agree that a little taste of the fame sours the blog. Bloggers get narcissistic and their feces loses its odor. A few million page views and readers can’t identify with them. It goes to the heart of why we like bloggers in the first place. We feel like they’re our friends. I feel like I know Alice, and not just because Party Pants drunk dialed me once.
When you’re a “blogger,” you sometimes get to this place where you “know” other bloggers. I have internet relationships with several other bloggers, some well-known, others less so. We’ve had email exchanges and private messaged each other on GOMI and Twitter. If you’re “friends” (or God forbid “fwiends”) with the Big Bloggers, you may post pictures of you all hanging out together. Maybe your readers feel like you’ve ditched us for the popular crowd.
There’s one blogger I think you’d be VERY surprised to know made me promise to email her from the hospital as soon as Pringles was born (no, it’s NOT Kelle Hampton). Another one nearly gave me a heart attack when she emailed me.
Or maybe you wouldn’t be surprised. More than likely, you’d say, “I have no idea who that is.” Because “fame” in this world is so unlike real fame that it shouldn’t even be called fame. Maybe Glennon Melton can make a mash-up word for it. Nobodyoriety.
I’m Nobodyorious, but this person is even more Nobodyorious than I. Her Nobodyoriety precedes her.
And here I am, closing in on another one of my 900 word posts and I don’t even know what I’m talking about anymore. This is a perfect metaphor for my life right now. I’m still sort of wired from Back to School Night. I have nearly two hundred essays to read. Four periods of tests to grade. Notebook checks are tomorrow. I have no idea how I’ll manage that. A substitute accidentally ruined a piece of classroom equipment I use every day. Will Viva even be able to go to school tomorrow? Stupid viruses. Am I the only one who follows the school’s sick kid rules?!
But before I go to bed, even though it’s late, I’m going to check in on my favorite blogs and read some forum gossip. I heard from a DM on Twitter that some phony just pulled a dipshit move on IG.
Now she’s going to be even more nobodyorious.
The reason I like to read your blog is the very fact that you are not like other bloggers. You actually can write, and you actually are funny. A refreshing change.
I’m glad to have you as a reader, and I appreciate your kind words.
You totally rock. That is all.
You’re not so bad yourself, lady.
Well, I’m glad that mine was one of the blogs you checked in on.
I like that word, “nobodyoriety.”
How are you doing in the aftermath of your own GOMI trial by fire? GOMI is like a cheating lover. If they do it with you, they’ll do it to you.
I saw you write that on Twitter and I thought how well it fits. I’m over it. I mean, I won’t go back. I’m too thin-skinned. And I won’t go back to be on the pitching side, either, because honestly, none of it feels good to me.
But what about your “obsession” with Kelle Hampton?! I mean, all you ever do is think about her with jealous rage, so how will you channel all of that energy?!
Sigh. I know, right? Seriously, Mrs. Odie, I think you’re too smart and too good for GOMI. To each his own, though.
I love it when you post, girl! I also love GOMI.
GOMI, I wish I knew how to quit you.
I remember in the 80s when AOL was Q-link and you dialed up from your Commodore 64. Dork-alert.
I started in the early nineties, I think. Maybe 91? Remember that sound of AOL connecting? I can still hear it! And all the chat rooms full of men pretending to be bicurious women? Good times.
I don’t think I’m suffering from nobodyoriety. I’m just nobody. And I prove it every day by not posting because I’m too tired, or too busy STILL DOING SCHOOL SHIT after a 12 hour day in the classroom where I only got paid for 8 hours of it, or working off last night’s bag of kettle chips by going to yoga. I rarely even read blogs anymore. The popular are also famous and nothing’s going to change that. Maybe the blog world IS slowing down and if that’s true some of our more illustrious blog-sisters are going to have to get a normal job like the rest of us. That will be interesting to see some of these gals work a job like ours where not every one of your farts gets saluted by 1000+ commenters.
There is so much about being a teacher that’s hard. The people who will sneer, “If it’s so hard, then why don’t you just quit?” not withstanding. You nailed it. Sometimes, when I get home from work and I realize that I could easily spend the hours from 3:30 until I fall asleep at 10:30 working FOR FREE, I feel a plethora of emotions. I think I can write a whole blog article about it. I’ve been working on it for ages. The difficulty is the timing. Depending on my emotional state, the tone may come off too bitter and alienating. Whenever I work on that draft, I put it aside knowing “Now’s not the time.” Now’s not the time either, because I’m going to write a unit plan for a substitute for another teacher in my department. Long story, there. One I can’t tell because someone is being investigated for the kind of stuff the general public thinks ALL TEACHERS DO, that in fact virtually none of us do. And I’m going to write about that too, but carefully. I need this catharsis. I’m exhausted and frustrated. Guess how much they’re paying me for that extra work? A big, fat donut hole. How many “likes” do you think my sub plan unit will get?
Thanks for taking the time to read my blog, and for your feedback. Stay strong, sister.
The reason that blogs start to suck after while, is because they get “Big Mac” syndrome. They get big and feel the need to stuff their meat with filler. Boring. I scroll over most of the blog posts on my “bloglovin roll.” Yours, I never skip. I would hardly call you a “Nobodyorious.” Someday on MTV, they will have a show called, “Remember the 2010’s” and they will say, “Remember when people blogged and posted their entire life online for strangers and perverts printed photographs of their children? OMG. It was Mrs. Odie that set the bar for blogging and being anonymous. Her blog was rare piece of filet mignon.” Ha. All joking aside, I love your blog.
Long time follower, just had to say I love your blog. It’s well-written, funny and always relevant. I am pissed at you, however, as you lead me to the time-sappingness that is GOMI. I hate myself for reading there but I just can’t stay away. The Kelle Hampton thread draws me in the way I just have to peek at my tissue after I blow my nose!
Anyway, I wanted to pose a question. I think I am a decent writer. I am fairly sure I have things I can share that others might find amusing, helpful or can just snark on. My issue is transferring the thoughts to paper, or pixels, I suppose. Do you have any advice? Exercises? Tips? I’m not even necessarily considering starting a blog, I just want to help remove the block between expression and execution. Thanks in advance!
You NAILED it: “I’m Nobodyorious.” Honestly, you’ve linked your blog on GOMI like , 4-ever, and I thought maybe you were a decent read, but, nope, sorry : (
Thank you for reminding me to unlink. Now no one will make the mistake you did.
It is interesting, that you think everyone thinks “all teachers do” certain stuff… So you seem to feel especially put upon and not recognized. I disagree. I think teachers do an amazing, very difficult job…. As do police officers, fire fighters, paramedics, childrens aid workers etc. I don’t get all the complaining though, and seemingly not much joy, gratitude or pleasure. Yes, we could all (or lots of us) work “extra” for no pay, to do the job as we feel we would like to do it. That is life. You impact kids, and that is amazing! I guess the tone that seems to come across is that you are so hard done by. I get its frustrating, but look around. As for your snark about other bloggers, sorry, it comes off really irritating and mean spirited. I would bet they didn’t all start off super popular, and they have challenges and issues too. You aren’t better then them… Even if you would like to think so. Why not practice being kind and giving what you would like to receive?
“Practice being kind.” Do you think that I am not kind? Do you think that this blog article is who I am? Or is it possible that this is me venting my frustrations so that when I go to my classroom, my kitchen, the diaper changing table, on a walk with my dog, to the DMV, to a table piled high with student work, I feel like I’ve blown off steam and can approach my life with a cheerful attitude?
People always think that teaching is supposed to be like all of those inspirational movies they’ve seen and they cannot bear to hear teachers vent their frustrations. I think that’s more about you than about me. Perhaps you can look into your own heart and try to identify what it is about what I have written here that has triggered you so. My tone here is that I am exhausted because I am. I am adjusting to being a full-time, working mother. I’ve been doing this for about 5 weeks. If I want to write about how hard it is for me right now, why is that a problem for you?
Personally, I hope that your persona here is not what you show your kids. But the fact that you are online pals with Screamin’ Lisa does not give me much hope. You come across as the classic burned-out educator who makes life harder for students, parents, and other teachers. You might be in an “adjustment” period, but this has been your tone the entire time you’ve been blogging, as far as I can tell (and I am here only because you linked at GOMI in your search for readers…I guess that can backfire sometimes.).
Alexandria, or Ann, you clearly have a bee in your bonnet over my “tone” as an educator. You’ve made some assumptions about me as a teacher based on my blog. I am not going to defend myself to you because I’m not insecure about my teaching. Think what you want. Do what you do with your classes and I’ll do what I do with mine.
ETA: I definitely am a more gruff, distant teacher. Not the kind you would come to about your problems. I hold strong boundaries. I am their instructor, not their friend. I care about commas, thesis statements, supporting details, Cornell notes. My “kids” are on the brink of adulthood (most are 16 or 17, but last year I had students as old as 19). When parents email me about their children forgetting homework, I express understanding but firmly refuse to accept late work. This is the time for them to face consequences for their actions (or inaction), when the stakes are low. I don’t give a frog’s fat ass if these kids like me or not. I want them to look back on this year and say, “Wow. That was hard. But I learned so much in that class.” And I want high test scores. If they want hugs, that’s what their moms and friends are for.
Am I “Screamin’ Lisa”? Cool. I’ve always wanted a nickname.
You’ll always be screaming’ Lisa to me. Cue the eye roll.
Mrs. Odie, You are such a waste of space, in my opinion. Congratulations on proving, through this childish article, something that I’ve thought for so long. GOMI. 😉
Rationally speaking, how could she be such a waste of space when that space is unlimited. That’s quite a charge to level. Your signature says not just Nicole Marie, but Nicole Marie Story. Is your story more worthwhile? I mean, shit, your link led me to your non-childish post about Egg White Delight from McDonald’s. Apparently, there’s even space for you.
She’s trolling for page views, Michael.
Don’t you ever give up, Nix? DId you follow her here just to be rude?
Nicole Marie-what a revolting woman. That’s all. Oh, thanks for the great writing Mrs. Odie.