Last night, during the tossing and turning brought on by the most recent email from my sister, who I feel is trying to convince me that I am one hundred percent at fault for our bad relationship, I came to some conclusions. Not pleasant conclusions, but still they are conclusions.
One of my conclusions is that I am NOT a writer, and NOT a journalist. No, I am a blogger.
Yes, this is a step down in the way I describe myself. I have always considered bloggers to be less classy than writers and journalists. Hence, in the interest of feeding my ego, I always called myself a writer or journalist, rather than embrace the truth.
The point of her email that made me realize that I was lower on the classiness totem pole than I thought was came when she asked me how I felt about everyone in the world knowing how she currently felt about me.
Do you see?
Yes, that is right. I didn't care. In fact, I thought it was slightly amusing.
That is why I have to turn in my union cards at this point. Writers and journalists are supposed to care, and do their best to keep their lives secret. Bloggers, on the other hand, tend to be like stand-up comedians, if we can get a good bit out of talking about our personal lives we will.
I always joke with my wife that if I ever do stand-up, she is going to end up with a starring role in my routine. And yes, she knows that I have blogged about her.
Obviously, I need to issue the same warning to my relatives. (I think that my friends, frienemies, and enemies know that they are fair game already---I hope.) And I probably need to add the stand-up creative license warning also: If the joke is funnier when I am not telling the complete truth, then that is what I am going to say actually happened.
I have been living in a fishbowl for a long time. I had the misfortune of going to a high school in a small town where everyone knew everyone else's business. For a long time, I did my best to conceal certain facts. Not that I think that it worked (in hindsight). I bet everyone back home knows the real reason that I failed high school (and it was not the reason that I was supposed to pretend was the reason---I am not a lazy moron---everyone probably knows the real reason why I was not doing homework and skipping classes, but shhhh---no one is supposed to know the truth; it might make someone else look bad and their reputation is more important than mine).
It gets better. My mom was horrified that people might find out what I was writing about. Hence my pen-name. A few years ago, I caught onto the fact that certain people back home were not surprised by what I was writing. And if they knew already...well, the whole town obviously knew. At that point, I decided to openly admit that yes, MDE and EME were the same person.
Of course, this is all just an aspect of my family hiding lots of skeletons in the closet. If my sister was really smart, she would look in the closet and ask what was in there that installed the vast distance between the two of us. I would think about telling her directly; but earlier in the recent spat I chose to keep something off the grid, and she responded by openly exploding about it in full public view.
(For the record, responding with anger to me when I am trying to be rational and am telling you the truth just makes me more more likely to mistrust you. And mistrust does not led to close relationships.)
There have been several things I have kept off the grid. For months, one of my cousins have wanted to know who said certain things. I have been ignoring the questions. I wonder if my cousin knows who it was now.
I will admit that I am impressed by the quick clean-up that my sister did. But it makes me wonder what skeleton in the closet has a poppet of her in its hand at the moment. And part of the dance it making her do blinds her to the fact that I am NOT the same person that walked out of that house in 1984---threats, blackmail and public explosions do not phase me. After all, I am a blogger and this is just the natural behavior of the envirnoment that I chose to write in. (Proof of that can be seen everytime I do another bad book review.) And I am going to continue sharing my personal life because it is part of my stock and trade.