Friday, April 25, 2008

Considering Anonymity

Someone recently suggested that I start an anonymous Blog into which I could pour my sexual fantasies and all the family drama that I just cannot put out there under my name. She observed that Looking2Live had served its purpose and perhaps I should consider moving on to something else.

I must admit that I have felt more and more restricted as friends and family and Temple members read my Blog. There was a certain freedom in those days of 0 comments when nothing I wrote was on anyone’s radar screen. There were never any ruffled feathers.

But writing anonymously would require so much care to make sure there were never any revealing details. I marvel that someone like Washington Cube can continue to pull off anonymity.

Furthermore I suck at keeping secrets, so I would inevitably tell someone and that would be the end of it.

I even discussed this briefly with my therapist this week, who said, “Why don’t you just keep a journal? Isn’t that what an anonymous Blog would be?”

That’s when it really hit me how much I love the exchange with other people. A few of these people are locals whose faces I would recognize. There are also people I know only through the Internet, many of whom live far, far away. Then there are a few faithful readers, like the person whose IP address is registered in Kernersville, NC, but who shows up as being in Tampa. This person doesn’t have a name or an identity and never leaves a comment. But he/she comes back most every day to read. (My StatCounter still fascinates me!)

After 1200+ posts I worry that I might be just recycling the same old ideas. But I take comfort in the fact that if my readers’ memories are as bad as mine, no one will ever remember that I said it before.

So I guess the bottom line is business as usual on Looking2Live. The X-rated stuff will forever live only in my imagination.


Blogger DC Food Blog said...

For me, the awareness and interaction of others makes me even more frank. Certainly I write a food blog and don't necessarily talk about my sex life. Somehow though, having other people read what I'm writing makes it easier for me to write. I kept a written journal and it was boring.

10:45 AM  
Blogger Barbara said...

DCFB -- I have no problem being frank. I have had a few occasions, however, where people were less than pleased with what I had to say. But you are right, the idea that you are writing one side of a conversation tends to make it much easier to write. That's probably why I never got past the first page of a written diary.

11:24 AM  
Blogger Kristin said...

I worry about anonymity. I think that belief in it can prompt people say things that are downright mean and eventually, many times they come back to bite.

A journal's the only way to keep things truly anonymous and even then it can be compromised. Just ask my brother. I haven't had one since I was eight. People keep buying them for me and I keep not using them. Because of him.

5:09 PM  
Blogger Mother of Invention said...

I'm laughing at myself here but if I had to do a whole blog on sexual fantasies, I'd run out of material pretty fast and be posting even less than I am now!!! Plus the readers, if any ever came, would get bored pretty quickly!

Just keep on with what you're suits you and you never seem to be at a loss for words.

9:27 PM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Kristin -- I'm much more comfortable Blogging under my real name. I at least think twice about being mean!

MOI -- You could be writing an anonymous X-rated blog right now! I think we all have the capacity to fantasize.

10:02 PM  
Blogger Kellyann Brown said...

Barbara, I'm glad that business will be as usual on Looking2live.

Although I post mostly on
I have a second blog where I communicate with another part of my deeply disturbed following.

I have lived the part of people being upset at what I write. A simple post about my sister and I meeting at The Elephant Bar got everyone commenting back to her and I think she was a little taken aback. Now I don't name names, I just say, "A certain female relative of mine". You have to laugh when my mother said, "What are my daughters doing going to a BAR!" :::laugh:::

I love the Brown family blog world, keeps us having something to say at the big holidays. Some times Mr. R. (my husband) will ask me a question and I will say, "Didn't you read my blog on that?" Nope, he doesn't!

10:32 PM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Kelly -- Sometimes it's hard to recognize what will set someone off, but most times I suppose I do know.

Sometimes it makes it easier when your spouse doesn't read. But there have been a few times when we had interesting comment exchanges, especially in the brief period when my husband found time to Blog.

12:18 AM  
Blogger Pauline said...

I remember once when I was a newspaper columnist, getting a letter from a disgruntled reader because I had written a column about some sorrow or other and she complained that she read my column to cheer herself up and what was I thinking, writing about sadness? My response was that she could always put the paper down...

I come to read here because what you say is interesting. I like the dailyness of it, the interchange of ideas in the comments. I can always "put the paper down" if I don't like what I'm reading. It's why god created back and forward buttons on the computer.

7:25 AM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Pauline -- Was that god who created those buttons? I thought it was a disgruntled reader. :)

7:30 AM  
Blogger Reya Mellicker said...

Cube is one among literally MILLIONS of anonymous bloggers.

And I never suggested you put your sexual fantasies on the blog. I talked about secrets, things you wouldn't want to say to anyone you know, etc.

But announcing the possibility of an anonymous blog on a non-anonymous blog kind of knocks that out as a possibility, hmmm?

8:32 AM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Reya -- Cube is somewhat unique in that we know she lives in the DC area and we know a lot about her after 4 years, but I am now convinced that we will never meet her and that's OK.

Discussing the possibility of an anonymous Blog in this forum in no way rules it out. If it's truly anonymous, saying it's out there just puts it among the millions you cited.

If I were to write such a Blog, I already have half a dozen posts in draft in my head. But that's probably where they will stay, because I just don't think I'm cut out for anonymity.

9:27 AM  
Blogger Washington Cube said...

Well here I am, out of the ether...

If you have read my blog over time, or stumbled on one of my comments, you will know I have written about my life--enough to put together bits and pieces.

Interestingly enough, or sadly, I dunno...I have friends who know of the Washington Cube blog and have no interest in reading it. When I first started it in another format, they would come on as guest bloggers, or leave comments, then the novelty wore off and they stopped reading. It bothered me a bit, thinking if they were my friends they would want to read it, but, I've let that idea go.

You are right in that there are many things I do not blog about. I have discussed this with a lot of you at one time or another (what we write viz what we self-censor). I may still write about them someday. I've leaked out bits on health and family deaths, but never the whole sheebang.

The nice thing, Barbara, is that and it's alternatives are all free. If you want a secret blog for fantasies, can make one, and just as quickly zap it when you tire. If you think you'll leak it's secrecy, slap a password on it, and do NOT give that out. I have four blogs going in my name right now and about six domain names (that I'm doing nothing with, but they are there.) One of the blogs is known by one other person, and it will always be that way. However. It is out there. Fully exposed should someone stumble on it.

I say if you want another one, try it. What have you got to lose? Continue writing from the heart. Don't worry about what others say. I showed several friends your special seder table and they loved it.

9:40 AM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Cube -- You are truly a DC Blogging legend. I have learned so much about you over the years, but in truth you are still an avatar that changes from time to time. Even though you write anonymously, you take great care not to write anything damaging about friends or family or yourself. In fact the biggest question I have ever had about your Blog is your need to remain anonymous, which only you can answer.

At some point I may start a second Blog, but there will be no announcement or ceremony if indeed that happens. Sometimes words must come out just as a chick emerges from an egg; a Blog seems as good a place as any.

1:43 PM  
Blogger mouse (aka kimy) said...

I'm happy that 'bottom line' is l2l will continue.... anonymous blogs are all well and fun, but there is something about the sense of community and connection that comes from reading blogs where folks share themselves...

the info from statcounter is quite interesting and fascinating....but I have found it doesn't catch everyone - there are some folks that leave comments (at a certain time) but they have successfully avoided leaving any cyber footprints.... most curious to me who is fairly ignorant in the nuts and bolts department when it comes to cyberspace...

12:30 PM  

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