My Private Island

I’ve mentioned this before, and that is if you ask me to estimate how many people read my blog without thinking I would honestly say around 10-12. I’ve recited that figure on numerous occasion, because 1) I can’t imagine anyone outside of those 10-12 people (friends and family) whom I’ve bullied into reading my blog would be interested in reading it, and 2) truthfully, only having a few readers is a little liberating, and it kind of allows me to be a bit self-deprecating.  I have permission to express things more freely.  Hey, I’m only writing for friends. And it allows me a neat excuse when I’m outted as a blogger who doesn’t have the notoriety of say a Patton Oswald (or any number of bloggers).  “Well, really only a few friends and family follow me, it’s not a big deal.”

Ostensibly, I post as a way to practice writing since language is not my strength.  Growing up, I was the toddler that hit or destroyed things while my more precocious relative of an equal age bedazzled the adults with words.  I would often hear, “why can’t you be more like him?” as I grew up. This probably lead to more hitting of the things and a fair amount of stink-eye. Writing helps me compose my thoughts and use my words, which is especially good on days where I’m actively trying to set fire to things with my mind. Through my blog I get to post my ramblings, my rants, ridiculous anecdotes, and my heartbreak – noise inside the brain of an extremely ordinary person. I also use my posts as a way to send mass letters to friends an family announcing, “this is where I’m at right now. This is who I am right now.”

Having only a handful of readers also takes away a certain measure of accountability, “hey, only 10-12 people will read this so it’s ok if I lose my mind over some issue.” This false belief has lead to some carelessness on my part. There’s nothing more humbling than being told, “I read your blog,” wait, what??? “and I only realized how affected you were by something that was said when you wrote a particular rant” (paraphrased a ton) by someone whom you didn’t realize knew you had a blog, and whose dear friend it was  you wrote a scathing piece about. Err… whoops. Not my finest moment.  Or you get an email from your Jr. High bully asking, “hey, is that me? Oh yeah, I remember you now” where you learn a lesson in the power of the internet, and why using full names maybe wasn’t your finest moment.  These experiences have made me more keenly aware that this isn’t my private island of 10, though I admit it more often than not still feels that way.

Someone recently told me in regard to this space, “you don’t know how your words affect people” which was extremely humbling. So, this is a shout-out and a thank you to all of those other readers whom I sometimes forget I have.  To Melissa, Jenn, Heather (you are strong, and amazing – though we haven’t met, I hope you know I think you’re great; I believe in you), Drew, Jerry, Jim, Julie, Heather B., Denise, Roanna and David (actual gifted writers), Lynn, Tori, Gail, and Irina (thank you for keeping me sane in the real world and for allowing Buddy to talk politics openly – sorry about Marine le Pen, Buddy). To Brandi who is one of the toughest people I know with a heart of pure gold, and Meredith who makes me laugh more than she knows. To Lori (I believe in you, too. You got this.)  To Karen (I may not always comment, but I enjoy everything you write). And to Dale, you’re a PITA, but you’ve kept me grounded through some dark times (by being a PITA – I think that’s your secret).  To the 10ish: Anna, Jonathan, Dad, Charla, Seth, April, Aunt Philis, Kim, Tony, HRH DeAnne, Kati, and Shari – you’re troopers to survive all the years of my blog nonsense, and for encouraging me (and for once asking me about t-shirts – I did look into it, but the image was too small to work with).  To everyone else who follows me along this bumpy ride of life, I may not know your name, but I appreciate you and thank you.  And to Scott and Carolyn,  whom I miss more than words could ever express – thank you for your encouragement – for suggesting I was funny, for cheering me on all those years. This world is a little less bright without your beautiful and gentle light.

All of you make for one amazing set of 10 on this island of mine.

8 thoughts on “My Private Island

  1. HB says:

    Thanks for letting me in on your island space! 🙂

  2. Tony says:

    I appreciate having the window into your life. I don’t really have the “write stuff down” urge, so you’ll have to get my news by forcing it out of me. 😉

    • Beth says:

      Is this the fun part where I get to poke you with sharp bits, and you confess all your secrets?
      ALSO! Someone is having a big birthday in a couple of months!!!! I want to hear the big plans!

  3. Here, have a coffee. (your choice as the imagination is so rich)
    Lovey post. Having few is freedom – I so agree.
    Time is such an artificial thing. Believe it or not I was once in a university research project on how people perceive time. I must have been the toss out too odd too count statistic. You’d sit in a room and were given a buzzer to press when you thought a certain amount of time had passed. No mentally counting or humming the birthday song to assist. Turns out I have absolutely no concept of time. Couldn’t tell at all when the time segment happened. But hey – the sun goes up and goes down – that’s really all you need. Apparently watches commit suicide on my wrist – they just stop/break for no reason at all – watchmakers cannot explain it – except one old German immigrant watchmaker looked at me and said it happens sometimes – some people just never are able to wear watches…they just have no connection to time. And told my mom to stop wasting her money on repairs – and stop thinking I was breaking them on purpose.
    It’s good to be timeless, yes?
    (Sorry to be slow getting around reading – blogging was getting too much like a job, and you know the nice weather will over and summer oppressive heat will be here shortly…like in 2-3 days)
    Waves from the coast!

    • Beth says:

      No worries on any slowness, I’m the same way. I go through spurts of trying to catch up on everything I enjoy on the internet, which is then followed by ignoring the internet. That said… I’m always here, always supporting, always enjoying.

      Interesting about the watches. I used to be the same way, and it’s why I don’t wear a watch now despite that issue seeming to have gone away. I just get worried I’ll purchase a watch, put it on, and then the watch will die. Hopefully, your mom listened to the German watchmaker and you were free of any further watch-breaking-blame. Also super interesting about the research. For me, time passes much faster when I’m busy, but also when I’m busy I feel like I’ve accomplished more – like I’ve packed more in, so in a way it’s moving faster, but it’s denser? Maybe?

      I agree – it’s good to be timeless.

      Hope you’re enjoying these slightly cooler days as we march forward into the summer. I can only hope that for the hotter days time will speed up a tick or two.

      On Wed, May 24, 2017 at 9:33 AM, The Big Blue Mess wrote:


      • Time density – great way to say it.
        The watch maker also said watch killers (HAHA – my word choice) tend to move very rapidly – and there may be some connection with magnetic energy. At least he made me feel better. For a while I had a pocket watch, but if I need actual time there’s always the phone.That’s time enough
        (Whoo-hoo – one last cool morning)
        Have a cool-ish holiday weekend!

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