the problem of audience and purpose

When I started posting in this blog in earnest, in September of 2010, I had a fairly clear idea of what I wanted for it, and what I didn't. I didn't want what essentially amounts to an online journal, with litanies of day-to-day personal details that mean next to nothing except to the people you already know in real life. I didn't want it to be exclusively my poetry and/or personal essays (there isn't nearly enough of it for that), and I didn't want it exclusively a tumblr-style image collection, but I wanted room to include those if I wanted to. What I settled on was, as the title suggests, basically everything; I wanted a kind of lifestyle blog - or a blog that conveyed my personal taste - that would have a larger appeal.

Of course, what dictates what I am enjoying or ruminating on is still my own life and my own experiences. There have been many times over the years that I have posted a particular song or photo because it reminded me of someone or of a situation - small associations that probably only I would make. A blog often feels somewhat like writing into an impartial void, and what's nice about a void is that it takes whatever one says at face value, and so my internal motivations were easily still completely anonymous.

But once one becomes aware of a particular audience, one starts writing to that audience, because that's what good writing does - it orients its content and delivery to who is receiving it. Much like the observer effect in quantum physics, it is completely unavoidable, even if one wishes to suppress the tendency for one reason or another.

There are love letters on this blog. There are expressions of pain and hope and longing and anger and many other emotions. But even then, this blog, in its detached and mostly anonymous form, is an attempt to convey something about myself, not something I use as a tool to expose or hurt anyone else.

[the title of this post is actually the title of my friend's blog . . . so we'll call it an allusion, because I could not think of a more apt phrase]

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