I see a little old man several times a week on my way to and from work. His head is bent over his walker so stiffly, so unchangingly, that while I often wonder if he’s only watching carefully as he takes each step (as I do myself), I suspect he couldn’t straighten up if he wanted to; I’ve never seen his face. It makes me sad. But he is out there every day, at least twice a day. He has a small terrier he is walking very slowly as he makes his way. I never see him without the dog at his left side. I don’t know if he holds the leash or if it is attached to the walker, but this is one well-behaved terrier. I’ve never seen it tug or run far ahead; he stays right next to his master and they are a picture of love as they make their way down the sidewalk, content in their slow pace. They are together.
My office sits on Speedway Boulevard, a main thoroughfare that earns its name. We live northeast of the office, and the shortest route involves a U-turn around the median in front of the building. For about a month now, there has been a shoe lying in that median. It’s not just any old shoe, though. This is a tall, sparkly platform heel that glitters in the desert sun. Whenever I see a single shoe in the street, I wonder how it got there, and where the other one is now. If they’re small shoes, I imagine an older brother or sister tossing the baby’s shoe out the window just to see what will happen, with the bonus of breaking the “don’t throw stuff out the window” taboo. It’s always a mystery; I can see shoes falling out of car in a parking lot or driveway if you opened the door of a packed car, but I assume most people doing 45 down Speedway do so with doors shut; shoes don’t just fall up and then out through windows. And a big sparkly shoe like that is a greater mystery; this is not a median where people would cross the street. It’s not really a heavily pedestrian area at all. And certainly a walker would not make the trek in high heels. But it got there somehow, and every time I see it, I really want to know how.
I’m going to take a blog vacation, and see if I miss blogging. Because I haven’t really been feeling it lately. I always have come back to it in the past, but I don’t know this time. Maybe this is it, finally. Or maybe I won’t manage to hold out the week before I feel the desperate need to opine. After all, Election Day is in 2 weeks.
But I have been blogging for 7 years now, at various URLs and under various guises, with the occasional long and short breaks therein that all long-time bloggers tend to take. The issue for me, and maybe for many bloggers, tends to keep coming back to a combination of ROI and ego-busting. Very few folks read this blog (not counting the 75 people a week who get to my site from some other random Viagra site that has no doubt stolen my content and arrive here only to be disappointed, like those who Google and are bummed to find that I do not actually have a recipe for green bean casserole on my site—hi there!) Notable exceptions are, and gratitude goes out to, regular readers and commenters Beth and Ghost, and occasional commenters Nikki, Alicia, and Alicia, who are the reason I’ve kept going this long as my readership and reader participation has dwindled. Thanks for taking time out of your week to read my stuff; I have been, and remain, honored that you would do so.
Another part of that is the ever-present self-questioning that has attended my blogging from the beginning, which involves variations on the theme “You know, it takes a lot of chutzpah to presume that anyone cares what you think or wants to read your stories about your dogs when there are 9 million blogs in the naked internet”; and despite my delight in the sound of my own literary voice and my faith in the brilliance of my writing, my failure in all this time to build an audience beyond a handful of beloved diehards is, to me, evidence that cannot be ignored. That is to say, I don’t think I will be missed, but I don’t like when people just disappear without explanation, so I’m ‘splainin’.
And finally, I have some songs that need to be written, and I find I’m not writing them. I go around and around with myself about why I can write a 1-4 page blog every week, but I can’t manage to sit down and write 3 verses, a bridge, and a chorus more than twice a year. This is lame. And the only answer I come up with is that I think more naturally in prose, use blogging as my outlet when I feel a need to comment on my world, and therefore feel no compulsion to express myself in a couple hundred words in the format of a song when I have unlimited space to do so in a blog post. I don’t know that setting aside blogging will make a bit of difference in my song production, but when that itch to write comes back, as it always does, channeling it towards music might serve me better on multiple fronts. Only one way to find out. I’m going to switch focus for a bit and see what’s what.
If you need me, you know me know where to find me. Thanks.