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Thursday, August 30, 2001

For the next week or so, I'll have something new to obsess about. A reporter for the local paper wants to talk to me about... what, exactly? My journal, I guess. Or online journaling in general, maybe. What I have to remind myself is that she's not here to talk about my life, because my life is not my journal.

Or is it? Sometimes I think that the two are so inextricably intertwined that the journal is more about who I am than anything else I do. With a few exceptions, that's all I write about, entry after entry, every single day. What I did, what's on my mind, what's going on in my minuscule corner of the universe. What I watched on TV last night.

Well, of course. What else should a personal journal be about? The point I'm trying to make (to myself) is that the reporter isn't coming to hear about my life, but about why I post a daily account of my life on the web. That's a good one. I'll have to give that some thought over the next few days.

My biggest fear is that a whole new class of readers will find me and start wondering the same thing. Who do I think I am, wasting people's bandwidth by uploading nothing more important or interesting than the contents of my head? If I start getting a lot of nasty email, I'm going to regret ever going public. Almost every email message I've ever received about the journal has been positive. I'm not sure why this is, but I'd like it to stay that way.

I'm not good at interviews. I'm not good at expressing myself orally. I'm fairly verbal, but not all that oral. I'll probably get words in the wrong order and forget how to put a sensible sentence together. I'll come off looking like a socially inept pretender (which is what I am, mostly).

If I'm supposed to be representing the "community," it's from a distant outpost. That would be a little like Ronnie Schell representing the comedian community, or John Tesh representing the musical community. It's almost as bad as portraying the Tampa Bay Devil Rays as a major league baseball team.

Now I feel guilty comparing myself to the great Ronnie Schell. Sorry.

That's not all I feel guilty about. I don't work very hard at this, you know. If I spent more time laboring over my entries (instead of working and weeding and watching TV and doing all the stuff I write about), I could probably produce a slightly higher quality entry once in awhile.

The newspaper has agreed not to use my full name in the article. I know that anyone who really wants to find me can do so easily, but there's no use calling attention to myself where someone who knows someone might see it, and check out my journal, and then tell the Boss that I'm writing mean things about him. (Which I haven't lately, you'll notice.)

My last name has never appeared in an entry, as far as I can recall. Anyone who's ever received an email from me knows what it is, so it's not as if I'm hiding. Not exactly, anyway. Still, I get enough search hits for "tickling" and "plates spinning on sticks" without attracting people looking for something more personal.

pathetic, ain't it?

My sad little homemade butterfly garden.

I could use this as an excuse to clean the house, or as an excuse not to. After all, since I take pride in being totally myself within the confines of my journal, shouldn't I be myself when someone's interviewing me about it? I'm a lousy housekeeper. Sue me. Tell the world; anyone who cares already knows it. If I pretend to be something else, I'm lying, which is the one thing I try not to do. Not here, anyway.

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