Friday, March 07, 2008

Hello, do you know me?

(Hee. The title comes from one morning when the hubs and I were but a not-even-engaged-yet couple, and he was driving me to work. At the time he worked for American Express. Somehow we got on the topic of those "Do you know me?" AmEx ads, anybody remember those? Do they still do those? Anyway, our big joke was if AmEx had Hitler doing one [note: There is nothing funny about Hitler. Hitler was evil and bad], and he had this dopey smile and we were imitating him in really terrible accents--I think we sounded more like if Squiggy from Laverne & Shirley were imitating Hitler [which no one should ever do, because there is absolutely nothing funny about Hitler, ever], doing the AmEx ad. "Hello, do you know me? When I was holding a beerhall puscht, I had no marks to pay the bill. Luckily, I had my American Express card. American Express, don't invade Poland without it!" We thought this was immensely funny, which was shameful and wrong because Hitler was no joke.)

Anyway. I was thinking the other day about the kinds of relationships we form online, and public images, and stuff like that, and I started wondering how much of me people actually learn/know from reading my blog, and what things are still a mystery (wooooo.)

I think the blog is a pretty good representation of my personality. At least, my personality without the crippling insecurities and laziness and all that stuff that nobody really wants to deal with anyway. I also think I'm fairly open and honest here. Yes, I tend to keep political stuff off my blog, because I find that distasteful in general on blogs that aren't specifically devoted to politics. And no, I don't really complain about my personal life--I don't come here and post, for example, when the hubs or the girls are driving me crazy or anything like that. So maybe what you get here is the "good" me, with all the yuck left off. The new and improved me, now with more coolness.

But honestly, I think we all have something of a tendency to do that. Nobody wants to read a blog that's nothing more than someone whining and complaining all the time. And we wouldn't keep a blog if we didn't want people to read it.

But because this is something I've been thinking about a lot, I thought I'd ask. Do you guys think you represent all sides of yourselves on your own blogs? Do you think you know me pretty well, or rather, do you think we can get to know anyone pretty well from a blog or do we need to see the flaws in pure Technicolor in order to really know someone?

I wonder sometimes if this isn't the reason why social networking online is becoming so hugely popular--because we can carefully censor the parts of ourselves we're uncomfortable with or think people wouldn't like (that, and we can stay in our pajamas and not put on make-up). And I also wonder if that isn't something of a shame. I've talked before about how important it is for characters to have flaws in order to be likeable or for people to be able to identify with them. Without negative emotion we can't really appreciate the positive, right?

I just wonder if I'm at the right level of honesty here, and if it even matters. The purpose of the blog is to entertain (both myself and anyone else who comes across it) and to promote myself and my work. So I've always felt this wasn't really the place for emotional nakedness, so to speak.

But hey, this is supposed to be fun, so here are a few obscure and not-so-obscure facts about me:

1. "Gimme Shelter" is my favorite Rolling Stones song.
2. I have lovely long fingernails.
3. I don't really have a favorite color, but when pressed I say gray because I think black is such a cliche answer.
4. I have a minor addiction to energy drinks. I especially miss "Full Throttle" which tasted like battery acid but was strangely more-ish (can't get it in the UK).
5. I'm obsessed with bedsheets. I insist on only using Egyptian cotton sheets on my bed because I refuse to sleep on rough sheets. I was totally devastated the other day when I realized our washing machine ripped big holes in one of my sheets, too. I've been collecting sheets for years, buying them whenever I have a little extra cash. I prefer only white sheets but the hubs made me buy some colored ones too.
6. I don't like hot drinks, even when it's cold out.
7. I regard cards, like for birthdays or Valentine's Day, as a waste of time and money.

...And that's only seven, but so what? I'm quirky that way.

Other stuff:

Personal Demons has its first review! Scooper reviews has it here. She really liked it, yay!

My friend Caitlin Kittredge is guest blogging today, over at Calendula Witch's place.


Anonymous said...

I think I get a pretty good read on your personality from this blog. I'm sure I would like you even if I discovered we were complete opposites in areas like politics, religion, etc.

I don't have my own blog, but I think my personality comes across here pretty well except that I type a lot more than I would talk.

In person, I'm very quiet and a terrible conversation starter, I usually will not speak unless spoken to. However, nobody ever has to ask if I'm angry (Irish, ya know).

But, I'm a very nice person. To know me is to love me. :~)> -V95

BernardL said...

I think personality comes through in words written, even without personal details. Humor, passion, annoyance, etc. all make their way into what one writes, sometimes unintentionally. You mentioned political blogs. I read a few regularly; and in many of the comments, I can almost picture the person pounding on their keyboard in fury. Writers, as you’ve cautioned, have to be careful what they express on their blogs. Too much, and sales of their books can plummet. Good post.

kirsten saell said...

First off, on the subject of Hitler's alleged lack of funny, I laugh at stuff like that all the time. Unfortunately, my kids are starting to, as well, which makes for some interesting conversations with their teachers.

I am a very balanced person when it comes to blogging--which is to say, I don't blog, haha. But my behavior on other people's blogs tends to be a lot less salty and, um, probably more carefully considered than the stuff that comes out of my mouth on a regualr basis. For example: I came in to work yesterday to find my boss had just siliconed around the sink in the waitress station. I took one look and announced to the restaurant at large:

"Hey, someone's been awfully sloppy with his caulk!"

And don't even get me started on the whole kindergarten class-inkblot fiasco. Let's just say, never tell the other parents what you really think those blots all look like, it won't endear you to anyone...

I just can't help myself. This is why I stay away from churches and day care centers.

This is why I don't post when I'm angry, or when I've been taking NyQuil.

There's a lot to be said about showing the best side of you--and the rest comes across in subtle ways. I think even if I don't know how you feel about politics or whatever, I have a decent idea how you'll reaspond to the things life throws at you, and that's a fairly good gauge of how well you know a person.

Charles Gramlich said...

I think that most of us learn only the best parts about others from their blogs, and I'm very much OK with that. Those people we are going to live with, sure we need to know them very well. But our friends? Why do we have to know every detail about them? Why not enjoy them for the best parts of them and how that brings out the best parts of you.

pacatrue said...

I very certainly don't talk about everything I could about myself or my life in my blog. In fact, I think of it as a slightly different person than the true me, which is one reason I prefer going by pacatrue in my internet life even when the people I'm speaking of know my actual name. December Quinn is a sort of writing personality who's slightly different from Stacia Kane, no?

Robyn said...

Kirsten, imagine having that same sense of humor when you're an actual children's pastor.

DQ, your wit and your style comes through, if not particular opinions. Though I do know how you'll react to this:

kirsten saell said...

So they all look like vaginas to you, too, Robyn? I thought it was just me and Rorschach...

Robyn said...

Wrong gender, but you get the idea.

Stacia said...

I think so, too, V95--in agreement on your entire reply. :-)

Oooh, Bernard, that's true. That's why I tend to stay away from political blogs. They get me too riled up myself, really. I'll fume about some dumb comment somebody made for hours. Days, even. I still get steamed up thinking of things that happened years ago, lol.

Lol irsten, that's awesome! That's totally the type of thing I would have said! And yeah, actually, the Hitler thing was really funny, but you can never be too careful. I'd hate to think someone did a Technorati search on Hitler and came across me making Hitler jokes with no disclaimer of any kind, you know?

Charles, you are always so eloquent and deep, you put me to shame. Seriously. Here I am piddling around with stupid puns and you just express a point so beautifully.

They're both a bit different from me, yeah, Paca. Much more sprightly and interesting, and much less time spent talking about crab fishermen on the Discovery Channel. :-)

December/Stacia said...

Ack, Robyn! MY EYES! Creebus, she's so awful I can't even stand it. Cover it UP, you miserable old hag! She reminds me of Annie's Miss Hannigan there. Bleh! I need to go find a picture of Beyonce or something to clear that away.

And lol, you dirty-minded ladies. I've never seen a real Rorschach blot. I've never had one of those personality analysis test things, either, which is disappointing because I always thought that would be fun.

writtenwyrdd said...

I think that even in real life we cannot learn all about someone without a long-term relationship. It takes years to become really close friends and still you don't share everything. Blogging is no different, except I think we have more of a deliberate choice on the part of both parties how much they share of their 'real' selves.

I do not discuss my actual job in general terms, for example, both because I don't want to compromise said job and because I don't want the persona it implies to poison my blog relationships. I also don't share many of my negative aspects, attempting to keep the dialog primarily about creativity and a few generalities.

The real me is complex and contradictory. The real me is a cranky menopausal fat bitch with complexities and overtones and a tendency to piss people off without knowing how. The real me isn't who I want to be on my blog, because the real me is what my day-to-day life is all about.

Blogging does allow one to be who one wishes to be.

I swear, we had this conversation a couple of years ago, didn't we???

Bernita said...

December, from your blog I deduce you're an extremely intelligent and clever woman who sometimes hides it.

Gabriele C. said...

Hey, if Charles Chaplin can make fun of Hitler, why not we? Sure, it's not the sort of jokes you can tell alound on the street, but I'll so share that one with my dad. :)

I'm less personal on my blog than some, but I think everyone should go as far as he/she feels comfortable. Excpet posting pics of your lady bits, that's sharing too much. :) And I'm glad for those bloggers who leave politics out, it's such a boring topic.

December/Stacia said...

We probably did have this conversation a while ago, Written, because the real me is pretty dull. :-)
That's true, though. In a blog you can be much more careful than, say on a message board, where you might react quickly to something.

Aww, Bernita, thank you! I don't think it's a matter of hiding so much as it is insecurity. :-)

True, Gabriele. I'm just afraid of the search engines.
And yeah, I actually find politics really interesting but find discussions of them extremely dull, if that makes any sense.

Anonymous said...

I can't believe you told the Hitler story...


Thanks, Hitler
Transcribed from: Comedy Central
Transcribed by: Laura Cihocki

Dave- actress
Kevin- Ralph Himmelfarb

[Title on screen reads: "Career Ending Moments in Show Business 1962." Dave is at the center-stage podium, holding a statuette.]

Dave: Thank you! Thank you! Thank you so much! Thank you, I--I owe this honor to so many people. I--I'd like to thank...I'd like to thank my friend and manager, Ralph Himmelfarb...[cut to Kevin in the wings, clasping his hands graciously]...Thank you, Ralph. producers, Sid and Marty Sidmartinson for having faith in me, uh, thank you...uh, uh, I'd like to thank my director, Derek [kisses hand], I love you! Uh, and, and, and, and, and I'd like to thank Harold Reinhouse for his wonderful script, I'd like to thank him. I'd like to thank Hitler, and, and most of all, I'd like to thank my parents. Mom, Dad, this is for you!

[Dave sniffles and holds back happy tears, then goes blank when he realizes that the crowd is silent.]

Dave: Mom, D-Dad...

[Kevin comes and escorts Dave offstage as music swells.]

Dave: What's wrong with everybody?

Kevin: You thanked Hitler.

Dave: I never!

Kevin: You thanked Hitler!

Dave: Why would I thank Hitler?

Kevin: Hmm, why would you thank Hitler...[rubs his beard]...I don't know!

Dave: I can't believe I thanked Hitler!

[Kevin yanks Dave off-camera.]

Credit to Kids in the Hall/Broadway Video

---Mr. Quinn/Kane