I've gotten all kinds of negative feedback about my "I started this blog on the advice of my therapist" blurb. The first complainer was Kevin, who's been urging me to start a blog for the past five years. He's pissed that Ashley is getting the credit.
Second to complain was Wendy, who said, "That makes you look even crazier than you already are." No mean feat. She also pointed out that it really has nothing to do with my blog, since I rarely, if ever, mention therapy. (I briefly considered talking more about therapy, but decided that talking about my dog is dull enough. I don't need to lower the bar further.)
Then Jackie told me it would be more accurate to say on the advice of friends who, as she put it "want to closely monitor your fevered brain." Other friends told me my blog was useful in the prevention of "3:00 A.M. rambling phone messages" or "as a mood stabilizer."
So let me explain. Ashley didn't suggest a blog in order to improve my mental health (she, like most of you, has pretty much given up in that regard). She suggested it as a remedy for writer's block. She gave me a bunch of psycho-jumble that involves reprogramming my brain circuitry so that, instead of reacting to the impulse to write with fear and trepidation, I react by simply writing. I'm supposed to write for at least five minutes whenever I feel that "impulse" coming on. (If I actually followed that advice, you'd be hearing about subjects even more tedious than the ones I've regaled you with -- in fact, I've been hankering to write about antiperspirant lately, so thank your lucky stars.)
When Ashley told me that, I said "no way can I keep a journal like some suburban teenage loser." The reason I know that is that I used to keep a journal back when I was a suburban teenage loser. But writing structured, researched articles or cohesive fiction (or any fiction) is not exactly a spur-of-the-moment, I've-got-some-spare-time kind of thing. And emails don't really count. Particularly when all I do on email is ask Eve about her latest thrift store finds. (Martini set, complete with shaker and twizzle sticks, never used.)
That's when dear, sweet Ashley, who once told me that she wished the Internet came with library index cards so you could find things more easily, suggested a blog. I didn't even know she knew the word "blog," (I once had to explain the term "keyword" to her) so I was pretty damn impressed.
Anyway, lately I've been feeling like I've been foisting my blog on a long-suffering audience. Until Jackie told me that she's so unutterably bored at work that she checks my blog pretty much every hour, idly musing to herself, "I wonder what Sequoia is up to."
And that makes it all worthwhile.