Thursday, June 01, 2006

The Story

Okay, okay-- I'll explain the brother posting:

A few months ago, Trista alerted me to this, and told me I was in it. As with many other bloggers who ended up there, I had no clue, and as you might imagine, I was inordinately excited about it. But I didn't want to say anything here because I didn't want to seem like I was bragging about anything. (Now I think this was silly; I was/am excited. I could have told.) So, I told a friend or two who knew about the blog. And then I told Brother K and Brother N. Personally, I don't know that Brother N ever thought of it again (although... if you're here too, N, you should also come out).

When I told Brother K about the book and blog, I did indeed say, "But don't look for my blog and don't read it." I was serious. Really, I was.

Yesterday I told Partner about my post, calling K out of the woodwork, and she said, "Of course he reads your blog. You told him about it."

"But," I protested, "I asked him not to read it."

Her response? "Get real."

Now the kid claims that I have talked about the blog subsequently, but I don't think I have. That much. I may have mentioned that it flabbergasts me that blog readers hail from all over the world, and how cool I think that is. (And it is-- very cool!) Or I may have mentioned something about the crazy mixed up cd group. I don't know. I can honestly say I just said those things not as enticements to come and read, but just said them.

But now after talking with Partner, Bro K, and reading his comments, I can see the point. I'm not annoyed he's here reading, but I don't know if knowing it will change my internal editor. I'm inclined to think it won't. After all, this is my blog! Read at your own peril! I suppose I've always been aware on some level that loved ones might trip across the site someday whether I mention it or not. (I mean, I did end up finding frog this way. No one told me about her site or even that she blogs, but I found it. And, ahem, read it without telling her for awhile. [Frog and I go to the same church.])

The thing about blogging is that it is a public forum (unless you password protect the blog). I can't get upset about Bro K reading, or anyone else for that matter. I'm pretty sure there are other lurkers here that know me outside of this blog. Some have told me, and others haven't. Never will. Some readers are friends, and others are ex-friends. Others are people who know me, but don't really know me. And others are strangers, and still others were strangers who I now have deep and abiding friendships with. And that's all okay.

As a writer, I've been aware that things one writes may rub people the wrong way. I suppose it's one thing when my poetry or fiction has been edgy, but different when it's the blog. Although I don't know that I've ever really been edgy here. I guess what I'm saying is that when I am writing about me, I write pretty freely. Tell everything. But when I write posts that center on my interaction with other people, particularly family, I try to be mindful of the fact that that person might read this. I'm always honest, but... maybe more politic.

Why, one might ask? Why be more politic? Well, because this the only life I've got. And if you haven't sussed it out yet, family equals number one priority. When I was in high school, and perhaps my freshman year of college, I hadn't quite figured it out. My dad would say to me, "Your friends are your friends until they're not. Your family is your family forever." It's probably not a maxim that would work in every family out there, but it works in mine. My mother and father have fought for every one of us kids at various points in our life. My brothers and I love each other fiercely.

And here's the other thing: we fight in my family. Oh Lord, we've had some doozies. Things I even try to repress-- and we've said dreadful things to each other. But here's the rub-- we've said those things. We haven't written them down, in print, pen, or otherwise. (An evil email or two is excluded.)

I think about the power of writing quite a bit. (Stands to reason; after all I teach bloody English.) For example, the colonists didn't just stand up and say, "We're sick of British tyranny. We're independent now," they wrote it down. I'm not saying that the spoken word isn't powerful-- not at all-- we all know there have been some pretty damn powerful speeches out there. I'm just saying that on the whole, it's easier to forget. It's more informal. So when my family fights, orally, we can forget to some degree the nasty shit we've said to each other. Even though at the time we thought we'd never forget it. And as raging mad as I've been at my mother, father, brothers, or Partner, it's passed. And I'm happier at the end of the day that I haven't written it all down. When we fight, we all get stupid with the crazies.

So at the end of the day, it's okay that Bro K is here. And I did call him immediately after reading his first comment. "Jackass," he said to me, and then we both laughed and laughed. He's very excited about the impending pregnancy. Sometimes I think more than I am right now. (I'm still a wee bit nervous, truth be told.) And we do talk a lot. I could write a lot about him and how totally smart and cool I think he is. One thing I always remember is my gramma telling me how much Bro K loved me. She could see it. I hope she could see how much I love him too. There are scenes I will always see Bro K in that symbolize who he is. I'll tell you one of them, and then you'll probably love him too: When our house was rough framed, but buttoned up (that means all windows in and roof on), my family was here, trooping through the house. We saw a bird, a little sparrow, in the family room. I opened the slider door and hoped the bird would hop out on its own, but it was terrified. It was almost as if you could see its little heart beating. No one, not one of us, me, Partner, my father or mother or Partner's gf would go near it. What if it had West Nile? What if it pecked us? But Bro K walked over to it, talked to it gently, picked it up in his hands, cupping it, and then lofted it gently out the window whereupon the bird sailed away. I cry every time I think about that.

The biggest worry I have about him here and out in the open, is that his witty and highly intelligent comments will woo my readers away from me and on to him. It's probably a moot point since as far as I know, he doesn't have a blog.



Blogger DD said...

I'd read his blog...if he'd dumb it down a little for me. Crickeys! You're right, he is a smarty.

I actually hoped that my family (at least my sisters anyway) would have read my blog to save me the painful retelling of failures and loss and explaining what every stupid acronym meant x4. I guess I ought to be careful what I wish for.

2:24 PM  
Blogger Soul Searching said...

Nothing sexier than smart!

4:56 PM  
Blogger Pamplemousse said...

Yeah, how old is he and can we see a picture???

You know that I was just kidding with my last 2 comments, right? And you are in the blogging book? How cool is that??

5:33 PM  
Blogger Tanya said...

I love this post. You've expressed so well the relationship I have with my family. Though we can say nasty things to each other, we all know that there is nothing we wouldn't do for each other. Your father's quote fits my family very well. And because of this, I hold back on my blog because my family know I have it and my mother checks it EVERY DAY. I always have to think twice before I hit publish. And I do regret that sometimes. But in the end, it's better than any alternative.

Thanks for sharing your journey with the world - I keep coming back every week or so to see the latest installment. Good luck with your family endeavours.

4:01 AM  

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