Friday, July 28, 2006
Some Blog-related Fandom Encounters
I had my first run-in with the insanity of blog fans yesterday.
El Tabachnikov swung by my desk, and proceeded to shake his head and say, "Yeah, Sage, I was disappointed with your post." He was referring to the entry, "A History of My First Date".
"Disappointed?" I came back, unbelieving. "You mean, the sweetly wistful reminiscence of my first love? Didn't it strike a chord in you, make you wing backwards in your own memory and put you in touch with your own youthful vulnerability?"
"I guess... a little bit... I was expecting how most of your posts end..."
"You mean, a deviant, or not so deviant sexual encounter?"
"Sure, Tabachnikov, that stuff is great, but there are other facets to the human condition. I'm just trying to explore them, and show that I've got the ability to work in different genres."
We went on to rap about other stuff; the nature of repressive households, the scarcity of chicks at Yeshiva, etc., etc. But in the back of my mind was this nagging pustule of doubt. Should I, in fact, be pandering to the mentality of my readers? Should I tailor what I write to the likes and dislikes of everyone who stumbles across my blog?
Clearly, the answer is no, and yet, geez, I can't stand criticism. Why can't people just accept and appreciate my artisitc endeavours as I do? Why can't they just think I'm the greatest thing since sliced bread and let it go at that. But no, they're like, "why can't you do more X?" where X denotes their particular interest. Remember that kid Road, before she vanished into forgetfulness and obscurity? She loved and worshipped me like one of Jim Jones' followers, yet always wanted me to be "funny". March can't stand anything that involves "words" or "concepts" deeper than that of eating cake. Fresh eviscerated me for using white paper instead of lined. Pog now loves me instead of disagreeing with everything I say, so that's something anyway.
Which brings me, inevitably, to KP. Here's a bloke who'd got a deep and penetrating mind, who thinks about the nooks and crannies of the universe as well as the nooks and crannies of his friday morning bagel. The kid's got moxie. He's got opinions and things to say. But when I ask him to comment on my blog more often, he say's, "It's gotten too popular."
And I'm thinking to myself, popular? Well, strictly speaking, there was a time when just March and KP read the blog. But, inevitably, like blowflies attracted to putrefying flesh*, the blog readership swelled to a good twenty regulars that I'm aware of, and probably a bit more that do not leave any trace of their visitation apart from a stamp in some metering program.
So, if that's popularity, then KP must really enjoy getting in on the ground floor. And then abandoning. He's like the blokes who used to like Green Day but savaged them when people actually liked their music. But I understand KP's rationalizations. He once had me all to himself, and now he must share. And he doesn't like sharing. He balls up his fists and cries out in existential agony, "O Sage, wherefore hast thou forsaken me?"
And then there's Nobby Burton. Nobs used to work at the desk right next to me, for about four years, in the spot that KP now enjoys. We've rapped about stuff till the cows come home, and know the ins and outs of each other's personality. Nobs knew me way before this blogger stardom thing happened.
It is Nobby's self-appointed duty, and I do mean self-appointed, to keep my ego in check. It all started back when I brought in a tune I had written for him to check out. He was mildly impressed [he's always mildly impressed!], but he still had to describe it as "a bit Teshy." Tesh-like. As in John Tesh, the former entertainment show host who went on to a profitable but artistically vacuous musical career pandering to new-age crystal worshippers.
Now, let me point out that, musically speaking, there's a superficial, but still vastly different, resemblance between the two. They're both mellow. There's a piano in both. But that's it. That's the only similarity. But rather than give me the satisfaction of saying the tune that I created is actually pretty good, he must always ensure that I remember my place in the grand scheme of things.
After each post, he often comes by the desk to give me the benefit of his critiques. The "God" series, where I write dialogues to explore various aspects of the human condition in a witty and irreverent manner, is described by him as "wacky".
"Why don't you write real humour, like Seinfeld or The Office?" he asks me.
"Do you know how hard that is?" I ask him back.
What I write is never good enough for him. I'm like the dutiful son forever trying to win the overbearing father's affection. And Nobby's quite satisfied with that arrangement.
I can only imagine what it must be like to be a real star, or famous person, and have to deal with legions of insane fans. No wonder they end up living in walled compounds with armed guards and dobermans patrolling the perimeter. But for now, it's not so bad. At least people are reading. I'll get the walled compound when and if it becomes necessary.
But if there are any female readers out there that want to sleep with me because of my burgeoning flame, please let me know. I'm sure we can arrange something.