I’m gonna level with you. I’m having some angst about this blog. I know. Again. Can you tell? Can you sense my floundering? Because I can sense you sensing my floundering – shaking your head and tsking sympathetically, murmuring poor, poor Peevish as you x out of the site. I feel like it’s so obvious that I need to address it, lay my cards on the table.
It boils down to this: I’m just not feeling it. I’m not finding the desire or fodder for posting with any regularity anymore. And that would all be fine and good, except that it makes me sad and it makes me anxious. By some miracle, I seem to have cobbled together a real, true readership. You all. All you. You sexy beasts. Man oh man, would I love to collect all of you lovelies in a sunny field somewhere with beer and music and mushrooms and just talk and dance and play! Did I just write mushrooms? Heh, heh, er, ahem, cough, cough. See, that leads me to my next point which is the WHY of it all? Why the angst?
As usual, I have been cogitating on the subject for a long string of days and I have a few theories. First, my other food writing gig kind of forced me out of the closet with regard to this blog. I thought about keeping them separate, but the truth is, my only qualifications for getting that gig was this gig. Sadly, commercial real estate law does not a food writer make. Either does a loopy blog, but at least it’s closer. As much as I try not to think about it, there are all sorts of new people reading Peevish Mama, namely my lovely parents and in-laws and, possibly even some of their friends. Helloooo there. Don’t get me wrong, I’m thrilled to include them in what has become a much bigger piece of my life than I ever imagined when I began almost two years ago. The problem is that I find myself being more careful about what I write, more critical. And careful and critical are not, when all is said and done, a place from which I’m inspired to write.
Old habits die hard and even though I’m walking up the steps to 40’s front door, I still feel like a kid and I still, in an old knee-jerk visceral way, feel the need to please this generation of folks, hide things from them, skirt around the truth, reveal only the good part of myself. It’s silly. I’m not giving them enough credit for understanding that these are just words, that this is all just venting and processing, light entertainment, silliness. I’m also deceiving myself (especially in the case of my parents) if I pretend that they aren’t already deeply familiar with the mean, dark, naughty, irresponsible, lazy, cynical, ornery aspects of my personality. Who am I kidding, right? And my cursing? No one curses with as much panache as my mother, who at least has the decency to do it in Spanish. When my Peruvian friends blanched at the expletives flying out of that pretty lady’s mouth, I calmly handed them the official line: she grew up with five brothers. That is also the excuse I used to explain my swearing to Supergirl: Chuchi grew up with five brothers. Someday Supergirl will drop an F-bomb, her daughter will call her on it and she will say: Your great grandmother Chuchi grew up with five brothers. All this by way of saying, everyone can handle a little fucking swearing. Moreover, as sweet Nanook pointed out yesterday, most of this is good, happy, goofy stuff. My kids are wild and wonderful and exhausting and we’re all muddling through as best we can, using humor and honesty (and beer and wine and tequila and gin and vodka) as our balm. There’s nothing all that subversive here, as much as I love to believe I’m the picture of urban gansta sophistication. In the end, I’m kinda regular, if a little verbose and neurotic. No surprises here.
Another theory: at this time last year I had had knee surgery and was on crutches and this blog was my life line. For six weeks I wrote ferociously, running far and wide with my thoughts and words, since my legs couldn’t carry me. This spring, right now, I’m just in a moving and doing kind of mood. All the things I didn’t get to do last year, spring cleaning, weeding, cooking, yoga, the soccer jamboree, neighborhood festivals, bike riding, concerts, I want to do now. Sitting and writing just isn’t as appealing as it was when there was a foot of snow on the ground.
Yet another theory: I hate the internet. And by that I mean I love the internet but I don’t want to love the internet. I want to spend less time on my computer, not more, and yet it’s hypocritical to write, to expect others to read, when I don’t want to spend time reading all the other great stuff that is out there. There is some beautiful, funny, compelling writing happening every day and it’s disheartening to realize that most of it will go unread, at least by me. As per theory number 2, there are only so many hours of the day and as of yet, I am unwilling to shift my time and attention away from real books to cyber-prose. So I have to draw the line somewhere. I assume everyone else is feeling the same way, so I figure why keep adding to the noise?
And lastly, I had put a two year collar on this little endeavor, and I’m coming up on two years this Mother’s Day. I wonder if somehow I’m subconsciously letting it go, so it doesn’t feel so wrenching when and if I ultimately do. I had hoped to keep writing for at least two years, but I never thought about abruptly forcing myself to stop after two years. And the truth of the matter is, I’m not ready to stop, hence the angst. OK, scratch this theory. My subconscious is so heavily scrutinized that there’s nothing “sub” about it. It’s highly unlikely my writer’s block has anything to do with this. Yep, scratch this one.
So maybe I keep going, but in some new way that I have yet to figure out. Maybe I take more breaks, do more living with less writing. Maybe I have a little faith that you’ll still visit, even if I’m not doing flips and handstands all the time. Maybe I need a little time to acclimate to my new readers – forget about them a bit, find peace with the prospect of their scratching their chins and wondering: is she serious about wanting to give psychedelic mushrooms to a crowd of people in a field?
None of you will ever know, will you?