Tuesday, June 19, 2007

the z-list celeb ...

never, since my days of absolutely dominating the long jump pits of southeastern minnesota in a pair of wacky outrageous tights and a dee-light soundtrack playing in my walkman, have i had a situation like this: i was recognized.

i was leaning against a wall when a stranger approached me and said "i used to read your blog."

i'm not even going to lie and pretend that my ego didn't inflate to dangerous levels. and that if he wasn't careful, he would walk away wearing shards of ego debris on his t'shirt.

he identified himself as cityboy -- a somewhat regular commentor on m former blog. a man from the twin cities who found my site after reading about it in the star tribune.

"i thought about emailing you when i knew i was coming to town to find out where the pio is. and which bars to go to in superior," he said.

the thing with people who i meet who have read my old blog -- they always refer to the pio as the "pee-oh." this cracks me up. it is, for the uninitiated, short for pioneer.

"and on the way into town i saw a taco john's and figured that is the one you always go to at the end of the night," he said.

then we played memory lane with the past two years of my online life:
"remember the video of your roommate taking the crap?" he said.
i sighed, laughed, nodded.
"oh that was hilarious," he said. "and then later you gave him the boot ...?"
"yeah, hee hee," i said.

then he introduced me to his friend and girlfriend:
"she's like melinda without a filter!" he said.
they nodded.
"i used to read her blog all the time!" he said.

"do you think this is creepy?" one of the women asked me.
"no," i said. "i've been waiting for this day my whole life."

a long time ago i thought that i'd have a really popular site. that it would get thousands of hits per day and that i'd get a book deal and that i'd never have to stand in line for a pitcher of long island ice teas on a wednesday night at grandma's sports garden. there would be shirts and interviews and someone would write a hip hop song about it.

then that went away.
now i realize there are about 20 gazillion blogs online and 18 gazillion of those bloggers are doing the dead man's float in that same pool of hubris. and about 17 gazillion of those bloggers are people who say "look at me! i'm edgy! i just wrote the word vagina!" -- kinda like i used to be.
so, i'm back to this sort of anonymity. less than a hundred hits a day, when i had figured i'd be well-over 100,000 by now.

in high school i had a friend named neva who would find subtle ways to brag about herself in a way that seemed to say "oh my gosh, it is a burden to be this great." she'd eye a group of hot public school boys and say "that one is totally staring at me. my gosh. seriously. he needs to stop staring at me." or "ugh. i'm getting too much playing time. its exhausting playing this much basketball."

this made the rest of us very self conscious about saying nice things about ourselves. and so, if we did, we'd preface it with an "i'm not trying to be neva, but ..."

so here it is: i'm not trying to be neva, but last night i felt like the lindsay lohan of blogging and it wasn't creepy. it was super cool.


Anonymous said...

If it's any consolation, I like your blog better more mellow/not trying so hard/no aforementioned v-words and the like. Plus, nothing you've written lately can come back to bite you in the butt later.

CYA when you're online. It's safer.

Miss Kate said...

Aren't you tired of it yet? I'm really tired of it, or at least the public side of it. My hubris is long-gone.

I do have to say that I used to get more hits off your old blog than from anywhere else, which led me to believe that you were the most popular blog in Duluth, MN. Which I guess comes full circle to the point you were making with this post.

Stinkbait Boucher said...

Pardon the interruption - it seems rude to appreciate an insightful post without acknowledging it - I'm old-fashioned that way.

Everything about this little medium of ours is born from the need to "act out" - even when we're behaving. The quick "fix" is the peculiar sense of community that it breeds - the knowledge that you're one of the cool kids.

This fades but doesn't die quickly and I think you did a great job of illustrating that.

Eventually you get old and grumpy like me and enjoy hiding in plain sight.

"Paper or plastic sir?" he asks emptily.

"Oh my God! He doesn't know who you are does he?" your companion whispers.

"He doesn't need to know who I am. Just let it go." you reply. "Paper, please."

viciousrumours said...

You may never get a book deal out of this blog, but you make me smile on days when I don't even feel like taking a shower and that's saying a lot. Some days I really need that smile. So brag...just a little.

Beret said...

I had the same type of friend in high school, but add to the subtle bragging the ability to make EVERYTHING about her or her current boyfriend. It was awful. We used to call it "pulling an Anne".

When I come to town this summer I'll totally be on the lookout for you and/or Chuck when I drag my husband to the local "hot" spots.

By the way, have you ever been to the "Pump n' Munch" in Rochester? I was visiting my sister and I couldn't stop laughing when she had to pull in there to get gas.

Maurey Pierce said...

You're clearly at a good point in your life, feeling happy and stable ... and that tends not to make for blog posts that are quite as, well, colorful.

Agree with Stinkbait. This was a great self-awareness post.

Flee said...

Ha ha ha ha ha ha!

christina said...

the gas station in my neighborhood turned into a pump and munch. i totally forgot that rochesterism.