Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Comment Ca-va?

I've talked about blogging before, how it started out as a way to keep family and friends updated on our daughter and has turned into a really good thing for me. Especially during the earlier months of my stay-at-home-momhood, it provided a connection to the outside world that I wasn't really getting otherwise, for a number of reasons. I do sometimes hold myself back because I know that my parents and my husband's family read this, but I don't really feel that not cursing or tiptoeing around certain topics is really that much of a hindrance. I've never been one to talk about most of that stuff anyway. Imagine how tough my gynecological visits are. Our conversations go something like this:

Me: I'm having some discomfort around...there. (pointing in the general direction of the lower half of my body)
Doctor: Where?
Me: Next to my, um...

Doctor: Your vagina?

Me: Oh my god.

Doctor: Your anus?
Me: (fainting)

I'm not sure where my extreme shyness about these things came from, but the very fact that I just put those two words in this post has me literally in a cold sweat. So not writing about that stuff is no biggie. Because of this though, my blog will never be one of those avant garde blogs that says the stuff that everyone is thinking and no one says because they're too embarrassed. Because I'm too embarrassed. Likewise, I won't write things that are unkind to my friends or family, even though sometimes I really want to. Like how my sister that lives 2,500 miles away, who is a stay at home mom turned Ebay mogul, simply can't find a couple of minutes here and there to check in to my blog more than twice in four months. WTF, right?

But I digress. What I wanted to talk about is the phenomenon of commenting. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE me some comments. And if I have something to contribute to a person's post or just want to say bravo, then I'll leave one myself. In addition, I've found some really great blogs by clicking through from other people's comments. What I don't get is that some of the really popular blogs will get hundreds of comments on posts. Hundreds. I've even seen a few that had thousands of comments. I expect that most people's motivation for commenting falls into a couple of categories: communicate with the writer of the blog OR with other readers. I don't mind being number 20 or even 50 or 75 but when your comment is number 434, who exactly is going to notice you? I simply can't imagine that Dooce takes the time to read all 500 comments on every post. Seriously, scroll down and look at how many comments she has on some of her posts. I don't want you to think, dear reader, that I am posting this out of jealousy, although I am a tad chartreuse of her readership. But she has that because of her ability to beautifully and humorously convey a thought and she's been doing this for like seven years. Serious props to her and all of the hard working bloggers out there, because coming up with witty, touching, insightful posts (almost) every day isn't easy and they deserve every bit of recognition they get. I just have a hard time posting comments that late in the game because I feel like the only people who are going to see it are the people commenting immediately after me. Which maybe that should be enough, but I just don't like feeling lost in the crowd.

Having said all of this, and possibly alienating a few, please feel free to leave hundreds of comments on my blog. I promise to read every one.


  1. Ca va bien.

    The blogs that get hundreds of comments amaze me, too. But, for me anyway, I don't think blogging is a popularity contest. Of course, some blogs are more popular than others, but I don't feel I'm competing with anyone. My blog is just my life, my ideas, my thoughts -- not a race for the most people to respond to that.

  2. Damselfly - I'm with you. I'm happy if people comment but if they don't I'm not going to stop. I do get the feeling from some out there in the blogosphere that commenting is less about supporting/commiserating/celebrating fellow bloggers and more about building a fan base.

  3. mother o'bean, you just say whatever you feel it takes to get your point across. If you can type it, we can read it. If we find it too hard to read, well then, we have a whole deeper group of problems that don't need to concern you at this point. On the other hand, just look at 95 percent of the comments on most blogs; they're total nonsense, and surely you don't have (m)any readers that regularly talk gibberish. So, actually, a lack of comments might just indicate a generally more intelligent readership!

  4. Thanks for commenting on my blog! I love comments, though I would certainly be overwhelmed by 814, like I saw on Jennsylvania the other day (I heart her too!) Have you gotten any from people you don't know?? I got one from a Texas Mormon mother. Weird.

  5. Macdady - Are you my daddy? If you're not, then this is very weird, but if you are "hi" and thanks!

    Nicki - Girl, you know I'm keeping up on your stuff! As a matter of fact, the majority of my comments are from people I don't know in the "real" world, but people I have come to know and like through their blogs, like the absolutely fabulous Damselfly!

  6. I'm just a slow blogger and a slow commenter. I like the friendships that blogs bring. Everyone loves comments that's for sure, but I will never be a stellar blogger because I flat don't have the time. I'm in it for the camaraderie.

  7. Merecat - I'm with you. I don't have the time to do it every day but it is a nice outlet and I have come to "know" some really great people, like yourself, through this process. You keep doing your thing and I'll keep reading!

    Iago's Mom - thanks for stopping by. I'll come visit you!

  8. I love the way some of my existing (i.e., with people I have met in person) have been enriched by having a blog and also love that I have started making friends with other bloggers, like the thoughtful Mom O' Bean.

    I love comments but agree that I would keep blogging even if I never received any.

    Also, I share your annoyance with family members/close friends who can't make time to read. I would so read theirs and comment if they had blogs . . . but maybe I am just nosy? No, I'm just interested and loving to hear what people are thinking about and doing day to day.

  9. MEP - Thank you. As I mentioned, but didn't really go into much, blogging has been so great for me. When I first started out, I was struggling with figuring out who I was as a stay at home mom. The baby wasn't much for interaction at that point and I just didn't know how to define myself without a job. Plus I felt alienated from all of my working friends (no offense, working friends). Most of whom are childless but even the ones with kids seem to be living a different life from me. So finding people with similar issues was absolutely life-saving for me. Not to mention the camaraderie of the blogging community. I should have mentioned on the numbers response that although I follow a lot of blogs, there really aren't that many that I feel a real personal connection to, as I do yours. I mean, I love Dooce and Jennsylvania and Baby on Bored et al, but I follow them in a more voyeuristic way. Does that sound bad?

    (BTW - you don't have to tell me yours, of course, but my name is Cara. I always feel a little weird when people address me as Mom o'Bean. Our blog title used to include our full name and my husband felt weird about having our last name out there, so I changed it. And when I did, I just changed to Mom o'Bean, too. But I saw a Momma Bean comment somewhere the other day and I started thinking that I might switch to something with my given name in it.)

    My goodness, this is one long response!


Give me some sugar, baby!