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Location: Central Michigan, United States

Spent a long career making lots of money for other people. Now it's my turn. _____________________________ Email:

Thursday, March 30, 2006

The Personality Behind Closed Doors

In my office keyboarding these words, I am, for awhile, the sole occupant of this building. My office door is closed. At some future minute in this day I will push the button labled, "Publish Post".

When the button is pushed, my words and thoughts will become available to anybody in the world who seeks them or may stumble across them. The value of truth in the words they will read is known only to me. So it is with others; who post their own words and thoughts, and offer comments on the words and thoughts keyed by their fellow bloggers.

Traveling among the sites of blogland, I sometimes stop to wonder if I am visiting the real personality of the writer, or a fictional personality created by the writer. As writers, that's part of what we do---create personalities. By our work we project out to the public fictional personalities. We have an expectation, or hope, forms of relationships will develop between the reader and our created personalities.

I wonder how many of us do the same for ourselves as bloggers.

I have formed a myriad of perceptions about the many blogger personalities I visit. Some I perceive to be shy, gentle, non-confrontational. Some I perceive as aloof, selective in their intervention and sharing. Others seem arrogant, self-serving. I recognize bullies, needing control. There are some who appear to me insecure, defensive. I see some as seeking popularity, a "following". Maturity of perspective and immaturity of perspective I see too. Some seem open, honest. A few seem manipulative. Some are students, some are teachers. And so it goes.

My perceptions form in my mind visions of real people whom, all but maybe one or two I will never meet.

If it does come to pass I meet the one or two, I wonder if the real personality will be too the blogger personality.

There is no "question of the day" here, nor expectation for comments. These are only the ramblings of a dry drunk; maybe seeking a clearer perspective on my own personality.

I'll push now the button, "Publish Post".


Blogger E. Ann Bardawill said...

" There is no "me" "
Peter Sellers

12:15 PM EST  
Blogger E. Ann Bardawill said...

"I see some as seeking popularity, a "following". "

Oh pits.
Am I THAT obvious.


12:16 PM EST  
Blogger Bernita said...

Reads like a rejection.

Remember people - "it's not about YOU!"

12:34 PM EST  
Blogger For The Trees said...

Oh, my. What perception you have. Very good thoughts. I think you need to be writing every day. It's a good release, but more importantly, it's a fire for your creativity: keeps you warm, keeps you concentrated, keeps you going when the going gets so tough it makes the Iditarod look like a simple stroll.

With perception like that, you MUST be a writer. Get thee to a quill!

1:03 PM EST  
Blogger Jaye Wells said...

My question is this: How much control do we have over others' perceptions of us? In my experience, not much, whether it be through our writing or just in every day conversation. Unless we're talking about out and out fabrication.

I wrote a very short story and posted it on my blog. In my mind, the woman I wrote about had paid to have her husband murdered. But everyone who read it thought he had been kidnapped and she was upset. So in my mind she was the villain, but in my reader's minds she was the victim. That angle never occured to me. And it was a lesson for me about how little control we have over our writing once we open it to an audience.

Great post, Erik.

3:20 PM EST  
Blogger Sandra Ruttan said...

You know, I really hope that I get to meet you some day.

You rock! And your word verification sucks.

4:54 PM EST  
Blogger jason evans said...

I wonder where I might fall.

Do you fashion a persona here for yourself? Do have a target impact you're trying to achieve?

5:35 PM EST  
Blogger Shesawriter said...

I don't exist, so I can't comment. LOL!

7:47 PM EST  
Blogger M. G. Tarquini said...

Unfortunately...the Bunions are all pretty much what you read. We keep trying to rise above ourselves, but, so far, it's not working.

8:45 PM EST  
Blogger Alphabeter said...

Is "personality of the day" an option?

12:19 AM EST  
Blogger Erik Ivan James said...

e. ann: I know, couldn't find him in that overcoat.

e. ann: You already have a following. Earned.

bernita: Only the good observations are about you.

forrest: A stray dog ate my quill.

jaye: you're correct, we really don't have much control over other's perceptions of us. All we can do is try to create a favorable one.

9:24 AM EST  
Blogger Erik Ivan James said...

samdra: I hope we meet too. Just don't bring Boy Kim. I'm too old for threesomes.

jason: Still looking for my persona.

m.g.: Well of course it's hard to rise, spending all night at JA's.

alphabeter: Great comment!:D

9:30 AM EST  
Blogger Bernita said...

Erik, your personna indicates a gentleman who is always courteous - with as shy, sly wit...

9:40 AM EST  
Blogger Sandra Ruttan said...

Erik, a threesome of that nature requires a lot more work on my part, most likely. And I'm just not that ambitious.

10:54 AM EST  
Anonymous Ric said...

Great post, Erik.

I think one can get a pretty good picture of folks who blog honestly. But, as Jaye said, perception is everything. What other folks come up with might be far different than reality.

As far as meeting fellow bloggers, it appears a lot of us live rather close to each other. Just a matter of finding JA's for a glass of tonic with a twist.

10:51 AM EST  
Blogger Candice Gilmer said...

I agree with you Erik, you don't know who these people are who you read their blogs. I read some of my friends that I know, and I come back going "WTF?" then I read blogs of people I don't know, and stand there and say "yeah... I get it."

So as for who I know and don't know, I have no clue. But the blogs I read regularly I find I relate to them, relate to the words, and I hope, what I relate to is, in fact, genuine...

9:52 PM EDT  
Blogger Erik Ivan James said...

Ric: Thanks for the visit.
Yes, it would be great to meet some folks in person.

Candice: Thank you for stopping by.
It is an interesting community of personalities. We never quite know for sure. Do we?

7:40 AM EDT  
Anonymous jamie ford said...

Interesting post. I get self-conscious about that once in a while. Maybe that's how personality disorders are formed. No it isn't. Yes it is. Who said that? Shut up.

dsfnmmasd c;lk aD


3:35 PM EDT  
Blogger S. R. Hatcher said...

Very philosophical--I enjoyed reading your post. All these thoughts have floated through my mind in bits and pieces, however, you said it very well.

7:59 PM EDT  
Blogger For The Trees said...


It's almost noon on Wensdy the 5th of April. You haven't posted and I'm getting choked up with all the smoke from the incense I'm burning for you. The bulletin board is chock-a-block full of little pieces of paper with Koans written on them. I'm gonna have to stop the incense now, I've got a nasty film on my monitor screen - and I'm afraid to look inside the computer and see how much incense smoke there is on the cooling fan.

So I'm gonna open the window and let all the prayers out, along with the incense smoke, to flutter up to Deity Central, where they'll all be sorted out to the correct Supreme Being. God Speed on your escape from robbing the bank! Keep your mask on until you're back in the car!

And post! It's a great place to bemoan your existence -- it's where **I** bemoan mine!

11:49 AM EDT  
Blogger Erik Ivan James said...

Jamie: Great comment:)

S.R.: Thank you very much.

Forrest: Yes, by all means, let those prayers out. And the deamons.

1:22 PM EDT  

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