Recently (as in three months ago) I found a blog list for my high school class. So as I've been following and reading my former classmates' blogs, I have come to an interesting realization: blogstalking is a lot like watching soap operas.
I remember when I was younger (as in somewhere between the ages of 5 and 15), I learned that we don't watch soap operas because they're addictive and they distort our perception of reality and they make us want things we can't have like handsome men and fancy cars. I'm not sure who said this-- it could have been a teacher, a parent, a church leader, or something I'm completely making up right now. In any case, I remember soap operas being a "no-no." (Note: this has not stopped me from indulging in guilty pleasures like Beverly Hills 90210, Grey's Anatomy, and The Hills.)
Blogstalking is no different than obsessively watching The O.C. or Days of Our Lives (by the way, whatever did happen with Bo and Hope?)
Many of my former classmates are now married with children. They make cutesy blogs that look like digital scrapbooks and frequently post pictures of their children, who usually have blond hair, trendy names like "Kyler" and "Braxley", and disturbingly high IQs, which are miraculously manifested at the age of two. A nauseatingly cutesy sign declaring "We are a happy family" can literally be found on one of them (yes, I threw up a little in my mouth when I saw it), but they all say it one way or another. Fulfillment has been found in family and friends.
Those that aren't married live another kind of life. They have recently climbed Mount Everest (with pictures to show) and now they are building orphanages in Africa. Or they are living in New York City and spending their evenings sipping wine and engaging in intellectual banter with artists and writers and scientists. The world is their open book and they aren't afraid to scribble their names all over it.
Then there is me.
I turn 27 next month and my blog does not fit either category (which is one of the reasons I refuse to add it to my high school list). I read these blogs, and think to myself, in my 26 years of life what have I accomplished? ABSOLUTELY NOTHING! I have not written a book or produced a documentary about the prevalence of AIDS in South America. I don't have the doting husband or the adorable kids (it's probably for the better-- my kids would most likely look like trolls anyway). Basically, even though I'm a normal job-holding, taxpaying citizen, I'm a menace to society because I have no idea how to French braid, I'd rather die than climb Mount Everest, and I learned the definition of "mens rea" from Legally Blonde.
In other, more concise words, blogstalking is akin to torture. And yet I keep going back for more.
See. They're addictive, they distort my perception of reality, and they make me want things I can't have.
Just like soap operas.
But I like them anyway.