For reasons I don’t quite understand, I’ve been going back and reading my very first blog. Some of my older posts weren’t terrible; for every “Why do I deal with idiots?” post there were others that dealt with geeky thoughts and the story of how a little bit of Bumblebee merchandise came into my possession. I’d write about an awful customer one day then how Prime and I went to the movies and had a great time the next. Similar to this blog, my previous one was a “your mileage may vary” sort of thing.
However, there was one particular post that I’ve been avoiding: the post celebrating the 25th anniversary of Transformers: the Movie. That post was a problematic one; it led to the screed that my former friend decided to post on a Mother’s Day a few years later. It was an angry post, one that I wanted to avoid.
Or so I had thought.
Last night, I did the unthinkable. I finally reread that old post. What I read utterly stunned me. In fact, I had to go back and reread the post at least twice more to make sure I was reading the same words that had started all of the trouble.
The post really wasn’t angry. It was blunt in some locales–I flatly stated that I and my mother did not get along, that was a statement of fact–but it wasn’t angry. There was no tantrum being thrown; what was I doing was speaking honestly. So why was my so-called friend so quick to claim that I was throwing a fit, that I was angry and bitter?
All kidding aside, it makes sense: I was being honest. Rather than being nostalgic and sugarcoating everything, I spoke with honesty, with truth. It was something I hadn’t really done before, balancing out the good and the bad. I was walking a fine line, one that was between blind nostalgia and bitter veracity. It would have been easy to cross over into either territory completely but somehow, I didn’t.
The main problem with this post is exactly that: it is a blog post. It doesn’t truly have a “tone”. It can be interpreted in multiple ways and through various lenses, which may have led to the initial confusion. Blog posts don’t automatically come with a disclaimer that reads “This is not an angry post, just an honest one”. It really is up to the reader to interpret what they are reading and personal feelings can color that.
Which leads me to the other questions: did she get the opposite of the impression I was trying to make? Did she simply skim what I had written then got pissed off that I dared say that my mother and I had a strained relationship? Had I simply said, “Wait, this is what I was trying to say…”, would I have avoided the entire incident?
I’m not sure. I can’t answer those questions. I don’t know if I’ll ever have the answer to any of them. I don’t know whether or not that’s such a horrible thing.
To say that this helped contribute to the stagnation of that blog is true but there were other factors as well; I no longer worked at Walmart and didn’t have a reason to complain about screaming children and clueless adults. I was still dealing with the mental trauma and the media tomfoolery of the shooting that occurred in my store. In the span of six months, I had to job hop. I just didn’t have the time to sit down and put together a blog post. There was too much baggage in my life at that point. I was also living in mortal fear of saying the wrong thing and being judged for things that I didn’t mean.
Or worse, I lived in fear of being tracked down in order to have my so-called “friend”try and drag me into high school level drama. I had long since outgrown that and I wasn’t about to go back to worrying as to whether or not two of my friends could get along, let alone stand each other. (Everyone was an adult. If they couldn’t work that sort of thing out between themselves, then I certainly couldn’t help them.)
Of course, now I can’t use that blog; the template gives me some wicked eyestrain. (Welcome to the “joys” of getting older.) I can’t use that blog because of the completely screwed up HTML on a good number of the posts. I can’t use the blog anymore because the original purpose is gone; I started it to vent about my job and that job is now a fading memory. There’s no point in going back. I’ve more or less passed the blog to Prime; if he wants to start posting there, he can.
Here’s hoping his words are better interpreted than mine were.