Wednesday, February 1, 2012

100

This is my 100th blog post on Kendragarden.

Don't get me wrong, there have been other blogs.  There were 413 posts on my last blog.  My drinking log blog, Drink Kendra Drink, had 249 posts by the end.  (R.I.P.) So, I guess 100 shouldn't be a big deal.  But, it is.  Because I like this blog.  This blog is what I want it to be in a world where nothing ever is.  So, I'm throwing myself a little 100th blog party.  At 10:30 a.m.  (The party pretty much consists of listening to Leonard Cohen on Last.fm and writing this but, hey, I'm having fun, you guys.)

Kendragarden started out as Desk Donkey.  I ended up changing the name to my Twitter handle as a way of claiming it for my own.  Of being okay with it.  Like, yeah, this is me.  This is what I do.  I created it as a place to post my personal essays.  In my seven years as a "writer," I've produced a lot of work.  Most of it resides in a folder on my iMac labeled "Stuff."  Most of it has not seen the light of day.  I've written novels and children's books and memoirs.  I've written many many essays.  I have a stack of rejection letters in a drawer.  I keep them because I like them.  They make me feel productive.  So, Kendragarden was created as a place where I could write what I want when I wanted to.  Unlike my other blogs, which were literally "web logs,"  this one has always felt different.  It's my fun place.  It's my rant place.  It's my therapist.

When you're writing about yourself all the time, you forget how weird it is.  How narcissistic and self-indulgent and full-on fucking strange it is.  You're exposing yourself on a regular basis to whomever is kind enough to read on.  There's something scary and thrilling about it initially and then, after a while, you're just doing it for yourself.  You forget that other people are reading it, no matter what your numbers say.  You forget that you basically tell everyone what a freak you are ALMOST EVERY DAY!

That is until you're at, say, your nephew's Birthday party and a relative mentions something you wrote about on your blog.  Then you're like, oh yeah, people know all about me.  Because I tell them!  I let them in!  Not that I have anything to hide.  But, when I'm alone in my office writing, I'm not thinking that people will actually read the words that I've written.  The fact that they do is awesome and humbling.

On Monday night, I went out and met some other writers I only know through Twitter.  They were fun and sweet and I had a good time.  I also had a moment of clarity, sitting at the table and realizing that although they were meeting me for the first time, they knew more about me than some of my relatives.  They knew all about my dog, my West Texas upbringing.  They knew I'd order vodka.  They knew that I sometimes want to hug pizza.  They actually kind-of knew me.  Like knew me knew me.  From the internet.

It's neat.  I like it.  I know it's not the same as being friends with someone for your whole life.  But, there's something to be said for connecting purely on a mental level.  For appreciating the essence of someone else's life, whether they're a stranger or a college classmate.

Before I wrote, I acted.  The thing I loved about doing theatre was exposing myself through the characters.  I liked to imagine myself connecting with them emotionally, even though they were just fiction.  Writing is connecting with yourself emotionally and inadvertently connecting with the world around you.  I get down and dark and pathetic like everyone else.  But, writing always always makes me feel better.

Aaaaand, my point.  I just want to say that I am extremely grateful to each and every person who reads this blog or follows me on Twitter or Tumblr or reads me on The Impersonals.  I'm lucky that I get to express myself.  I appreciate your support more than you know.

Now, I'm going to go write about something snarky before I make myself hurl from all this gushiness.