Tuesday, July 13, 2010

A Blog I Left Behind

I read Dooce for the first time today in months. And now I can't stop thinking about it.

I used to read her stuff all the time. I used to enjoy reading it. It was funny. It was interesting. It was real. I felt I could relate to her, and really found myself cheering for her when she did well, and sympathizing when she didn't. I discovered other blogs I liked by reading through the comments on her posts. Now though, on the off chance I look at her site I just feel a painful burning in my chest, and the word "why" reverberating in my head.

Some of it is jealousy. I would love to blog, and be a cottage industry, and move into big beautiful house after big beautiful house. I would love to have book deals, and be flown to New York. I would love the whole package. I have a wonderful life, with a beautiful family, and everything I need, but still, that grass looks mighty green from this side.

However, while jealousy is a part, what really keeps me from reading is the fact I don't think the same person is writing it any more. She's not funny. She's not self deprecating. She seem to alternate between bragging, and being defensive. Her pictures are still gorgeous, but the stories that went with them are gone. It makes me sad, because it's like I lost a really good friend who I liked to visit every day, and now I just see in the grocery store and turn down another aisle so I don't have to deal with her.

I don't know, I guess everyone has blogs they outgrow, or that they stop liking. I know I have lost and gained followers depending how whiny or funny I am. Luckily, there are still other blog friends out there who I still think are pretty cool. They just don't have huge mansions... Yet.

26 comments:

The Vegetable Assassin said...

I used to read Dooce too years ago. She was funny, had just had the first kid and it was refreshing to read. But now I'm with you. It's changed dramatically. I rarely ever look at it now. She came along at just the right time, before there were five million blogs out there and she had something funny and different and it got picked up. It would be very rare nowadays for someone to go that route as the competition is too great. Everyone has a blog!

But I don't feel bad really about Dooce because I figure that as you get successful and your situation changes, so do you and so you're not the same struggling person you were before, so you can't write about it the same way anymore. The same things aren't important and sadly that alienates some of your audience, usually the ones that got you where you are now. And then you're getting lots of attention so that changes you too. But Dooce just isn't for me anymore either. I don't relate to it at all. It's that thing where you think someone has totally and utterly sold out - and they have.

But I don't blame her for that either, I mean who wouldn't rather be paid to shill things and write their blog than be working in an office for "the Man". :)

Still, just because they change doesn't mean we have to like it either. So I agree with you.

FabuLeslie said...

Interesting. I hate to admit this, but I haven't read her stuff at all. I think I tried once. Didn't get the hype. Never went back. Maybe I will check it out again to see what I think. Certainly, 'making it' can change a person. Must be what's happened to her. Or, a ghost writer does the blog now while she does the books, etc. ;)

Bridget Callahan said...

I promise to let you know as soon as I get a mansion, so you can stop reading.

Aunt Becky said...

My imaginary monkey butler Mr. Pinchy is offended by this. He LOVES Dooce.

I, however, see what you're saying. She's too big for most of us to relate to anymore, and frankly, while I'm not like JEALOUS, I prefer to read bloggers I understand. I don't even MAKE business calls, let alone have an assistant.

liz woodbury said...

i've been feeling the same way lately. i have been reading her all along, enjoying her photos of chuck and marlo but finding myself increasingly irritated by her without realizing why. she's not funny anymore, at least not in the wry way that drew me to her writing in the first place. maybe it's that her life is so settled at this point -- not much mormon/family strife, happy and well adjusted with two kids and a big house, etc.

i'm sure there's some jealousy there on my part. i'm positive there is, because when i read about the new ENORMOUS house* that they needed to buy because there wasn't room for their five assistants or whatever in the old house, i felt this irrational disgust brewing and knew it was time to stop reading dooce before i made myself crazy (or, um, crazier).


*not that i covet an enormous house. i'd just like enough money to pay the mortgage on the house i already have!!!

BugginWord said...

Agreed. Also, for the record, I call dibs on the South Wing of Bridgett's mansion.

G said...

Interesting. Never had that experience with any one blog, although there are blogs that I don't visit as frequently as I used to.

She Said said...

Dude, not only do I NOT have a mansion, I was hoping we might crash on your couch for a few months.

Her said...

Oh, I didn't tell you about my super glamorous move? I think you need to be jealous of ME, not her. We moved in with the in-laws. Oh, yeah. ;)

But really, I understand feeling that everything is greener on the other side. Sometimes when bloggers become too rosy I have to stop reading for just a bit--at least until they start putting more of themselves out there.

Midwestern Mama Holly said...

Ive found a few blogs that I once liked to read, now not so much. Its sad, but I have found since starting to blog and before.. the bigger a blogger gets the more they begin writing to please sponsors, etc and the more they forget where they came from and the little people. Its like they dont have time for us. Ive never read Dooce, so I cant speak about her... but recently Ive taken a few off my blog roll for the very reasons Ive listed above.

Princess Stupidhead said...

I'm kind of slow. I didn't read her until the later years, and so I never got why she was so popular. Half the time all that is posted is a picture, which is totally ok when you are not doing it for a living, but on this blog seems like "putting in the hours."

side note: most people I've known with big houses are not happy. I'm not even sure why that is - but the point is, a big house is never something I am jealous of - because it might be a curse or something.

Granny Annie said...

I am not familiar with the blogger you mentioned but I do have many that I still read but no longer comment. I rarely delete any from my reader.

Amanda said...

I was thinking the same thing about you - not about your blog, just you in general. Lib, you've jumped the shark - time to think of a new way to be cool.

I really do not think Dooce is funny.

LL Cool Joe said...

This is a very interesting post. I've never heard of Dooche but I, like some of your others readers have lost interest in some blogs I go to. I wouldn't delete them from my reader but I may not go to them so much anymore. I think some people just run out of interesting stuff to say, or they are just a one trick pony.

I think a good blog changes with the person, and I think it's important to express those changes too so that your readers come along on the journey with you.

Michelle @ Flying Giggles said...

I never really read her blog regularly. What I read of it was quite funny. Everyone changes through different stages of her life. Maybe she is feeling a little too pressured to be funny bc it pays the bills, where before it was just writing for fun?

Riot Kitty said...

Never read it, but it seems like a change that would make me stop reading it too. People and their egos are just annoying!

Erin said...

I still read her and find her entertaining, but for more self deprecation have you tried Pioneer Woman? She's made it big, too, but still makes fun of herself.

Jules said...

FYI: I will NEVER have a mansion. I don't like to clean.

Captain Dumbass said...

I know what you mean. Hers was the first blog I ever read thanks to my wife following a link off a foody blog. Its just not the same.

Now if only I could sell my ass to the highest bidder.

Sam said...

Many years ago, when I was first blogging, I was actually on a KPBS radio show with her (about blogging.) And now? Here's a hint: no mansion. :)

But here's how long it's been since I've even thought to check her blog: I didn't realize she had a second kid. ;)

Eternally Distracted said...

I am with you. Dooce was the very first blog I ever read, I had no idea about blogging until about 2 years ago and someone at work had told me to read her. I read it religiously for months and tried to catch up on all the archives too... When I started my own I found that there were so many other less indulgent people in this bloggy world and kinda just drifted off from Dooce...

Ca88andra said...

I've only read Dooce a couple of times and not lately, so I guess I'm not missing much then? I think one enjoys different blogs at different times - just like we might enjoy fiction for a bit then non fiction, etc. I wonder how long it will be before I move into the mansion...

dufmanno said...

I never read her until recently and even then, I creeped back into her archives to see what everyone was whoo hooing about.
I actually enjoyed some of her stuff but sadly will never attain that kind of status due to crap content, bad spelling and no chance with grammar.
Since wallowing in the gutter seems to be my fate, I shall make peace with it.
Tally ho.

Zoe Right said...

You said it sister. I actually read her for the first time today also.

Mid-western Mama- I had to go check. Whew still there.

I actually started blogging because of Dooce. Anything to not study.

Jannie Funster said...

I too stopped reading Dooce.

I switched to Pinoneer Woman. She makes me laugh, but unlike Dooce she's a really nice and loving person. And her blog is bigger than Dooce ever was in her heyday.

Found you via LLCoolJoe.

Cheerio!

Ily said...

Dooce was a breath of fresh air when I first learned about blogging. She made me laugh and I shared her frustrations. I read her when she was dealing with her depression or reminiscing about the bad old days battling it (one or the other). I was dealing with misdiagnosed depression at the time (when it was actually undiagnosed hypothyroidism).

Then when Dooce had her girl and her style changed a bit, I still found it funny. I pop in every now and then and like you, I adore her pics...especially of the new baby and the dog, but that's about it these days. She's gotten a little bit too commercial for me and not in a way I can relate to most of the time. I still haven't written her off completely though. I'll probably visit her again in 3 months to see what she's up to. How's that for loyalty? :)