Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Oh Show Me The Way

The other day I had my first stranger post a comment on this blog. She had found me via Peking Duck, a blog I frequent, whose owner, Richard, very kindly posted a notice about my endeavor. I say she was the first stranger to visit my blog, though there have been others I haven't actually met face to face. But I'd met them through email groups and in the blog-o-sphere, so they weren't strangers to me. Having someone I'd never encountered come to my blog and comment on it, this felt like pretty exciting stuff. Someone had found their way to my obscure outpost at the end of a rough, barely marked trail.

Moreover, this wayfarer has a blog, along the journey. Of course I had to pay a return visit.

Joann describes her blog as "my meanderings about life, books, news, and crossing-cultures." The place is thick with links and content. One major theme running through along the journey is also blogs themselves: what do they mean? What are they for? A series of posts reports from a recent bloggers' convention held in Canada. One post compares blogging to church (church is lacking by comparison) and mentions the spirituality inherent in the process.

I'm still a neophyte in this world. My points of comparison are mostly with the creative process as I see it and the need so many of us seem to have to express ourselves. To make ourselves seen and heard, to leave some kind of trace of our presence. But it's interesting to note the kind of language used when talking about blogs: "I frequent this blog." "I went there." Of course we've been talking about "cyberspace," as though it were some physical location for years, but what's happened with the blogging phenomenae is that cyberspace has been colonized by all of us settlers seeking our own little piece of land, our place in this open territory, where we can express ourselves, create an environment and make welcome friends and strangers who might stop by for a visit. Have a hang-out for the regulars. No wonder the infamous Billmon called his site the Whiskey Bar...

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