Who I am with respect to blogging

I read about Shona Vixen‘s blogger-filled weekend yesterday, and I know that AlooFar isn’t keen on meeting fellow bloggers. In my years of blogging (not here, obviously), I have met one blogger: we met about six years ago and we remain friends today. I met one woman in the last year through this blog, but she herself is not a blogger. Although I was very excited to meet her, I was also terrified that in person she’d look down at me (hehe, I didn’t know she was so cute and petite sha) and just be disappointed that GNG didn’t look a certain way (i.e. like a typical Nigerian woman who oozes style and elegance) or wasn’t cool (though the blog itself should have prepared her for that!).

One thing I can be proud of is that my character is the same in person. I hate lies and subterfuge, and don’t see the fact that I am online as an opportunity to create a sexier, skinnier, smarter version of myself: I just am. I won’t write or act like I’m beating men off me with a stick when I’m not. I won’t pretend that I don’t get jealous or feel blue or get angry. I can’t drum up any adventures to make my life sound more exciting than it is(n’t), nor do I make it sound worse. In person I do use self deprecation as a humour tool, so that’s why you’ll get entries like this every now and then. I am your typical lazy, almost-30-year-old who knows she’s really blessed but tends to forget it often, especially when yet another single friend or acquaintance announces her engagement.

I sometimes wonder what impression this blog gives of me . I think when you have a blog that you update regularly, the danger can be that readers come to feel that they know pretty much everything about you. And don’t get me wrong: you can learn a lot about a blogger from their blog, but only to a point. Despite all efforts to be authentic, very few people are capable of showing every facet of their character through their writings on their blog. Yes you can get a good idea of someone’s character and values from their blog, but don’t be surprised when they do something that you consider “out of character”: it might actually just be a part of their character that their blog has not yet revealed.

All of this to say that I feel different about meeting people now than I used to for some reason. Before, if I discovered a blogger or reader in my city I wanted to meet them sooner rather than later, and would imagine us being friends based on very little info (the reader I met last year is an exception though: we got to know each other via the phone a bit, and I thought she was cool and had to meet her). I used to imagine taking part in huge blogger meetups and reunions. Now I find I’m content to just e-meet bloggers and not go to that next level unless I see the possibility of a real offline friendship developing.

Maybe I’m becoming an introvert.

28 thoughts on “Who I am with respect to blogging

  1. I totally get where you're coming from. some blogger once remarked on my "fab lifestyle", and i was like "oh no!, u really dont want my life"

    i guess its easy to believe that u know someone through their blog, but u never really can be 100% sure. my blog for example is just for me to breathe, and have something to do besides school which takes up much of my time. some form of escapism for me, which is why i dont write "deep stuff". i just dont want to

    I guess u can only infer basic facts, like all my readers know my bra size! jeez!!! lol.

    plus i read blogs with a certain personality in mind, i even have different "voices" for different blogs. i'm well aware that i might be wrong, i guess thats why im not too keen on meeting a lot of bloggers – cos that means more often than not, id have to revamp my whole "image" of them.

    seeing as this comment is becoming a post on its own, i guess i'd get back to figuring out how anti-arrhythmic drugs work!

  2. oh, and im still smarting from not winning the give-away, so i was boycotting ur blog in typical child-like sulking fashion….and the day that post went up, i wasnt even first! talk about adding insult to injury!

  3. LOL @ Bumight — you couldn't say all this in one post!!!!

    Anyways… I think (i'm no psychologist) people tend to associate memories with images and as they relate, they tend to refine the image….. Guess keeping e-stuff, e-stuff and real stuff, real works, unless there's a complimentary method that gives a non-e-perspectie to an individual.. But even at that its still a gamble…..

  4. lol..This Danny can know how to speak big grammer..

    I guess it's inevitable to form an opinion/impression of a person online.. be it via a blog post or a comment..

    Not having expectations probably helps.. so at least if you did meet the person you won't be 'too' disappointed.. or have to do a mental image revamp..

  5. I agree with you on the fear of meeting bloggers…lol..I still remember the first time I met Shona, I took my male cousin with me just incase ….incase of what I dont know…but she turned out to be really fab….and we have become great offline friends since then..

    I know for sure from the bloggers I chat with that they expect me to be all about sex cos they always end up bringing sex up and I dont really have anything to add to it or to advice them on cos I have said all I know about sex on my blog….

    They probably expect to see me in some sexy top with half my boobs out and the tee shirt and jeans shocks the heck out of them..

    chei, this has to be one of my longest comments ever…

  6. I agree with you, no one person can be fully revealed through their blog, afterall even people who have known you in person for years don't really know all of you.

    Each human is like a book and the pages keep unfolding!

  7. I agree with ROcNaija.Danny……….U can so speak grammar? remember that some of us no too go school o!

    I think GNG is really becoming an introvert, I understand your not being enthusiastic about meeting fellow bloggers ( that not withstanding, I am looking forward to meeting you). As human beings and with all the graphic abilities God gave us, we tend to add a picture, a form, or face to anybody we talk with or even characters we read about in novels, so its just natural people would form thier opinions about you from what they read on your blog.

    In as much as I tend to write about personal things, I know my blog does not fully reveal who I am , I am a bit on the shy side.

    In all bloggers are very interesting people…………and again Me, Olufunke, I am looking forward to meeting you GNG o!…feel like it or not, plumpy or skinny, Good or bad Naija girl, humorous or just plain dry, hardworking or indolent ……..LOL

  8. ur right………. ive never met a blogger physically before except the ones i knew before. and only 2 bloggers have had the privilege of seeing my pics. That been said, most people say they know the kind of person i am thru my blog but its kinda impossible cuz i choose what i write and how i make it sound. I am not a big fan of meeting bloggers cuz i feel it takes away their curiosity about me

    and yes Danny, too much grammar

  9. ha! Introvert indeed! lol!

    True the online world is so virtual that it tempts you to present yourself as something you are not. I think it takes real strength of character for people to just be themselves.

    Really, why would I want to be someone else?

    That being said…Hmmm, meeting fellow bloggers? Not sure I want to really. Just that it'd be nice to put a face to all the blogs I read!

  10. Great observation and a good post…I mean YNC is pretty much the same person on her blog and offlline, I hate to be fake and would always be me. I do speak to a few bloggers on the phone and they have amazing personalities too, am guessing it depends on the blog and the inspiration behind it. Writing is a way to discover the secrets of ones mind and that's what a lot of bloggers are doing with their blog. It all depends on WHO.

  11. true. true. true. e-life is certainly a perspective. Jaded, and worse, properly hidden. however, with some care and caution, u can make good use of the adv of the e-friendship thing. i have (on fb) and am glad for it. but i gerrit, can be fristrating when u are judged, classified and all, by your blog. ther is more to any individual than the side you see. much worse is wen the existence or not of a 'relationship' is blogified or blog based! now that really is hilarious! lol! but true. very true…

  12. Haven't you always been an introvert though? You sure come off as one.

    I agree that you may never know who a blogger totally is through their blogging, but do not underestimate the information you might gather. And seldom is the information you get in what they say. It's moreso in what they don't say, how they write and their general perspective on the world.

    I actually believe that people may know more about a person by reading their blogs than by sitting next to them everyday.

    Just my $.02.

  13. I'm feeling you on this post…I know there are bloggers I'll flow with if were to meet in reality…seriously!

    The beauty of blogville is the fact that you get to know people's mind before meeting them…how you ask? by their posts and comments on other people's blog…having said that, you truly cannot know a blogger in all his/her entirety via blogville…we all have our individual "scoin scoin"(madness!)!!!

  14. I for one guard my anonimity jealously. I have made great efriends here and I quite like the fact that my blogville relationships are seperate from my everyday ones. I dont really think i want to actually meet up with people coz i blog about quite personal stuff and I dont think that when people know the fact behind the posts i will still be able to write so candidly

  15. Hmmm…. i guess i can go either way. Make friends or not make friends. I just let things happen naturally. I haven't made any friends off blogging. I've talked to u, Abbie and Invisible are my friends on FB, and that's about it.

  16. GNG, I feel you on this…..i think the older you get or per haps more matured, you tend to lose interest in certain things.

    In undergrad, I had so many online friends and I had awesome relationships with these people….but now, i get relunctant to take same road. like "miss definitely maybe" said, i like my anonymity

  17. Hmm interesting, I have never really fantasized about meeting any bloggers 'cos i love the anonymity of blogville. I think blogs give a reflection of a slice of one's personality. It's funny 'cos even if I met you and you were aloof, withdrawn, barely said anything to me, etc I'd still think you were COOL just 'cos your blog is cool and those thoughts came from inside you.

  18. Well, blogging has given me great friends so far. i never thought i'd meet people whom i could connect with. i just wanted to write down my thoughts. Blogger friends are BONUSES turning to REAL TREASURES. you're one.

  19. Well I have known of you from your other blog and not until recently did I tie the two people together. I was like it's a lie you mean verbosity (that is one thing that sticked from the other blog and that was my name for you) and GnG are the same people.

    Like someone said above all else to thine own self be true.

  20. GNG. . . First time here and i'm loving it. I quite agree with you and most. It's very easy to develop a definite mindset about a blogger based on the content of their blog. . . A wrong judgement in most cases. For instance, i have a defined mindset on Afrobabe and Miss D.M. lol. A unique thing about the e-world is the fact that it allows you be anything you want to be. On your blog you could even become the direct opposite of the real you. You get to write about your wildest fantasies and actually star in them. . . an impossibility in the real world. On meeting bloggers, I really dont think its a big deal so long as you keep your mind open and not expect to see Superman or Wonderwoman. . . Generally though, online friendships and relationships tend to work out best when kept online. There are exceptions sometimes though.

  21. I guess I'm not anti the concept of meeting bloggers because I have been active on a Naija forum where I ended up meeting a lot of the forumites (if that is a word). My blog isn't very personal either so I wouldn't feel exposed per se. At the same time, I'm also not actively on the hunt to meet bloggers. If it happens cool, if not no shakings.

  22. I'm not saying not to have any expectations at all.. That's inevitable.. I'm pretty much saying "don't raise your hopes.."

    Avoids any uncomfortable moments.. ;)

  23. i deff understand this. i have a lot of friends who are also bloggers and we all know who is who so if i tell a lie, i'm afraid they'll expose me. so much of anonymity abi? true word though and FIRST TIMER.

  24. Only saw this today..lol!! The few bloggers I have allowed into my life outside Blogville are all GREAT!!!

    I actually meet them on via email/facebook first..so take away the 'awkwardness' and well I see it as networking too because so much more happens beyond our blogs!!

    I have a wall with Blogville where I keep most of my private life private…well wiv just the peak into my life on my last post…and I really don't mind what perception folks have of me because heey…lol..

  25. I know the feeling… I think that the longer you have been blogging then the more cautious you feel about meeting people in case what they esxpect of you is not what you are. In the beginning there are no expectations you are what you are but naturally people build expectations after a while and that can be scary!

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