I feel compelled before I begin writing this to pause and collect my points
because this post won't be popular to some
because it asks something of its intended readers
that we all don't necessarily want to do.
Gentle reader, this post is not a take-down of the pretty girl
nor is it a condemning of the artful photograph.
It will neither celebrate nor denigrate the mathematical equation of realness to beauty divided by grim reality and narcissism.
This post is a challenge to the dark parts of us that cringe at the false cheerful portraits we see and yet continue to click on a blog or website we despise
to the part that sinks when we see someone else's success
or crows when a mighty egotist fails
is a tough pill to swallow if you were hoping I'd throw in some slightly veiled barbs at women you may not like
or who have hurt you, me or us.
That won't happen in this space today or ever:
I have too much love in my heart to dabble in immaturity and too big a realization that this heart only has so many beats before I'll be dead,
before this magnificent life will burn out and whip me back into the Mystery.
There will be no elbow-nudging you with my clever cruelty like, "Eh?Eh? See whatididthere, yeah?"
this post is a request that you
(In writing 'you' I am also addressing myself, lest this come across as preaching from a mountain top of personal power and awesomeness.)
I have thought about this subject for so long and hard my brain has muscles
and the conclusion I've arrived at is that the power to choose joy or aggravation is within our grasp and merely requires that we demand self-reliance and strength.
It's too easy to choose the evil twin: we look at a beautiful blog and we feel slovenly there in our sweatpants and bedhead, the cellulite clinging to our haunches miraculously missing from the tawny thigh of glimmering self-portraits that celebrate the miracle in everyday living.
that's tough to handle even for the confident
even when the sweatpants are cocktail dresses or business casual
even when our everyday looks pretty passable:
a good day pales in comparison to his there in the Brooklyn Coffee Shop, bokeh from a good lens shot behind his thick perfectly fashionable vintage eyeglasses
or hers vaulting across a dappled meadow with three wild-haired kids and a smile that rivals the sun...
but dear friend,
no one's life looks like they look online.
just like you and me
and the reason that they blog in the first place runs the gamut of infinite possibility
from the greatest pain to the most overwhelming joy.
They fart in their studios
wake with bad breath
yearn for things unmet
wrestle with demons and lose
There are no rules
and that kinda pokes at our sense of justice, doesn't it?
Can't we all be a part of something honest and without artifice?
Not everyone can be honest.
So here's what I propose for all of us who have ached with a sense of missing some big announcement on How to Live According to Curation -
Use that sense of deflation to pinpoint what you most wish to change.
If all you want to do is find someone company for your misery you can stop reading here: the rest is for those who want to take a juicy bite out of life in all its bitter and sweet.
Your heart aches at the scenery of her country living?
Gas up the car and get out of the city.
You look at her perfect coif and tuck a frazzled end behind your ear like you have since the last subpar haircut you got?
Get online and research salons in your area: search Yelp for reviews and get your hair done.
Take that course
plan that party
The thing that pokes us may be the very thing we feel is missing from our lives: going and doing something about it empowers the observation and gives rise to our own adventures or the investment in a torch or pottery wheel or horse.
Read up on how to maximize your point-and-click to get some great pictures
plant a tiny garden
get out that dusty paint set...
Use the twinge!
An ignored stomach twist can grow into a green-eyed monster quicker than you would imagine
but if your twinges lead you toward the unfulfilled in order for you to fulfill them, what a gift!
What a gift!!
The other option that applies to that feeling we've all gotten that this perfect scene has a snake coiled around the rafters
or that the noble words of self-bravery are a dig at someone else's expense
is to simply stop reading.
Stop going to that website
unless you like to feel uncomfortable.
The careful curation of a life has nothing to do with you, other than that you read it and appreciate it or simply pass on by to find other material.
I find that personally
there was nothing like pushing a human being out of my body and into the world
(with all of birth's pain, glory, blood and strength)
that quelled the desire to read pretty things with little depth.
I currently favor cooking blogs
because they help me feed my family and I love to hear the stories behind a dish.
Sometimes sweet streudel has a surprising origin
and chicken soup contains the power to heal a marriage as well as the common cold.
I love the blogs of friends
of fellow designers
and motorcycle mechanics
but I run like Hell when I catch a twee tone emanating from syrupy words;
someone writing about how to have a good marriage must be honest and grounded for me to keep reading and coming back.
I like problem-solvers.
Everyone has their tastes (I am writing on an empty stomach, can you tell?)
mine have grown grittier and simpler as the babe gets big
as I age
as my Bullshit meter gets crazy-accurate and fine-tuned...
If these words sound harsh it must just be that I am tired and ragged at the edges
but they are filled with so much love, I hope you can feel that.
I want you to see that there are ways to approach this genre of writing and reading that help you hone your energetic instincts and honor your time and interests:
blogs are awesome and often chock full of useful tidbits and community
in ways that uplift and inspire.
Don't waste any time being upset about how another person is managing their work and expression:
go out into this big bold world and experience
it fully -
who knows what your shared experiences will gift another in frustration