Monday, September 28, 2009

The Monday

Two years ago, I thought that it would be fun to make up an is-it-or-isn't-it quiz about Shakepeare plays. In order to have a reason to do this, I created the Thursday Quiz. That turned out to be so much fun that I came up with the Monday Quiz a few months later.

Having the Quizzes quickly changed the nature of keeping a blog. Not only did I have to make sure that I had material ready for every Monday and Thursday, but I had to have something ready for every Tuesday and Friday as well -- new content that would mark the end of the Quizzes. Throw in a little something on Wednesdays and most Saturdays, and I had committed myself to daily publication.

Which has been great! Obviously I don't mind shooting my mouth off, and a surprising number of y'all have been willing to read my material, or at least skim it, or at least click through to boost my number of hits and make me feel like the time spent has not been completely ridiculous.

The problem with blogging, though, is much like the problem of college. You meet all of these brilliant and engaging people, you develop a big crush on the sheer quality of their prose, you get all excited when you realize they are reading you too -- but then they move on, their life in the biospace gets more interesting or more stable or more demanding, and suddenly you realize that they haven't posted since April. You make new friends, but often lose the old.

And now I feel like I'm more or less running into the biospace problem myself. I've noticed myself neglecting some of the responsibilities of the middle-class, middle-aged dude -- the house, the yard, the bland conformity -- because I "have to" make sure there's something ready for the blog. Which would be fine, if the spring that runs the blog -- the Quizzes -- was something fresh, new, and innovative. But you and I know that I've long since used up the best topics; to a certain extent, I've been in reruns since about TQXL.

So here it is Monday, but without a Monday Quiz. I'm sure this bugs me more than it bugs you, but if there's any letdown, we apologize for the inconvenience. Perhaps I should also apologize, though, that tomorrow -- Tuesday -- will bring yet another of the unpopular Great Movies reviews. And a long one. E.T. Because I'm not going for the clean break and just shutting this puppy down. No, I'm just trying to shut down my feeling of obligation to it. In particular, the ongoing projects -- Great Movies, The Reading List -- will continue. The Bible blog and the Shakespeare blog will keep plodding along, too.

The only other change to business as usual is that you'll have to do a robot check when entering comments now. I'm sick to death of weeding out the cretinous Taiwanese spam. Have a great Monday!


fingerstothebone said...

Hey, how do you know it's the cretinous Taiwanese spam and not cretinous mainlander spam? (Traditional vs. simplified doesn't always distinguish the two.)

fingerstothebone said...

And hey, I didn't get a robot the robot sick?

fingerstothebone said...

Oh, and I forgot, the most important question -- I'm not all clear whether this is a permanent condition of the MQ, or if you're just taking this week off?

Rebel said...

There are way too many obligations in life... blogging should NOT be one of them, hobbies of any sort should not turn into obligations. So just write what you want to write and call it good. Even if you do want to write about movies so old & boring that *you* don't even really enjoy them. ;) =P

Elaine said...

We'll still be interested in what you have to say, M5000! and Bravo for taking control; there are enough obligations in life without creating more.

No doubt you will continue to find Bloggable Moments-- babies that need names, snippets of overheard conversation, moppets in toy stores-- to share with us.

Oh, and *I* do not see the robot, either.

Nichim said...

Oh, thank heavens. Because I was just half-awake, needing to get to my co-op shift relatively on time, and thinking "oh, jeez, Monday Quiz, aargh." I didn't want to do it, and I'm pleased to see that neither did you.

Michael5000 said...

@fingers: When it says things like "peace and love from Taiwan" and "please support earthquake victims in Taiwan" and what-not, I regard it as a clue.

The Robot appreciates your concern; at the last second I decided that he won't check you the day of the post.

And: permanent -- I wouldn't have written seven paragraphs just to take the week off.

@Nichim: You never HAD to take the Quiz, you know.

Elizabeth said...

Never do anything that isn't fun any longer unless you're getting paid to do it. Or your mother tells you to do it.

Definitely do it if your mother is paying you to do it.

Eversaved said...

Well, I guess I'll have to find a new bi-weekly way to kick my self-esteem down a notch.

But other than that, I support the decision. Why create obligations when there are enough real ones out there, anyway? And plus maybe this way you will have more time to write vignettes, which are always my favorites anyway!

I'm currently rebelling against my blog, as well, although I haven't completely abandoned it quite yet. I understand.

d said...

well, that's it for me. i'm never coming back here again.

i, for one, have enjoyed the quizzes quite a bit, but i can totally understand why you are weary. there's no reason on earth that blogging should feel obligatory. if it's not fun, don't do it.

Aviatrix said...

Maybe you can make it a once a month quiz. Weekly is pretty ambitious. I have been blogging almost daily for several years now. At first it was daily because that was a limit I set for myself NO MORE THAN ONCE A DAY!

Now I often break posts across multiple days, but the readers don't mind. My old posts were often too long.

Jenners said...

The robot missed one!!!

I just started getting that crap on one of my posts.

I haven't been blogging as long as you but I've already felt the sense of obligation and the ups and downs. I think the key is to do what YOU want and just hang the rest. No one is paying you, right? So don't worry about it and do what you want, when you want. : )

Michael5000 said...

I told the robot to let one through, just to make my point.

boo said...

I have often wondered how you managed to do it. The quizzes are so well constructed.

I think if my family, my mother in particular, were not to read my blog that I would have given it up entirely in the last few months. I am glad I didn't even if I have cut back substantially from the days of daily blogging. And I am glad you haven't given it up.

For me it is bouts of depression that keep me from reading and writing. And though I am too old to be so concerned about what my mother thinks, I don't want her worrying about me so I don't blog about it. I swear it is the same kind of sneaking I did when I was a teenaged delinquent!

I don't blog about depression, shootings, injuries or financial difficulties all so she doesn't read it and pass the dim news on to my father whose stress issues have caused him fairly serious health issues.

I have erred on the side of caution and in doing have become one of the most boring slacking bloggers and readers on the planet. And for that I apologize.

But know that you are in my reader and I have read when I can even if I don't leave comments or tracks, I appreciate the time you put into this and love your writing and observations.

If you never did another quiz again, I would still enjoy reading your blog. And am still agog at how you can keep up with it all.

Bridget said...

Be free!!