I kind of fell into blogging unintentionally, without having much of a clue about what goes on in the blogosphere, and without having anything remotely resembling a plan. Asked to choose a user name, I went for Meirav, which is simply my first name – nothing imaginative there. For a headshot I used the picture of a snail (yes, there’s a story behind that) until at some stage I got fed up with people mistaking me for a man (at least they didn’t think I was a snail :)) and replaced it with a cartoon image of me and a penguin. (why a penguin? well, why not?)
This all started back in June 2007, on a social networking site called Multiply, where I took my first tentative steps and gradually found my voice. But at some stage I began to feel that blogging on a social networking site is kind of weird, and there are also some technical aspects which make it less than ideal, like the inability to comment on a post without having a Multiply account – sure, setting up an account is free and pretty painless, but would you really bother? If you come across an interesting blog and you think, oh yes, that’s really cool, would you bother to fill in an online form just so that you can say “that’s really cool”? One of the [many] things I like about WordPress is that people can reply without having to have a WordPress account. Because when you blog, you want comments – it’s the only way you know that anyone has actually read your stuff! Viewing stats only tell you that people have opened your posts – but I know very well how many times I’ve opened a post and thought it looks interesting and kept it open to read later… and never got round to it. (And my experience of human behaviour is that people are even capable of clicking Like without reading the whole post.)
I also went through a stage of rethinking the whole thing and trying to compartmentalise a bit, setting up separate blogs for different purposes – the idea being that people are more likely to keep coming to a blog which is more clearly defined. But I’ve come to the point now of realising that this is just not me, I don’t do structure! I have humungous piles of paper all over the place because I’m hopeless at trying to decide where each of them should go. It’s the same with blogging – except for some very specific issues (like what I’ve been doing on my Church Laundry blog, for example), the only way that is actually sustainable for me is if I just plonk anything and everything in one place, using tags and/or categories to create some order in my chaos. Sorry. I know there are people who have a deep need for order and structure and want everything to be clearly filed under the appropriate subject, I’ve heard these people’s pain on Google+ because they hate adding someone who is, say, a tech expert, only to find that he posts not only tech stuff but also lolcats and recipes. I really do understand – but I can’t help. I am me. I can only offer what I’ve got. If you don’t like what I’m offering then please don’t subject yourself to it.
This is why this blog is simply called “Meirav’s Blog”, because that’s what it’s going to be – not an attempt to focus on any particular topic, not an attempt to cater for any particular readership, just a pick’n’mix jumble of my thoughts, feelings, rants, ramblings, experiences, wonderings… about anything that comes to my mind, anything that I feel like writing about. Some of it will be deep, some of it will be light, but all of it will be truly me. It’s pretty much what I have been doing on Multiply for the past four years, with a few differences:
- Here anyone can comment.
- Here anyone can easily subscribe to my blog.
- Here everything is public – on Multiply I have the option of making some of my posts accessible to just my friends/just my family/etc, so I can use it for more personal stuff.
- Oh, and the User Interface here is nicer. Definitely. And the widgets are great. And I like the Categories feature.
- But mainly, I like that this is just a blog and not anything else. There is something really nice about the simplicity of using something that is meant just for one purpose, and is therefore designed very well for that purpose. Like using a good camera instead of the one on your mobile phone.
Now maybe I should set up an About page. You guys are going to want to know who on earth I am, right?
p.s. Multiply eventually closed down, so I moved my public posts to an archive on WordPress.