One thing I have learned by picking up this blogging thing at full cadence and with a committed-and-purchased web address is this: There are a LOT of us out there. If the attention of the average reader and fellow blogger was a zero-sum game, then I (and most) wouldn’t stand a chance of being heard over the ambient room noise.
And by “noise” I mean it to be more than one beautiful song playing at the same time. There are some good writers out there; unique as well.
As of this entry, I’m twelve posts in. I’m the WordPress equivalent to a tiny little baby, sloshing around the amniotic sack while contemplating an internship for NASA.
And despite my first-trimester limitations, this intelligible clump of cells with the faint characteristics of success is already sitting around, working out absurd ways to promote myself; how to stand resolute and face off the giant, tank-driving antagonist in Tiananmen Square. The one that says, go ahead and go to the moon. Some dude’s already got a flag there.
Yeah, I hate those people too.
So scheming has its merits, but my last trip to Disneyland vetted a line from Sherlock Holmes’ books. In paraphrase, man by himself is unpredictable. In numbers he becomes a mathematical certainty.
“Oh, yeah, well kids, listen to dad. We’ll wait until the light show this evening, then we’ll hit the Indiana Jones ride thirty-two times. No one will think to protract their plans like us.”
And of course, we get there and the line is longer than California’s Death Row (but still moving faster than those fast passes).
So what’s a guy to do? How does a guy relegate himself to a high-profile, ingratiating Joe Isuzu for the purpose of publicity? How many now-defunct, compact cars am I going to have to commandeer to start hectoring the neighborhood with a megaphone?
How–am I supposed to get others:
- Excited about the blog, and
- Excited about a novel I am writing that completely sets the history of the Blues on its ear?
How do I become the veritable Corporal Klinger, sallying forth to the central quad of the M*A*S*H Unit, dumping an entire can of passive-agressive erstwhile-accelerant on myself and demanding to be heard?
And hey. WHO PUT GASOLINE IN MY GASOLINE?
I guess I could sneak into places and when I get thrown out, yell out my URL, but the time that I was physically removed from David Copperfield’s 1998 setup crew* is any sort of behavioral barometer, that won’t work. They did not care who I was. All they knew was: I was setting up his equipment without a security pass, and they did not know how I circumvented the labyrinthine process of getting ON that crew.
Actually, that’s not entirely true. They did care who I was.
Copperfield throws a frisbee in his act–a way of “proving” that the person he is inviting up on stage is not a plant.
And wouldn’t you know it.
That evening the frisbee flew right into my hands. Copperfield motioned me up to audience applause.
Just then, I saw him cup his hand over his ear monitor. He stopped me dead in my tracks, and deftly improvised “Hey, why don’t we take this a step further, and have YOU throw it one more time?”
I’d give tangible money to hear the panicked, clarion cacophony David must’ve endured to let him know I was a radioactive isotope. Not to mention the paroxysms of laughter my wife had when she saw me get dissed, which, is actually a better story than if I had gone up there and done a card trick.
But they CARED who I was at that moment.
So the success of this blog lies somewhere in between. I’m not inclined to post drive-by links to generate traffic. I believe that will come with time and qualitative care.
And I believe that if, and when David Copperfield needs web traffic, he can feel he can come to me to provide it.