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Why We Blog

July 29, 2012

in random

He was a lonely ghost uttering a truth that nobody would ever hear. But so long as he uttered it, in some obscure way the continuity was not broken. It was not by making yourself heard but by staying sane that you carried on the human heritage.   George Orwell, 1984


Every once in a while, I have to pause and ask myself, “Why bother doing this? Why blog?” IF I am honest when I say, “I don’t really care if anybody reads these words,” why is keeping a journal not enough for me?

For starters, I have never succeeded in keeping a journal. I must have accumulated dozens of journals with scribbles only on the first few pages: my handwriting progressively became sloppier, and the word counts less, until … blank. Blank. Blank.

So am I really that narcissistic, as I like to accuse myself of – getting it out of the way before anybody else points this out.

This recurring self-reflexive questioning was put to an end when I came across this Time article, “Like to Brag on Facebook or Twitter? That’s Because Self-Disclosure Is like Eating and Sex, Says Study“. The title itself is self-explanatory.

Intriguingly, the researchers noted a distinction between types of self-disclosure: introspection, or privately thinking about oneself, compared with having the opportunity to share those thoughts with another human being. Again, as expected, while introspection was itself sufficient to light up brain regions associated with reward, the effects were “magnified” when participants believed their thoughts would be communicated to someone else.


In this other article, “Why We Talk About Ourselves: The Brain Likes It“, it was spelled out even more explicitly. Here is the paragraph that I have committed to memory as rebuttal against my imaginary accusers:

We love talking about ourselves, we really do — that’s what a group of Harvard neuroscientists found while testing the theory that we’re big on self-disclosure, anyway. In fact, say the scientists, we love self-disclosure so much because it tickles our core value centers in much the same way as “primary rewards” like food and sex.

The researchers noted that people particularly enjoyed self-disclosure if they knew other people were listening. When people were given a choice to share their responses with others or to keep them private, they gave up 25% of their potential earnings in order to broadcast the personal info. “[The] effects were magnified by knowledge that one’s thoughts would be communicated to another person, suggesting that individuals find opportunities to disclose their own thoughts to others to be especially rewarding,” says the study.


There you have it.

It is in our psychological make-up, part of the evolutionary outcome. How can you fight that?  In fact, more people should be doing this –

Blogging. It is good for the soul.

And since it is 100% fat free and at no risk of contracting STD, it is good for the body too.


I’m waiting for the day when, if you tell someone ‘I’m from the internet’, instead of laughing they just ask ‘oh, what part?’                        


I met a fellow blogger yesterday.  It no longer feels weird to me to meet someone who I have been talking to online, “sight unseen”, for a long time, in real-life 3D.

The Internet is magical in this regard.

Velva from Tomatoes On The Vine and I saw each other in real life, flesh and blood (thank goodness it was all flesh and no blood), for the first time. It did not occur to me how amazing it was that there was no awkward moment at all. It certainly helped a lot that both Velva and her husband are absolutely lovely and warm and easygoing. As soon as we found each other outside the restaurant (no red rose necessary) and gave each other a big giant hug, without a beat, we launched into a fabulous night of great food and even greater conversations as if we have known each other for a long time.

And we have indeed. I guess that is the point.

When we are participating in the blogging community, and its extension on Facebook and Twitter, what I like to call “the greatest social experiment that nobody knows they are in”, we inevitably suspend our suspicion, or rather, we give in to our natural tendency as human beings to trust each other. Although a healthy dose of wariness towards strangers must have helped guarantee the survival of the human race, I believe that the basic trust in people’s goodness must have played just as significant a role. The virtual social network is an interesting arena for us to exercise that push and pull, and if you are lucky, you found yourself getting pulled into the inner circles of some absolutely fabulous people. When that happens, it feels so natural, you don’t even hear the bang when your virtual world and your real life collide.

It is strange how it is not strange at all.


I love what xkcd said: "I'm waiting for the day when, if you tell someone 'I'm from the internet', instead of laughing they just ask 'oh, what part?'"



The Perfect Storm

May 16, 2011

in random

When I was pregnant with my number two child, Mr. Monk, I suffered Deep Vein Thrombosis (aka blood clot) : my entire left leg was swollen before I realized it was not a muscle strain that’s been causing me excruciating pain, but rather something that could be life-threatening. My Obgyn immediately sent me to the emergency room – yes I drove myself (but I was not having a heart attack so I was not as crazy as this other gal I know…) and they put a filter into my aorta so no broken pieces of the Titanic-sized blood clot would get into my heart and stuff.

It only happened because the stars were lined up just so. A perfect storm so to speak.

Turned out I have a genetic disorder #$^%@%* that makes it easier for blood clot to form if my body has extremely low level of folic acid.

The amount in prenatal vitamins would have been more than adequate to prevent that.

By then I had been throwing up for about four months so no, I was not absorbing my prenatal vitamins properly, and I was severely undernourished, sustaining mostly on Gatorade. (Btw, I bet severe “morning sickness” would have been qualified for disability IF men could get pregnant…)

Your blood turns thicker when you are pregnant due to female hormones.

I was also extremely dehydrated which did not help with the blood thinning department.


Long story short: everything worked perfectly and BOOM! I had DVT, blah blah blah.


Why am I telling you this now? Because once again, the stars have aligned perfectly:

New job (my company was acquired)

+ New office

+ Two computers to deal with

+ Two systems

+ Two business processes

+ Two to-do lists

+ Longer commute (including my “I am on a fucking boat” moments, yes, I realized that)

+ Longer hours expected

+ Same kids

+ Same husband


STRESS = TEETH CLENCHING (which I did not realize I do all the time until now) = Massive and Rapid Bone Loss in My Teeth = Oral surgery to be expected

It is not like I have been having nightmares about losing all my teeth since I was young…

Head. Meet desk.

Hello, more stress. Nice to see you show up with more of your friends. Just come on in. Move right in. Mi case su casa.


So here is what I have… I found this blogger who has quite a few cartoons with cultural/social media commentary that make me:



Mr. Dave Walker actually encourages bloggers to embed his cartoons on their blogs. He has been doing this since 2005 and is probably one of the first people online to understand the concept of Sharing is loving...

So I am sharing this because Dear Internet, I love you, and I miss you, but I really need to prioritize the many things on my plate and focus especially on the ones that will help ensure I continue to have good dental insurance…

I am taking cover and waiting for the storm to be over.



cartoon from

cartoon from

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Source: Cartoons by Dave Walker. Find more cartoons you can freely re-use on your blog at We Blog Cartoons.


I love spam comments as much as I love Hallmark cards. Until I realize they don’t mean it

April 12, 2011 marketing at work

I know many of you have written about spam comments lately. Like the piracy industry, the spamming industry gets smarter and smarter each time we retch up our defense against it. I have been observing the improvement in quality in the spam comments I have been receiving and been amazed by how much I could […]


Hubris, Or, How Blogging/Tweeting Makes Everything Seem Funnier

April 10, 2011 random

Hubris. In case you are worried that all your kind compliments may have given me an ever-expanding ego, No Worries, my friend… I emailed several of my Annie Lennox+Sabina-From-The-Unbearable-Lightness-Of-Being inspired photos to The Husband. I got one line in response from him: What are you planning to do with those pictures? And this came only […]


Can’t Hardly Wait

March 28, 2011 a picture is worth a thousand words

    Some random associations from a picture I took this Sunday. Budding. Can’t hardly wait. Spring Awakening. Frank Wedekind Frank Wedekind who in 1906 gave us a play criticizing the sexually repressed society with depictions of group masturbation and other subjects that scandalized theatre goers. This quote attributed to Wedekind which made me chuckle […]


Apology, Pet Peeve and Two Horses’ Asses

March 24, 2011 random

Dear Internet, I miss you. Yes, in these past two weeks, you still see me coming around once in a while, reading articles online, sharing random pictures on Facebook and Twitter, and flirting with my lady friends with my witty one-liner tweets. It has been still only Drive-by Interneting, which in my book does not […]


The Little Light that Could

January 6, 2011 random

I have not been able to focus and write anything since December 30 because on our flight back home, my husband asked me WHEN and WHY I became so politically aware and belligerent, bordering on snobbish. I was caught off guard and tongue-tied. Lots of soul searching on my part since then and panicking. I […]


The Obligatory New Year’s Day Post

January 3, 2011 random

Only 3 days late. . . (Cue music: “I’m a loser baby, so why don’t you kill me?” Even more a loser because I am partying like it is 1993 to this song sitting at my desk…) . . . Now that we got the obligatory discussion of New Year’s resolutions out of the way, […]


Remember Showgirls? Nomi says you’ve got to put this flag up and see who salutes

December 4, 2010 random

Boing! <– warning: NSFW Whoa, mama! Now I’ve got your attention. This proves that if put in the right context with the right mood implied, ANYTHING you say can be interpreted with a naughty bend. But first, a warning. . . That being said, like a good strip tease, I am going to start with […]