Stolen from Hoss...
How did you come to learn about blogging?
Many moons ago, one of the masterminds helping to keep my benevolent employer afloat would spend a great deal of time telling people that blogging was going to change the world. Then, I would go to his blog and see that he had linked to a load of New York Times articles.
"What the fuck? This is lame beyond my previous definition of lame," I would think.
This March, that fella will be moving on to serve as a higher-up in Microsoft.
How long have you been blogging?
For a year and a half. I started in late May 2004, with my first post clearly establishing this as nothing more than a hollow tool of self-promotion.
What got you interested in creating your own blog?
For some reason that I no longer remember, I found myself Google searching a catchphrase from film. The phrase turned out to be the title of the blog for some fella about my age who lived in the middle of nowhere, lived with his parents, and worked full-time at a fast-food restaurant. He wrote a lot about how video games.
Then I did that stupid egotistical thing that everybody does when they see a film or read a book that doesn't amaze them:
"I could do better than this," I thought.
Of course, as you may have noticed, I was wrong. Or, perhaps I could do better, but I don't. I am half-assed. Huzzah to my mediocrity.
How many blogs do you have?
Three, all of them mostly useless -- this one, my Welsh-language blog, and my blog dedicated to coming up with names of bands. My dream for that last one is that one day, a band will actually use a name from the blog and make it big and they will acknowledge me in NME.
How has blogging affected your life?
I have become lame beyond my previous definition of lame. For the most part, the affect has been subtle, but extensive. If the evil genius at my benevolent employer is right about blogging changing the world, perhaps it is doing so in an unexciting manner, similar to the way Kleenex has changed the world. You could live a full and rich life using handkerchiefs instead of Kleenex -- no one around you would know or care. But I tend to be a fan of Kleenex.
What feelings do you associate with blogging?
Uhm, good ones?
How does blogging benefit you?
I think it makes me slightly more tolerable in person. I have an overwhelming desire to talk about me, me, me. But the opportunity to promulgate myself on a daily basis means I can keep quiet and listen to other people for probably three additional seconds.
My personal memory is now Google searchable. Hey, what was I doing 9 November? Drinking. How about 18 July? Drinking. OK, but what about way back on 26 August 2004? Drinking.
And I have the ability to do a bit of international namedropping in conversation: "Oh, my friend in London was saying the other day that..."
The benefits of my Welsh blog have been far more extensive, giving me focus and support in learning the language. Welsh blogging has gotten me a mention in a magazine and the opportunity to be on the radio twice. I am moving to Cardiff in July, but I already have a few friends there. In a very weird way, some part of me feels less that I am moving to an entirely new place (which I am), and more that I am going home.
Discuss some of the relationships you have formed through blogging and how they have affected your life.
Jenny and the boy were among the first people to leave comments on this blog. I sent Jenny a coupon thing I found on the street, she sent me a poppy and a beer mat, and somehow this was good enough foundation that I suddenly had two really cool people that I'm able to visit when I'm in London. More recently, Jenny, in her professional capacity, sent me a load of financial aid information to help me prepare for Cardiff.
Mona sent me a holiday card all the way from France, Heather claims that she would knit me a hat if I sent her the materials, and several folks have offered to share a pint or two or three with me should I be in their vicinity.
The same sort of thing is true for my Welsh blog, if not even more so. In October, Mair, Geraint, and Rhys met me for a few drinks the day before I interviewed for the degree program at Cardiff. I somehow managed to drink for several hours and not pay for any of it (I should point out that I offered to pay, and I'm sure they will expect a few rounds out of me when I see them next), and the next day I walked into my interview with the confidence of having spent several hours practicing my Welsh the night before.
A few weeks ago, Rhys, totally out of the blue, decided to help me find a place in Cardiff and sent suggestions, the names of several estate agents, and told me where I could post a sort of "flat wanted" ad online. And my knowing Mair might result in something really, really cool but I'm not sure I'm allowed to discuss it. Countless others have been ridiculously supportive and encouraging to the extent that I am constantly having to temper my ego: "I'm not actually this cool, these people are just really nice."