The Ghost In Your Blog

MalibuPierBenchbloggerI don’t know how you would measure a person’s imagination or if it is even possible, but if we could I expect mine would be bigger or more active than average.

That is not meant to be anything other than a comment, not bragging or even humble bragging, I am just sharing a thought.

It comes from a lifetime of having a million stories floating through my head and comments people around the blogosphere have made about how many blogs I support or the real life folks who ask how I never seem to run out of stories.

I don’t know how or why, it is just how it is always been for me. It is kind of like asking me to comment on what it is like to be a man, it is all I have known.

Sure, I have my thoughts and ideas about what it would be like to be a woman but I don’t really know if they are all that close because I have never been one.

What If You Weren’t Alone In The House

If you are among the few who know me in real life and know me well you know that the bravado isn’t really an act. I don’t consider myself to be a tough guy, but I am a guy who has been through some tough situations.

Some of those include having exchanged efforts to hurt or not be hurt by others. Yeah, I know what it means to hit someone else and to have been hit, not really fun or something to brag about but I am sharing it here because I am trying to provide some details and layers for those few who read these pages and review the tapestry I am trying to paint.

Anyway, if you go back to those who know me you know that for my entire life there have been times where I have found the dark to be uncomfortable.

I usually attributed it to my imagination because it was always easy for me to picture monsters, bad guys and just stuff that could hurt me looming somewhere beyond my eyesight.

In fact, I attribute my learning how to fight to this fear of the dark and the sense I got at times that something was waiting to get me, something I couldn’t see but I could feel.

That sense of anticipation, the worry about what might be coming has always been a sore spot for me. Any time I got into some sort of altercation (there really weren’t that many) I was always anxious…until the first punch was thrown.

After that I was good, it was kind of like getting into a very hot/cold bath where the slowly dip yourself into the water approach could be excruciating.

Of course burning water wasn’t exactly comfortable either, but you can’t expect to have everything now can you.

the sense I got at times that something was waiting to get me, something I couldn't see but I could feel.Click To Tweet

The feelings  started around a month or so ago, maybe longer, it took a while before I started to pay close attention.

It was this uneasy sense that I wasn’t alone in the house, yet I knew that the only living creatures inside the house were the dog and some goldfish.

There were moments where I would be in the shower when I was certain that someone was about to walk into the bathroom, where I would sometimes stick my head out of shower and listen or call out but never hear anything in response.

Moments where I would be working at my computer or standing inside the garage and get this sense that something bad was close but I always ignored it because I figured it was just my ridiculously active imagination.

One day I had enough and I shouted out into the air that I wasn’t ready to go back to prison, that 10 years for murder was enough.

There was no answer and so I looked at the dog and told him I was being ridiculous and that if he wasn’t barking I wouldn’t give a second thought to it.

The Ghost That Attacked Me

Not long after that things changed and I started picturing a man or men with knives or guns coming up the stairs or sneaking out at me.

I looked at the dog and told him I was certain my imagination was playing tricks on me and asked him if he thought I should get more sleep.

He just wagged his tail.

And then one day I wondered if a ghost or malevolent entity was attacking me. Probably didn’t hurt that I watched The Amityville Horror late at night.

Anyway, I mentioned it in passing to some people and one of them suggested I ask for help from the angels. I shrugged my shoulders and figured why not.

If they don’t exist it wouldn’t matter and if they do, well they are supposed to help.

But being who I am I also made a point to create a mental picture of myself dressed as a Jedi who wasn’t just capable of using The Force, I could also shoot laser beams from my fingers, had Adamantium claws and was ridiculously fast/strong.

Hell, if you are going to imagine yourself as some kind of superhero you might as well go for it.

Anyway, things changed after that and the sense that something was in the house with me disappeared. That doesn’t prove that anything was here or that any efforts to call upon angels or become a Jedi worked.

But it doesn’t prove it didn’t either and the way I see it since I haven’t tried to Force Choke the drivers that cut me off or levitate the dishes from the table to the sink I must be ok.

The Ghost In Your Blog

Sometimes I look at old posts and decide to run them again.

Sometimes I grab something like Our Patron Saint- Our Lady of Getting Lucky or He Used To Be The Six Million Dollar Man because I am pleased with the work I did there and I think that new readers would appreciate them.

Most of the time I try to change the headline a bit and or tweak things just a little and then I read through the comments.

That is where I find the ghosts of the blog, faceless names of commenters who used to hang out here, part of the evolving community.

Somewhere along the way they chose to end their stay and stopped walking with the rest of us.

Sometimes I read their names and wonder why they no longer visit and why they chose to end the journey. I wonder if they grew bored, were offended or ran short on time and decided this place wasn’t providing enough of a benefit to keep coming around.

Any or all of them are ok.

I have used every one of them as reasons for no longer journeying with other bloggers.

Sometimes I imagine that one day we’ll all gather together again and share our stories. Sometimes I imagine we’ll find ourselves sharing a meal, or drinks around a wooden bench at the beach or a cabin in the mountains and that the ghosts of our past will walk back into our present.

Boo.

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15 Comments

  1. Tim Bonner September 28, 2015 at 8:03 am

    I sometimes look back at old posts too and look at the comments. I haven’t republished any yet but I might do when I’ve written a whole lot more.

    I remember when I used to get 50 to 100 comments all the time but I also had to bust a gut doing tonnes of reciprocal commenting to do that.

    Life’s too short for that. Now I only follow a handful of blogs, subscribe to them and comment when I feel like I have something to say.

    Things are much less hectic that way.

    • Danny Brown September 28, 2015 at 8:05 am

      It’d be so much easier if every blogger simply used Postmatic. 😉

      • Tim Bonner September 28, 2015 at 8:11 am

        Exactly. The majority of blogs I subscribe to use it!

        I do have some I follow on Feedly too but I don’t check it very often these days.

        • Danny Brown September 28, 2015 at 8:16 am

          It’s funny, mate – I actually get frustrated now if I have to jump over to a blog to comment. First world blogger problems… 😉

        • Jens-Petter Berget September 28, 2015 at 11:02 am

          I haven’t been commenting on blogs in a while, and now that I’m finally back “online” it feels really good to have Postmatic. The more I use it, the more I understand that it was the right choice to make the switch.

          • Jack Steiner September 28, 2015 at 3:23 pm

            Hey Jens,

            It certainly makes it easier to participate in conversations with people and I’m definitely commenting on some posts that I never would have before.

            Not because I didn’t want to, but because of a lack of time.

            • Jens-Petter Berget September 28, 2015 at 10:18 pm

              That’s exactly how I feel. I recommend a tool called Timely (timelyapp), I’m using it to schedule time blocks and to track the time I’m using. It was started by a fellow Norwegian.

    • Jack Steiner September 28, 2015 at 3:24 pm

      It’s really hard to keep up with all those bloggers. Some of them are excellent but that doesn’t mean you have more time to give or work with.

      • Jens-Petter Berget September 28, 2015 at 10:15 pm

        True. I have experienced this for the past months as I’ve been working on some new projects. It’s been close to impossible to keep up with the blogs I read.

  2. Larry September 27, 2015 at 1:52 pm

    You really think about being a woman? Are you going Kaitlyn?
    I’m usually thinking that I am thankful to be a man.

    • Jack Steiner September 27, 2015 at 2:19 pm

      I don’t have any interest in becoming a woman but I have thought about what it is like to be one. When you have as many women in your life as I do it comes up. Daughter, sisters, wives, mothers etc.

  3. Julie September 27, 2015 at 7:40 am

    I think we all meet up in the Caribbean one day because…why not?

    That’s funny that you felt it at the computer, the garage, and the shower – because the first two were dead on, and the last is the age old place to meet up with Spirit. Psycho had it right. Maybe it’s because we’re vulnerable there? I had a visit this week in the shower that was hilarious. Whenever someone needs to reach me, that’s the place to be.

    Based on my experience, the dogs don’t help alert you to anything, unless it is new. If it has been lurking for a while, they’re like,”Ho hum, well it’s been there for a year, so my human must see it, too.” If the dogs start barking and the hairs stand up on the back of my neck, that’s proof that something’s changed. Or the chills are a good marker for me too – and full body chills are the PLEASE PAY ATTENTION AND LOOK OUT certain signal. Everyone is different but your spidey sense was certainly working.

  4. Danny Brown September 26, 2015 at 6:06 am

    Hi mate,

    This is a really interesting comparison. It’s funny – now and again, I’ll look at old posts from the “Related Posts” section under individual posts.
    Looking through the comments, there are names that used to be regulars, and there are names that are still around today, and then there are those in-betweeners, who may have found the post from a share.

    Often, I’ll click through the URL of their name, only to find it gone, or no longer updated. I check their social feeds, and they’re dormant. And, much like you, I wonder what became of them – did they just stop blogging and move on, did something happen to them, are they family people now, etc.

    I often think about reaching out to some, just to say hi and ask how life is treating them. Then I wonder if that’d be obtrusive. Ah, the middle ground of indecision…

    Glad you kicked the ghost out. Man, these things will eat your bacon like there’s no tomorrow!

    • Jack Steiner September 27, 2015 at 3:36 pm

      I need to connect a related posts plugin here again, keep meaning to do that.

      I do the same thing with old comments, I click on the links and see where they go. I find it is usually a mix of “dead” and live links.

      If they are “live” I will often leave a comment on a recent post and then go about my business.

      The dead links, well like you I wonder what led to their decision to stop or if maybe they didn’t. Maybe they started something new and I just never heard about it.

      Sometimes I think about checking in too…

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