This might seem weird to those of you who frequent this blog, but I’ve never kept a sustained journal or diary.
The closest I’ve ever come to doing so was after I received a diary for Christmas when I was 10. For the next six months or so, on nights when I was so inclined, I would wait until my brother was in the bathtub, glance in all directions and break out the diary. I’m not sure why I did that, other than I figured that’s what you do with a book that locks.
On the other hand, sentiments such as, “Social studies fair project in the making” and, “Had fun this afternoon” deserve only the most discreet diary environment.
I have no idea where the diary is now. Who knows who’s reading it?
That time aside, along with a few freestanding emo moments in high school, I’ve never felt the need to chronicle my daily doings, or even my feelings. Probably because that would be crushingly boring.
Here’s how yesterday would look:
“Woke up at 11. Finished a blog at noon. Helped mom archive photos to scan later. Rode my bike to a local middle school to play flag football with some friends. Haven’t played in three months, so I was a little rusty. Made a strong initial impression on the guys, which helped me through my cold streak at the end. I’ve been sore ever since, but not too badly. Had hot chocolate with my friend Blaine, and then we watched Family Guy on Hulu before calling it a night.”
The opposite is also true; some things would sting too much to see on paper. The few times I’ve expressed my most secret desires and concerns on paper or document, the idea that anyone (or myself, later) would see them made me cringe. It’s true that writing is often therapeutic, but that plateaus after a point. And once that point has been reached, the only relief is to tear the paper to shreds. I’ve scrawled words on paper that, once destroyed and disposed, gave my place a feeling of exorcism.
As prolific a writer as I am, I don’t see myself ever getting too personal. At least, not in a banal sense. I do and will continue to share parts of my life that I feel are interesting and relevant to others or, at the very least, compelling to write. I’ve often been accused of not letting people in, but believe me, the public viewing area is usually far more interesting than the warehouse.
If, on the other hand, you really want to know how my afternoon’s going, just ask.