Sunday, July 04, 2004

the secret of happiness

I've been thinking about expanding my blog role because some sites give handshaking links and it could boost traffic to my site. The problem is that I try to read every single post on the blogs I link to, and I only have so much reading time. I'd have to give up my compulsive need to know everything that's going on in my blog roll and I'm not sure I can deal with that.

Anyway, it's not that important to increase my blog traffic. As I said in a previous post, I no longer have unreasonable expectations. La Shawn gave some great advice for how to increase your blog readership and I could try to do all of that. Maybe some day I will. But the truth is that having a large readership was never really a goal of mine, just an expectation. It's like eating a homemade tamale and not finding an olive in it. It's not like the goal of eating the tamale was to get to the olive, but you did expect one, and it's a little disappointing when you don't get it.

On the other hand, if you aren't expecting the traditional Mexican sadist special, you may be chewing happily on soft maza and chicken until you bite down hard on an olive pit and have to spit the pit out along with parts of your teeth. If I tried, I probably could extend the analogy here, but I'm not sure it's entirely worth the effort.

So where was I? Oh yeah. The point being that when I discuss minor disappointments or mention that I'm not good at self promotion or do other things that may seem like whining and complaining, I don't (usually) mean them that way. I'm extremely analytical and introspective. I mean wa-a-a-ay at the end of the curve. So the analysis of my blog progress and my personal skills seems quite impersonal to me. If I did feel deeply unhappy about it, I would keep it to myself. Girlfriends hate that, but I don't imagine blog readers will mind.

Some people have dreams. I have affectations. I tried to learn to play blues harp (harmonica in blues style). I was technically successful (meaning I can bend notes pretty well), but I'll never be a real musician. For some people this would be the end of their world. For me it's a curiosity. Something I'm not naturally good at? Who'd uh thunk?

Anyway, it's all about expectations. I never expected to become a great blues musician. If I had, I would have been slightly disappointed just like I was with the blog. But I would probably have responded the same way: "Oh well, I guess I was being unrealistic." That's the secret of happiness you know --expect nothing. Then you will never be disappointed.

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