Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Posting Like a Young Person

I read a lot of young people's blogs, since it's the best way to keep track of my big kids and their friends.

I've noticed there are a few types of posts that often show up on their Xangas, and I find them intriguing, not least because I don't think I could post like that even if I tried hard.

a) The picture post. Lots and lots of shots and shots--in the car, all in a bunch at the restaurant, two or three friends leaning into the picture (Rule 1 of Being Young: You Must Lean Into Each Other For The Picture). This sort of post is almost impossible for me because 1. I don't go out in big hilarious groups much and 2. the prospect of getting the pictures off the camera and into the computer and onto the blog post is just too daunting with Matt and Amy both gone.

b) The song lyrics. Young people are really into their music, and songs really, really speak to them. I find this interesting. I get the feeling that they have these jumbled emotions in their heads that they can't seem to put into words, and then they hear a song on K-Love that expresses their feelings exactly. So they post the lyrics, and I'm sure it doesn't mean quite the same to me reading as it does to them, but I'm glad they posted anyway. However, if I tried to do this I'm afraid it wouldn't really connect with people because I would either post old-fashioned hymns:
O happy is the man who hears
instruction's warning voice
and who celestial wisdom makes
his early only choice.

or John Schmid:
O fenza maus, vo vit du naus?
Uff diesem Riegel shrping ich nous.
Dot iss un loch, no gay ich nei
un dess sell au mei haemet sei.
(Trans: O fence mouse, where are you going out? I'm running out on this rail. There's a hole, I'm going in, and this will be my home. [to the tune of O Tannenbaum, yet. It's so sweet. And it has such a sad ending: "Then comes a dog, and digs me out. Then I'm a dead fence-mouse. Then they lay me to rest and cover me with leaves." Trust me, it's a lot more sentimental in German.])

c) The mysterious, slightly-ominous statement:
"And then there are days that you get to the end of, desperately wishing you could start all over again and do differently....."
"what if you want something very, very much, you've wanted it for a long time and it's right within your grasp... but one thing and only one, small issue is in your way. SO little but SO insurmountable!! why??? grrrr.... "
"i feel wound up tight as a drum, just Waiting for Something to Happen"
"There are dreams, and there is foolishness. It's a thin line sometimes. But what would have happened... what could happen... "

These are actual quotes (hope you don't mind, you-know-who-you-are). I read them and think, Oh so beautifully put and mysterious, but WHAT ARE THEY TALKING ABOUT??? And especially if it's someone I know, I do way too much speculating.
When I write, it's specific or nothing, so I admire this ability to toss out a filmy foggy phrase into the cold fall air and leave it floating there.

d) The dryer lint:

Well i'm kinda slacking on keeping up on updating this thing. been busy. but haven't really been doing a whole lot. mainly just work and relaxing in the evenings with the girls. if you can call it relaxing. it gets pretty crazy around here.

hey ya'll...it's been a while. a lil update on my o so exciting life for ya...um school started which is sadish cuz that means summer is over...and i love summer.

Those are quotes too, and if the authors happen unfortunately to come by here, let me give them this gentle advice: write your post, then delete the first paragraph, and it will be much more interesting. And use capital letters now and then.

e) The spiritual questions and church complaints. You've all run into those I'm sure so I won't copy them here. I can't write the latter because I am the preacher's wife (of course I don't have any complaints about the church, ever, either, so don't get me wrong here). And I can't write the former because it feels too private.

So, since I can't post like a young person, I guess that makes me an old person. And here's my advice to other old people and all parents, aunts, teachers, and mentors of young people: READ THEIR XANGAS.

Quote of the Day:
Emily: That doesn't make sense.
Jenny: Well what you said made sense to me but I want to pretend it didn't. So there.
--(How one of their many recent arguments ended.)


  1. QuOTeD -- I wonder what their X-versions are.

  2. Mark? I can't figure out what you mean. Sorry.

  3. Oh dear, now you're making me feel old, and I'm not yet eighteen. I don't believe I have ever "posted like a young person" so to speak. I certainly know where you're coming from though. Perhaps I should be glad that I don't post like a young person, if it means that my post are even slightly like your delightful little windows into your life.

  4. hmm. a touching song. i'm sure it's a very sentimental funeral dirge in the fence-mouse community. ;-)
    Dorcas, i will say this for you: you try very hard to understand other people, and it shows. You may speculate alot but (as long as it's not to various other church women;-)) i really don't mind that because when u ask me about stuff, it makes me feel like you care. and i think more than just me would say that.
    and sometimes those foggy statements are simply put there because, i guess, we just haven't learned how to put it into words.

  5. I so understand what you are saying, and that's the reason I don't post...it would probably all fall under catagory d! Pauline

  6. You forgot to mention the "Interests" column, where you must mention God first or otherwise people wouldn't know.

  7. I have been trying to convince my church leaders and influentials that they need to read at least some xangas, but I guess it's hard for them to prioritize it when they don't see how important the internet medium is to today's youth.

  8. Wow! these last two posts say it so well!! I can not tell you how many times God seems totally absent, except for a reference to Him being their "best friend"...

    And HOW DO YOU get leaders and parents to see the importance of staying tuned in to their youth's blogs?!

    Well said. Thanks.

  9. An interesting comment "I have been trying to convince my church leaders and influentials that they need to read at least some xangas, but I guess it's hard for them to prioritize it when they don't see how important the internet medium is to today's youth". I have really struggled with the same question. There are some church leaders who almost seem to wish there were no such thing as the internet or blogs. I am afraid that mindset is going to come back to bite some people. Lets face it, the internet is nearly an integral part of life such as electricity or the telephone. The internet is NOT going to go away simply by ignoring it. A lot more could be said about this and I really need to do a whole blog post on it.

  10. Qu(ote)O(f)T(h)eD(ay)

    X-versions = Xanga post version

    If my cryptic note still doesn't make sense, don't worry about.


  11. Mark--Thanks for clarifying. Jenny, being 8 years old, doesn't have a Xanga version. Emily's is here.

  12. Well, said. I agree that it would be a good idea for parents and church leaders to be reading their youth's writings. I admire the way you can voice concerns in a non-threatening manner.

  13. Very well stated. I enjoy keeping up with acquaintances lives by reading their children's xanga posts. Many times I have come away saddened and disheartened. Do people not realize that they are so transparent? At least some of us can read between the lines.