Last night I was watching vlogs on YouTube as research for a project. I suddenly got a wild hair and considered starting a vlog of my own. After all, I have a camera that I haven’t touched in over a year, with a tripod and everything. I could do 10 minutes every weekday, which would easily fit into my schedule, and talk about anything I wanted. It could compliment the longer-form discussions Katie and I have on the podcast, and the articles and essays I publish in HUBRIS: The Journal or Cultural Horror. One of my goals heading into 2018 is to try to be more outgoing and less of a recluse. It could fill some needs.
Then I remembered three things. One, I hate the word “vlog”. The world “blog” is awkward enough, but it’s short for weblog and the “bl” sound rolls off the tongue rather naturally. Blue. Black. Blow. Blood. There are plenty of words in the English language that start with that sound. Vlog, though? Okay, video log, I get it. But “vl”? What else starts with “vl”? Vladimir? Vladivostok? I actually consulted a Scrabble dictionary and there were few words listed, most foreign and the rest acronyms. Vlog is forced. I rebuke it.
Two, I hate the way I look on camera. There’s a reason we do a podcast and not a video show. There’s a reason I’m a writer and not a performer. I have no problems with public speaking, but I can make sure I’ve showered and trimmed my beard and dressed appropriately for those gigs. To do a daily blog would require getting out my my sweat pants and torn t-shirt and doing my best to not look like a lumpy potato. That sounded too much like work. And I don’t think the kids today really want to look at a 54-year-old curmudgeon yelling into the cloud.
Three, I am a writer. I don’t care that blogs are dead, or that people allegedly no longer read anything longer than a tweet. This is what I do, dying form of communication or no. If I could talk for 10 minutes in front of a camera for a vlog (ugh), which after editing and uploading and such would really end up being 30 minutes, then I could commit to 15 minutes a day to crank out 500 words, give or take, and revive the blog.
Doing a blog used to be a warm-up exercise. I would write something first thing in the morning while I sipped me coffee, woke up a bit more, and got ready to do some quote-unquote real writing. Then at some point blogging got conflated with real writing and that ruined everything. So we’re now full circle, where I’m just going to blather for a bit and not worry about SEO score or being topical or even making any sort of coherent sense. Join me!