Exhibitionism or Art?

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There’s a surprise in the post, and in the surprise, a first-time public reveal…

                                                                                                                                                       
I’m playing with two thoughts.  One is the line between narcissism for the sake of the self and entertainment for the sake of others, and two is the idea of transparency.

What actually is a personal blog?  Public therapy?  Community?  Mental masturbation?  Decluttering of the head?  Worthwhile for the sake of writing?

I would include “giant plea for attention,” but who’re we kidding, any creative endeavor we share has an innate “love me” entreaty built into it.  And it’s okay.

Gunmetal Geisha

For the most part, the only people who get bloggers and why we blog, are other bloggers.  The personal blogger isn’t taken seriously by anyone involved in high art, or in fact, anything intellectual.  Unless we end up in a publication, we don’t even get to call ourselves “writers,” and are instead stuck with kind of a cartoony word.

“Blog” sounds like a combination of “glug” and “bog,” and makes me think of “blogging” as swallowing mouthfuls of bog water while letting out funny noises from the throat.  Just say the word out loud and watch your face in the mirror.

It’s been an ongoing dilemma to reconcile the literary aesthete in me with the part of me that’s not only proud, but passionate about my blog.

I write a blog that isn’t so much about me as it is me.  It’s like I am my own body of work.  If that sounds self-obsessed, it’s because it is.  Why lie.

This brings me to my second thought:  Transparency.  I may be self-obsessed (most of you are too).  But I’m also deeply obsessed with steering this self to be accomplished, guileless and kind.  That means even more than wanting to be loved, I want to be good.  For me, that begins with honesty.  Truth-telling.  Not doing anything I’d feel shame over or need to keep secret.

Besides, in this age of privacy-depleted internet, choosing to be transparent is far less stressful than worrying about what people can find out about you.

Sometimes, this takes practice.  Sometimes, it’s hard to admit to people who hold me in high intellectual esteem that I even run a personal blog.

Who does a personal blog truly serve?  Can it ever transcend to art?  Are truth and art diametrically opposed?  We already know that “reality,” when it comes to television, is the antithesis of both art and truth.  But can actual reality ever become art?

I don’t have the answers to these questions.

So instead, I’m plunging further down the totem pole with a likely self-indulgent but redeemably self-aware – and potentially entertaining – experiment:

Today I enter the realm of – gasp! – video logging.

(I refuse to call it “vlog” because it sounds even sillier than “blog.”  At least “blog” has that funny ring, whereas “vlog” sounds like painful Viking weaponry.)

I’ve decided to embrace the idea of myself as my own body of work.  Maybe I need to prove to myself that it isn’t narcissism but entertainment for others.  But that’s for you to judge.

The truth is, a year ago I recorded close to a hundred 5-minute clips of myself yammering to…  You?  Myself?  My computer?  The cosmos?  One day, I abruptly stopped, thinking, this is disgraceful.  But now, I watch those same clips and I’m riveted.  I’m slowly forming an idea about how to use them in a project.  But first, let’s see how my first-ever public video log works out.

In the video, the idea is to achieve in person the same Gunmetal Geisha written voice by which I seek to enlighten and be enlightened, show my true self and entertain.

If you like it, do subscribe to the YouTube channel because I won’t need too much encouragement to move forward with video side projects to supplement Gunmetal Geisha.
 

Cathartic Monkeyism

  • Even monkeys get nervous.

[If video doesn’t play, click here]


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69 comments

  1. FRIST!

  2. Or not. Damn your comment moderation, GG!

  3. This is gonna be fun!

    I always thought vlog sounded like a painful viking.

  4. So. Great. You are so great! Laughed my ass off. Literally. My ass is on the floor. And, I don’t pick my nose or lie either. 🙂

    1. Hi Lizzy! This made me laugh a lot.

      1. Yay! You make me laugh, too, honey. 🙂

  5. Mike Vogler · · Reply

    LOLOL!! Oh my gawd this made me laugh and at the same time I took yet another wonderful message away from your post. I did watch the entire video log (no Viking weaponry needed for sure) and you knocked it out of the freakin’ park, Gunmetal! I need to figure out how to first convert videos over before I can even get to editing! So, you are way ahead of the game in my book. Also, I’m huge on transparency and have been working on that immensely in my life. I mean the real nitty, gritty nuts and bolts of me. A tough hill to climb but therapeutic in the long run. I also admire and applaud anyone who does the same because I love folks being real and I embrace those who have the courage to be just that…themselves. You are both funny and inspirational as always here. Great Job, hawtie!! 🙂

    1. This is a lovely comment, Mike, and makes me feel good about posting the video. Thank you so much!

  6. I really enjoyed the video! And, girl, you could have gotten away with SUCH a younger age! Dang, you look haute [sic].

    1. I’m so glad you watched and enjoyed it. And thanks!

  7. Holy snappin’ duck shit GG, I’m in love! You hooked me the moment you “were NOT going to edit this”…yeah, right. More please Miss…Miss…oh yeah, you lied about giving up your name…so, now you’re Miss45…no, in another year that’ll change, so it has to be Miss69…unleeeesss…

      1. Nooo GG, that’s not what I was getting at…sheesh! Still, definitely hottie, definitely NOT haughty.

      2. I know Red, it was just funny.

      3. I’m an idiot haa! Phew!!

        Enjoy BlogHer and Aussome btw

      4. Not in the least!

        And thanks. We’ll have stories for you.

      5. Aussome = adorablest nickname ever. I have trouble calling you Gigi, because that’s what my nephews call their grandma. Yikes!

      6. Someone else said “Gigi” sounds like a hooker on methadone. I like GG – pronounced with an American rather than French “g.”

  8. *mindblown* 😀

  9. You’re such a liar… 45 my ass! 35 max

    1. Big smile.

  10. Ah ha! About to go watch the much anticipated video… now!

  11. Okay, busted my ass up laughing at the very last line.

    1. That’s my favorite too…

  12. I did not pick my nose while I watched that video. But I had the strong urge to swipe at it casually. Thus am I subscribed.

    1. Great! I will aim for less nose-swiping the next time…

  13. I love it!!! And 45! Girl, you don’t look a day over 30. I’m serious. You are gorgeous.

    1. You’re making me blush and I love it. Thank you!

  14. LOVE love LOVE love

    1. Big hugs to you, thanks.

  15. Paul · · Reply

    Yikes! And all this time I thought Gunmetal Geisha was a computer generated artificial intelligence. But no, she has a nose – a much discussed nose. Of course, that could be a creation of the computer to lead us down the wrong path. Hmmm. This deserves some serious thought.

    Cool video GG – Loved it. 😀

    1. A much discussed and distressed nose apparently…

      I’m sure on some level it’s weird to see someone animated for the first time, especially if we’ve projected our own idea of who they are. But you’ve seen other stuff from me, I believe.

  16. Love it! Commented on your video itself and subscribed, but loved it!

    1. Thank you my dear, I saw it.

  17. Twindaddy · · Reply

    45??? I’m skeptical…

    1. Here’s hoping you remain that way once I’m in my 60s.

    2. I can believe it. Cimmorene was born the same year, and some people think she’s younger than me (but I’m the younger one by 5 years). Her real name also means “youthful”.

  18. Cannot watch the damn video.

    Stop back later.

    SHIT.

    1. Someone informed me today that they can’t come to this blog from work because the browser thinks it’s a porn site! I really hope that’s not why you can’t watch the video.

    2. The video is unlisted… so while you can’t watch the video on this page, you should be able to watch it on YouTube… there is a link on the message that should take you to YouTube. I was able to watch it there.

  19. […] on my own.  I know quite  a few amazing people who will be there and I even managed to convince Gunmetal Geisha to be my roommate.  I knew we were made for each other the moment she sent me a pre-dawn […]

  20. LOL — loved your vlog — you’re so funny! Love love love when you acted our haughty vs. hottie! HA!

    1. Ha, good, I’m glad I was able to make you laugh!

  21. […] beautiful way with words, which comes through whether she’s writing or speaking to you. But she told the world that she would be transparent (whilst simultaneously and with the help of judicious cutting, remaining something of a mystery) […]

  22. Definitely a hottie. Not haughty. Aussa sent me here via Twitter; I’m most glad that she did. Have fun at BlogHer!

    PS – I looked up peripheral vision but the answer was too complicated. Sorry.

    1. Welcome Sean. I’ll have to thank Aussa. (I’m pretty sure we’ll have lots to report back from Blogher…)

      Thanks for looking up peripheral vision. The good news is, I’m no longer seeing spots. But I did put on a pound — the spots stopped once I made sure to eat regularly.

  23. julie · · Reply

    ok, I don’t know if it was me laughing or my coworker listening, but he had to get up 2 times to see what I was looking at! Then he talked thru the last line! gah!

    1. Spots. It was about spots.

  24. Nana · · Reply

    I was laughing so hard that it attracted the attention of my whole family 🙂
    Can’t wait to see where you go with the next video!!

    1. That’s funny, Nana, did you show it to them?

  25. After reading Steven Pressfield’s (imagine in italics) The War of Art, it’s noted in the psychological aspect that many of these writers, who clearly follow a “form,” could be doing this for ego purposes.

    We, as bloggers — you know what, fuck it … We as writers (imagine that in italics) do this “weblogging” thing for self. We love to write. We love to tell stories. We love to tell our side of things and opinions. We, for the most part, gain the respect from other bloggers … ahem .. writers out there. Sure, there are some pretty shoddy posts, material, and blogs in their entirety out there.

    It does suck that we don’t get credit or we are frowned upon. We do what we feel passionate about . Should we get famous down the road, at least we were true to ourselves along the way.

    1. Check this out Christopher, you can create html italics in comment sections by inserting the word you want italicized in between i and /i placed in two sets of angle brackets. I’m trying to include them here for you, but they keeps disappearing because “it” thinks I’m trying to put in actual code.

      And I agree with everything you wrote.

      1. Ah, good. I never fully realized that these comment boxes were html compatible.

        “It” … whatever “It” may be.

        Hope all is well!

  26. I started blogging because I was told I needed to, to promote my writing. I didn’t want to, but felt I had to. Little did I know how much I’d LOVE it. But, I don’t do much of any other social media. At least in this medium, we go to other bloggers and reciprocate by indulging each other. 🙂 So, you are NOT 45. No way, no how. And, btw, in a world full of liars, I’ve never even understood HOW to lie. I can’t do it, even if I wanted to. Even if I’m asked if I like someone’s new hairstyle, I can’t lie. It’s refreshing to meet another non-liar … except for that one you told … about being 45. 🙂 Why someone would lie about being older though, is a conundrum.

    1. I just explored your blog a bit and I’m definitely intrigued. Glad to see you here, and thanks for calling me a liar. (I never thought I’d say that and mean it!)

      1. I think you know I was playing with you on the liar part. I do enjoy your sense of humor. I just checked your ‘about’ page, and one of your lines jumped out at me like one of mine did for you. “I’m an overachiever trapped in a f*ckup’s body.” Thank you for checking out my blog.

      2. Yes, I knew you were playing, haha. that’s why I liked it.

  27. You may just be my new addiction. You’re 45? You look 22. That’s a compliment. I just watched your video log (you’re welcome for not calling it the dreaded word) and then I watched your video with Aussa to Lizzi. I need more. That is all.

    Okay, not all. I have to point out that after I watched the Lizzi vid, your vlog (sorry I’m just too lazy) showed up again on the little YouTube mosaic right above a tile that said, “How to Speak Ghetto.”

    I think you and Aussa may have to work on this one next.

    1. Hi you! (I refuse to say, “Hi Cellulite…) What a great comment: “You may be my new addiction..” And thanks for the other compliment. I’m a fan of you the person, and you the writer, so everything you said here made very happy. (Aussa and I may have something completely different in the works. Let’s just say there’s other footage.)

      1. Awesome! Or should say “Aussome?” I had no idea you had such a playful side. I love it. You’re quite versatile.

        You can call me “Mandi.” I was scared to use my name when I first started blogging, so it still shows up as Cellulite, but it’s not a very fun pet name.

      2. Perfect.

        And I’d say, my playful side dominates me… Now, any time you come across a sentence of mine, you can read it with new light!

  28. I’ll have to watch the video at home but your analysis of the word ‘blog’ has me in splits!!

    1. Well, I hope the video makes you laugh too!

  29. mem13 · · Reply

    Loved the video. I used to avoid ever touching my nostril regions like the plague, but over the past year or so nature, in her infinite jest, has seen fit to bless me with a newfound propensity of bats in my belfry. Picking your nose = misdemeanor. Having a friend tell you over lunch with no small pride that they’ve ordained themselves your official boogar-notifier = felony. Pick with pride, GG. There are worse alternatives.

    I’m very intrigued by your project. You say you feel there’s some distance between your literary voice and your blogging voice. Do you feel that you the blogger and you the speaker/vlogger are similar voices/works of art? I feel my “writer” voice differs greatly from my blogger voice, though I suspect they’re less different than they are mutualistic oppositions…like an agonist and antagonist.

    I just called you a “vlogger,” and now feel like I should apologize. Not just a run-of-the-mill typed “I’m sorry.” Like, hire-Gloria-Allred-and-hold-a-press-conference-then-appear-on-morning-talk-shows-and-tear-up-a-bit apologize.The combined phonemes in that word are an abomination.

    1. That is quite a philosophical comment, but I shall have to refute your well-intended advice and suggest the alternative: Constant nostril-monitoring, formidable horn-blowing skills, bathroom escapes, and of course, an abundance of tissues.

      I don’t feel there’s too much distance between my day-to-day self and my literary self. My writer and blogger voice are the same, because I treat blogging the same as my non-blog writing.

      And yes! in regards to that phoneme combination and pretending it’s English…

  30. We need to be best friends. That is all.

    xoxo nancy

    p.s. Okay, I acknowledge the above was a little forward. And creepy. But you are amazing. I met you through your video appearances with Aussa at Blogher and on Lizzi’s site. Not that I’m stalking you or anything. I’m not. Totally not.

    1. Haha! Hello there, new best friend.

  31. maurnas · · Reply

    I actually like that my blog is not art. I make art, I craft, I write blogs, I write fiction. I carefully stay away from anything that is too introspective and serious. I don’t want to be high brow. I don’t want to be talked about by the New Yorker. I want to write and make the things I love and the things I would want to read and see. And I have distinctly low brow taste.

    I love Dante’s Inferno, and Monet, and listening to NPR. But talking to people that also love that stuff is excruciating and feels like a homework assignment. I’d rather talk about Stephen King, and Back to the Future, and this painting I saw of Godzilla vs The Stay Puft Marshmallow Man. Because that is fun and talking to people about it is fun. I think pop culture is important. And I think blogging is important too.

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