I’m not a writer. I’m not a blogger. I don’t claim to be either one while simultaneously admitting that I’m not sure I understand what either term means. I know it’s not as simple as a writer being someone who writes. By that logic I am many things; I’m a part time runner, an occasional binger and a full time and glorious eater. But those don’t seem to fall in line, either.
Are you a reader?
In 2013 people seem to be everything without being something. I meet people every day who claim to be writers, marketers, teachers and realtors all at the same time. To me, this person doesn’t actually do anything – or at least do anything well. If you claim to do all of those things it screams that you’re actually terrible at all of them – trying to do many things sparingly, so that people won’t notice that you glaringly do all of them poorly.
Not that one should turn down opportunity. That borders on foolish. If you are offered money for something you enjoy doing, take it. I am paid by many online publications, newspapers and marketing companies for writing. I enjoy the practice and am not opposed to someone paying me to do it. That, however, does not make me a writer.
If I were paid for legal services does that make me a lawyer?
This is the rat-hole that we all must face. In a world with Elance, Zuckerberg, Google and location independent occupations, the opportunities to do ‘other things’ are innumerable. If you are hired on elance to write a cookbook on baking – because you once made an exquisite carrot cake for the church picnic – does this make you a writer? A baker? Both? Neither?
I don’t know anymore.
I recall being in the second grade and doing the generic ‘What you want to be when you grow up’ activity. Some kids wanted to be fire fighters. Others teachers. Some, remarkable given their age, even knew they were destined for the NBA.
We all know this exercise. There is no wrong answer. Except there was: we could only choose one. Saying you wanted to be a chef AND a police officer was brushed aside as absurd. Practically speaking, that is absurd. How can one have the time to dedicate themselves to being a full time chef and police officer and do both to the best of their ability?
I don’t ask people what they do anymore. I don’t understand their answers. If someone volunteers this information and only lists one solitary thing, I am impressed and inherently intrigued.
Likewise, I have respect for a person who identifies as doing many things, but not to being many things. To me this signals a higher awareness of what you’re doing – which in turn means that you’re much more intelligent than I am.
The reason I don’t understand others’ answers is because I’m at a loss to understand my own. What I am – rather what I do – I don’t know. I thought – perhaps incorrectly – that starting a blog would help me understand myself better. While I continue to search for an applicable answer to that rhetoric, I know very well what I’m not.
Am I a rambler?