Like most bloggers I really appreciate comments. The late great Richard Sher, host of the radio show Says You! ended some episodes by saying “this show is best when we get your comments, when we get your contributions, and most of all when you show up.” In a blog, aside from tracking statistics, comments are a way for me to know you’ve shown up. And I say most bloggers enjoy comments even though I’ve never collected any formal data on that; most blogs just seem to allow comments and it seems like their owners appreciate the feedback. There have been a few I’ve run across that didn’t allow comments and there was even one where the guy who it belonged to had a statement over the comments section that said something like, “If you want to leave a long comment consider getting your own blog.” And I was seriously tempted to leave a really long comment telling him that was a great idea and he’d inspired me to do just that and I’d like to hear any suggestions he had, because it seemed like something he’d really appreciate, but that’s another story.
Anyway I like to reply to comments as well. Not everybody does and that’s okay. I know some bloggers don’t and that’s okay; I know some, like the infamous Bloggess, get so many comments they couldn’t possibly reply to them. It seems like even bloggers who don’t reply to comments still appreciate them, and that’s what matters.
All this got me thinking about what an interesting thing comments are, too. Never before in history has there been such spontaneous feedback between readers and writers, except possibly on a tablet of the epic of Gilgamesh where someone chiseled, “Utnapishtim rocks!”
I also know there have been technical difficulties at my particular blog and that some people who’ve tried to leave comments haven’t been able to. Earlier this week I was doing some housecleaning, or rather blogcleaning. I can’t give you a specific reason why but, while I’ve been able to keep up a pretty regular blogging schedule, I’ve been in kind of a weird head space and I realized it had been almost two months since I’d replied to any comments. I also found that some comments I’d read and really enjoyed and even “liked” went to the spam folder. It’s an odd thing that I get a fair amount of obvious spam in the comments that I then have to deal with like clumps of hair in a shower drain but legitimate comments, comments I approve and like, might slip down the drain.
I also haven’t been great about visiting some of my favorite blogs, and even when I have I haven’t always commented so it probably seems like I didn’t show up and I can’t explain that either. It’s like something changed in the past six months or so, but I have no idea what it could possibly be.
All this is just to say thank you for showing up and I’ll try to show up myself. After all this is a cooperative effort. Also this might be too long; it’s a good thing I’ve got my own blog.