The Family (Or most of them)

The Family (Or most of them)
The Family

July 16, 2007

An apparently non-cathartic experience

I was going to say that I have had a cathartic experience.

But as far as I can tell, I would have been wrong.

Because according to, a carthartic experience involves, at least in one context, a cleansing of the bowels. I have not had my bowels cleansed, although maybe I should.

No, in fact, what has been recently squeezed through the wringer of my life is my supposedly naive view of the Internet.

I appear to have been caught -- like a doomed deer caught in the glare of oncoming headlights -- in the vaccuous nebula and space-time continuum of the World Wide Web.

Too trusting a soul, too enamoured by the miracle of instantaneous communication, too blind to the dark element of humanity (or some newly devised software that randomly scans computers and lifts off images for other uses).

My habit, my desire, my wont has been to often post on my blog about people I care about and to display pictures and stories of those people on and, with many more pictures, on my Flickr site that I also put on my blog.

It has been a wonder of my world, at times, an avenue for telling fellow bloggers -- people I have come to care about -- what's going on in my emotional and personal life, and to talk about my feelings for and history with those people.

Little snippets, as it were. From Spaceship Orion. From Within, Without.

I have told you about my kids, some of my loves, my different lives, my self, my ups and downs, my immediate and extended family members, my upbringing...the stuff that has brought me to where and who I am now.

I also blog far too much about Bush and Iraq and religion and a whole bunch of other crap that really doesn't matter, except to our current and future existence.

Oh, and about my fridge and stove and my closets and my shoes and my nosehairs and my small male brain, too.

But I have felt most alive when I'm posting about things and people that really matter to me. But as of now, I can't do that any more. At least not in the same way.

Some of those people closest to me have told me they don't want me publishing pictures of them on my blog or on Flickr. Some object to me saying things on my blog about my family.

And as much as I think their concerns about image manipulation or child abductions or someone being able to track them down and do harm to them or their kids or their property is overblown, I have to honour those feelings.

Even in the face of the advent of Facebook and similar Web trends, these ARE their faces. These are THEIR lives too, not just mine, even though this is MY blog and I feel I have a right to write and say what I want.

So I have obliterated my Flickr site altogether.

I'm in the process of removing most pictures from all my posts of the past, pictures that have revealed some of my most favourite people, but who fear having their images or the images of their kids on the Internet.

And while I've been doing this, the word catharsis came to mind.

But I guess I never really understood the word entirely. Here's the definition from that comes closest to the reason I've so enjoyed posting about more personal stuff:

"An experience of emotional release and purification, often inspired by or through art. In psychoanalysis, catharsis is the release of tension and anxiety that results from bringing repressed feelings and memories into consciousness."

I wouldn't say I've been releasing tension or anxiety when I blog about people who are close to me.

It's been more of just a joyous, exhilarating experience that, yes, has brought these memories into consciousness so I can celebrate them in some sort of new way.

But now I'm going to have to find another way.

Forget the enema and laxatives. Where's my Bran Flakes and beans? I can feel myself loosening up already...