I’m talking to you today. You, the silent reader, lurking in the shadows of the blogosphere. You read daily or occasionally or only when there’s absolutely nothing on TV, not even an old re-run of the RonCo food dehydrator infomercial. And when you’re done reading this or other blogs, you skim through the comments and you pause for a second. Should I comment, you ask yourself? No. No, I have nothing to say, you think.
Tisk, tisk, lurking reader. What you don’t realize is that bloggers are an insecure and frantic population. When bloggers check their statistics daily (or every 45 seconds) and see that less than one percent of the readers are commenting, it causes some of them to have what has been clinically termed Severe Tumultuous Unending Probability of Internal Dysfunction Illustrated Through Yakking, or STUPIDITY. In short, the less you comment, the more you cause a blogger to write more aimless, thought-numbing pieces. It’s a vicious cycle that seems to have no end.
However, it’s not too late. You can do something to help. According to somebody else’s blog that I have never commented on, today is the day of reckoning for anonymous readers. If you read a blog or two or twenty but never comment, today is the day that you give yourself a username and go where silent, lurking readers have never gone before—to the comment field! [crowds cheering]
I, too, lurk some blogs. I read and laugh and wipe my eyes and then click off the site and check my e-mail. I know now that I must change. Even though I have never met half the people whose lives I read about, which occasionally makes me feel like a voyeur, I know that, as a blogger, nothing is more exciting than opening your e-mail to find a new comment. (Seriously, it’s like manna to the soul.) Time to invoke the Blogging Golden Rule: Comment to others as you would have them comment to you.
In order to make this easier, I’m building on Emily’s idea. I’m going to reveal five secrets, two of which will be complete and total lies. Your comment, should you choose to make it, can be to guess which of the secrets are false. And—AND—I’m going to involve bribery, because it has always worked well for teachers, public television, and kidnappers. The first two people to correctly guess the lies will win [drum-roll, please] a TEN (that’s right, ten!) dollar gift certificate to the greatest place ever invented to spend your money: TARGET!
OK, ready to play? (Oh, and by the way—my immediate family is disqualified from the competition, although I still want their comments.)
Five Secrets, Two Lies
1. When I get really upset, I get little purple lines all over my neck. I call them my emotion meters.
2. As a little kid, I used to interview myself in the bathroom mirror, as if I were being featured on Entertainment Tonight.
3. I have, on at least three occasions, written letters to Oprah pleading for help.
4. My adolescent bedroom featured posters of Kirk Cameron and Andre Agassi.
5. I never read any of the novels assigned in my high school AP English class.
OK, have fun! Let the comments begin!
I’m off to be a good little commenter too!