Friday, April 22, 2011

~no comment! (?)...

Skirt, shoes and scarf:  vintage thrifted, Shirt:  Mens' Hanes undershirt (purchased a pack in my size)

I think I could have entitled this:  My Favorite (and NOT so favorite) things about blogging.  Style Underdog's return and "nothing added" blog style has really gotten me thinking.  So, under the heading of "getting it out of the way", let me start with my not so favorite things about blogging.

1.  The self-imposed pressure - post more, be clever, write well, bullet points, take better photos, etc....
2.  The inevitable comparisons...."Her clothes are nicer than mine", "Her photos are better than mine", "Wow, she's so creative.  I really need to work on that", "DANG!  Where did she get all those followers?!?!?", "She's blogged for two months and has a zillion followers, I've blogged for 9 months and have 10!!!", "How does she dress so cute EVERY DAY?  I really need to at least brush my hair this week!"
3.  "Follow Me" - A personal pet peeve of mine.  THIS I VOW....You will NEVER be asked by me to "please follow me" or "take a look at my blog".   I'm here.  I'd love for you to visit.  We'll have coffee and a goody.  We'll chat about clothes, philosophy, our kids, our desires, our insecurities, whatever you want actually.  But when you visit it'll be because you WANT to visit, NOT because I did a drive by "follow me". 

Favorite Things:

1.  The creativity.
2.  The community.....Oh my GOSH!  I've met so many kindred spirits!
3.  The kindness.....I've NEVER encountered negative comments on my blog.  The closest that I came to that was when Bella told me what she felt my outfit didn't work.  But honestly, I LOVED that!  I don't need smoke blown up my skirt all the time.  I loved that she was sweetly honest. 

Now these short lists leads me to the "Comments" issue. My favorite thing and least favorite thing about blogging.    I'm feelin' Style Underdog on "no ads".  I've addressed that before.  I'm totally with her on "no followers"; which is probably simply taking the followers off of her blog (but doesn't prevent one from following her blog).  I get "no events" and nothing on the sidebars.  But when it comes to "no comments"?  Stop the bus, this is where I get off! 

My favorite part of blogging is comments.  Without comments, there's no interaction.  There's no give and take.  I love comments because it's allowed me to get to know so many of you!  It's fun checking my blog throughout the day and seeing what you have said.  What's really cool is that often, the outfit is an afterthought.  It's like meeting a girlfriend for coffee.  Chatting about whatever.  Maybe something in my blog makes you think of something completely off's so great that you share that with me.  If it weren't for comments, there's really no reason for me to have a blog.  I mean honestly, I'm not THAT interesting!!!  I'm wearing clothes everyday.  I can find only so many ways to wear a skirt!  But the comments tell me and allow me to tell you, "I get you!" and isn't that what we all want to hear sometimes?

But let's keep it real.  Comments can be sooooooo frustrating!  Oh CRAP!  I need to comment back!  Is "Thanks" enough?  Sometimes I really don't know what to say.  It's easy for me to comment on my friends' blogs (which became friends through the comments), but when I'm trying to reciprocate a visit; there are times when my mind just goes blank.  Then there are the comments that are nothing more than "drive bys".  "Cute skirt!....visit my blog"  "Love your blog....visit my blog and follow me"  "So pretty!!.....please follow my blog" You get the picture!  I hardly see those as comments, but rather ads.  And then it leads to a conversation with myself:

Nice Serene:   "Well, she did visit my blog.  All she wants is for me to follow her.  If it makes her happy to have hundreds of followers, then don't be a jerk Serene, just go on over and follow her.  What's the big deal?" 

Jerk Serene:  "But I don't WANT to follow her blog.  It crowds up my reader and honestly, I'm just not relating with her style"

Nice Serene:  "Oh just STOP!  Make her happy already!  It's such a simple thing to do."

Jerk Serene:  "But it's not like she's following mine!  She's just trying to get new followers.  I don't want to play into that."

Nice Serene:  "You know what Serene?  It's not all about you.  You don't know her.  You don't know what her blog means to her.  You don't know what her life is like.  Maybe getting more followers is the only thing that gives her a little joy right now.  What's so hard about just doing something that truly doesn't tax you at all??  C'mon girly!  What's your problem?!?!?"

It's EXHAUSTING in my head sometimes!!!!

Sure, comments can be work.  But they're worth it.   Without the comments, I'm basically saying, "Look at me" but don't give me any feedback; because I really don't want to take the time to read it."  That just doesn't work for me.  If all I want is an accounting of what I've worn, I can keep that in folders on my computer.  But I WANT this interaction!  So while this is a route Style Underdog has taken, and I'm glad it's working for her; I just couldn't do it.  What can I say?  You had me at "Hello"!


  1. Great post. I'm just wondering how you heard the conversation that takes place in my head??

  2. Ok Serene, I just a tiny second here so I'm sorry if this is short...there is so much I want to say but I may have to come back tomorrow.:)

    First I can not stand when people come by just to leave a comment that says "Follow me". I seriously have had that before and it drives me nuts. Why is it so important? I have taken the follower thing off my blog as well because quite honestly, it says nothing. Not all those people read my blog and I KNOW that the quality of my writing can not be determined to be good or bad based on the number of "followers" I have ...ridiculous term by the way.:) I think it breeds a weird sort of competition and causes people to make erroneous judgment on blogs based on how many followers they have.

    On the other hand I adore comments too! They are so fun and make blogging great for me! I love to leave them too but only short ones like this. I never ramble on and on. :)

    Anyway must run, love you and love your blog!:)

    Happy Easter!

  3. I always check out the blogs of people who comment on mine. Some of them are of interest to me and I will follow them. Others aren't about things I'm currently interested in. Those I read, check back a few days and comment if I find something I like. Then I leave. I have gotten the follow message but being very passive agressive, I don't.

  4. Shy! Is THAT what I was hearing? All these voices in my head, sometimes I just don't know WHERE they come from! :)

    Colleen! And THIS is why I love you!! I took the followers off of my blog too because you're right. It really doesn't mean anything. I want people to come to my blog because they want to....not because it's blog correct!

    Judy, I do the same thing. I check any blog that leaves a comment on mine. If I can relate, I follow. If I can't, I usually don't. But I DO make it a point to leave a comment on their blog. There is ALWAYS at least one thing that I "get" about their blog!

  5. I never measure myself with others. I like to get better and everything, including photography that never interested me before. I am learning from each and every one of you, and that is fantastic, bu I wont allow the blog to put pressure on my life.
    I couldn´t agree more with you on the comment side.
    Love them, and find them very helpful as well. I don´t mind commenting, although I miss some posts.
    You have done a superb job Serene.

  6. The interaction part is what keeps me blogging,too.I kept my blog for have a year private but it wasn't fun or evolving.Everytime I post now I check to see in what spirit it is accepted by the community.All the feedback I get has made my posts better. I also don't leave follow me notes,I go for quality rather than quantity.

  7. i'm cracking up at this post ~ i've had several of these thoughts too. when i started blogging, i was stressed about "followers." now i couldn't care less. blogging is FUN for me. it's my hobby and i don't care who's reading. don't get me wrong, i appreciate all the comments and emails i do get, but there are plenty of posts i don't receive comments on which is fine. i do it because i enjoy doing it, not because of how many followers i have or complimentary comments (not that i mind them...ha ha). my biggest pet peeve about some bloggers is the chronic need they have to buy everything they see. i used to follow a couple of bloggers, but dodn't anymore simply because of that. my favorite bloggers to read are the creative bloggers. the ladies who buy vintage, thrifted or who are excellent sale shoppers. the women who WEAR clothes already in their closet every day. making new outfits out of what you have on a limited budget is challenging. spending unlimited money on whatever you see and covet is not. btw, great outfit! ;)

  8. Oh, goodness, I loved this post so much. I've been struggling with a lot of similar issues since I began blogging. Especially the self-imposed pressure, I need to take better pictures, and the comparisons to other blogs, are followers something I *should* be more worried about?. The follow me comments I ignore, but to honest I really don't get many.

    I'm in complete agreements on your favorite things list too - especially the community and the kindness - who knew strangers could be so lovely.

    As for comments. I'm just never sure how to handle them. For awhile I tried to respond to everyone who commented on my blog. But, I wonder if it would be better if I just commented on their blogs. Either way I support comments because I know that new comments make me very happy and I hope they make other bloggers happy as well.

    Okay, that was proably a lot from a perfect stranger, but I just found your blog and I enjoy it immensely!

  9. "Its like meeting a girlfriend for coffee"--that says its all GF!! So glad you did this--it was on OUr MIND! You make me laugh, because, line for line, I have felt evreything in your post. And how would we have met each other without comments? lOVE YA, Paula

  10. This is a very fine post and totally captures what goes through my head when I'm behind on visiting blogs. Because of my work schedule I can't keep up daily and tend to do it all in one big marathon...But we wouldn't put ourselves through all the inner agony before having coffee with a girlfriend. Lately, I've bee rethinking my approach and while I can't go StyleUnderdog's route, I do need to change my approach.

  11. I am so with you, Serene!!!!
    I liked the no comment, no pressure part of SU's blog because it does take the pressure out of commenting when you really don't have stuff to say, and if you don't comment for a little while, your own comments go away.
    Comments always make my day!

    I did read a great post
    (i think it was in IFB last week?)
    That ONE follower who visits regularly is worth a hundred "follow me's" that never come back.
    I believe that is true.

    I know 150 people don't actually follow me regularly.
    This is a great topic and it makes me wonder if I've gotten myself over my head as
    ( i "follow" over 100, but actually follow regularly 15-20 )
    What's a girl to do?
    I suppose, the goal is to find like-minded people and develop solid relationships with them.
    it's not about numbers anymore.

    i admit, i focus so much on making good images and finding inspirations for outfits that my commenting suffers.

    I sometimes feel the need to post a group apology!
    I also miss the comments I used to get through Google.
    Now Twitter is what all the cool kids are doing ;)
    but it seems to take away from actually visiting the blog!
    I just wrote u a book ;)

  12. Love this photo set. and I don't really mind when people ask me to follow. I understand where most of them are coming from~ but with that said, I will never do a giveaway to GET followers,or go and ask people to follow me, because if they want to follow they will. I want them there because they feel inspired or they like what I do, not because they feel like they have to. Hugs To you!!!!

  13. i recently found out (on a minimalism blog) about Dunbar's number:

    "Dunbar's number is a theoretical cognitive limit to the number of people with whom one can maintain stable social relationships."

    i think there is a Dunbar's number, tho it likely is different for all of us (mine is about 12!) we all have to work it out for ourselves, but i am glad to see some people (like Bev) trying out different approaches when 'the traditional' doesn't work out.

    due to a chronic health condition i've had plenty of experience in limiting what i do, so i just apply that to blogging as well. but i've also felt the pressures and expectations and comparisons! plus, it's a new territory so we're all forging new ground, together. great post and thank you everybody for thoughtful comments!! steph

  14. love the style here. classic and chic.

  15. You look fab... and... I have similar conversations in my head too! It's not about following for me, but commenting. "She comments on my blog all the time and I feel obliged to comment back but... I can't relate to her and don't really like her outfits!" It's hard. I want to be sincere in my commenting, but obviously don't want to say anything negative!


  16. Seriously, I am glad you didn't take my comment negatively- you know I would NEVER say something mean to anyone, but sometimes my "truth" may come out harshly, and for that I apologize- my skills of diplomacy are nil, and I do believe in tough love which to me is to have the guts to speak the truth, even if it's unpopular. Yeah, I don't blow smoke up people's skirts, because I feel like my compliments would be worthless if they weren't sincere.

    LOVE this post, chica. I didn't realize SU is back (yay) so will run over there to read it in a bit. And I agree with you on the comments- my favorite part of blogging is the engagement we have with eachother.

    And I suffer the dilemnas you do- I am a bleeding heart so my blogroll is now swollen and distended with a blogroll impossible to read. Sigh.
    I think we both need to take a deep breath, and do whatever we choose to do with joy, and not an ounce of obligation or guilt.

    That said, let me tell you again, I love your style and how you rock the secondhand goodies. Like me, you believe in sustainable style, and put together constantly fun ensembles, that you happen to share with us.

    the Citizen Rosebud

  17. Checking out your blog for the first time ever today. Now I'm going over in my head everything I wore when I saw you this weekend! Love your style and how your quirky personality and humor comes across in your posts. I will definitely be checking it out more often - it's a way for me to connect with my girlfriend! BTW, I am a BIG Goodwill girl - have several cotton summer skirts that I am able to find @ thrift stores for less than $5. And I LOVE wearing skirts! I am the ONLY one who wears them @ the library! Now that I see how talented you are, I want you to come home with me & help me put together outfits from my closet! Love ya girl!


Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment! ~Serene