Recently, the comment section of this blog has been peppered with quite a bit of anger and criticism. This is nothing new, to be fair. Anyone who’s ever posted anything on the internet is familiar with the equation: Person + Internet = Rage. However, lately there’s been a lot of, “This blog has changed!” and “What happened to the old Karley?” I have to agree; this blog has changed. When I started writing it, over six years ago now, I was 21 years old, living in a squat in London, taking a large quantity of drugs almost daily, and–based on my own Google diagnosis–I’m pretty sure I was a sex addict. Back then I wrote about my daily life more often than I do now. That was for two reasons: 1) because I only worked about six hours a week (I was a flyer girl for nightclubs and lived on basically nothing), so I had a lot more free time to shout unsolicited rants about my feelings at the internet, and 2) because in certain ways my daily life back then was a lot more blog-worthy than it is now. For instance, back then I could honestly say things like, “Today a homeless Romanian family moved into our living room, after which I went to a party in an abandoned toilet factory and everyone took DMT and had an orgy.” Now, however, my daily life is much more like, “Today I woke up and made myself a protein shake, after which I swallowed a bunch of Ritalin and worked on my laptop for seven hours, and then I ate a taco with my friend, and then I was moved to tears while watching the Joan Rivers documentary on Netflix.” See what I mean? The latter just lacks a certain punchiness.
When my daily life became less punchy, I began to interview people with punchier lives than my own–porn stars, prostitutes, fetishists, quadriplegic dwarfs, etc.–and posted those on my blog instead, so that I could live vicariously through their punchiness. This was fun for me because I love interviewing people who have a lot to say–the sort of people who can just talk and talk, and every sentence that comes out of their mouth is more entertaining and extreme than the last. The people who have a lot to say are usually the people who do things, rather than the people who make things. You wouldn’t think so, but it’s true. When I first started working as a journalist for magazines, I interviewed a lot of people who make things–artists, musicians, writers, filmmakers, etc.. They never had very much to say. I’d ask a band, “Why did you start your band? Why do you make music?” and they’d answer, “We don’t know. Because we like it, I guess.” I used to find this annoying. I was disappointed that the people whose art I loved, who I imagined to be some of the most interesting people in the world, actually didn’t have much to say about their work. Years later, though, I feel differently. It took me awhile to realize that just because a person creates an amazing thing, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the process or reason behind its creation is also amazing. I learned that actually, the creative process can be very long, solitary, mundane, and ultimately not worth talking about. I also learned that often, art is a form of communication. And if that’s true, doesn’t that make asking an artist to talk about his artwork sort of redundant and counterproductive? I’m not sure. But maybe we should all learn to just appreciate amazing things for what they are, and be satisfied that they exist, in order to save everybody a lot of stress and disappointment.
More recently I’m sometimes in the opposite position, and interviewers ask me questions. The other day someone literally asked me, “Who are you, really?” That question creeped me out. I challenge anyone to answer that without coming across like a total douche. And anyway, who even cares who anyone really is? More often than not the reality of person is either boring or depressing, and I’d rather have the fake version. But when put on the spot, the best answer to the question I could come up with was, “A busty blonde blogger. Wait, no… actually, just write whatever you think sounds good.”
I was talking to an artist friend of mine recently about the concept of change. He was saying that as an artist, once you gain recognition for creating a certain thing, people begin to expect that thing from you. For example, if you become famous for painting flowers, afterward people expect you to paint more flowers. When people like something, they want more of it. The people want more flowers, so you make more flowers. However, after a few years of making flowers, you get bored. Flowers don’t inspire you anymore and you want to try out something new, so you start experimenting with painting trees. This makes people angry. The people don’t like trees–they think the flowers were prettier–so they start to complain. They say, “You’ve gone downhill. We preferred your early stuff.” Then you start to panic, and all the pressure makes you think, “Maybe I should just give the people what they want.” So you start to paint flowers again. But this doesn’t make the people happy either. Now they’re saying, “You’re a one trick pony. We’re bored or flowers. We want something new.” And so you kill yourself. And then, forty years after your death, they hang your tree paintings at the MET and everyone agrees they were your real masterpieces.
You can’t give people what they want, because people don’t know what they want.
The worst sentence in the world, after “What kind of music do you like?” and “What’s your star sign?” is “I liked their early stuff.”
Maybe I should start re-blogging old posts. Maybe that would make everyone happy, because then I could stop stressing about needing to post more often, and everyone else could have the old, better, more ME version of me back again.
I’m currently trying to write a book and a movie. It’s awful, I want to shoot myself. But that’s another reason for my recent lack of lengthy personal posts. It’s unfortunate, actually, because I think blogging relieves a lot of my stress. (LOL) I don’t have the money to go to therapy, because I don’t have health insurance, so I sort of see the internet as my therapist–my neutral confidant. I talk to it about my trials, traumas and concerns, and afterward I feel relieved, less anxious. Although sometimes my therapist can actually be quite harsh, like when it sends me random emails saying things like, “You are a fat whore with no talent.” Tough love ;)