Obsessive-Compulsive Blogging Disorder and its Ramifications


Obsessive-Compulsive Blogging Disorder: where every altercation, interaction, poetic moment, amusing sign, epiphany, and witty observation must be documented in blog and/or photo format and shared with the online world.

Its symptoms are most obvious when the sufferer feels compelled to take a photograph of, say, a menu. Or a flag pole. Or the back of somebody's head. This eccentric behavior is typically waved away by the sufferer as incidental to the more important Big Picture idea, while bystanders remain befuddled by the individual's mysterious and seemingly random actions.

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Okay, so fess up-- how many of us here suffer from this? Or not "suffer," per se... Because as far as I know, the only suffering that actually goes on is that of my poor, dear friends. Who have to wait while I grab a giant stack of travel brochures because I got a laugh out of the The World's Largest Ball of Twine attraction...

Or while I spent time sifting through a pile of Jell-O ads from 1935...

Or they're asked to take photos out the window of my car while I drive really, really slowly past a road sign... Or a bridge... Or a pothole.... Or a guy with a mullet.... Or roadkill...

Or, well, you get the drift.

So extreme is my love of blogging, and my desire to gather the very best in the funny for my readers, that I've begun taking my camera with me everywhere I go. I was seeing things that made me laugh and lo!-- no camera. So now I am better prepared.

This also means that while I drive to work, I may very well draw unnecessary attention. I mean, I'm not sure, but I might have made the guy in the truck in front of me just a teensy bit paranoid when I began taking these pics on my commute yesterday.


It wasn't intended to be of my fellow driver and his vehicle, though I can see where that might have appeared the case. I was interested in one of those 11' 6" road signs for my Truck-Eating Bridge post. Only how could he know that on a dark, rainy morning, when a flash is going off in his rearview mirror?

Why, he couldn't! He likely believes I was validating his license plate to report a traffic violation. Or I fell in love with his nifty pick-up truck, being unduly influenced by too many episodes of Top Gear. Or I have never seen a more handsome back of a man's head. I mean, dig that ear!

Now, that's one good-lookin' ear.

For my thrifting blog, I have a little vintage car-shaped planter, which has a little vintage doll that sits in it, and acts a bit like the Travelocity Roaming Gnome or Olga The Travelling Bra. It appears at various cool new antiquing locations, and is my symbol of Road Tripping.


This is fine-- my readers recognize it right away-- only my readers also aren't random people on the street... People on the street who see me in front of an antique mall with my camera and a small pottery Model T with a dolly in it enjoying an elaborate photo shoot. I have noticed passersby watch in eye-brow-raised curiosity, as I try to hold this thing aloft in front of the mall sign AND take a steady picture.

This sort of shot requires time and patience. Meaning, of course, MORE people see me than I would perhaps prefer.

I am considering putting out a sign that reads: "Back Off, I'm a Blogger." Or "Bizarre and Blogging since 2006."

Unfortunately, I think only a small proportion of the folks would know what that meant.

So tell me, my blogging buddies-- do you think you have Obsessive-Compulsive Blogging Disorder?

Are you ever in the middle of a nice dinner out and think, "Hm-- I should blog about how one peanut could kill me. Let me take a picture of my spouse's plate of Kung Pao Chicken"?

Have you ever been caught doing something for your blog which isn't easily explained?

Obsessive-Compulsive Blogging Disorder affects one in seven. If it isn't the seven people you just tagged in your latest meme, well, all I'm sayin' is, don't be surprised if that one in seven is you.

Intervention sessions will run every Thursday after Emoticonics Anonymous.

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Vote for this post at Humor-blogs, where the strange and unusual is not only accepted-- it's mandatory.

26 comments:

Alice said...

I don't think I have a disorder about writing my blog, because almost every day I feel like I should quit. I've said before that writing gets painful for me and coming up with topics kills, unless something extraordinary happens.

I do become obsessed with reading the comments though and just love them. I want all the good stuff without doing the work. ; )

Don't you ever quit though! I find it interesting to compare those blogs who have really strong writers and those who just sort of jot down what's happening.

Bravo!

Jenn Thorson said...

Alice- It would be a tragedy if you quit. You were one of the very first humor bloggers I met, where I read your work and said, "YES! THIS is what I like to read in terms of funny."

Your stories are original and fun-- your Vanilla Ice interludes are insane and inspired-- and it's a pleasure to know ya.

So I hear you that you struggle. But I hope you'll carry on. You're entirely too hard on yourself, I think. And I think the fact we herd of readers comes to see you every day is testament to that.

/End motivational speech :)

Meg said...

Great post!! I definitely have the disorder and it's getting harder and harder to hide from the kids.

As for Alice, don't believe it folks. She IS a good writer. And funny, too.

/End second motivational speech.

Da Old Man said...

I live this disorder, but I have found a way around it. When I was busy taking pictures of the meals I ate in Atlantic City, I got several stares. But then I started to be sure to mention to the server (loud enough so everyone in the restaurant could hear.) "The meal is wonderful. I'm just documenting it for my readers. I'm a photojournalist," the atmosphere changed. Waitpersons posed, the throngs around me then looked at me with admiration. Ok, maybe it was disdain, but they were wrought with emotion, dammit. It's just in framing, Jenn.
You are not a simple blogger, you are a documentarian, specializing in pop culture.
Hold your head high, and position that ceramic model T as proudly as you can, my friend.

Jenn Thorson said...

Meg- Perhaps the kids can be introduced as blogging accomplices. My own friends now offer up things of their to photograph for my thrifting blog. One of them gave me full-fledged permission to relay any funny childhood stories she might have been involved in...

I think they, deep-down, enjoy the aiding and abetting. :)

And thank you, also, for the second motivational speech for Alice. She's a great, funny lady who makes me laugh daily. So if she quits blogging, I'm gonna have to travel south and rough her up er somethin'.


Da Old Man- AH! I'm a photojournalist. Or a documentarian! I got it!-- kinda like Ken Burns but without 12 hour long posts and repetitive music. :)

Sunshine said...

I think the root of the disorder is for every little picture moment you whip out your camera... I know this feeling but canot control it... working on it because I may end up arrested one day...

Jenn Thorson said...

Sunshine- Heh, are you saying I'm going to be hearing about your exploits on the 6 o'clock news one night?

I'll see if I can get our fellow bloggers at Humor-blogs to help me raise some bail money. :)

Claire said...

Would it awful to admit that I have created an elaborate cover story for my blogging adventures in september?

(adds another thing to ruddy note pad)

Jenn Thorson said...

Claire- So if I blog about meeting you and JD and Kdawg in September, does this mean I'm going to have to refer to you via a codename or something?

Because, um, I think you might have blown your cover just then.

Greg said...

OMG...I was totally hesitant to cop to being an Emoticona-holic last week...but this, there is simply NO denying!! I can't step out the front door without the camera--what if there's a new flower blooming I haven't captured yet...or a new angle...or some new creature trying to graze...or, well, it just goes on. Sometimes I'm really NOT sure I could stop if I wanted to. : )

Documentarians. Hmmm. I like the sound of this...but are we just covering up our neuroses? I just don't know.

Jack Payne said...

I'm not obsessive-compulsive about blogging. But, other things? Yes. For example, I have to check, at least 6 times every night, to see if the front door is locked.

Otherwise, I'm like the old joke:
What does an accountant use for birth control? Answer: His personality.

About the most adventursome I get these days is to wear gray istead of blue to make a bold fashion statement.

Houseonahill said...

Too Cute!! ACTUALLY, I might suffer Blog Catalog Obsessive Compulsive Disorder!
Great post ~

Jenn Thorson said...

Greg-- You say that 'covering up our neuroses' thing, like it's a BAD thing... :)

Jack- Living life on the edge, eh? Do you ever find the door unlocked on that sixth try? And if you do, do you have to start all over again for another six tries?

HouseonaHill- Thanks-- you know, I might as well! That's a whole other problem to deal with, though-- And I think it affects a LOT of us. :)

Claire said...

No that's okay, its more about what I will say whilst I am out and about to non bloggers :)

Kathy said...

I absolutely have this disorder. Just yesterday I left a restaurant MID-MEAL, to go to the car for my camera. I timed taking the picture of my entree so that I would draw the least amount of looks. But now I'm taking Da Old Man's advice and not hiding it anymore. I would like a badge, though. Like a press pass, only bloggier.

Steamboat said...

I love Olga the Traveling bra. Hope to see more of her.

Steamboat
www.powder2glass.com

Jenn Thorson said...

Claire- Ah! Well, we'll just say you're a journalist for the BBC. They'll buy that!

Kathy- Ha, was it food that looked like something else? I bet it was. Did it involve bacon? :)

We'll have to see if we can come up with a Blogger Press Pass. Maybe DaOldMan's graphic guru Rubba can develop something. :)

Steamboat- Gosh, I sure do hope you know Olga. Otherwise, I've been spammed in a really really creative way. :)

Chat Blanc (aka Sandy) said...

love this post! I think it may be a cautionary tale of what's ahead for me! I can see the signs of the disorder starting to manifest. But since I like all of you already affected I'm thinking it can't be that bad! :)

damon said...

I bring my camera just about everywhere too. The last time I DIDN"T have it with me, an alligator walked across 6 lanes and had traffic stopped...right in front of me!!

With no pic, my boss didn't believe why I was late for work.

Jenn Thorson said...

Sandy- I like to think as far as disorders go, really, this one isn't the WORST thing to have. I mean, we don't chop up people and store them in our basement. We don't curse randomly in public places without cause. We don't envision ourselves the king of the world, when we're actually a store room worker at Wal-Mart. So, on the scale of disorders... this might just be the one to have.

Damon- I missed a road-crossing wild turkey that way once. So the moral of the story? ALWAYS have the camera. Hey, Damon-- why did the gator cross the road? :)

Jay said...

I actually got the pic of a road-crossing wild turkey in Califormia a couple of months ago! LOL!

Yeah, I have it too. And I can identify with the posing of cutesie objects to get them in the photo - I was asked to take part in a fund-raiser for a greyhound charity a while ago and part of the deal was to receive a small blue greyhound stuffie in the post and take pictures of it in various interesting places. Yeah, I got some funny looks.

Hmm. I might have to blog that one!

Jenn Thorson said...

Jay- Ha, I'd love to read about that. I can only imagine. Ah, but that's okay-- why not confuse the masses? It's what makes life fun. :)

Zombie Money said...

Yeh I need more self control :)

Cool blog!

Chris said...

My name is Chris, and I have OCBD.

Jenn Thorson said...

Zombie Monkey- Heh, yes, well... maybe you should blog about that! :)

Chris- (chorus of all the other OCBDers in the room): "HI CHRIS!!"

KAT said...

Jenn,
Thank you so much for referring me here....
Kind of like a Doctor would do.
I am definately addicted, and this proves it!
And the sad thing is.....
I hadn't even thought of the camera yet....
all you nice people gave me another idea,
and the batteries, they are a-chargin'