Are We All Just Voyuers At Heart?
July 16, 2009 2 Comments
Now, I’m not going to lie here, I LOVE reading personal finance blogs. LOVE IT.
The key here is personal. I can’t stand blogs that are “10 Ways to Save Money” and “Why YOU Don’t Need an Emergency Fund!” – articles that show nothing of the person and are there as… well… self help financial blogs rather than personal finance blogs.
I like the dirty facts. I like reading people budgets and seeing the things they buy (or don’t buy). I love reading purchase justifications and savings motivations. I like hearing about people’s successes and failures. I just love reading about PEOPLE. And I like it most when it is PERSONAL.
And since the internet seems to be the big amorphous, semi-anonymous being (Ok, I DO know Okturn Delmoniq and I could probably use some deductive reasoning skills to figure out who Debt Ninja is, but seriously, I don’t WANT to, that takes the fun out of it!) … as I was saying… since the internet seems to be the big amorphous, semi-anonymous being, I like to spy!
And I started thinking about this and realized that nearly ALL of the most popular sites on the internet and baised on SPYING on other people. Myspace, Facebook, Classmates.com – sure there is some element of “reconnecting” that we convince ourselves we’re doing. But at the very heart of it, we’re spying on our old friends. Who are they now? What have they made of themselves? Did I do better? Or how about these sites like Postsecret, grocerylists.org, Found Photos, Awkward Family Photos, or even the “Missed Connections” on Craig’s List. Or how about ALL of reality television?!
We’re all just interested in watching each other, seeing what the next person is going. And I’m not going to lie, when I come across a personal finance blog where someone owes more money than me, I smile inside. As if I’ve “beat” them somehow. I managed to not screw up my life as much as that person and I feel GOOD about it. (Does this make me a horrible person? Or just an honest one?) And I see other people who never screwed up at all, always walked the straight and narrow and never got themselves into any “bad” debt. And I kinda scoff and think “Really, REALLY, do you know what it is like to have bad finances? Can you REALLY speak about good personal finance when you don’t know what it is like to pay 25-50% of your income to DEBT.” (Who knows, maybe they can, maybe others can learn without experience – apparently I couldn’t)
And when I think about this blog, is it here so that I can get my life and finances in order OR have I posted about this in a semi-anonymous way so that my life too can be open for judgement and the world of voyuers? Perhaps I felt guilty for being an “anonymous” voice looking in at other blogs and wanted to feel less “wrong” about staring at other people’s finances by putting my own up?
But when I think about to Day 1 of this blog, I didn’t care if anyone read it. In fact, I hoped that NO ONE would. I just wanted a place where I could write about my ideas, my finances, my struggles and not WORRY about judgement. But I’ll be honest, I made some pretty bad decisions in the first few months of this blog – and I think a lot of that is BECAUSE no one was reading it and I was accountable to no one but myself. Once there was an audience (or at least a few passers-by, I mean come on, I’m no J. Money or Krystal at Work here)… I felt like I should make BETTER choices so that I didn’t let YOU down.
In other words: THANKS FOR READING!