Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Grey Goops

"Grey goop" means a lot of text without anything to break it up. This is a bad thing in the design world. Pictures are wonderful because they are a visual element among all the words. Words are boring things. Pictures are not. Pictures are exciting, and one can digest them quickly.

I like pictures. I'm glad people take pictures. As a designer, I'm so happy pictures exist. I love designing with huge pictures.

But as a writer, and a woman, I sort of hate them.

Sometimes I'll write these long, lovely things, (at least I think they're lovely) and I think about them a lot. I think they're funny. I try to get all the grammar right. I try to be witty and funny and profound.

But when I show the finished product to someone -- whether it's a blog post or a book or a scrapbook page -- I get complemented on the picture or graphic. It's nice to be complemented on anything. But the picture was just there to draw the reader in. I know from a fact my blog posts with pictures get way more views than ones without. I'd just hope that the picture helped the reader actually find interesting content to read.

As a woman, I get fed up with the visual taking over everything. I like getting complemented on the way I look. It's nice to feel beautiful. And often people saying those nice things don't really know me, so the only thing they have to say is about how I look. But how I look isn't what is important about me. Fashion is fun, but it's not my substance. I just feel despair sometimes because I feel that's all anyone cares about. It is all anyone has to say, and I know it's because they have nothing else to say about me so they have to say something about my hair, or my outfit or my shoes. One day soon I'll be really ugly, and I might wear really ugly clothes, and then what? What will people say to me when they have nothing to say? Will they lie? I don't know.

I'd rather be complemented on my writing, or my college degree, or how I'm really hilarious or good at Scrabble or something. Or maybe not complemented at all! I love it when people just listen to me and talk to me about interesting stuff. I like when people read my "grey goop." That is the greatest complement of all.

Because it is hard to feel confident. I'm looking for a job and it is stressful. I'm trying to remain positive and hopeful, but it doesn't help when all everyone seems to talk about to me is just how I look. Because how I look doesn't help me get a job or help me feel important or useful. It's just a nice thing, like dessert. It isn't essential.

I don't even consider myself that pretty. I'm alright with that. I'm glad I have a working body and I'm content with the way I am. Most of the time I'd like to think beauty is irrelevant, but I know deep down that to the world, it's one of the most important things. I don't want to give into that shallowness, but at the same time, I have acknowledged that it's a good thing to dress up and look cute so people notice you. So that maybe, someone will be drawn in and read the grey goop: the interesting stuff that just looks boring.

So this is a test. How many people will read this post despite having no picture? (In the bloggersphere, pictureless posts are almost unheard of.) How many people care about what I think? I know not many, but I find comfort knowing that there are a few people out there, like my family and Sam, who do listen to my opinions, my thoughts, my worries, and my dreams. I think it's alright to talk about things besides muffins, parties, and cute hairdos on blogs. I want to talk about deep things, even if it's not as flashy or fun.

Thanks for reading my grey goop.



Barb said...

Not only will I read your grey goop, I will read it and comment on it within seconds of you posting it! Ha! (Life with babies, oy).

I think you are definitely a woman of substance, dear Meg, and I think you come off that way to people, too.


Karena said...

Meg. your grey goop is super interesting and enlightening to read! You really are quite the writer if I do say so myself!

Alex said...

Legit, Meg. : ] I'm a fan. Also, I didn't know that you're a red personality. Me too. : ]

hailey said...

no idea who you are or how I found your blog, and you have no idea who I am, but I've been going back through your blog and just read this post (obviously). honestly some of my favorite blogs rarely, if ever, post pictures. I'll take a well written post about anything over one with only pictures. and if there are pictures, they better supplement the words, not overtake it.