Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Blogging - One Year and Beating

A few weeks after I returned from my last trip home to Cleveland I was on the phone with my mother when there was a long pause. The silence was broken when she told me that there was something she wanted to share with me. I didn’t know what to expect. In all my years I could only recall her using that as a caveat once and what she told me was indeed life changing news. This time however, the secret she wanted to disclose to me was that she had discovered my online journal – The Starr Report, and had been reading it since she first found it.

While I was home I had updated or at least viewed my blog and apparently I didn’t erase it from the history. A day or two later she typed in the first few letters and was led to the rest. Instantly I tried to recall every entry, what I said and had I talked about anything I didn’t want her to know. I was certain there was going to be a stream of questions but there weren’t. She asked only one. It was a question that I’ve only been asked perhaps once or twice.

Why do I blog?

At some point during 2003 I began to realize that I was maturing and if it were to be the will of the Lord I would have the beautiful blessed experience to one day grow old. I also realized that there were two things I have always been neglectful in doing – taking pictures and keeping a written record of my own life experiences. Those two activities are invaluable. They produce and serve as hard copy memories, as windows to later view and reflect on ones life.

Still not one to take photos I decided that I would at least begin keeping a journal. If I did not chronicle my history, the events, people, emotions and ideas that entered and departed from my life then no one else would. I was reminded of this again over the summer when I looked at an elementary school and thought how the one I attended as a child was torn down. The middle school I attended no longer stands, nor my high school or the two college buildings, one in Cincinnati the other in Baltimore that I practically called home while matriculating. Even the actual home I grew up in as a child has now been renovated to the point where it looks almost nothing like it did when I was young. Someone else could look at that structure now and draw a totally different story of my childhood. I live in a world where I know people are prone to make up your history for you.

From January 1, 2004 through November 14, 2004 I kept a private journal. It was one year ago today, November 15 that I decided to transition from keeping my journal on paper to publishing it online.

It is with the same fundamental reasons that I began to journal that I still do so today, only on the Internet now. I wish to chronicle my history and growth. I wish to tell most accurately and descriptively my own tales of coming into manhood. I want to look back at good times and bad. I do not want to forget where I was, how I was feeling, what I was thinking or why.

History is so important and it must never be lost. Recorded history has always served as an explanation as to why things are what they at a point in time, offer inspiration and to offer clues of what is to come. I must be able to read and reflect on my history.

I also believe that for at least the time being it is most appropriate for the Black gay man that I am to keep this record online as this medium has played such an integral role in constructing my racial and sexual identity. My evolution has held a rhythmic interactive call and response with information, affirmations and spirits that I would have never encountered without this medium. I recall the first interesting stories and characters I moved through during my days on WBS, the fine tooth readings of editorials on Blackstripe.com which led to my writings being published there and the thousands of dialogues and facts and myths I’ve garnered from the web and coupled with the millions of every day experiences of natural life. And now even with my blog I sometimes beat and hear a magical response from the East or West from fellow tribesmen.

So, I will continue blogging and pray the beats go on.