Saturday, January 17, 2015
Plumbing the depths
I've been a fan of www.mandyfish.com for at least a year now. I stumbled across her blog thanks to Facebook - she is a Detroiter and works for an area advertising agency. My sister-in-law worked there too and had liked one of her posts, so I checked it out. I was hooked immediately! I mean, check out her latest picture. She is funny, poignant, questioning, frustrated, soul-searching and absolutely not above skewering herself in her writing if it will make for a good blog post.
She definitely crafts her posts for an audience; I sense she is frustrated with her advertising work (and I happen to know that there have been big cuts at this particular agency), and she openly admits that she wants to publish a memoir, so I am under the impression that her blog was constructed initially with garnering an audience in mind. Each blog operates according to a prompt; sometimes she writes about parenting, sometimes she writes about work, sometimes she writes about her relationship with her husband, and sometimes she writes about her faith, which is Buddhism. Her voice feels authentic; one of her recent blog posts discussed the kindness of her neighbors when she was growing up with an alcoholic mother. The neighbors fed her, clothed her, took her on vacations, gave her Easter baskets, and kept her safe. I think that's what I like so much about her - though some of her posts are laugh-out-loud funny (her latest one pokes fun at the way she mispronounces the word "structure"), I keep coming back to her blog because of the variety of it. She can pull at your heartstrings as artfully as she can tickle your funny bone. I think she embodies that idea of ambiguity in journaling; this is a woman who absolutely seems to be reveling in the chaos of life, and it makes her writing universal. Her honesty about her goals, dreams, and aspirations has me rooting for her. But I also wonder what she holds back, especially in light of her difficult childhood. What parts of herself does she choose not to share? What is too painful to be made public, even when you want an audience?