About a week ago my husband got me a book and said, “Here. Read this and tell me if there’s anything I should know in it.” First of all, wasn’t there a Seinfeld episode where George has someone read books for him? Anyway, the book is about the online media — specifically big blogs — and how they manipulate and overload people to encourage clicks and page views and user activity.
I don’t really like the book or the author — who admits he was a PR guy who did all the same sleazy things he is chastizing bloggers for doing now. I’m not even sure I believe what he’s writing — he tells such a back story of how he couldn’t be trusted with his copy online, why should this book be any more truthful?
But, here’s what sticks with me. What’s wrong with a little quiet?
To be successful, he writes, a blog has to be noisy, constantly updated, larded with clicks and provocative headlines.
I got nothin’.
This blog is quiet as a mouse. I’ve had one click in the 3 weeks it’s been up. Full disclosure — that one click was me. And, I clicked by mistake. Even I didn’t mean to click on this site.
But, I kind of like the quiet.
It’s like baseball. Baseball is so quiet. Nothing happens for these long, sweet intervals. Everyone just stands there, watching and waiting. All there is … is a green field, a handful of guys, and waiting.
It’s not that the players are standing around stupid. Instead, they are being present, being ready, and — like a game of chess — have expanded the stillness into all the possibilities that may come. You’ve got to be pretty good to keep yourself so centered when things seem so quiet.
I love that.
Yoga is like that. And, it’s what scares many people away. In the middle of a flowing series, I sometimes ask my students to stand still. And, many get antsy. They don’t want to. They want to DO something else. You are doing something, I insist. You are standing there.
According to the book I’m reading, the best blog posts are 200-300 words. This guy clearly doesn’t understand how exciting extra-inning games can be. I bet he hates baseball. I bet he thinks nothing happens. He’s wrong.
Now, I’ll just soak in some quiet.