Greetings and Salutations!

Welcome to the longest-running* yet least-read** blog on the internet! Here you'll find me writing about all the things that I write about, which strikes me, just now, as somewhat recursive. In any case, enjoy :)

* not true ** probably true

Sunday, September 25, 2005

SomethingSticky: A Six Month Retrospective

Originally uploaded by MercerMachine.

It’s been almost exactly six months since my first post, but really, that’s just a coincidence. We’re not exactly punctual here at SomethingSticky. And by we I mean me, but the whole ‘we’ thing makes it sound like I’ve got a team of bloggers slaving away to amuse, inform, entertain and appall you on a regular basis. Which would be cool.

Why a retrospective? Because I believe it’s important to know where you’ve been before you can decide where you’re going. I’ll tell you a secret: I still don’t know what this blog is about. Looking back on its ‘successes’ (not that that’s the right word, but I don’t know what else to call ‘em) two things stand out: First is “We’re That Blogger” which has been called a meme, but if it’s a meme, it’s the most passive meme I’ve ever heard of. The second has to do with stick figures.

Coming from a marketing background, there’s a part of me that automatically wants to duplicate anything I’ve done that people take an interest in and pay attention to. I’m going to resist that urge. One cannot duplicate spontaneity, and those posts I’ve written that people enjoyed most were spontaneous. The second urge I have is to analyze just why those posts were popular, and that one I can’t resist.

We’re That Blogger: Wow.

It’s been an exhausting week. For those who have been waiting for me to add them to the “
We’re That Blogger” post, I apologize. I never expected so many to share so much, and I haven’t had the time to update properly. There are about a hundred now, if you add together those on Tomorrow and those listed on Technorati, Icerocket and the more traditional search engines. Amazing. I’ll get there, little by little.

Cowboy Caleb called it a confession, and certainly there’s nothing wrong with using it as such, but others have used it in other ways as well. It has been used cathartically by some, and humorously by others. It’s been used as a declaration of love, and a declaration of loneliness, and confusion, and sometimes all of these at once.

Popagandhi suggested it may be Singapore’s first literary meme; and I’ve come across some posts (notably hers) that are certainly of literary quality and merit. Others have used it to express fears, hopes, dreams, disturbing secrets, mundane desires and bleak rage.

Mr Miyagi described it as a ‘cannot help but follow’ meme. And it’s true. I can say that because I cannot take any more credit than that last snowflake that causes an avalanche. You see, the reason that the simple words ‘I am’ have struck a chord with so many people is that everybody has something unique to say, every single person on earth. And most of us are just waiting for a reason, for permission, if you like. It’s just so hard to know where to begin, what to put in, how to say it, when to stop. The simple formula represented by ‘I am’ gives that amorphous mass of experience a form to pour into. It really is true that, in order to be most creative, it’s best to create artificial restrictions. Look at poetry in general, and haiku in particular.

Something Stick-like

The other big ‘success’ of SomethingSticky came about during the NKF hoopla.
‘A Threat Too Far’ was a simple four-panel cartoon that ended up in the Straits Times Digital section (under the sub-head ‘Fifteen Minutes of Fame’). Just crude little stick figures and crude little doodled tanks. Honestly, I don’t know why people liked that one so much. Maybe because NKF was acting so childishly by pushing a lawsuit they were doomed to lose, that a childish representation of the whole thing was fitting. Like Rockson said, ‘it’s like score own goal, man’. Idiotic. I’ve always detested bullies.

Anyway, if I could make a living depicting the events of the day in a stick-like fashion, I’d be a happy man. (Any takers? Today? Straits Times? New Paper? My email address is . Have your people talk to my people, eh?)

Sticking With It

But the biggest success of SomethingSticky by far has been that I’ve been able to connect with so many people. Sure, I’m not xiaxue (no really,
I’m not xiaxue) but the fact that anywhere from 30 to nearly 200 people visit this blog on a regular basis to see what I have to say is both amazing and gratifying. I’ve met many fantastic writers and people, both in person and virtually, that I never would have if I hadn’t started blogging. People like Expat @ Large, Mr Miyagi, the maine minx, mrbrown, wannabe lawyer, daryl sing, cap’n intrepid, wit and spit, the flying fool of a took, jaschocolate and others (check out the blogroll to the right). And that is worth every second I’ve spent at the keyboard over the past six-seven months.

So maybe I’ve got my fifteen minutes of fame, as the Straits Times Digital article intimated. If so, so what? Sure, it’s nice for people to know who I am or think what I’ve written or drawn is interesting and worthy of a look. I’m a writer after all; I was before I started blogging and if the internet disappeared tomorrow I would still be a writer. But if I never get another hit, I’m still coming out way, way ahead.

Now if only Neil would
kick the bucket….


Anonymous said...

mercermachine, this is one touching post.

and yes, i love those stick figures of yours. :P but my room walls are still not ready for it. my room's messy and horrible and etcetcetc.

you've done good. and er, neil should die?

Blanc Fleur said...

this post is a classic example of what makes your blog so readable, and yes, although nowhere in the same level of addictive as... heroin for example, it is drug-like on it's own.

let me explain.

synthetic/natural drugs contain chemical addictives which influence the body to succumb to it's er... influence.

you have none of that whatsoever, just a great sense of humor, an admirable wit, and a personality that's larger-than-life. well from what i could tell that night anyways lol.

therefore, i'd say Neil doesn't have to die. (you know they put some sort of chemical in the newspaper ink that sticks on fingers after until the unfortunate reader decides to eat Chicken Wings right?)

you could just stand in the middle of orchard road naked with your blog address written on your tummy as an alternative.

cheers :)

Anonymous said...

Wah I got mentioned!

I am sho crever!

Thanks, you Machine, you.

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Just passing by your blog and though you'd like this site.

The Screwy Skeptic said...

Retrospective. It's like you're taking baby pictures of your blog during its formative years, aw.

And I'd tell you you're a killer writer, but you knew that already, and god knows you've got enough Mercer Maniacs out there, feeding you grapes and fanning you and the like.

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