good stuff

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Oh so handsome Oliver with rarely seen, feral boy Gus (renamed Virgil by the cowboy)

If you can't say anything nice
don't say anything at all

I am sitting on the fence this early morning when it comes to the issue of comments -
I'm mulling over my choices 1. leaving them be as they are free, easy & open 2. considering (but not very seriously) adding comment moderation or 3. just getting rid of the comment section all together. A good friend recently took a blogging break because of this very issue. She sighed a big ol' sigh and closed her blog down for awhile and I don't blame her.

Oh it is so true isn't it ?
If you can't say anything nice, kind, constructive*, helpful, concerned, questioning ....
then let's ask ourselves, really ... why say anything at all ? why comment ? e-d-i-t

Thankfully most comments we receive here at 29 Black Street are of the tres positive, encouraging, delightful & funny (snort! yes ! I mean you Shammy Sham) variety. I have never felt the need or desire to use comment moderation and still don't but after a recent wtf downer comment left on a post in which I was flying high as can be with enthusiasm and optimism a comment that left me with my mouth hanging open thinking ... Huh ??? I am seriously considering removing the comments altogether.

And the reason I'm considering this is that unfortunately that one in a hundred poopy, stinkin', some one's in a bad mood and found there way over here to vent comment stuck with me, stuck on me for days. It's not even what the comment said so much as it was that someone hadn't the sense to know that their comment wasn't helpful and could wound or hurt. Could deflate a buoyant mood and that makes me feel sad. That day I kept wanting to add my own comment asking ... and your point is ?? but I didn't because I'm not interested in participating in that sort of back and forth negative volley.

Why do we have comments on our blogs ? What purpose to they serve ? What do they mean to us ? Do the regulars who comment influence how and what we say ? Am I strong enough to not need them ? This curious mind really does want to know and please your opinions on this issue are welcome. It's a lesson I guess for all of us, myself included, because we are all fragile creatures just trying to do our best - if we can't be kind and supportive to one another then ... lets zip it ? OK ?

If I do choose to remove the comment section I know I will still hear from many of you by email
and please do write ... anytime + all the time. We love hearing good stuff.

Aaaaaaahhhhhhhh ! that felt so good - off of me darn ol' Yuckiness
* I especially enjoy and welcome creative critiques from my artist/designer peers re my work

the beach boys - sigh - heard at the grocery store yesterday - songs of my youth


  1. I'm sorry honey. Whatever your choice is we'll still support you.((HUGS))

  2. The beauty of this {this being your blog}is you get to decide.

    In some ways someone leaving a single unwarranted comment among all of the many, many lovely comments you receive has been given the power to make that decision on your behalf.

    I moderate, because in the beginning I was getting a lot of spam and then I just decided to leave it that way. My readers tend not to comment, so the numbers are somewhat manageable for me to continue moderating.

    Whatever you decide, I will always stop by for my Nova Scotia "let's see if Susan can make me more homesick today..." fix.

  3. thanks Dani & SV but hey isn't that the way in life ? we can so easily let all kinds of good things be erased by one thoughtless remark. Guilty.

    I do receive many emails from my closest blogging friends and if i do decide to close my comments I trust that they will continue to comment that way and I'll welcome all new mail. xo S

  4. I echo Dani's sentiments... What's important (to us fans!) is the original content, what YOU post, not the comments. Do what you gotta do; we'll still come round to see what you and the gang are up to. :)

  5. One of mom's letterpress blogging friends in Toronto is going through the exact same thing due to an "anonymous" person leaving a hurtful comment. If I were not a Golden Retriever I would have shown my teeth!! Good luck in your decision...oh, and mom (growing up in New Jersey) has all her Beach Boy records still. Tail Wags,

  6. And who knew that orcas could snort so well?!

  7. and make others snort along with them

  8. I comment because unlike my real life, I can't keep my snarky blog mouth shut. Sometimes that's a good thing, sometimes not. My recent shutdown has more to do with my own internal frustration. A blog wall so to speak. Normally if I can find something humerous to blog about I'm a much happier person but with the dreadful season of Top Chef boring me to death it's just been a struggle.


    Comments will be coming back, I will be back and The Squirrels will be back.

    I would ask that you keep one thing in mind, if you never had comments I would have never have gotten to know you like I do. Nor would your relatives want to smack me. I think you should give yourself permission to delete any comment you don't like. It's your blog you can do whatever you want. You know you always have my support and now I'm kicking myself for not seeing the comment in question. A little delicate Orca chomping was probably called for.

  9. And don't think I didn't notice that you put up snuggly cat pictures up with this post. Oh I noticed all right.

  10. Susan, I can't believe anyone would leave you negative comments. That's just mean. Your blog is a place of beauty and inspiration. Snarky commenters must be jealous. I am sorry this happened, as I share your sensitive nature and know how I would feel.
    You do what you need to do, and your faithful will keep visiting, whether or not there are comments.

  11. I always say that a big part of the problem with the written word is that we can't hear tone or inflection...can't see the author's face or body language ... can't intuit or understand how they really mean a phrase, a sentence or a whole paragraph.... and definitely not a comment.. usually left with spelling, grammar and speed of thought mistakes ... where even one word interjected at the incorrect spot can feel like a punch in the gut.

    There is a lot of reading between the lines ..or, conversely, perhaps not reading enough between those lines..... and if we have a sensitive nature, are easily offended, are having an "off" day, or are excited by something that someone else doesn't feel exactly the same about.... being hurt by what we sometimes think we see, or feel, between those lines, is bound to happen.

    Blogs are a public thing..... and, if your comments are open.... anybody can and will comment. You pretty much have to be ready for anything I think..... or, on the other hand.... close or moderate the comments to suit yourself. Sometimes it takes a few days or a week to get over a slight, or a perceived one.... but, we get over it and move on....

    having said all of that.... I did read back through the comments for several days.... can't find anything to be upset about ...but, that's probably because I try not to take too much personally, seeing as I don't know any of the commenters from a hole in the ground.... they could all be axe murderers for all I know. And.... Hmmmm..... the only one I found that maybe could be interpreted in a hurtful vein, ...might be be mine....acckkk!!!! just before one of mine..... hmmmmm again.....

    If I offended in any way..... me sorry........

  12. Comments are odd, aren't they - lovely to get, even if they say nothing; if I don't comment it's usually because I can't find anything meaningful to say, but as someone pointed out to me today, it's still nice to get them, sort of validating your blogger-self, letting you know that people read your posts.

    But I bet I'm not the only one thinking "What did I say that upset Susan?" I hope it wasn't me! Maybe we could have a meme about The Worst Comment You Ever Got, and post them, commenter's identity and all!

    Although I only ever got one that upset me, something along the lines of "you really need to get a life!" and it turned out to be a friend who hadn't realised what she sounded like, and was then outraged that I should be hurt by it!

  13. Think of it as a bit like playing ping-pong (table tennis). You need people who can return the balls to let you know that they are out there, playing WITH you, (and we are, all over the world) but every now and then you come across a player who is just plain mean, and determined to win at any price.
    They are the ones with the problems, which are likely to manifest in other areas of their lives as well. Just ignore them. There are plenty of us apart from them!

  14. Hi,
    I disagree with Dani- dont switch of your comments. Its what helps create a little community for others. Even though I dont comment every day I do visit here each morning (your evening) and the imput from other readers really 'adds value' so to speak. It gives it a sense of community when I can go and visit one of your friends too.

    There must be a thousand positive, lovely comments on this blog, dont they outweigh the one bad one? Its like an inner-critic-thought isnt it, seeming to stick around and torment us while, if we would only notice, the inner-coach has much more useful stuff to tell us.

    Hit delete instead!

  15. Also, the advice people give you here in the comments is helpful to other readers too

  16. Oh, and look, if you didnt have comments you'd never have seen my new avatar!

  17. Susan, I've been thinking about the question you asked about what purpose do comments serve? I realized that for me, comments mean I'm not so alone out here. Whatever you decide, I will be reading with you.

  18. Love your cat photos - Sorry about the bad comment, I agree with the old saying 'if you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all'.
    I hope it all works out well for you.

  19. I'm sorry that happened. (I hope it wasn't me!) Whatever you decide you rock and you're one of my favorite stops on the interwebs. You're an inspiration.

  20. Love that song, btw.

    Well, I lvoe comments a it makes me feel connected with you lot out in the blog world some. I don;t think I would like blogging with no comments. I want that interaction.

    I have moderation due to a few potential unsavory sorts that might care to further rain on my parade but I have yet ever needed it.


Hey ! We LOVE comments here at 29 Black Street.
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