Ever since I started writing this blog people have been telling me, usually in a negative tone, that I’ve changed. I remember the first time I ever got a comment that said “you’ve really changed your writing, go back to the old stuff”, I felt a tinge of pain as if I’d sold out or something. Looking back at the first comment of that sort, I realized that it was only 6 months into blogging and the person probably didn’t realize that anyone in the arts who stays the same is selling themselves short.
I would say that every two weeks I get an email, facebook message or blog comment that tells me “I’ve changed” and continues to go on and on about how used to be so funny and how I should be writing like I used to. I’m sure that there is a group of readers who would prefer I write lists all day, another group who wants me to only write about shidduchim and shomer negiah and yet another group who wonders why I’m not that angry about the Jewish community anymore, but change is inevitable.
Luckily the audience has changed drastically over the years, it used to be mid 20′s angry frum singles who were pissed off at the system and the hypocrisy of the yeshiva world, I’m sure those people are still around. I’m also sure that there is a much broader crowd reading the site and not expecting me to write anything at all. It just so happens to be that I have ideas bursting forth from my head at every moment of the day, but I have other passions competing with blogging. It used to be that the only thing I did, other than blog, was outdoors stuff. Now, cooking, my wife and outdoors are all competing with each other. I guess the chilly 47 degrees it is at the moment is keeping me inside.
Whenever someone says that I’ve changed, I want to scream at them, that yes I have changed and thank God for that. I started this blog when I was 24 and now I’m 31. When I started it I was living in Albany, NY and working as a private investigator and other odd jobs to keep up my skiing and road trip habits. The life I had at the beginning of my blog is so foreign to me now. You’re damned right I’ve changed, I look at my old posts and I cannot believe I wrote such drek. I cannot believe some of the things I thought or said back in my old work, yet it shows this incredible transformation. I really was an angry, cynical, immature, sexist and quite ignorant guy back in my youth. It’s also a lot different when no one is reading your site, you can pretty much say what you want, but switch 0 to eighty thousand a month and it could change what you say.
When I first started becoming known in the frum world, I loved the attention and the spotlight, now I don’t like it all. When someone used to say “aren’t you that guy” I would always say “Why yes I am” and engage in conversation. Now I don’t admit who I am, it’s not that I’m not proud of this blog, it’s just that I like being behind the scenes. Cooking is exactly the same way, in my experience most chefs like to avoid clients and prefer to be in the back away from praise.
I hope that everyone changes, I’m very satisfied with my changes, I’ve never thought I’d be as happy and at peace with myself as I am at the moment. I never thought I would stay the same and it’s interesting to note that when I do visit old friends and they haven’t changed – I really don’t respect them much.