7 Jul

Image courtesy of http://3.bp.blogspot.com

As you know, I love to write. It’s my hobby, my passion, my solace. Problem is, I’m rubbish at reading. I haven’t read more than a handful of books since I left university over 10 years ago. I did an English Literature degree and all that forced reading, analysing, summarising – it just took all the enjoyment out of it. So since then reading has felt like a bit of a chore.  Shame really.

Embarrasingly, it’s the same with reading other people’s blogs. If you haven’t grabbed me in the first few sentences you’ve lost me. Even when I’m pretty interested in the subject matter, I’m always prone to a bit of skimming. My attention span is rubbish. In fact I can think of only a handful of posts I’ve actually read word for word. Taken in the detail of the language, the complexity of the argument.

The thought of someone skimming MY posts upsets me. Carefully crafted, meticulous in word and description – it’d be like someone smothering my home-cooked meal in ketchup. (Something Mr Milk IS prone to doing). But I’m not stupid; of course people skim my posts, many won’t even be arsed to open them.  I’m not everyone’s cup of tea, especially over the past few months. “I didn’t sign up for this depressing shit!” (an actual reason given by a work colleague for unfollowing me within 2 days of joining). And it’s painfully obvious when someone hasn’t read your posts properly. They’ve guessed the subject matter from the title, and totally missed the mark with their comment, sometimes with cringeworthy results. “Well done on the weight loss!” when the post was actually about the agony of putting it all back on 2 months later.

And I know I’ve done this a few times myself on other people’s blogs. I think it’s quite unforgiveable, and I hate it, and I do it all the time.

This kind of total hypocrisy follows me round quite a bit.  I frequently have greater expectations for other people than I ever manage to meet myself. Like being appalled at the childminder when you pick your kids up and they’re glued to the television AGAIN, like your own house isn’t a bona fide movie theatre. Or you go tutting at your husband for failing to wash the dishes before stacking them in the dishwasher, and then he points out that he was in fact out for dinner the night before and this was all your handiwork. Or wincing in disbelief at seeing another mother fly off the handle at her children with a bit too much menace, before your own raging banshee is unleashed later when you spy a chocolate fingermark on your cream blinds.

So come on, what expectations do you have of other people that you frequently and miserably fail to reach yourself?

13 Responses to “Pot.Kettle.Black.”

  1. brinkofbedlam July 7, 2011 at 10:40 am #

    Can I just say I’m a bit the same with blogs. If I’m grabbed in the first sentence I’ll read things, if not I’m skimming. I do read yours though, and it’s not depressing shit – it’s thoughtful. As for unreasonable expectations, I have far too many of them aimed at myself and everyone else too probably. Not enough room in a comments box to fit them all in, and you’d probably skim, lol! ;O)

  2. Themadhouse July 7, 2011 at 11:50 am #

    Hmm I think I resemble this. I am also guilty of judging a book by it’s cover. I have over 1000 posts in my google reader and have latly just delighted hem

  3. Mwa (Lost in Translation) July 7, 2011 at 12:04 pm #

    What? Wash dishes before putting them into the dishwasher? You know what a dishwasher is for, right?

    • marketingtomilk July 7, 2011 at 5:15 pm #

      umm, shoudl’ve said rinse, and yes, you do have to if the food is caked on….my mum taught me that, okay

  4. Alexander Residence July 7, 2011 at 5:32 pm #

    Hello. I read lots of your posts and they are so very readable and beautifully crafted. I should comment more, am rubbish for that. Recently I needed to write and that has had to take priority, but I am getting back into it.
    Bereavement changed my blog and for a while I found it infuriating. I wanted to write but I didn’t want to depress people. Today, after thinking it over since we tweeted about writing about mums a while back I finally found a positive way to express some of that stuff, come and have a look and tell me if the first sentence grabs you?
    Hope you are good. Penny xx

  5. Mummylimited July 7, 2011 at 6:04 pm #

    I think I get what your saying, but to be honest I only skimmed the post 😉

    Driving on a Sunday is my pot/kettle issue. I’m forever tutting at those clogging up the roads on a Sunday and complaining that they should be at home, I mean it’s a Sunday, for goodness sake. All this while driving my car.

  6. Kelloggsville July 7, 2011 at 10:35 pm #

    Expecting an apology or make up moment from my husband but would never do the same. Never.

    I do skim read some blogs but rarely yours. There is added detail in yours that won’t take a skim so I tend to be an all or nothing when it comes to your posts and the ‘nothing’ days are usually down to my lack of time not content! Whereas my posts would generally stand up to a skim read I think. Therefore I expect you to skim mine but I expect to read yours. Is that the entire opposite of pot kettle black?!

  7. jfb57 July 8, 2011 at 8:18 am #

    My list would be too long for this little box H! I totally agree with Kelloggsville about your posts. You have that talent that makes the reader go back if they have dared try to skim! 😉

    • marketingtomilk July 8, 2011 at 12:59 pm #

      @kellogsville @jbf57 I am so touched by these comments. Really? I feel most chuffed.

      mwah! x

  8. Mummy's Little Monkey (@Jax2000) July 8, 2011 at 10:32 am #

    In all honesty I have never skimmed over your posts – I’ve always read every word. I can not believe what your work colleague said to you!!! Are people really that insensitive??

    PS: my OH smothers everything in tomato sauce. I only saved some lovely Sea Bass the other day by threatening to kill him if he ruined the dish by pouring it on. I mean, come on – fish and tomato sauce???? That’s freakin’ disgusting!!!

  9. susie@newdaynewlesson July 8, 2011 at 11:34 am #

    Yup to ditto to all-and no did not skim-read it all-every word.

  10. mrsteepot July 8, 2011 at 8:17 pm #

    *looks around the room, shuffling feet nervously*
    There is an, oh so small, chance that I am guilty of the same!
    The problem is that the goalposts keep changing in my head, so I expect stupidly high things from myself and others one day, then the next I don’t expect anything! So in actuality I *do* only expect the same from others as I expect from myself, it’s just that that is an ever changing concept!

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