For several weeks now I have been drifting in and out of journalist-blogger coma.
I've barely posted anything to my blog. And I won't lie and tell you that I've really wanted to but just haven't had time. Sure, there've been busy stretches. I do have stories to report and write, after all. But if my heart had been 100% in it I could've found time to blog.
At any rate, I haven't been able to figure out my ailment till now.
That's the answer. I've been trying to swim against a tidal wave.
You know it's election season. I know it's election season. We know that in election season many serious news consumers - those serious enough to visit news organizations' Web sites - are all about the all-politics-all-the-time coverage. And I'm not mad at 'em. When I'm on a break at work, I'm trawling the Web for political news. When I'm at home these days the TV is on some cable news channel, where pundits are talking politics. It's addictive. And in its shadow the other stuff, the less urgent stuff, isn't quite as interesting to some people.
But when you're a journalist and blogger with a niche and something that isn't your usual topic takes over the print pages, and airwaves and the Web, your instinct is to sometimes continue to push your niche in its "normal" form. I don't know what to tell you. It's a stubborn pride thing for me, maybe.
Yes, I've written the occasional blog entry on politics, but sometimes it has been a forced effort. If I can make an analogy, there have been times when I've written about politics that I felt as awkward as the celebrity who hears (often from people like me, ironically) that no wants to know his political opinions and that he should just shut up, get rich, score hot dates, and do what he does best - act, or sing, or wrestle a bear, or juggle flaming bowling pins, or ride a unicycle, or something.
I mean, I'm a features writer. I do things like trends in popular culture and lifestyles, and consumer behaviors, right? Who am I to tread on the territory of the all-political-all-the-time? Don't answer. That's just me thinking out loud.
But I'm done fighting it. Until we have a new president-elect in November, until all the votes are counted - including the few thousand cast by Americans living overseas that will inevitably get lost in the mail, I'm gonna try to find a political angle to at least half my blog posts each week.
I'm gonna try to view features angles like Chris Rock views Robitussin: good for everything that ails ya.
Want to talk about how a politician's views on family mesh with his or her own family?
Rub some 'tussin on it We can do that. Want to debate whether or not a politician's religious beliefs can shape his character but not influence his policy decisions? Rub some 'tussin on it We can do that.
Now if you'll pardon me, I have to go work on the new addition to my beat: youth and religion in politics....seriously.