I don’t remember the beginning of the internet like everyone else seems to.
I was too busy playing on Goofy Skateboarding to notice the launch of dial-up or broadband and its sudden presence in every house.
I don’t feel like I grew up with the internet at all: I didn’t have a Habbo Hotel or Penguin Club account, or spend all my time searching ‘boobies’ whilst my parents weren’t looking.
Instead, I was continuously helping my Bratz dolls get with their dream guy and have their first kisses under my desk till quite potenitally an embarrassing age.
When I did start using the internet, my brother hooked me up with a super bland email address so that I could start using MSN.
To my genuine surprise, I was quite possibly 1 in 100 people to use their actual name in their email address, rather than a variety of underscores, numbers and faux hugs and kisses (xo).
I didn’t mind the occasional nudge on MSN, or that weird animated fist thing that would appear on your screen and knock a few times; to remind you that your hilarious friend needed you to reply to her latest schoolboy dilemma.
MSN was cute and fun – despite spending most of my time in Times New Roman and freaking the fuck out when I couldn’t read someone’s message for the thousand emoticons that would pop up instead of letters.
It certainly passed some time on a Friday night whilst I updated my Myspace layout and top 5 friends.
I believe I also missed out on a little thing called Bebo somewhere along the line, so I was definitely still a little behind on internet crazes.
Skipping Bebo, I’d moved on to bigger and better things. Like the Piczo website I created during my months of having an obsession with fruit prints…
And when Facebook finally arrived, and my days of playing with my mobile phone-shaped eyeshadow kit, and laptop-shaped Bratz stationery pack were over, I began my long journey to becoming a regular sasspot on the social media platform in the only way I knew how: By keeping everyone updated on my hunger for pancakes, my current pancake cooking, and my satisfaction after eating said pancakes.
Abigail ‘wants pancakes’ – 12:01
Abigail ‘has decided she’s going to make pancakes’ – 12:02
Abigail ‘is eating pancakes she’s just made’ – 12:08
And somewhere down the line, I was introduced to the idea of a blog, and quickly became an online writer – suddenly I was ahead of the times.
I started my first blog before A-Level. It was called The Plan and I had every intention of using it to document the successes through my life plan and my journey within University.
The second fell through after a few months of reporting real news and my opinions on those matters. I thought it would help with my course, but really it was just a faf.
After showing quite an enthusiasm for the online world, my brother bought me my own domain. Cool, right? If there was ever a millennial gift to give, it would be a domain. My little piece of the internet.
It was anonymous. So I could write as I pleased, and I really felt like I was doing quite well. I could write about everything and anything, and read about other people’s equally sort-of-interesting-because-I-don’t-know-you lives.
But then the blogosphere changed. And now I don’t feel like a blogger. In fact, perhaps I’ve fallen out of love with the whole concept.
Now, I don’t seem to be able to keep up. I don’t have a thousand followers, a year of blogs to write, or even the ideas of which to transform into blogs.
I don’t have the consistency to be a blogger; or the patience, or the face.
I don’t have a wardrobe of branded garments for me to throw on whilst heading down to London for a quick photo shoot and a coffee.
There’s no PR assistant calling me from Vaseline asking me if I can post a completely irrelevant photo and caption on Instagram; to advertise their pots of lip balm that are already so well-known, I’d essentially be advertising grass to a grasshopper.
And the same goes for fashion brands, or blogger events or anything for that matter.
It’s not necessarily just a case of jealousy either; it’s a case of pressure, consistency and probably a lack of depth around the whole blogging sitch. It’s too much of a money making scheme these days, and content seems to be lacking.
Was that designer lipstick really in your bag when you decided to do a ‘What’s in my bag’ post? Or did you slip it in after removing the hair grips, chewing gum, wrappers and crumbs?
I don’t have a favourite foundation, or a make up routine to fascinate the world. And I especially don’t have any disposable income that I can cheekily spend on yet another Gucci bag.
Part of me thought I could keep up with the online world, and accept that blogging can now only survive when it’s fuelled by the hub of Instagram. But it’s speedily advancing every day, I am not part of the crowd.
I even deleted Instagram app mid June – a crime in such an era that’s close to warranting the death penalty.
I couldn’t take the faux aesthetics made by filter upon filter.
I couldn’t stop wondering about where all these random empty roads were, where fake ‘I’m casually crossing the road whilst my photo is being taken’ posts come from.
And thoughts like
‘how do their boyfriends feel about constantly fighting against a phone for attention?’
‘Does he, too, take photos of every coffee?’
‘Did he want his whole house to be monochrome, or is she kinda just suppressing him?’ have genuinely kept me up at night or stuck in a daydream at work.
Sure, I’m probably just a bit cynical about other people’s success, but I also admire it – hell, I even desire it. To write about absolutely anything and be paid to do it in pretty outfits? Come right at me.
But blogging – privately or publicly, leisurely or professionally – has always been my love: My reassurance that I have a skill in something. That I’m good at something, finally.
And I guess seeing the success of others, whilst my blog collects dustbytes in the internet bookshelf due to a total deficit in good ideas or motivation, really wrecks the whole idea of ever wanting to blog again.
This totally reads like a goodbye blog, and no doubt there’ll be plenty of people who choose to unfollow or ignore it. But right now, I have nothing to offer anyone.
My wit has dried up and my life involves bigger problems than what filter to use.
Blogging was a part of me, and it feels like a chunk of me has been eaten up by real life.
June and July were terrible months and I hit dark depths: And I’m still on overdrive when it comes to overthinking and pulling through. And truth be told that’s fucking knackering.
My priorities now lie in eating comfort foods and watching First Dates. And what’s there to blog about in that combo of luxury?
So excuse me whilst I find out if my favourite couples ended up with each other, whilst eating marshmallows and reminding myself that the gym is still out there.
Maybe I’ll be fully back eventually. But for now, you’ll have to cope with the intermittent attention I give to the internet and my little space.
And with that, I’ll probably just go back to my crosswords, or eternally play Crash Bandicoot as far as possible, until it’s game over – but that’s just because I’ve lost my memory card.