Daily Archives: October 9, 2011

Unfiltered ≠ Crazy

Over at Forbes, blogger Susannah Breslin wishes to suggest that crazy people make better bloggers, and likewise volunteers herself as an example of a crazy person who is one of those better bloggers. Her argument, basically, is that crazy people are willing to be unfiltered, honest and entertaining, which makes them more interesting than sane people.

I’m not particularly persuaded by her argument. I am neither here nor there with her opinion that she is crazy; she may be, and I have no reason to doubt her self-assessment. But I don’t buy the argument that being crazy means that you are inherently more interesting as a blogger than the average neurotypical human being. I know a fair number of people with diagnosed mental disorders of one sort or another; as a class, they are no more or less unfiltered, honest or entertaining than anyone else. Conversely, I know a fair number of people who pass for “sane” who are perfectly happy to be — depending on one’s perspective — either the guy who’s just saying what everyone’s thinking, or the guy who delights in dropping the turd in the punchbowl. Likewise, speaking as someone who’s done his share of ridiculous things simply because he felt like it, being diagnostically mentally disordered is not a prerequisite for such behavior.

It’s possibly more accurate to say that Ms. Breslin is as crazy as she says she is and she’s also gleefully unfiltered. Good for her; I hope both bring her joy. But as far as her thesis is concerned, the only thing I think she’s 100% correct about is that no one wants to read your blog if you’re boring. You don’t have to be crazy not to be boring. You just have to be not boring.