Archives » April 26th, 2002

April 26, 2002

The Need to Vent

I’ve been thinking more about blogging, the needs it can fulfill psychologically, and crazy ideas about why it’s growing in popularity. I thought of it again today while reading an article by Reno columnist Cory Farley. He’s been called the liberal mouth of Nevada, not always complimentarily. But in today’s column he relates a visit with a psychologist where he was told he has so little job stress because he is being to paid to do what others are paid not to do—run off at the mouth. It got me to thinking how that has become a basic human need in today’s society – food, shelter, and the need to vent. But people don’t always want to hear you vent. In some places, like at work, it can be actively discouraged, even grounds for termination. If you do it at home, your loved ones are soon going to get very sick of hearing you whine and complain. Previously, you could always let loose your aggravations into a diary, but who would ever read that? There are a lack of places to vent in this culture, and it used to be that firing off a letter to the editor was about the closest you could get to having a public forum to let go.

Now we have blogs. In a blog you can rant and rave all you want, and there’s a chance that your voice might actually get heard. It’s not as private as a diary, but it’s not like standing up in a crowded theater to tell everyone what a lousy day you had. It’s a happy medium, more like going into the woods or to the rim of the Grand Canyon and screaming. It feels good to let it all out, and there’s a chance that someone else might hear you and pass it on to everyone around them. A blog is finally a place where you can go to let off your steam, to let loose what you’ve been repressing all day. To finally feel like you have the same freedom from stress as an opinion columnist.