On some of the blogs I visit, I'm a confirmed lurker. These are the blogs where it feels as though all the commenters know each other, and on occasions when I have left a comment, I've almost felt (perhaps unfairly in some cases) like an intruder.
Then there are the blogs which seem to welcome comments from total strangers, and although I still don't often comment, I do love to feel that I can. I also love it when, having left a comment, I see from Sitemeter that someone (I don't know whether it's the blog owner or another reader) has paid me a return visit. I've discovered a few good blogs myself by clicking on the profiles of people who have commented on my own blog.
I know that people have different reasons for keeping blogs - some only exist to keep faraway family and friends up to date with their daily lives, and in that case, maybe it is an intrusion when I interrupt the conversation with my own comments (though in that case, the option is always open through blogger for people to restrict their readership to those that they choose, so that I generally assume a blog with open readership is not restricted).
I know from Sitemeter that I have a fairly steady trickle of visitors, and some keep coming back. Some comment quite regularly, and I love reading their comments (and their blogs). I'd just like you all to know that this is (I hope) a friendly blog - as far as I know, only one person whom I know outside the blogging world reads my blog, and I love getting visits both from people I am getting to know and from total strangers and hearing what they think about the things I'm posting on.
I do moderate comments, and I have two reasons for this - first, because I find that's the best way to make sure I know when there's a new comment and don't miss reading it, and second, because I've both received a bit of spam/mass marketing/obscene junk myself and seen a lot on a couple of other blogs. However, my blog does now allow anonymous comments.
So if any of you are tempted to delurk, but are feeling a bit timid about it, can I just say - you're very welcome here, and I'd love to hear from you!