Oh stop, it’s nothing like that.
I went to James Madison University from Sept 91-Dec of 93. Went to some other schools before that, long story I don’t want to go into right now 🙂 While I was there, I started playing MUDs and MUSH and through a great series of events, I met a woman online before the internet really existed. At that point we were all getting into having school email accounts, and posting things on bulletin boards, and everything EVERYTHING was done with this thing called a modem.
I played this online, text based, roleplaying game with people from all over the country, in fact it was everywhere;There was a guy from Denmark and a girl from Australia that used to stay up really late or wake up super early just to hang out. Yeah, I know, The height of the social scene.
A good friend of mine and I had always talked about how you can or can’t tell emotions from an email or from text scrolling across the screen – cool thing is, he made it his masters thesis 🙂 I Still to this day think you can totally with some people, and not with others.
I’ve been thinking about all this lately and realized that the internet is really, truly a social phenomenon. I just spent 20 minutes talking with MammaDawg about books we’ve read, books we’re waiting for, etc. I’ve never met her, she lives on the other coast, but I felt comfortable talking with her.
Mike, over at Unraveling Mysteries emailed me after I had missed a few days of blogging to make sure I was okay. I talk about Dad stuff with RagingDad on his blog and my blog all the time.
And Facebook? Oh lordy don’t even get me started. But that’s a different phenomenon. That’s a reconnection, rather than a connection. I’ve found everyone from almost all of my ex-gf’s to a guy who I was in CUB SCOUTS with (Hey Kev), but they are all people I have known before.
I think the internet allows us to find people who we are compatible with, can share thoughts with, or even in Mike’s case – mess with, when the Sox pound the crap out of the Angels. But that being said, it’s a catalyst for communication across space like never before. When the hell would I hang out talking to, or even meet, a guy from the other side of the US who smokes cigars, likes the Angels, and has completely opposite political views? Or a woman who is talking about her family and how her Brother is being a pill, or just checking out RagingDaughter Connie’s latest pic to admire how adorable little girls are.
I have always said that this blog is for me, but admitted that I like feedback(no, that is not me soliciting for feedback). It’s the excitement of getting an email from the blog that is a comment from someone about something you’ve written, or thought about. And they agree wholeheartedly, or vehemently disagree. You’re making a connection and forging a relationship no matter how deep or how slight. I find myself opening outlook each morning, and perusing several of the sites I enjoy (including my newest fascination, the Bloggess herself), and spending some time every night rereading the posts and responding to them.
Why? Why do I care what is going on in these peoples lives? People I will probably never meet, and yet care about. Get sad when I find out something bad that’s happened, happy when something cool as hell happens. I’m still investigating all that in my head. This post is part of it, and the main reason I blog. It’s helped me to iron out some of the millions of random fired thoughts in this big mush back in my head.
And it’s not even just the people who come to my blog and draw me to theirs. It’s the people who are commenting as well. I’ve got an interesting mix of friends old and new, fellow bloggers, random posters who followed a comment I made on another blog, and just people who find me using google.
I’m not even going to mention how often I update my twitter account, and how often people remark on it on Facebook. That’s just a rabbit I don’t even want to look at, stay in the hat fuzzy white creature of doom 🙂