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Thursday, 14 April 2011

To the Internet... And beyond!

I haven't posted much recently, have I? Since my laptop breathed its last in the Priory for Addicted Laptops, and I've purloined this lovely beastie from my son, who really has greater need, but then his old laptop still works. So, until he gets home for spring break, or whatever it's called here in the UK...

When I was without my laptop, which I've only had my paws on for just over two years, I'll be totally honest I felt somewhat bereft.

I missed what was happening in 'the world'... I felt a little out of touch, isolated - Especially given my rural location, and my lack of a meaningful job at the moment - More about the interview laters...

How much of our own self-worth these days is now wrapped up in our on-line lives, do you suppose?

Do you even think about it, mes bloggy chums?!

Apparently, the way we think and how we structure our time is changing as a direct result of our capacity for social networking. CLICKIE. I know mine has. Our children have the attention span of ADHD gnats, as a result. And yet they're not any less intelligent than those of us born in the Sixties', or Fifties', or whatever we're owning up to in terms of age this week!

We who only had draughty Public Libraries for refuge once a week, levering our forms into the heaviest chairs to study at, next to the, sometimes smelly, homeless man who had come in from the cold to read the papers. (Now he probably uses a Blackberry or sits in the Internet cafe... Ok, I'm being facetious).

To continue - We with our access to weighty tomes and encyclopedias - in said Libraries... We who had pens and paper, not screens and keyboards. Our kids are probably just as bright as we claim to be, in fact. Thank Goddess for that!

But our lives have changed irreparably as a result of social networking, non?

Last week I spent a lovely afternoon at the Coast with friends - We went to Crusoe's in Tynemouth - The weather was unseasonably good and I was surrounded by people I've worked with - recently and in the past - who mean a lot to me. We've all met one another at various (and vicarious!) stages in my life (and theirs...)

What we all have in common is that we all talk on Facebook. And now friends from my past have made new friends through me and each other, courtesy of (mainly ripping the tiddle out of each other!), social networking twaddle and chit-chat... Without it, they'd probably never have had the opportunity to meet one another...

One dear friend whom I met in my twenties even brought her sister who's now a dear friend too, and I'd only ever met her before virtually!

It made for an interesting afternoon, as we all got along, as conversation waxed and waned, and we each treasured some authentic real-life moments that had had their fledgling beginnings in black and white...

Friends are to treasure, no matter where we may encounter them in life.


Gigi said...

I have just been musing over this very topic! (Mine was more along the lines of instituting a week-end ban just to get Man-Child to actually speak to humans...but I digress....)

It is very interesting to sit back and realize that the people we've met online mean as much (if not more) than some of the people we know in real life.

Just yesterday, I found myself asking hubby two very different questions in order to try and help out two very different people. People who mean the world to me; despite the fact that I've never "met" them.

So yes, the Internet can be a place in which you lose yourself - it can also be a place in which you learn much and meet people you might not have ever known existed.

Hmmm, maybe I'll re-think that ban.....

rallentanda said...

Thank you for the interesting post and the recommended article in the 'Guardian'.
It is something I think about frequently ( virtual connections and real life connections.)I agree with Gigi that one of the benefits of the net is discovering like minds whom you may never encounter in everyday life, particularly if you have an esoteric interest like poetry .
I'm not on Facebook but I suspect it is a more personal exchange than having a poetry blog which is intense but a bit more cryptic with information.
Is it possible to form a close relationship online without actually meeting the person?
I have read on blogs of people actually meeting up for coffee in various places and really enjoying the experience . I don't know why,but I still have a niggling doubt about virtual connections.

Expat mum said...

My goodness - Tynemouth's changed!

Bagman and Butler said...

Stiff from hours in front of the computer, I go outside and am amazed that it is still there, sky and everything. I go to town and can't believe all these other people who are also outside. So many! But then I notice that most of them are texting or something - staring, at least into little tiny screens -- and I become a little more comfortable.

Jinksy said...

Meeting of minds doesn't need bodies! I think it depends whether you are an extrovert, or introvert as to wich kind of meeting you prefer - virtual, or in the flesh. Either can be very rewarding, for communication is key to both - body versus verbal language being the only difference.

Grumpy Old Ken said...

The bloody thing rules, but what would life be without our blogs. Mind you, I can't cope with Facebook, Twitter , friends United etc!

Something I wrote earlier...

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