I’ll be the first to admit it. I love the internet. I do. I have been online in some format since the early 90s when we used Prodigy. When my family traveled to Israel in 1994, we lugged our 40lb laptop with us so we could write to the other 3 people back in the states who had email. I had a (now defunct) Geocities site and started blogging in 2003. I have made a lot of friends “online”. I read my news online, I consult Dr. Google countless times each day, and every major purchase we make as a family is only after an excessive significant amount of time spent doing online “research”.
I’m just geeky enough to admit all of those things to you. But, I am also honest enough to say that it isn’t enough for me. And sometimes I forget it. I am a very social person, yet thanks to the internet and text messaging, I find myself struggling to make conversation one on one or over the phone. Why the social angst all of a sudden? Since when do I second-guess everything I say? (not always a bad thing – ahem)
I think it’s because of the wit of online personalities (my own included). Online, it’s almost a requirement to have a hook or say something catchy in as few words as possible. You need to stay relevant. With a blog, you need to stay relevant AND be entertaining. That doesn’t translate well into the real world when you just need to be yourself. We all know that guy. You know, the one with a comeback for EVERYTHING. Don’t you just want to say, HEY that guy! Not everything has to have a punchline.
OH I am SOOO that guy.
Today I had the honest pleasure of spending time with a friend I don’t get to see nearly enough. We had lunch sans children and electronics and it was just lovely. I found myself being real and even a couple times caught myself before talking when I realized, no I can say that. This isn’t my blog. It’s my friend.
I am pretty honest over here on LKT, but there are definitely lines I don’t cross. I love having the internet as my sounding board. But having good friends is not only crucial to good parenting, but also a healthy marriage, and just becoming the best version of yourself that is possible. I am genuinely thankful for my friends. IT should go without saying, but I doubt I am the only one who can look up after a week and realize I haven’t connected with anyone. So, don’t just sit there. Call your friend! I am sure they are only a beer away.