Sunday, December 2, 2007

virtual becomes actual

Finally meeting someone in person, that you've been speaking to online for so long, is both delightful and strange. You're nervous about what to wear, what they'll think of you, have a vague butterflies-in-the tummy feeling - it's like a first date. But then suddenly, you're both there, looking at each other - solid, three dimensional, and you realize that all of those exchanged words have drawn an accurate and lovely image. Your meeting is the coloring in, a bonus. The picture is completed and a parting embrace brings it all into focus. Not a goodbye is exchanged, just promises of "see you later! online!".

The world grows ever smaller.


Robb Allen said...

Hence why the Blog Bash is going to be so cool!

Of course, every here and there you read someone's blog for a while without ever seeing a picture of them. You start to get an 'idea' of what they look like in your head.

Then one day you see a picture and you think "that's not what they look like!" because the mental image you built was incorrect.

Most people aren't like me. I don't mind blogging under my own name or posting pictures of myself. So people will just have to make do with trying to think what I sound like ;)

phlegmfatale said...

Yeah, it's odd, isn't it, but it's really good, too. I think this is the greatest sense of community I've ever had, and I love all the bloggers I've met - good folks!

anon(kidding!) comatus said...

Well, robb, you're obviously chasing some other kind of fame...

Seriously, early adapters of on-line blog handles probably were just being cute and staying in character. Having encountered some blog bullies though, in an earlier life that involved fairly technical debate and a couple of fairly unhinged individuals, I'm thinking semi-anonymity will become more of a norm. And it's not all bad: reminds me a little of the glory days of amateur radio. Or, as in your example, what reading was like back when pictures were expensive.

Robb Allen said...

Comatus, I've been "online" since the 1980's. Back in the days of acoustic couplings and being proud of 300 baud.

Back in 95 when I bought, I made the conscious decision to be me and see how that worked out.

So far, not so bad. Of course, back then I just goofed off. Now that I'm a "controversial" blogger (I mean, I talk about scary guns!) it might bite me in the ass. Who knows? My next career isn't going to involve computers so I'm not as worried as I probably should be.

Tam said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tam said...

've been Unanon since I logged on at Glock Talk back in '99 to ask a question. In the intervening years, I've had the pleasure of meeting dozens of folks through intarw3b gun bulletin boards and, more recently, blogging. They have almost unanimously been fine people, and a few have become lifelong friends.

It is weird seeing someone for the first time that you've known for years.