2000: It's Too Damn Hot
2001: Someone Else's Treasure
2002: Called on the Carpet
2003: Home to Mother
2004: Love and Marriage, the other Side
2005: Welcome to My State
2006: Fighting City Hall
2007: "The Cave"
IN MY OPINION
Books Read in 2008
at these videos!
New on My
Mirror Site, for RSS feed:
IN A FLASH!
15 June 2008
I don't remember the exact quote, but somewhere in The Wizard of Oz, Dorothy says something like "My goodness..people certainly come and go so quickly here." I may be way off, but that's the jist of it.
I was thinking about that when I accidentally pressed the wrong button on my bookmarks toolbar on Firefox and connected to the Morning Stories page. What an amazing experience that was, and what an incredible flash in the pan it was!
A group of us came together, through e-mail, under the leadership of a woman named Liz Cooksey, and in a matter of a month or so, we had transcribed something like 150 Morning Stories broadcasts. But that wasn't the amazing thing. The amazing thing was how quickly we became a community. Well, some of us. Four or five of us were prolific e-mailers, one set up a blog for us to use, there were talks of getting together, we joked about visiting the one who lived in Italy. People sent photos of their families, their vacations. There was lots of chit chat, the beginnings of some soul-searching, we all agreed to set up Skype on our computers so we could have face to face chats and I actually did talk with a couple of people.
Tony Kahn, the producer and director of Morning Stories popped in from time to time to leave messages and I was excited to meet him when I went to Los Angeles for a taping of Says You.
And then. It just all dissolved! Seemingly overnight. The Morning Stories transcriber group hasn't had a message in months. I tried to start a discussion, pointing out that I hadn't heard from anyone and asking what everyone was doing and there was a resounding echoing silence in response. My note to Tony following our meeting, following up on something we discussed, was never answered.
I had a note from Liz when it was my turn to transcribe the next new Morning Stories podcast. And one of the women, who is on Twitter, occasionally leaves me a "tweet" (that's what Twitter messages are called...I'm so hip!)
But my god ... that was the fastest coming together and splitting up since Brittney Spears' last marriage.
That is the problem with on-line relationships. You can be the best of friends one day and the next day you don't hear a word from someone -- and you have no way of knowing if they are alive and just sick and tired of you, or dead and nobody knew to contact you.
We had a group that grew out of one discussion group on CompuServe. When CIS started getting wonky, one of the people set up a discussion group that went hot and heavy for quite a long time. But then it just all kind of faded away. Some of the group had physical problems and we have no way of knowing how they are, all the banter has stopped completely. We only hear from each other when someone is traveling or when someone has a birthday. Being a part of each other's lives is completely gone.
Fortunately there is my other CIS discussion group, now also a Yahoo group. We've been together for over 10 years and are still as friendly as we always were. We also have ways of finding a lost soul who stops posting messages for a while. We all have each other's address. Most of us have each other's cell phone number, if worse comes to worse. I don't see this group splitting up in the foreseeable future, at least not until we start dying off.
I'm also glad to know that Walt has contact information for Peggy, in case something should happen to me, and Peggy has friends who would contact me if something happened to her. That's not a friendship that is likely to fade away into nothing.
But there are other people I've lost, people whose blogs I followed religiously, who never post any more. Someone wrote to me recently because he'd come across my name on The Bitter Hag's web site. He used to follow her all the time and wondered what she was doing. I had to tell him that, like him, I had no idea. I only knew what was going on in her life from her blog and she hasn't written a blog entry in over a year.
Likewise SecraTerri hasn't written a blog entry in more than two years. She and "Haggie" were people I knew in real life, people with whom I had gone on bike rides, and now there is no way to contact either of them. I wonder about them because I care about them and considered them friends.
Fortunately Marn is posting again, but went for several months with no posting at all, and when someone passes "a certain age," you just kinda wonder when they disappear, you know?
Maybe this flash in the pan situation I've encountered with the Morning Stories group isn't all that unusual. Maybe it's just the instant gratification of the internet that accentuates the loss of people who once were very important to us.
People do fade out of our lives in real life, but it doesn't seem quite as noticeable until you suddenly realize that "Hey--I haven't heard from so-and-so in a long time." There is a long list of people who fall into that category, and I'm sure that I'm on a similar list for a lot of people. Not people that I don't care about any more, but I guess people that I've grown away from.
But when you're someone's real life friend, someone else generally knows it and lets you know if something happens to your friend.
I just had to check on Denver Doug, who was one of those people that I kind of let slip...then discovered he had been diagnosed with inoperable cancer. I checked him out today and he posted an entry on June 5 (the previous one was in April), so he's still around and I was able to put a note in his guestbook telling him I was thinking about him.
But I don't think there is going to be any follow up with the Morning
Stories group. We hadn't actually formed a close bond yet, just getting to know
you stuff. Still, I felt there was the potential for a close-knit group among some
of us, and it's sorry to see that it all seems to have dissolved, perhaps on the heels of
the sad news that Morning Stories is not going to continue after the current
PHOTO OF THE DAY
MILES TO NOWHERE: 52 miles