Thursday, August 31, 2006

The Relationships of Blogging

The other week when I was home—and screaming obscenities in my parents’ house about all the crap they had to move—my mother cornered me after the hellacious day of packing the pod. “You may think this was rough on you, but it’s worse for me. I’m leaving my house after 31 years.

I sighed, “Woman, we are not moving you to a home. You are choosing to downsize to house that is 900 square feet bigger.”

I don't care.” she responded. “And by the way, I don’t want you to write about this to all those strangers on the Internet.

Mom it’s called a blog.”

She looked back, “I don’t care what it’s called. There are murderers, pedophiles and predators online.” (That fucking dateline guy ruins everything, doesn’t he?)

They’re not strangers, mom. They’re real people. They’re my …well, friends.

(Shit… I said it out loud.) Friends.

In a way, I guess they are. Well, you are.

Confidants. Critics. Sounding Boards. How do you explain to people outside of this blogging world, the relationships that are created in this world? How is it that it’s sometimes easier to be more intimate with people you don’t know. They laugh with you; they cry with you. And yet, they’d most likely pass you in the street without knowing you.

Almost none of my friends nor family have blogs. Most will read and then drop me an email to respond. Not one person I know shares in this world of blogging relationships.

So how do you explain to someone how exciting it is to have someone link to you? Who else appreciates the thrill of increasing the number of subscribers on bloglines. Or the validation when other bloggers invite you to become part of their blog.

These are my friends. These are people
• Who I’ve met
Who parent like I do
• Who I correspond with every few days
• Who share mutual friends
• Who live in my home town
• Who have the same afflictions I do
• Who I’ve talked on the phone with

I love getting up in the morning and seeing what my friends have created in the last 24 hours. Each person has a very different style that moves me in different ways. And each has made me feel important as they read and comment on my creations.

So yes mom, in some strange way, these are my friends. As weird as it (or they) may be, I've grown to enjoy and cherish them.



Blogger Peter said...

Thanks for including me in your list of friends, Friend.
When I got home from work Heidi was on that site you reffered us to yesterday. She was having a bit of trouble picking a photo. She only has about a million to choose from.

1:43 PM  
Anonymous MetroDad said...

Well said, Steve. I think it's hard for "outsiders" to realize the sense of community and friendships being formed online. It's very cool though. I've gotten so much more out of blogging than I could have imagined.

2:11 PM  
Blogger MotherReader said...

I'm...tearing up. That was so very sweet. And very true about the relationships that form online. Thanks for including me in your list. Thanks too for being a unique voice in the daddy blogger arena

10:13 PM  
Blogger Steve S said...

I don't know anybody offline who blogs either. And I can remember my mom warning me about people online, but if you watch the news when they arrest these predators and pedophiles, they're always church going people, something our church going old school parents often forget.

11:59 PM  
Blogger KristieD said...

i am a lone blogger too in my family. well, 2 weeks ago i got my mom and my sister to start one, but my mom will probably never post again, and my sister isnt too into it either.

I have "friends" too. The ones i consistently comment on and they come visit me too. Even exchange emails. My friends and family dont get it. But i love it.

12:04 AM  
Blogger The Brian said...

Very well posted. I'm still new to the whole blogosphere but I'm enjoying it tremendously so far. Still finding the right tone and niche I think. I doubt I'll ever be a blogstar but it's a fun diversion for many of the reasons you point out.

9:58 AM  
Blogger Phil said...

Nice comments. I'm a bit isolated up here in North Idaho, but have managed to meet quite a few local (non-parent) bloggers, and they're all very nice. I've actually talked with one dad blogger on the phone (Brett at DadTalk), but the rest of you all seem like familiar friends after months, even years, of reading your posts.

2:50 AM  
Anonymous Sarah, Goon Squad Sarah said...

It is really hard to explain my "internet friends" to non bloggers. I think my in-laws think I'm really strange for meeting people in real life that I only know from the internet. But you know, when you read someone's blog four or five times a week you really get to know them.

I certainly know more about you than I do about my next door neighbors. I probably e-mail you more than my college roommate. You know more about my day to day life than any of cousins do. You are my friend.

9:41 AM  
Anonymous Richard said...

Samantha, you are truly gifted. I loved this posting. (You don't mind if I call you Samantha in public, do you? I'll change it if you do; I'll cease and desist.) You just let old Patsy know!

9:16 PM  
Blogger Green Dads said...

Hey Steve,
Thanks for the mention.

8:53 PM  
Anonymous JGS said...

Why are you trying to make me cry like that when I am at work??? it's nice I am not alone in thinking about all of this. And that I'm not writing to some "murderer, pedophile, and predator."

That's a big weight off of my mind. ;-) Thanks, man.

4:55 PM  

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