CONNECTED OR NOT?       11-15-2015


We tend to think that we are more and more connected with the world, due to Social Networking, websites, cell phones, etc.  But is that really true? It occurred to me, when a friend moved and her cell didn’t seem to be working, that I had no idea how to reach her.  I didn’t know her new address, and I didn’t know the last name of her friend where she moved.  She had already told me that she couldn’t get her computer to go on line, so I didn’t think she would see an email. 


Many of us live in an isolated world. We don’t know our neighbors.  But we know people across the world.  An odd situation, indeed! These are connections to people you have never met and probably never will, but you like them. I love the way one of my friend’s mind works. We play “DrawSomething” and are so compatible that we have a huge score. I usually know what she is drawing before she is finished. I’ve also played with my nephew, whom I’ve not seen or spoken to in more than ten years.


At the same time, I’ve noticed that at parties and other social gatherings, some people have their cell phones with them and check them over and over.  They may be connected with their phone but they aren’t in the moment and aren’t paying attention to the people who are right there in front of them. I have a friend who never goes anywhere without a cell phone, camera and laptop. All of these things are brought into my house, when visiting, and checked repeatedly while visiting me.


Ever been to a party or at a friend’s house where the television is going in the background?  It always makes me feel that I’m not the most important thing in their lives at that moment.  This is especially true when there is a sports game on.  It is mostly men, but they are trying to multi task with watching and also conversing with you. 


I have so many valuable friends from Social Networks but would I ever know what happened if I never heard from them again?  If you have a computer and your partner doesn’t know the password, or doesn’t know how to use a computer, would they ever be able to notify me if someone died?  Would they know that you have meaningful friends on Facebook? Would they even know that you existed in their partner’s life and really cared about them? What about all your personal stuff that is never shared with others. What will your spouse do with your MP3 player, your phone, your email addresses?

I’m probably weird but when I’ve made a personal connection with someone on the internet I care about them and enjoy communicating with them. I will feel sorrow at the loss if they leave my life.


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