Friday, July 24, 2009

More randomness

Regarding what others think of me... it's a real dilemma, or challenge, for a writer, to not get ego and product mixed up. Of course you want others to like what you write, but first you have to want to write what you write and read what you write. In one sense, everyone else is secondary (sorry, all of you kind folks who might read this).

In terms of what others think of me apart from anything I produce, i.e. if they like me or don't like me, etc.... Well. How utterly embarrassing. As a 42-year-old grown woman, good grief, isn't it obvious that if that matters to me, then at some level I must be having a problem liking myself. So, therefore, I need others to make up the difference.

Oh, brother.

OK, the other sort of random thing I've been thinking about lately is how all of these social networking tools (FB, Twitter, blogs, etc.) are feeding an already narcissistic culture. It's making a value out of self-exposure and self-expression, beyond that of the artistic and into the realm of the purient. I've put my toe into the water of most of these new technologies, and in some cases have jumped in the deep end wholeheartedly. So my comments are not externally critical but looking into the mirror and asking how best to harness it all and where to draw the line.

Looping it back to my almost reckless Sally Field-ish self-expression of paragraph two ("You like me, you really like me!" right? heh heh, she giggles nervously), for me, I need to draw the boundaries for myself based on what I perceive as "useful self-expression" (i.e. useful to others, or useful for me to express to others) and "harmful self-expression" (which I'll just express to myself, or not at all). Maybe others have different boundaries. I'd be curious to hear.

I think this particular posting is potentially useful, because I suspect others may have similar feelings, so my self-exposure/random thought might connect with someone in a good way. Also, I believe most folks I know are primed and ready for a meaningful dialog around the impact of Web 2.0. There is a profound shift in the way we think, talk, write, interact. It is bringing generations together, but it's also creating mini-schisms. I care about this topic because it is making me a bit distracted, but also because I think there may be startling implications for my son as he grows up. I'm just not sure yet what those implications are.

So, there's my randomness on this Friday afternoon. Very fuzzy. I hope you still like me (I mean "like it")... Oops.


  1. "Oh, brother." You rang?

    To me, FB feels like a very large ADHD cocktail party. And yet I do drop in, perhaps indulging in my own form of ADHD. I just have to lower my expectations for meaningful, and lasting, conversation.

    You said, "There is a profound shift in the way we think, talk, write, interact." Neil Postman's work is highly relevant here.

  2. Hey, bro, thanks for the reading recommendation. I'm looking forward to "unplugged" time at the lake to catch up on good books and perhaps a few meaningful, and lasting, conversations.

  3. "It has been demonstrated many times that a culture can survive misinformation and false opinion. It has not yet been demonstrated whether a culture can survive if it takes the measure of the world in twenty-two minutes. Or if the value of its news is determined by the number of laughs it provides" (Neil Postman, Amusing Ourselves to Death, p. 113).

  4. Isn't it a strange paradox that a 24X7 news cycle has actually reduced the depth of coverage available to "measure the world" by? Weird.