This morning on the way to work I got a call from Mrs. J, all the way from her distant east-coast home. Since she rarely calls in the morning without some exciting tidbit to share, I was surprised when she responded to my greeting with “Well . . . so you’re moving in?!?” I thought back quickly over the past few crazy days – had I called her? – before I realized that she’d heard the news right here, from my blog. At first I was a bit embarrassed that I’d neglected to tell anyone except the IRS, the post office and my office manager. Of course, the first day or two I wanted to keep the news to myself, just enjoy and freak out and be ecstatic and panic all by myself. Then I felt shy – I’m happy and I’m glad to be congratulated but at the same time it’s a private thing and I feel private about it.
Now that I’m comfortable enough to share on the blog, though, it’s time to tell my friends about it. When I fired off a quick “Hey, here’s my new address and oh-by-the-way it’s also The Baron’s address” e-mail this morning, I got the most supportive response from Little Miss Law: “Funny how the blog becomes such an info source, huh? Sometimes when people ask me how I am, I want to say, “Haven’t you read my BLOG???” “
It’s a strange but very real phenomenon, the impact of technology in our lives. I know there must be hordes of sociologists out there right now philosophizing about this very thing, but today at this crossroads in my own life it hit home powerfully how much I rely on e-mail and the internet for the most important of communications.
And allow me a quick tangent, because there’s more . . .
So for all the complaining I do, I actually work pretty hard sometimes, and once in a while I have to goof off a bit with my co-worker (my cubicle buddy, and interestingly enough, holder of an actual ship captain’s license – so I’ll call him Cap’n C). So anyway, Cap and I are fond of such puzzling time-wasters as Professor Fizzwizzle (his fave) and Grow (my fave). But today we have our own real-life Where’s Waldo: we’re looking for Steve Fawcett. This morning on NPR I heard a story about how Google and Amazon are making it possible for everyone with an internet connection to scour the Nevada desert for signs of his plane. Of course, Google Earth works so slowly on our computers that we were only able to spend a few minutes looking, but we each checked out a few “sections” of the desert through the Amazon.com Mechanical Turk website. While I can’t pretend to understand the technology behind this process, the result is undeniable: the world is a much smaller place these days.
From a life-and-death situation like Fawcett’s, to finding a friend or a date or a spouse online, even to the small oscillations of my little life, the technology behind the internet brings people together. Big changes can be scary, they can feel seismic in scope, but there are so many anchor-points out there in the universe to grab on to – so go on, reach out.