I love Facebook. I don’t care what any detractors have to say about it. Recently I discovered my genuine love of people in real life. I had considered myself a disgruntled neurotic with the constitution of a hardened New Yorker for most of my life. However, that hard exterior has proven to be a soft cocoon, and I’ve emerged a very Southern and warm butterfly or at least one of those really pretty moths.
Now that I love people, I want to get to know them all. Or at least as well as I can in the limited amount of time I have to spend with them. And here is where the glory of the Internet comes in. I can keep in contact with my friends all over the world without having to track their phone numbers down and leave them voicemails. Some might say this cheapens relationships. I disagree completely. Recently, I posted on my Wall that I was flying down to Nicaragua to go surfing and less than half an hour later, I got an email from a friend I had met in Costa Rica a few weeks before. She said she’d meet me in Nica for a few days of surfing together in the middle of my trip. She showed up, and it was amazing. A quick opportunistic vacation friendship has now turned into a Surf Buddy friendship hopefully for life. We’re plotting our next trip at this very moment.
In spite of this love of the World Wide Web, there are still complications. Just today, I had a chat conversation where all subtlety was lost. I am a relatively good communicator in person using hand gestures a lot, and I’ve got expressive eyebrows and a loud voice. But this chat went awry when I tried to be coy and flirtatious while typing with a guy who speaks English really well but it’s still his second language. The Internet will rob you of your game every time. Instead of impressing this guy with my coolness, I think I may have insulted him deeply. I was just trying to be funny, but I suppose I need to be a bit more sensitive with my sense of humor when dealing with matters of the heart over the Internet.
But if it weren’t for the Internet, I’d never have been able to contact this person in the first place. Or I would have had to write a letter. I can only imagine how much humor and subtlety gets lost by the Postal Service every year.