Online Intimacy

All too often I follow the breadcrumbs wherever they lead me online. So I stumble across some pretty random stuff. Thus why my RSS reader contains way too much stuff to reasonably read. (That reminds me, I need to cull a couple hundred subscriptions again.)

Well, I found the anonymous blog of a woman in my extended social network (no, not the Web 2.0 sense). There is enough evidence to know who the owner is a specific person 2 degrees away. The one thing which confused me was her use of a pseudonym for talking about someone who was in the news.

Having read just posts covering the last 18 months, I don’t think I could meet her without bursting into tears. She has had a horrible time with three deaths of family or friends, a wedding which didn’t happen, and verbal abuse at work. Tragic stuff has just bombarded her. These horrible events interlacing insightful commentary about media make me sad. Yet I was only able to make myself stop in order to write this post.

Someone who invests the time and energy to publicly write about the difficult personal details of his or her life really impresses me. Years ago I kept journals which became where I expressed many of the emotions I ought to have instead given to the people around me. Whether positive or negative, people deserved to know how I felt about them. Instead pieces of paper received the intimate details of who I was. My friends got a Vulcan. This blog is rather impersonal because I figured out early on in blogging, people who know me would find an anonymous blog and read it for any mention of themselves.

At this point I no longer even try to hide. Anyone reading it knows in seconds Ezra writes it and whether or not they know Ezra. Then again, these cold emotionless bytes are for public consumption.

Irony would be if she reads this post and mentions it. The above details are obvious enough she would almost certainly know I am talking about her. I am relying on the same tricks of not using names of people and places to avoid making it too obvious. They didn’t work for her. So I have one last thing to possibly break the anonymity: We both use the words “rants” and “raves” in the blog titles/subtitles.

Blog Crush: Part II

Following up on my blog crush post.

The Internet is a much bigger place than just the blogosphere. My previous comments were solely about blogs and strictly within the definition of “blog crush” provided in the qotd, not any of the many other forms of communication offered by the Internet. I have made lots of companions and even several friends over the Internet. I currenly have more companions and friends from online sources than offline sources (though I am currently working harder to create offline, local relationships).

Its a Straw Man Argument to characterize my lack of enthusiasm about making friends through blogs as because I am not open or trusting.

From the definition of acquaintance:

1. Acquaintance, associate, companion, friend refer to a person with whom one is in contact. An acquaintance is someone recognized by sight or someone known, though not intimately: a casual acquaintance. An associate is a person who is often in one’s company, usually because of some work, enterprise, or pursuit in common: a business associate. A companion is a person who shares one’s activities, fate, or condition: a traveling companion; companion in despair. A friend is a person with whom one is on intimate terms and for whom one feels a warm affection: a trusted friend. 3. familiarity, awareness.

I don’t share the intimate details of my life in blogs. Of course, I don’t share the intimate details of my life with anyone other than a handful of people. From the dozens of personal blogs I’ve read (leaves out the newsies, techies, etc), almost all do the same as I in leaving out the intimate details. Other than George, I don’t think the rest of you care very much for the details of some woman sticking her tongue down my throat, the details of who I find physically attractive, or even for whom I am going to vote. This lack of intimacy on everyone’s part is what prevents the creation of friendships from solely the use of blogs.

So what about warm affection? A good test, I think, would be to suddenly read in the blog post that a friend and family member wrote the blogger died. How would I feel? Would I cry over the loss? Would I want to go to that person’s funeral? With Bernie or George, I would really feel the loss and at least shed a tear. Prema, Porsche, and Briana would get a least some thinking about the great memories for a long time combined with feeling of loss. The others? I would feel a little bad, but I would not be devestated. Sorry, Gina.

Certainly, I have been called a Vulcan or even named Tuvok. My interpretation of what is a friend probably is much stricter than most would use. However, I am very open to making friends online. One can always use another friend.

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Origins of Brazilian Soccer Scorer Names

The link is for the article at Slate. A good teaser paragraph.

How Brazilian soccer players get their names. By Nick Schulz:

Brazil’s affinity for nicknames might stem from the country’s historically high illiteracy rate. As such, shortened spoken names are typically used more often than longer birth names. In Brazilian society, the use of a first name or nickname is a mark of intimacy. It’s also often a class signifier. Lula, for one, is known for his working-class roots.

This might help those a little confused about Ronaldo and Ronaldinho.

Players with the same first name often change their moniker to differentiate themselves. In recent decades, there have been several Ronaldos at the national level. One became known as Ronaldao, meaning “big Ronaldo.” Another became Ronaldinho, meaning “little Ronaldo.” When another Ronaldinho came along in the late 1990s, he was called Ronaldinho Gaucho—that is, “little Ronaldo from Rio Grande do Sul.” Eventually, the first Ronaldo left the Brazilian national squad, so Ronaldinho became Ronaldo. Ronaldinho Gaucho became Ronaldinho.

Yeah, its a tad complicated…