Monday, August 10, 2009

Twitterpated with Twitter

In 1942 Walt Disney produced an animated film called "Bambi".... is it necessary to remind anyone of the plot and characters of this beloved animated classic? Actually, I haven't let my kids see this movie yet, as I have sensitive kids and it would really hurt them to see Bambi's mom killed. I know, I know... that's just how life is but it would hurt my youngest, or perhaps I'm just projecting my own grief and emotion I felt as a child onto her!

Regardless, I've always loved Thumper's word Twitterpated to describe falling in love. In High School my best friend and I would constantly used the word; it's just such a fun word to say. Whimsical, different, and amusing. It helped that both my friend and I were Disney fans and knew nearly every Disney animated film produced. (my friend even more so than I)

I'm in love with Twitter. Twitterpated, even. It started out innocently enough. I was given an iPhone as a Christmas gift by my wonderful husband. I still joke that he's an "enabler" and is encouraging my internet addiction. This would be funny if it wasn't so true. In an online conversation someone has suggested Twitter and I was trying to figure out what exactly it was. He attempted to explain it and it was obvious he loved it though his explanation did not do much to inform or excite me, but I joined. He had encouraged me to go through his contact list and pick a few people that looked interesting and follow them. This to me seemed so bizarre; isn't that like stalking? Why would others want a total strange to follow them? Why would I wish to follow them?

At the beginning I kept all my information private; people had to request and be approved to follow me. There were times I'd change the setting to public and inevitably I'd attract a few half naked women "following" me, but it's easy enough to block them. I've been faithfully tweeting now for about 8 months. I could not tell you why I was addicted to twitter; Twitter was just an extension of my Facebook and for me, Facebook was the main attraction, only I chose to update it via twitter, and update I did!

I found myself addicted to twitter without even understanding it's draw. I loved to tweet every little thing I was doing, what I was reading, what my kids were doing, what I was eating. But I got to wonder, why does anyone care? I'm not saying anything meaningful here. Why would a stranger wish to know I went grocery shopping or am stuck in traffic? The life of a SAHM is pretty mundane in 140 characters or less. Plus, I hardly had any twitter followers and the ones I did have were all on my Facebook page so why Twitter?

This past month I am beginning to understand twitter and it really is addicting. I just might like it more than facebook. There's a beautiful simplicity to twitter. Although my facebook friends are primarily people I know, lately twitter has been comprised of people I don't know. It boggles my mind why these strangers who seem really cool, interesting, and intelligent would choose to follow me. The funny thing is that this latest group seem to all know each other. It's been fun in itself following their tweets. I have chosen to follow them as well and even have checked out their blog and they truly are amazing people that I'd never have "known" otherwise. I guess they don't exactly know me. But does it matter?

Twitter and social networking are ways of connection, and though I just follow their tweets right now I don't feel comfortable contacting them, be it by @replies or direct messages, but I have commented on their blogs, and feel that they bring a smile to my face, though I'm sure they'll never know it. This group of people (they're all from Tennessee) interact often on twitter and in real life too. I'm actually envious.

So, my friends who are IRL friends, please join twitter. I want a community like they have: a community online that spills out into my everyday life. A community that shares the mundane stuff like standing in line at a store or their choice of dinner, as well as the prayer requests and impromptu coffee or meals together. I want to share life, all of life, with my friends.

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