When I was about ten or eleven, I had a pen pal. She was my Grandma’s cousin and was about 50 years older than me. She was one of the coolest people I have ever met. She was the first person that I knew who talked about meditation and sustainable logging, long before either were cool. She traveled and wrote to me about her adventures. It was fantastic to get a letter addressed to ME from someone who was obliviously living a grand life.
It dawned on me that pen pals are a thing of the past (How many times do you write an actual letter in a year?). But this blogging thing, isn’t it a bit like having the whole world as your pen pal? How cool is it to connect with people, instantly on the other side of the planet. More and more the boundaries that once separated all of us fade in the wake of technology. It is easy to forget that not that long ago things were different. There was no need to unplug because we weren’t plugged in. Communication was slower, and some people could argue that the slowness and effort required made people value communication more then than now. But the sheer number of people blogging and twittering and posting tells me that the desire to hear and be heard to as strong as ever. It is just far easier now.
Still… if you wrote me a letter to tell me about your life, would it be more special than an IM?