Saturday, May 26, 2007

Lost in Translation

This week I dove head first into blogging. Then I stayed in the pool learning to swim, splashing water on my friends, and getting a bit sunburned in the process.

Once I had created my own blog, I was obsessed with reading the blogs of my friends, their friends, and eventually perfect strangers. I wanted to know what people blogged about. How did they structure their site? Were they blogging to journal or were they speaking to an audience? In the process I found a whole new world of some truly amazing writers. And then I started leaving comments. I wanted them to know how great their blogs were. I wanted to impress them with my own wit and perspective. In fact, I had to stop myself or I could have stayed out there for days in my frenzy of reading and commenting. Sigh. I am such a dork.

Then I got an email. An email, from one of those really amazing writers, apologizing for offending me. Apparently one of my comments which was meant to be 'thought provoking' and 'supportive' was taken as criticsm. (And don't go bother looking for it dearies...I deleted it!) I was heartbroken. How could I be so misunderstood? Then I remembed something I have thought a lot about lately, but forgot in my heady entry into blogsville. Sometimes in writing, things get lost in translation.

We have become a society of writers. Emails, message boards, blogs. We are more connected than ever before. But we are also different than we would be in person. We're braver in our criticisms. Quicker in our responses. Stonger in our opinions. And in all of this, something gets lost. Without the inflections you hear in a voice, without the smiles (or hurt or surprise) you see in a face we don't soften our blows as much. And sometimes, as I was, we are just plain misunderstood. A quick response to an email might seem uncaring. A humerous response to a blog might seem critical. So maybe we have more connections, but I can't help but wonder if they are as genuine.

Well my blogger friend and I made up after a heartfelt return apology on my part for not speaking more clearly. But as a result, I am challenging myself to pick up the phone more, meet friends in person more and to remember that cyber-speak will never be an adequate substitute for a voice, especially the voice of a friend.
~~~~~~~

Oh! And on a lighter note...to help me keep this resolution my darling husband got me a new cell phone. Okay, not really, that was a failed attempt to segue. He actually had a credit for a free phone that he used on me and took my old one, which still makes him darling in my book. It's so cool. It even has an MP3 player, but I have to admit that my favorite part about it is that it's hot pink. There is just something about a hot pink phone that makes me happy. I am a very girly dork, after all. ~grin~

4 comments:

Don and Lynn said...

Very true how things can get lost in writing! I got a new phone, too! It has an MP3 player, camera, etc. and I have NO idea how to work anything-lol! Who's the dork now :)

TINA DECKER said...

HEY SIS, YEA I TRIED SOME OTHER SITE AND IT DID NOT WORK OUT SO I DECIDED TO COPYCAT YOU AND LYNN. HOPE YALL DONT MIND. THANKS FOR MY COMMENTS. HOPE YALL HAD A GOOD MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND. GIVE EVERYONE MY LOVE.

karen said...

Woo-hoo to new cell phones! I desperately need one but am delaying the eventual torture of having to re-enter the sixty-jillion numbers I've saved into my current phone over the three years I've managed not to entirely kill it (it gets regularly dropped, just to keep it in its place...).

I got to hang with parts of your family this weekend - much fun! Rumor has it that you'll be travelling in for your cousin's wedding at the end of June? If so, we'll get to meet! Imagine the cross-blogging possibilities...soon you, too, can be viewing life events through the lens of, "How can I fit this into my blog?" :)

Shawn said...

So, true! So, true! That's a great vow to make ... I feel the same way sometimes. But, after so many attempts to try and make phone conversations work, busy schedules usually rule us back to e-mail. Vicious cycle, I think.