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Tuesday, October 6, 2009

A slice of honesty

I watched a Youtube video (Vlog) the other day in which the vlogger stated they were so happy to have their best friend’s support. The best friend in question was someone he’d never meet (IRL) living on the other side of the world.

Don’t get me wrong – I’ve met a lot of people thanks to the internet, some of whom I’m friends with i.e we e-mail, talk on the phone, send one another birthday and Christmas card etc. But some of these friends I’ve NEVER MEET in real life. (Real life, where you have, physically shared, personal space!) Some of the friends I’ve made online I’ve meet in real life, and thus they fall into the category of friends I meet via the net. (I’m not into putting my personal relationships with people into categories! I’m simply making a point of categories for this blog!)

Anyway… Out of the friends I’ve made online I’ve have varying relationships with. Some I’ve shared flats with, others I’ve slept with, some I just talk on the phone occasionally, others it’s only contact via the net through e-mail, and msn etc. The point I’m getting to is that I wouldn’t call any of them my best friend.

Best friend, is well something you find in a playground with children who put their friendships into different levels and award those ‘better’ than others the tag / label of ‘best friend’. Of all my friends I have I don’t have a ‘best’ one. They are all equal to me, they all represent something unique, thus the reason I’m friends with them, but none are ‘better’ than the other, and therefore I do not have a ‘best friend(s)’ I just have a group of close friends, and those who ‘know’ my name. (Does that make sense).

So back to the original topic I started out on. How can someone be a ‘best friend’ if you’ve never actually met them? When you have a RL friend, it different to the relationship you have with those you’ve never met. It’s those little things that you get from personal space contact that make your friendships in real life differ to those on line, the way someone looks at you when they talk can’t be replaced by a smiley in an e-mail. Nor can that sense of reality you get from someone when you see them, read their body language etc, be replicated online.

Which brings me to the following explanation. I meet a girl online years ago now, we chatted online, swapped e-mails, spoke on the phone etc and I ‘really’ liked her, but when I finally got to ‘meet’ her in real life, she wasn’t what I’d built up in my mind – (I did know what she looked like – this is not some vanity thing!) Her mannerism, the way she spoke when she was off guard, her blatant view on certain topics (You know the kind their opinion and thought are the ONLY correct one) It's these things that you can’t pick up over the phone, or the net. It’s that in the flesh connection, which makes me well scoff at these people who try and tell me their ‘best friend’ is someone who lives in another country and they have never met them, but they are like their bestest friend ever!

Some could look at this as ‘oh but he’s young’ Fuck that excuse! Everyone is ‘young’ at some stage in their lives, it’s the experiences we go through that make us the people / adults we are today. This oh but S/he is young is wearing a little thin as an excuse for ignorance. Step outside your front door, experience the world and base friendship and trust on MORE than a pleasantly rehearsed e-mail or a very controlled phone conversation!

I like all the people I’m friends with (That’s kind of an obvious statement as I’d not be friends with people I don’t like, but I’m sure you know what I mean!) I like and enjoy the ‘exchange of communication’ I have with online friends who I may or may not have met, and those who have to put up with my ugly mug in real life those pre internet friends.

Break out the ‘what you see is what you get friend’ That’s what the world needs more of.

That’s all I’ve got.

1 comment:

ScoMan said...

I think, especially for young people, it's a lot easier to share everything with someone you've never met because you don't have to look them in the eye and you won't be there if they laugh at your secrets. That sort of sharing can I guess create an intense trust in the other person and would be why they consider the other person their best friend.

And I'm not defending it, I think it's stupid too. I guess my point is, young people are stupid.