Friday, December 21, 2007

Mirror within Mirrors

One of our friends wrote a warm and thoughtful note on my modest efforts here. Because some of her comments are so universal I include it below, as well as my reply to her.

"Dear Bob,

I read, with great interest, your entire blog entries (skipping over, I'm afraid, the tech speech) and found it to be so fascinating because it's such a part of you that has been hinted at in various conversations but never really spoken about in detail. I loved reading it. You are ….so thoughtful and reflective about your life.

It also makes me aware and a bit sad that we spend so much time with people we love, but do we ever really listen to them, do we care about what they think and feel, or, are we just interested in "having a fun time and passing the evening?" Why don't we spend more time talking about life instead of which restaurant we should try next? Is listening and caring something of the past? Did it ever exist? This is something I will think about today, as I am afraid I am as guilty of this as the next person.

Thanks for sharing your blog with me; I will look forward to the next entry."

Dear Friend,

Thanks for taking the time to read the blog and making such insightful comments. It seems that so much of socialization is merely passing time. I don’t tell jokes, not that I don’t enjoy hearing a good one, but I neither remember them nor see the point in retelling them. For the same reason, I don’t forward (or want) broadcasted emails containing jokes, advice, political views, warnings, etc.

Socialization is more challenging as we age. Our working lives are over, although some people still constantly talk about their former working lives as if they are still employed. Everything seems to turn to chitchat. But the kind of personal issues I try to write about are difficult subjects and maybe that’s why “blogging” is a more ideal venue for reflective thought and feelings. Working them out in writing, for me at least, gives them a level of meaningfulness and accountability lacking in conversation.

As to the “next entry,” that is one of my concerns. Once embarked on this path, there are expectations, mostly ones on my part. I’d love to write often but there are other conflicting interests, including my music and a stack of unread books. Eventually I will get around to other projects, mostly autobiographical. May they be worthy of your note.