on parenting, kids, writing, humor, children's books, all books, traditions, the weird and intangible

Exit, pursued by a bear

Exit, pursued by a bear

Don’t you marvel at the social media dance floors? The swirling lights, the beat so loud you have to shout, the smoke, the mirrors, the stag line, the bouncers, the mean girls, those dancing in the front row and being pulled on the stage? Rave on Tumblr, dance your days away on Facebook, join a flash mob on Twitter. Become an actor on the stage called The Blogosphere.

I find it fascinating to see who posts their sock brand, and who still has an egg as their profile picture.

I am in awe of it all.

And at the same time, I feel it will eat me alive. Take Twitter. A young (under 21 year old) friend recently advised that tweets should be happening NOW. That’s cool bro (I probably said ‘young man’ but anyway)… I can do that. But in truth, I find the tweets so in-the-moment that I am immediately left behind, creating *FOMO, not the Zen that Deepak promised, if I were to find it (the moment). And then there’s the hangover – the beat-yourself-up I-got-nothing-done feeling after a day of seeking and liking. Apparently I’m not too old (see pew internet), so what’s my problem?

I do often think about this article: This one: Your Brain on Facebook:

“.. the brain network that is always on in the background is a region involved in thinking about yourself and other people . . There is a circuitry for “seeking” and a circuitry for “liking.”  The liking response settles down the excitement of the seeking circuitry. Without the liking response, we’re like the rat pressing the level over and over to get a little dopamine hit, forgetting all about food and rest .. The circuitry activated when you connect online is the seeking circuitry of dopamine. Yet when we connect with people online, we don’t tend to get the oxytocin or serotonin calming reward that happens when we bond with someone in real time, when our circuits resonate with real-time shared emotions and experiences.”

Makes total sense, and leaves me feeling like a slobbering Pavlov dog.

My latest quandary relates to this blog. Don’t you wonder who would want to read your mundane thoughts? I do. Writing a blog is part of who I am, yet a challenge like no other. To just write thoughts as they come with no peer-reviewed evidence based research, no lofty new ideas, no constructive advice – medical or other – seems .. a lavish, indulgent act. And so I stop and start and stop, and start again.

I do get hundreds of comments every day. A Nike apparel maker loves to send me words of encouragement. Many want to help with getting more traffic to my site. So thoughtful. Alberta Beef likes the way I connect the dots, and all sort of Ray Ban distributors send me cryptic, or German or Chinese comments daily. This one, just in:

     Hello, you used to write magnificent, but the last several posts have been kinda boring I miss your tremendous writings. Past few posts are just a bit out of track! come on!

from a Louis Vuitton handbag! The craziest thing was that that it stuck in my head – in fact, I think the handbag was right! And I’ve carried that sentiment around with me since 🙂

Some days when I exit the dance floor, the frantic stage, I’m Antigonus in a windstorm, with a social-media bear on my tail. I  endure a quiet mauling and die (apparently), offstage.

But when my Mac is next online, as the curtain opens to the perpetual beat, I’m there again, acting, a little less; dancing just a little less awkwardly.

[serious disclaimer: I actually wouldn’t be able to spot an actual comment at this point. So apologies if I’ve committed you to spam.
And serious PS for those of us over-40 – *FOMO = fear of missing out.]




Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *