Friday, August 07, 2009

Twitter Musings

A friend of mine, Catherine Ventura, wrote a lovely little blog for The Huffington Post. She alerted me to it in an e-mail in which she apologized for a guy she sent our way to look into sharing some of our NY office space flaking out by not showing up or returning calls after contacting us to display an interest.

First, her post, totally readable:

The e-mail:

Sorry if 'Clifford' turned out to be a flake....
Hope you got someone for the space.

No worries
, you tried to send us 'Clifford.' It just would have been nice if he had returned Dan's call when he decided to not show up. Oh well. people, right?

I loved your post. I was going to comment. But as each day passes I find myself closing in on, if not already embracing, my generation's version of my father's inability to figure out how to set the clock on his VCR. I find my learning curve is awful in the face of my 'artistic temperament,' or what very well might have been called ADD had that been a term in my day. My dad called it 'lazy,' of course.
So I sensed it too difficult to figure out how to subscribe to Huffington (I'm a Mac user. If a double click doesn't get me there, I'll likely either not go, or continue on and fuck something up), and will post my comment thusly:

I've found
two real values in internet communication. First, in the broadest sense, it allows people to communicate without having to be in the room at the same time, and without having to have the discipline to find paper, pen, a stamp. It allows us to send off 'postcards' via quick connecting e-mails, conversations through IMs, and of course, the reality of The Jetsons, via Skype. Joy abounds!!

But it's greatest value, I think, has been the ability it gives us to rediscover the lost art of letter writing. I think this is an amazing gift. That said, I find with the advent of facebook, even I, with this literary clarity, have progressively less and less time allocated, less patience, and less desire to write lengthy tomes as a way to communicate. This is a real shame, because if I, a child of the 50's, thus spawn of the people who came of age in the 20's, am seeing this erode, then I have to believe that this 'gift' probably, outside the world of blogs (which is, I grant you, an important component here), isn't even recognized by most people, folks who are embracing a communications medium with a radical word limit.

So maybe I would approve, maybe I'd even sign up (might yet do so), if I didn't feel Twitter was the cyberworld's version of the continued attack (MTV established this on the tube a couple generations back) of the "Short Attention Span Theater." I'm not avoiding in protest. I think I'm avoiding as I can see what it might do to me, and I think I don't approve.Still, I'm glad you wrote the piece as it forced me to do all this thinking out loud, on your dime, and got me to write a letter, instead of stopping after the roughly 35 words it took to respond to your note about Darryl. Well done, Catherine.




Blogger Rocky said...

I agree H. I mourn the loss of the epistolary tradition. Recently I was asked by a friend to recount the days when I'd met him and his wife in NY in the late 70's/early 80's. I went back to my "letter drawer" and literally found a treasure trove. Speaking of which, if you haven't heard anything, please google "Ted Gup" and "The Secret Gift." Tom's grandfather George Monnot plays an important role in this and it's gotten quite a bit of coverage.

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