The first time I ever saw Tmonkey on the street, I knew immediately who he was, because we'd been sharing this blog for a month or two at the time. He just walked and looked exactly like I imagined he might, and to be clear, I could pick him out of a crowd of strangers. I remember the first word out of his mouth, too: "zoinks!"
And then last week, in Tokyo, DBrown and I met the bright and fascinating James Luckett, of consumptive.org, which we've cross-posted plenty. Not that a day is any way to come to any conclusions, but James struck me as more or less exactly who I imagined he might be, from what and how he writes.
I think this is a very powerful and beautiful power of the internet, this kind of knowledge of someone through their interests and how they express them, and how that can be the first stage of a relationship. I think that's kind of new, and good, because it beats some kind of validation through e.g., cliquish social nodes, or, like, sneakers.
Halley Suitt maybe and might not agree, suggesting that we might be "fooling ourselves," that it's a Trompe L'Oeil Online Intimacy. It's an interesting question, and a smart way to ask it. For me, I think the problem might be in the word and idea of "intimacy," which is only one way to consider the kinds of movement we have through each others' lives. There are friends, and there are friendsters, and there are a million other kinds of relationships; some of them are new, typology-wise, because we are connecting to each other with brand new points of contact.
If it's trompe l'oeil, I think it's worth considering that trompe l'oeil painting has its own beauty, and its own value, and that some of the more meaningful experiences I've had with art were the hours I spent staring into it.
Just thinking out loud, as always, and as always, insofar as this is loud.Posted by kevin slavin at November 06, 2003 01:14 AM