Thursday, May 29, 2008

Two Worlds

So here I am with a couple of hours all to myself, back in the Arlington routine for a week or so, with the luxury of time to explore the ether. It's becoming clear the deeper I get into my writing and friendships here that I inhabit two entirely separate worlds: this one and the flesh-and-blood one. You readers are familiar with both, because I'm able to talk about the flesh-and-blood world here in my writing, but you only know me in my "literary" voice, the one that comes out soundlessly via my keyboard. The people in my flesh-and-blood world by and large do not know about the virtual world I inhabit with you. They either don't understand blogging, or they are too busy with their flesh-and-blood lives to have the time to mosey around in the ethernet, or they are not great readers....the reasons are many, and depending on the person each one is valid. But they know a "me" that you don't: in that other world I tend to ask questions and then sit back and listen instead of dominating the conversation as I do here.

I, of course, have the best of both, but wish I could mix the two better. I know many of us here in the virtual neighborhood would have a splendid time together in the flesh, even if it were only to wow each other with our music and food! (Well, what else is there?!) And I wish more of my flesh-and-blood neighborhood knew about the writing me, but changing peoples' habits is not my job. If they drift by here and enjoy, that's fine. But I guess I'll need to talk about it. You know--with my flesh-and-blood voice.

Today my flesh-and-blood doctor beckons to talk about the results of the hip MRI I had a couple of weeks ago. I doubt there is much to worry about, especially since the pain pill I got from the rheumatologist is working so nicely. But I'll find out soon enough.


Nan said...

Ralph, my wonderful blog friend, great songs and great post today! I have had similar thoughts on the whole "two worlds" thing. Only I suspect we have even more than two worlds! I was a huge Supertramp fan in the late 70s and early 80s – buying every album they put out. Breakfast in America and Even in the Quietest Moments were my favorite two albums, the latter of the two giving me several songs that just made me sob for some reason. Love the Rufus composition. I was just saying to Tom last night that I had to write to thank you for introducing me to Slings and Arrows. We are SO loving that show. Here's to blog friends! And hope that in the F&B world, the MRI results are okay.

splendid said...

dear ralph,
great musings today, i constantly find myself trying to mesh my two lives. i often find such interesting topics online and bringing them up to my family, i mention the blogger's name and they will say oh yes kat the maine woman who loves to travel and talks about her childhood a lot or brian the single dad and teacher from Ok, or ralph the guy with the great recipes and strange taste in music {this from teenagers!}
I love that the internet has made the world so much smaller. Hope all is well with your MRI .

Mim said...

Always love your Rufus Wainwright.
Hope the MRI doesn't show you need hip replacement. A good friend of our's just had hip replacement and in Aug my husband had a knee replacement. Both with good results, but still major surgery.
Yes it is two worlds isn't it. My son often says when he stops by, are you still reading the blogs Mom, as if I don't have a real life. This from someone who uses Facebook and My Space. On it goes...our internet connections and then our real life world.Fun to try to mesh the two.
Good food for thought today.

Anonymous said...

Yes, good luck on the MRI and ya know Ralph, in a way, by just trading recipes we are sharing a dinner or two . . . or more. I am always amazed at people that don't even know me from far away places who email me photos, like the one I posted today "Night Dance" came from a lady who said she loved my blog and if I found the artwork pleasing, please post it. I did. But who is she? Wish I knew her in real life. I'd buy her a coupla beers.

Ralph said...

Splendid, I had to laugh at the music comment. All I can say, when I hit "shuffle" on my ipod, consider it shuffled. Kind of like Forrest Gump's box of chocolates. I like 'em all! (Your kids should hear what I DONT share!)

Yeah, I learn a lot here, too, and share it. As another e-friend says, the Internet doesn't have to be isolating. It does form communities. But it is two distinctly different ways of being "together."

Ralph said...

You're right, Mim. The kids do have their own online communities--we're all off typing to other people!

As to joint replacement: if the pain got that bad, I wouldn't think twice about it, in fact, I'd jump at the chance, with whatever was left of my limbs...all my MD told me today was to go to an orthopedist, so that's the next step.

Ralph said...

You're right, Z&M, this virtual community we create is pretty cool, I must admit. That is a pretty poc she sent--in fact, all your posts today are great. Love the kitty family pictures!

Kat said...

Knowing blogger Ralph is really knowing flesh and blood Ralph. I can hear the words I read as if they were coming from you as we sit around the fire. The difference is your literary voice gets to muse more, to travel all over. You're not bound by conversation.

Splendid, I too find myself describing my blog friends in much the same way you do. My sisters know all my blog peeps as one of my them calls my blogger friends.

The internet has brought us together in remarkable ways!

Cuidado said...

I love this "keyboard community". I think we'd be great dinner companions. Bring a dish and a mixed cd. PEI's as good a place as any.

Great music today, Ral;ph. I know both songs well. Nice choices.

Ravel said...

The only difference here is that we met by the Net. If we were talking on the phone, would you say it is another world?
I always make my attitude the same on the Net that in person, or phone or a letter. The people are real on the other side of my computer...
On a chat I used to go, I saw people taking the liberty of being unpleasant and offensive. THEY make another world of a way of communication. They prob wouldn't do that in person.