shrinky dinks – part one

Invisible threads are the strongest ties – Friedreich Nietzsche


I’m a talker. Born to talkers. The types who will strike up conversations with strangers in line at the post office, which made me cringe with embarrassment until the day I realized that I had become them. I have fascinating conversations with strangers in line at the post office. All the time. And one day, I will have children who will cringe until they too begin to strike up conversations while in line waiting to send a package. It’s a never-ending cycle. Long live the US Postal System.

The blogosphere is kind of like a giant version of that line waiting at the USPS. You get to know so many people – so many stories, so many lives, so many ways to connect. Some you actually know. Some only through the ether. Mostly the latter. Until something like BlogHer comes along and there’s a big meet and greet.

Ironically, I was hired as the official photographer for BlogHer in January, just one week before I got my first writing assignment with them. The two were totally unrelated. The people who hired me for each job didn’t know the other.

I’m used to the freelance juggle of writing and photography but have never had two jobs come together like that. In all things social media, I’m beginning to see it is a small world after all.

There’s been a lot of chatter in the weeks leading up to BlogHer. Excitement in the air. I’m beginning to understand why.

These meetups aren’t just about workshops and networking and swag. They’re like seeing old friends except you have no clue how tall they are or recognize their handwriting.

My Australian URL friends Eden and Mrs. Woogs are making their way to LA en route to BlogHer.

I really wish that Eden and I had crossed paths for anything other reason than knowing that her husband and my cousin shared B-Cell Folicular Aggressive Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. I treasure knowing that she and her husband and boys are living, thriving beyond cancer. I was thrilled to walk in honor of her husband at the Light the Night walk last year

I am constantly amazed at the ways in which this whole shrinky dink cyber village brings people together.

The other day, a writer named Fadra guest posted on Eden’s site. And in the shrinky dink way of the web, I knew Fadra through friends (some URL and some IRL) as well as her blog. And just days before we’d been chatting online about iPhone chargers. As you do.

It was a funny six degrees-ish moment to see how all of our lives are crisscrossing – across cities and countries and continents.

Only connect, people. Only connect.

Here’s to saying hello to old friends for the first time. For the record, I’m 5’4 ½.  xo a.

This will be the easiest way to recognize me at BlogHer.


6 thoughts on “shrinky dinks – part one

  1. Denis Wright

    It’s great to meet people in real life whom you’ve met on Twitter. At the same time, don’t you find that sometimes you’d rather stayed as online friends you’d ‘imagined’? Sometimes the reality can be disappointing in some ways. Part of that disappointment can be in yourself rather than the other person – your failure to connect that may be something you think you lack in that person’s eyes.

    Sometimes it’s what you can’t see or hear that creates the attraction in that other personality you discovered, don’t you think?


    1. alexandrawrote Post author

      I think that we often create expectations in our heads of people we only know peripherally – whether online or in real life. With social media, we have redefined “knowing” people. People meeting at social media conferences generally begin via blogs with a common thread connecting them, not so sure about twitter.

  2. Kris & Chris {His Mrs. Her Mr.}

    Can’t wait to hear/read all about your experience at BlogHer. I admire people like you who are outgoing and able to talk to anyone. I think blogging and social media has made it possible to converse will all sorts of people and I love that especially being the sometimes shy person that I am but also love sticking up conversations with kind strangers from time to time, it’s sort of refreshing for me – running into people appear to be genuinely nice and friendly (btw most people I see at the post office are frowning! Perhaps I am going to the wrong one:) ).

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