I don't think of myself as old. Really, my hair is this color naturally. I can hoof four miles of mall at ten minutes a mile, pushing a stroller and forty pounds of kid, and I know my way around a computer pretty well. I've been programming computers before schools had them and I learned to do it from a workbook. I remember when computer screens were black with neon orange type and asteroids seemed like really advanced graphics. I owned one of the first laptops... one of those behemoths that required a suitcase with wheels to haul around. I mean, I'm not a computer engineer or anything, but I do double as the help desk for many friends and family who find themselves unable to discern why their computers are wigging out (okay, does that phrase date me??).
But though I get the technical side of things, the whole social thing, aside from email, is a mystery to me. I joined myspace just to be able to contact a long-lost friend who had a site, then suddenly started getting daily messages from old guys (by old I mean with grandchildren my age) so, adequately creeped out, I got rid of that.
Now I have blogger. And I discovered a world of other bloggers out there. People who are agents, and writers, and parents, and friends, and a lot of strangers that seem really neat. And a lot of these strangers are younger than me. Which makes me, the naturally blond, can kick your butt Wii skiing, completely able to set the time on my own DVD player thank you very much, the old person. Yikes!
I've found a few bloggers I really like. They are smart, sassy, funny. I want to tell them this. I want to write in their comments, I love this! You are amazing! Your life sounds fascinating and fun and I wish I were one of your friends because you sound just like someone I'd hang around with, except, you know, I'm all old and stuff and I'd embarrass you. But this post was hilarious and I totally relate. I check your blog every day because you totally rock!
And then I don't, because doesn't this sound a bit stalkerish?
What are the etiquette rules for blogging? Besides being civil and polite, is it okay to say, "I happened upon your blog and I really like it"? Is it okay to comment on what appears to be personal revelations or activities? Although I realize these things are put out into cyberspace with the awareness they are open to public access, do people want the public access? Do they want strangers peering into their lives?
It's a little like reality TV, except you actually can communicate with these people. It's reality computer. And I'm just afraid I'm the middle-aged woman everyone wants to vote off first.