John F Waterman
The works of John F Waterman

Blog 04.03.17 April 4, 2017

Hello there.

It’s been almost a year since I began writing these Blogs. Not as often as I like or ought to, but it’s a hobby; I try to save writing them for when I have something to say that I feel is important.

Most of us (I’m guessing . . .) have friends. Many of us have close relationships with these people, who represent important relationships in our lives. Sometimes we see these people every day and sometimes years pass before we can sit down face-to-face and speak with them. Social media can be an important tool we use to stay in touch with people we otherwise wouldn’t contact very often. However, it can also serve to distance us from them as well.

Social media makes it easy to send a post to a friend and also comment on one of theirs, just as social media makes it easy to post something to the world at large and receive comments from hundreds or thousands of people, most of whom DON’T know you up close and personally. It’s too easy to just whip off a post or a comment, and then assume that you’ve maintained that key interaction that makes you friends . . .and more importantly reinforces and maintains it. You can remain friends with someone who lives on the other side of the planet that you haven’t seen in decades via social media; not impossible, but often difficult anyway. I keep in touch with a large group of folks via social media whom I spent months and years with in very trying circumstances. We share bonds forged during the most eventful periods of our lives, when we were young and impressionable and under a LOT of stress.

Other friends live just a few kilometers away, but we still don’t see one another as much as we’d like. We have lives, families, jobs, schedules; a whole host of ‘things’ that seem to conspire to keep us from spending the best-quality time together–which is TIME TOGETHER. They end up sounding like pretty sorry excuses to not hang out . . .but they all add up. The worst of it is that we’ll still use social media to ‘stay in touch’ with these folks who live a short car ride away, when we could just make a date to have coffee, or dinner, or just drop by and be face-to-face with one another. The Russians have a term for being together; ‘drug s drugom‘. It literally means ‘friend with friend’.

I haven’t been spending that sort of time with some of my closest friends. I will not offer excuses. Instead I’m just going to go and spend that time with them. I advise you all to do the same. Don’t make excuses; make (and keep) friends. Especially if they are literally a few thousand meters away from you. Be polite and solicitous of their personal space, but GO and BE with them; and do what humans do best and are at their best when doing it.

Keep striving, friends.


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