--- What to do when StudMoose wants to be your friend
I have always thought of myself as a rather social person. I prefer being left to my own life, with family, but I like meeting people. I try to find a conversation for every person I meet. I can talk farm with farmers, sports with jocks, religion with the faithful, tech with the geeks, and there is always weather. I consciously think of what I know about a person I meet, so that I might initiate a friendly conversation. I want to entertain them if we are waiting, make them feel at ease if I am to introduce them, or just learn a little about their lives from the happenstance of our lives intersecting. Stephen Colbert last night used the term "share the planet", as in, he never shared the planet with John F. Kennedy. Stephen Colbert is younger than I am. I share the planet with many people; I will only get the opportunity to meet a few of them.
I have found everyone has some rather interesting moments to share with you. I always try to make them smile, relax, and hopefully laugh. People can then be themselves, inevitably I will learn a new thing. Of course, now that we put a portion of our lives online, we meet people in ways we do not realize. This makes my manner of tailoring each conversation to match the person I meet less possible. It is harder to find a way to touch the something unique about them. Often sarcastic or frivolous comments are taken too seriously. It is hard to type the raised eyebrow or subtle smirk, I refuse to use emoticons. Our modern society continually strives to unify what seems to be opposing goals. We are trying to become more and more connected as individuals, computer networks, and organizations, while maintaining our privacy, security, and independence. We want more and more powerful electronic gizmos that are smaller and smaller. We have to have high definition screens to give theater-like pictures in our homes, at the same time demanding streaming movies on a smart phone. Avatar in 3D was a spectacular visual experience. Why would I want to watch it on my iPhone?