This online world, of blogs and message boards, creates a series of connections. It grants us all the illusion of intimacy. I know people's hopes and dreams and yet I wouldn't be able to pick them out of a lineup. I know details about people's sex lives and bodily functions yet I have no idea how they take their coffee (or even if they take coffee). For all I know, all these people I encounter electronically and with whom I have meaningful interactions may not even exist.
As I have said before, I am wary of crossing boundaries. I have read too many fantasy novels and have too active an imagination. In works of fiction (like the Alan Ayckbourn play Invisible Friends), when one meets an imaginary friend, it usually ends in disaster. The boundaries exist for a reason and we should not dwell long in the border regions. So I remain inside a shell and rarely extend myself.
But, I wonder, isn't all that just a bunch of pseudo-intellectual drivel and psychobabble? Isn't that just my anti-social nature trying to keep me from reaching out and have meaningful interactions with others? Why am I letting my fear do the talking? What is the worst that could happen? What is so great about this shell, anyway?
So it was with all of these thoughts swirling through my consciousness, along with the far more immediate thoughts like, "Will she like me?" and "Will I like her?" that I drove up to the W hotel and picked up Karrie this afternoon.
Of course, I wanted to impress her, so I took her to my favorite book and record stores. We ate at a hipster cafe. She came over to my house and I made her coffee (and now I know how she takes it). She met my cat, husband, and child (in that order). I showed her a closet full of black dresses. There were many threads of conversations which were inadvertently dropped and now I find myself wishing I had remembered to pick them up again. There were many questions I wanted to ask which I forgot to ask. In short, six hours was not nearly enough time and Karrie must visit again (or we will be forced to visit her).
This imaginary friend thing kindof rocks.
And, for those of you who are interested, I took pictures.
Yes, Karrie is very tall and I am not. And she is very fair and I am dark. We could hit the road as a comedy act.
Alas, Karrie failed to get any pictures of me as she is still learning how to use all the special features of the iPhone (!) and the lighting in my house wasn't the best for picture taking. But that just means she has to visit again.