I write this post after a lengthy period of relative Interweb silence. Those of you who know me know that I am persistent like a tick normally, but life has been somewhat busy.
This has created another foray into a circumstance that troubles me, and that is the disposability of social media. In my own life, I have a family, wife and kids, I have a ministry in public office, I have friends and I have the part of my life that is ameliorated by social meejah. I have fast become of the opinion that life is like a large bottle filled with semi-inflated balloon - that when one gets bigger the others become squeezed.
I truly value those whom I call friends in the world of mine that is bound up in Twitter, Facebook or on this silly blog. I have been drawn to them (and I suppose them to me) for precisely the same reasons that I have been drawn to any of my friends - which is to say a commonality of interest, circumstance or perspective. I enjoy their company, and gain from their presence (and if you are reading this, I include you in that).
Recently, the ministry balloon has taken much of the space and I will not let the family balloon be adversely squeezed. That leaves my friends, and especially my SocMed friends, whom I then neglect.
Because my friends are the kindly sort of people that they are, they will call with one voice that it doesn't matter, that they will be there when I find time. I love them for that, but it doesn't help in many ways. Among its many good qualities, one of the poor qualities of social media is is disposability. Put another, I can simply switch it off. I am not one of those who will dabble with Twitter while I am sat with my family, and I try hard not to write blog posts while my kids are in the house. Obviously I cannot do those things while I am exercising the jobs of my ministry, and ministers who Tweet in church are not favoured by me (some things really should be sacred and of the space and place).
It makes me sad in many ways. I regard friendships as robust and important and worthy of all the requisite effort - except that ones built on SM become like the proverbial Bic biro. There has to be a pecking order in the life of anyone, and as a man with many calls on my time (dad, husband, priest, padre, PCC chair, brother, son, uncle, yada yada yada), there have to be priorities. Because social media is mitigated by an 'on' button that be turned 'off', it becomes, sadly, the inevitable loser.
If you are one I have neglected of late, I am sorry.
And enjoy Metallica - they are very loud!