On A Pale Horse Called Macintosh Posted: Mar 16, 2012 at 3:56 PM
*Dedicated to my gone but not forgotten cyber-friends*
When something isn’t quite right which is to say I feel something is wrong or perhaps just a tad to the left or right of bein dang peachy and I cant seem to corner up the reasons why, I’ll write my thoughts on paper in hopes of getting a better grasp as to what exactly is bothering me and then be able to proceed on to a possible solution, thereby protecting my sanity, what I have left anyway. It’s sort of like having an outside conversation with myself, sanity not withstanding. As a writer, it happens to me a lot and usually, by the time I’m done, a story evolves. I never seek the story and the best I hope for when I begin the outside-of-myself process is that I can make sense of my thoughts so they don’t rattle around in my brain for days on end because otherwise they usually do.
Now, I find myself wrassling with a real doozie. I don’t think it will become a story because I don’t want that. I would be content with a small revelation or perhaps just a stark reality. I suspect this is going to turn into one of those: “It is what it is” deals, tho Lord knows I already have enough of those in my barn.
Today, I lost another cyber-friend. I say another because that makes two in as many weeks. One I never met but knew for several years from talking in a chatroom setting and the latest friend, whom I did meet in person and have known for at least seven good years. I’m not sure how much more cyber-death I can take. I guess my biggest complaint here is that for the recent two site members/friends, there was no warning. Talking to both of them one day and literally they were gone the next. Two weeks apart but the same abrupt exit, leaving profiles and previous posts behind like cyber tombstones and epitaphs. As I read this part, it occurs to me that if I would have just gone and found my soul mate as I originally half-assed intended when I first joined this site, I wouldn’t be in this mostly depressing predicament.
So, that makes a total of seven on-line friends I have lost since becoming an online-dating/community site member in 2003. As far as the other five, a few I knew were sick and others I had no idea and I’m not sure which I don’t like more, the knowing or the not knowing. I had a close friendship with one member for several years, all the while knowing he had been diagnosed with cancer, long before we met on line. In the last two years of his battle to live, I busied myself marveling at his courage and tried hard every time we visited in chat to not be sad or feel sorry for him because he would never have allowed either from me. When he did pass away, I felt helpless to do anything other than post a farewell note on line. I had no real place to express my grief. When your close friends pass, normally you have the option of attending a funeral, spending time with family members, generally paying your respects and by the way, you usually know the family. Doing such things can ease a lot of pain and bring about a certain amount of closure . A person needs that when a friend passes.
When my close cyber-friends pass, unless I am fortunate to live close by, all I have is a small box with limited wording in which to express my sense of loss. That’s it and no matter what I write, it never conveys the weight of my sadness or the appreciation of knowing that person. And for those cyber-friends I have never met in person yet have known for years on-line the loss is still felt. I’ve come to the conclusion that an on-line community site atmosphere can be a double edge sword in that I have a lot of cyber-friends which is good but consequently, I seem to be losing more cyber-friends than real world friends to death. Adding to my personal plight is that the sadness and sense of loss isn’t any less or greater in either world. Today, having to turn another on-line friendship into a lasting memory is something I am not getting any better at doing…Montewalsh
Re: On A Pale Horse Called Macintosh Posted: Mar 16, 2012 at 4:13 PM
Beautifully said, Monte. I think you really captured our feelings about how the sudden news is so shocking to all of us. One day they are posting a poem, the next day they are gone without warning. All we can do is be kind to one another, and be a good friend, or say I love you when you care about someone, cos you never know. Here today gone tomorrow takes on new meaning when it comes to our cyber friends. This is why it is so upsetting to me when I hear about the chat room quarreling. How important is it really? We need to be kind to one another no matter what our differences are.
I so appreciate you posting this beautiful piece because I think you put into words what so many of us are feeling. We love you Monte Walsh! You are a real gem :)
Re: On A Pale Horse Called Macintosh Posted: Mar 17, 2012 at 12:39 PM
Wonderful orator dear sir, I too feel that double sides of feelings that we plan to meet but the real world gets in the way. I have missed not being in chat for the last couple of months and now really regret not being able to communicate to friends.
Best to all my chat friends those I have met or not.
Re: On A Pale Horse Called Macintosh Posted: Mar 20, 2012 at 6:16 PM
Thanks for putting those words out here Monte in this very interesting cyber space. 80 days ago I joined ES. I actally heard about ES from I guy I went on one date with... obviously I wasn't his dream date...probably talked horses too much...
Anyway, I decided to sign up and see what this ES would be about and to hopefully find some folks to ride with.
I decided to check out chat...I never before chatted. Wow, What a rollercoaster... laughs and music and a little fighting but more than that joy and fun and now saddness. Above it all, I have met the most interesting people ...people who I would never have met otherwise.
What struck me...and I never even considered it.. was the profound sense of loss and sadness I could feel at losing someone who I had never "met". I barely new Bushy and I could feel the sadness at his passing all across chat. I knew Ray/tombstonejack a little more - for a whole 62 days. His passing jolted me. At a point I thought I need to get out of this group because how would it be to lose again... Well upon reflection...
I am lucky to know each and every one of the people I have met here. No matter the future, what we have today in laughter and friendship is so worth it - even if it's just some chat, and email, some laughs and some music.
Re: On A Pale Horse Called Macintosh Posted: Mar 27, 2012 at 10:38 PM
Monte,Well said it seems like every time I get on the site now someone we all love dearly is either sick or has passed on to to greener pastures.We also have to know that on this site we are all friends and we want the best for all, and if someone needs us everyone pulls together to help for however long it takes....Judy
Re: On A Pale Horse Called Macintosh Posted: Mar 31, 2012 at 5:46 AM
Well said, we have not met or even chatted in chat. But I have read postings that You have posted and things you have said about others. You are another great person, that is able to put into words what the heart is thinking.
I was close to one other person, in Viet Nam that carried a note pad with him for some of the same reasons that You do. We started flying together around Jan 1st of 1970 & did so about 95% of the time till I departed RVN.
I will Never forget those times,
I will never forget Tim, Dakota and the others that I might not have met, yet I can still take that glance back, see them and Love them as My friend in Viet Nam said in one of the poems he wrote.