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One more thing to make me feel a little older

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

A recent study has discovered that online blogging is no longer a young man's game. You know, just in case there was any doubt left that prose is a dying art.

Look, I'm no renaissance man or anything. I can't wax poetic on the intricacies of life, nor can I compare and contrast to save my life. (Okay, I've done it — with stakes a slight bit lower than my life — but I don't make a practice of it, this site notwithstanding.) But one thing I think everyone should have an understanding of, if not a penchant for, is writing.

My mom was a librarian. That means to me the written word is something close to sacred. It's been our primary means of communication for thousands of years. That said, I don't think it's going anywhere, but that doesn't mean I don't think it's not being butchered.

Look, I have a Facebook page. I'm down with status updates. I get it, really, I do. But one status update doesn't tell you much, which is why I pay attention to my friends' feeds, to really get a feel for what's going on in their lives. They may be people I haven't spoken to in twenty years, but I know their spouses name, what their kids like to eat, and where they spend their Saturday afternoons. I may not know them anymore, but I feel like I know them. Ya know?

Tweets I don't get, though. It seems as though the constant need to be providing these microcosms of information has devolved the process into a meaningless pandering of so much spittle. That's not to say there aren't those who actually provide some sort of meaningful tidbit, but it seems to me, by and large, Twitter and its ilk seem to be for the mindless masses.

And let face it: today's mindless masses are today's kids. Sure, our parents said the same thing about our generation, and this generation will say the same about their kids. But the teens and young adults today grew up in a different world. They've had the internet most if not their whole lives. Limitess cable channels populate their universe. Text messages come second nature to them. So, heaven forbid, sitting down to actually write something is anathema akin to having teeth pulled.

The missus and I had a conversation a couple weeks back about how we actually spell words out when texting (the only exceptions be 2 and 4, it seems). We can't fathom not actually saying what we mean and just assuming the other knows what me mean. So even in short form, we write.

Like I said, writing's not going anywhere. But that doesn't mean I can't mourn its passing.

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