For a brief time after college, I worked as a disc jockey at a small radio station in South Dakota. There was something odd about sitting in a booth talking to people who I couldn't see. It made me nervous at first. I stumbled over reading the AP wire. I jumped when the phone rang with someone asking for a request because it reminded me that people were out there listening.
To get over the jitters, my boss suggested I place a picture on the microphone of people who made me feel loved and supported so that I could pretend to talk to them instead of thin air. It helped. I chose a picture of a group of friends huddled together in drunken glee on a dock in Greece. I carried that picture with me to and from work each shift. The plan worked. That was 19 years ago and I still have that picture pinned to my office bulletin board. The picture has some tape marks, pin holes and creases; but it still makes me smile when I see it.
No longer a disc jockey, I am still someone who feels like I am talking into thin air more often than not. Email has taken the place of the microphone. My desk has taken the place of the booth. Social networking sites have taken the place of an office building. Writing this blog--even writing fiction--is similar to sitting inside a booth in a darkened studio talking into that microphone and wondering if anyone is listening.
There must be a part of me that enjoys baring my soul to invisible strangers. There is something therapeutic about talking into thin air...all expectations are removed...all bias is erased...agendas disappear...defenses come down...leaving only authentic thoughts and emotion. Raw. Uncensored.
I have and always have had a burning need to connect with other people. It is this need that keeps me moving forward and hoping for a happy ending. It is also this need that leads me to confide more than I should, usually at inappropriate times and with less than trustworthy people.
But this need also drives me to be a trustworthy confidante. I treasure the responsibility of shouldering someone else's burden and being the one they reach for when they need to connect. That's what we are all here on earth for, isn't it? To connect despite distance, time, social status and what not?
I believe we all have that innate hunger to connect with another human being; hence the success of social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. As with anything, technology has both pros and cons. When it comes to staying connected, I say do whatever works for you, do whatever nurtures the human spirit and brings you happiness.
Despite life experiences, maturity and education, I haven't changed much in 19 years. Here I am in my darkened office with only the glow of my computer screen to keep me company. I'm listening to my own playlist on iTunes and sharing my random thoughts with invisible strangers who may or may not give a damn. Pictures of moments of pure happiness still dot my desktop and walls, but they are there because they bring back a memory of joy instead of as an antidote for stage fright.
I am feeding my need to connect and the hunger is insatiable.
About Moxie Girl Musings
Moxie Girl Musings is about starting over from square one after tragedy impacted my young family. It's filled with stories of triumph, struggle, snafus, hopes, and dreams. Sometimes there will be features from other writers that I like and every so often I'll include an original short story, but normally I simply write what's on my mind at the time. Welcome to my unfiltered true-life story as I figure out this thing called life. http://www.amberleaeaston.com