Monday, January 26, 2009


We met in the fall. It was not love at first sight. At first, I wasn't sure I even liked you. You struck me as frivolous, noisy, possibly shallow. A bunch of your friends rushed to introduce themselves, and I wasn't crazy about them either. They were talkers, not listeners, very full of themselves. They seemed awfully pushy. Self-congratulatory, too - always telling me how great they were and getting all agog over some personal "discovery" that anyone not so self-absorbed could have told them has been around since Socrates.

I was cool toward you. But I couldn't shake a sense of fascination, a feeling that you were trying to offer me something great.

So I decided to see you more often. I opened up and let you in on who I am, what I'm interested in, what I care about. Almost immediately, a new bunch of your friends introduced themselves, and this bunch was amazing: impressive thinkers, fascinating talkers, enthusiastic listeners, generous supporters. They introduced me to more people and our circle expanded exponentially.

Suddenly, our relationship was incredible.
Every tryst offered a newly woven tapestry of glistening conversational threads, an unending kaleidoscope of ideas, humor, music, poetry, news, recipes, opinions, and intriguing personal tidbits.

I couldn't get enough.
I started thinking and answering emails and even occasionally speaking in your unique 140-character cadence. I was tempted to abandon my usual pursuits and spend all my time with you. I couldn't stand the thought of missing even one thing. No matter where I was or what I was doing, I noticed the kind of amusing, eccentric, newsworthy miscellany that I knew would tickle you.

I was crazy about you. After every absence, I eagerly backtracked through our time apart to see what you'd been up to.
I listened to everything. I responded, commiserated, offered experience and knowledge, joked around, objected, supported. I was totally exhilarated.

But then a few cracks appeared.
Some days, you were more annoying than interesting. You didn't always interact. Sometimes, you took without giving. One of your friends stole something. Another tried to bully me; I stuck to my guns and we patched things up, but it left a bad taste. I felt crowded, pushed, pressed for time. Little, unimportant things started bugging me (who would have guessed that so many smart people can't spell?), and I started to resent your constant bombardment.

So I pulled back - not wholly, but enough to rediscover the joys of my life independent of you. I reduced your claims on my time. I kept listening, but didn't respond every time I had something to say, content to let some opportunities pass. I stopped being offended when every gesture was not responded to in kind. I gave to give, not to get.
I got over expecting you to be something you're not and just appreciated you for what you are.

Now we're content, you and I. Our relationship is comfortable and easy, inspiring, educational, fun, challenging, stimulating, non-judgmental and, best of all, reciprocal. Just like a happily married couple. Twitter, I love ya.