People seem to forget that the internet is a big place and that there's a spot out there for everyone, which can be really good or bad. Sure, there's spots for weirdoes and winos and pervy dudes, but there's also places for art and culture and comedy and fashion and style and fun and poetry and literature. And sometimes in these places, you find people. Your people. The people who you have everything in common with, beyond just an internet connection.
Probably about a decade ago, I was just getting into reading blogs (back when they were a topic of discussion on the Today show as the "hip new thing") and found a few crafty blogs that I loved and a few fantastically hilarious writers. Through those blogs, mainly in the comments, I discovered other blogs that I loved and it sort of snowballed until there was this sort of community of people that I adored. A couple of years later, some of us even started meeting up in person. I met Miss Bliss at LAX on our way (traveling together) to meet Jules, who was hosting a blogger meet-up at her house. That was my entrance to the world of "real life" internet friends and it was awesome. We had a great time because we had common interests and there was never a dull moment.
After that, I've tried to meet up with a lot of my closest internet friends. I've been so fortunate to meet a bunch of people in person: Kate, Adam, Caitlin and Allen, Danielle, Erin and Randy, Erika, Emily, Jamie, Kathryn, Bridget and Jim, Shane, Lia, Ben, Emily and Adam, Joe and Kelly, Shannon (although that one's a cheat, because she's part of my family), Stacey, Dan, and so many more that I can't even remember to type them all right now! Oh! I can't forget all the wonderful people that I've met through the Phat Quarter on Flickr! I haven't met you all face-to-face yet, but I'm so glad to know each and every one of you!
And after every meet-up, I have thought the same thing: those people are awesome. You know why? Because they're not just friends that I made while sharing a high school homeroom or a cubicle farm at work. They're not coincidence friends, they're people that I sought out in some way or another and we share truly common interests (if we didn't, we wouldn't share our words, our art, our time) which go deeper than just geolocation.
For that, I am extremely grateful. You've all inspired me to keep journaling (which has come in handy more times that I can count) here on this blog, to keep creating, to keep sharing, and to keep an open mind. You all are the best. For realsies.
Incidentally, I want to meet up with more of you lovely people! Everyone has been contributing to the Stitchers! google map that I created, which is awesome! In 2011, I'm going to try and look up people in the areas where I'll be traveling for business, in the hopes that we can have tea or something in person!