ON THE INTERCONNECTNESS OF THINGS – Marilyn Armstrong

The late great Douglas Adams (who shared my birthday, March 11th — I’m sure that means something, but I have no idea what) created a character that I dearly love. Dirk Gently (also known by a number of other names, including Svlad Cjelli), was the owner/operator of Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency.

It operated based on the “fundamental interconnectedness of all things.” I believe in Douglas Adams and Dirk Gently. We all operate, knowingly or not, on the fundamental interconnectedness of all things. More than half the posts I write — including this — are born while commenting on someone else’s post.

We are intricately and intimately linked. I wonder if we take for granted how bound to others we are in this strange cyber world we have created. I have read and heard much talk about the isolation of each person, alone and lonely with their computer. It has been put out there as a metaphor for the estrangement of people from each other, the symbolic isolation of individuals in the technological world.

I don’t think it’s true.

For me and for many friends isolation would be life without the Internet. Without computers. Without cell phones. For anyone who suffers a chronic illness, for those of us getting on in years who can’t get out as much as we used to — and whose friends have died or moved far away — and for young people whose studies, work, happenstance or life choices have settled them long distances — continents and oceans — distant from old friends and family, electronic communications are a godsend.

Super moon

If we cannot share a hug, we can share face time. Electronic communications are fast or instant and let us share in ways that were science fiction a few years ago.

Without my computers, I would be truly isolated. The fibromyalgia, arthritis and heart condition make getting around difficult. Without electronic connections, I would be a squirrel up a tree without fellow squirrels to hang with.

Bonnie guarding my computer

This post was originally inspired by Dawn Hoskings on whose post I was commenting when I realized how lucky I am to be living in a world that lets me enjoy virtual travel and participate in a larger world. I’m proud to be part of a community of bloggers, a community of friends around the world.

And grateful.

How about you?

Author: Marilyn Armstrong

Writer, photography, blogger. Previously, technical writer. I am retired and delighted to be so. May I live long and write frequently.

22 thoughts on “ON THE INTERCONNECTNESS OF THINGS – Marilyn Armstrong”

  1. You’re right. I have virtual friends all over the world. I read their posts. They read mine. I like and comment on their posts, as they do on mine. I may have never seen them in “real life.” I may not even know their real names or even what the look like. But they are my friends and we share a connection. I value them.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Absolutely! 🙂

    There is something subtly different about communicating on line compared to that in ‘real’ life, or maybe face-to-face is a better definition? There is an element of privacy/safety ‘here’ compared to meeting someone in person. You show to others only what you want them to ‘see’ and that allows you to be more creative and adventurous (for some) in their personalities than they might feel comfortable doing with someone who is within a fist punch from their face. Being on-line in the safety of your home (or some unknown location) allows for a freer exchange of thoughts and ideas in my opinion. It can also allow a person to be more honest than they might be with someone in the regular world where fear of embarrassment or rejection has a stronger influence on personal interaction.

    Of course, with certain people, it encourages them to be less honest and lets them pretend to be other than they truly are which is why we need cyber-crime experts to defend us from those with evil intent.

    As for sharing a birthday with DA: it means you are one of the 4/1461 people in the world with that particular birth date. 🙂
    (That equates to close to 19.7 million of you!)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am sure there are a lot of people with my birthday, but very few famous ones. It’s not a big day for famous folks. Now, GARRY’s birthday aligns with half the stars in Hollywood. It’s a very big day for performers. Personally, I had THREE important men in my life with the same birthdate as Garry’s. How coincidental is THAT?

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Having 4 important men share the same birthday is a big coincidence! It would be even stranger if you did not know of any women who also shared it!

        It might not be as unusual as it first appears though… many people might know of 3 or 4 people who share a common birthday but we might not always realise it if we did not ask and have a reason to recognise that certain date as being in common?

        The closest i ever came was finding the greatest love on my life was born the day before i was! But i don’t know all that many people’s birthdays i guess. 🙂

        Like

  3. A very good time for having a birthday!!! Some of the best ppl I know are March born…. Hero Husband is too!!!
    Terrific post – and exquisitely documentated with your photos…. 5* for that too!
    Already this morning I’ve literally written the same thing to a friend who ‘doesn’t believe’ in WhatsApp. I don’t care particularly in WA but it’s the only way I can stay in (business & private) contact and can be reached when I’m abroad. For (trying to) selling our house a MUST…. I have virtual friends very, very close to my heart. I know we will never meet in person but we share values, appreciate our sense of humour, tell even more about ourselves than we can do with our nearest and dearest in certain cases. Because we know we’re not being judged or lectured next time we meet up, don’t have to apologize for being ourselves. So YES, praise to the internet.
    Also, I ‘met’ you via your comments on another blog, and although I don’t know how I got on to the first of the few blogs I follow, but it was always a comment by someone who drew me to that ‘new’ person and therefore I assume that the written word still truly is a very strong and important indicator to what we treasure and how we want to be treated and dealt with.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I agree Marilyn, travel is more complicated and dangerous now. One gets to see all over the world and connect with interesting people who are willing to share bits of their world with you. This is what we have made of it.
        BTW one of my grandson’s has the same birthday as you.
        Leslie

        Like

        1. More complicated. more expensive and a lot less comfortable. I loathe airports and the seats are now too small for even small people. You can barely MOVE in those seats.

          And we get tired pretty fast. Garry, not just me, gets very tired very quickly. So even the most alluring trip doesn’t seem so alluring with all the complexities involved. And the exhaustion factor.

          Liked by 1 person

  4. Aaah, the irony of this!
    Could NOT send my comment for the longest time…. NO INTERNET CONNECTION!
    As we share with the guy upstairs (we’re in a short term flat lease and we cannot get a contract for ourselves as the commitment needs to be for 12mo min, we pay part of this man’s bill – BUT he’s moving out and no further contract for the flat has been established, so I went to talk to him and he put it back on for now as he changed the fuses & bulbs…..!!!) So, here to the gods of internet – AGAIN – hail!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. It’s so true. The internet is such a great way for people who are isolated by distance, ill health or other reasons to communicate and access services. It is a shame that it is often the people who need it most who have poor internet services.
    I don’t get out as much as I used to so I rely on the internet a lot. It’s where I shop but it’s also where I’m part of a community that is just as real as the one I live in.
    I didn’t take much with me when I left home during the bushfires but I did take my mobile phone and my laptop and they were my lifeline. There were days when I checked the bushfire reports almost every hour, I wanted to know what was going on in Geeveston and where my local friends were. I could not have done that without the internet. Social media can be trivial at times but during that time it was the way that people checked in on each other and asked for or offered help. Even the mobile phone that I hate was useful during the night we spent sitting in a car by the river.
    It’s true that some people can isolate themselves from the real world by immersing themselves in an online world but for many people if they didn’t have that online community they would have very little chance to have interesting conversations with anyone.

    Like

    1. That’s true for us too. We don’t feel isolated because we can keep in touch with as many people as we have time to “talk” to … which is always more than the hours in the day. I live in terror of NOT being able to communicate. What a boring life that would be … and lonely, too.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Amen amen amen amen!!!!!!!!!!!
    My daughter and family live across the pond! FaceTime is an awesome treat!! My son lives 3.5 hours away. Since his first was born they call every week. Started when we were in England. Awesome!! Awesome!! Awesome!! And without the internet I would not have met you. And you live in the vicinity of my brother and father. Interconnectedness!! ❤️

    Like

    1. I have always felt that electronic communications are more than just messing with your phone. It’s about being able to reach anyone anywhere … and even when we all had telephones, we couldn’t really do that. Now, if we aren’t doing Skype, we can send pictures, messages, birthday cards — and they GET there. You don’t need a stamp and you don’t need to drive somewhere to find a post box. It’s a better way. And for we older folks, it’s a blessing.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. It’s truly a phenomenon that is expanding, exploding, and evolving under our feet. It has it’s ills and it’s virtues. But I’m hooked on some of it. Not all. I don’t use a cell phone or own a smart phone. But I use my computer constantly. It’s my main recreation. I’m sure I’m an addict. Yet I dislike some things like Facebook. ?
    When we were on our holiday in Mexico we saw very few people with cameras – like us. Most people have smart phones that they take pics and videos with. I’m have no wonder that the camera industry is in a massive flux.
    Anyway … it’s here. It’s our reality. Our recreation. Our communication …
    Whenever my computer goes down I can’t remember what I used to do without it ??
    I know I used to read a lot more and get more sleep.

    Like

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