By now most of us are familiar with social networking sites such as Facebook or Myspace, well at least I'm assuming anyone reading a blog has a fair idea of what those are.
Besides being a nice way to express irrelevant thoughts on your own home page, you get the chance to share it with everyone else who has 'friended' you. In addition to this, you find yourself connecting with people you haven't talked with in years.
Without this technology in most cases you wouldn't hear from those people again unless you had an extraordinary network of friends (grapevine) or you ran into them randomly or at some type of reunion.
I had a situation like this come up recently, I've wrote before that I moved out of Parma at the end of my 8th grade year, my parents bought a new house in Streetsboro, so I was shipped off to a new city leaving the majority of my friends behind. I only managed to stay in contact with one of them after the move, my friend Mike, who in a surprising twist I hadn't met until I was in 7th grade. My other friends from elementary and middle school others moved on as I did. It really wasn't a surprise to me, high school was on the horizon for all of us, and it was likely to take us all in different directions anyway.
I had fond memories of a lot of those friends from the middle school and earlier years, but I sort of was resigned to the fact, that I likely wouldn't see any of them ever again, moving during the middle of your school life, sort of ends it for good, as you aren't even going to be at the same reunions and such. But with the new social networking sites, a fairly good memory (by myself and others) and one or two common friends you can even reconnect a bit with those from many years ago.
Ok, enough about that, I think you get the idea anyway, I now have a couple facebook friends from my 'childhood' including one I spent a large amount of time hanging out after school with for a number of years. I saw recently that John was still playing the drums and his band "Chief Bromide" http://www.myspace.com/chiefbromide was playing a number of shows in the area.
I've been wanting to see more local bands lately due to joining one. I tend to learn and refine my skills by doing and then observing. I find that if I can run through a task and understand the outline of what it takes to perform it, then I can observe or read the instructions to better refine it. By doing it this way, I find myself recognizing the details of the task and I'm able to incorporate those details quickly into my own actions. Which is the reason I've wanted to get out and see some performances. I also thought it would be a nice way to say hello and reacquaint myself with a friend from the past.
Last week, I saw a facebook posting from John, that Saturday was going to be their last show of the year, so I figured if I didn't do it Saturday, I'd probably not get a chance for a fairly long period of time. So I made plans to go see the show. It was a multi-band show starting at 11pm at the Beachland Tavern, I was fairly certain that they wouldn't be first up and I was right, as they turned out to be the third band on the ticket. I got there about 11:15 and spotted John and said hello, we were able to catch up for a bit, and as it turned out another friend from those years was there as well, and I hung out with him as John helped get things set for the show and performed.
I sort of expected it to be weird seeing John after so many years, not to mention the fact that you sort of get a casual feel for a person as a facebook friend, still weird to even have close friends say oh yeah, I saw you went there last weekend. So I really didn't know what to expect, in truth I'd say my worry was unwarranted as we hung out and talked for a bit based on the time he had available and caught up a bit on life. It was sort of 'neat'.
Plus I got a chance to hear the band, let me say I was blown away, they were incredible, a 6 member group and the sound was incredible. If you have a chance to see them, either in the Cleveland or in their tour cities come spring (St. Louis, Chicago, and somewhere else). I highly recommend it. You can also listen to some of their tracks off the myspace page.
It was quite a night, reconnected with an old friend and got to hear a great band, can't ask for much more then that, all from some small piece of technology. listening to some good music
5 months ago