Going Fishin’

by JL Beeken on 5-29-2008

I’d better say this before so much time passes I think it doesn’t matter.

It’s pretty tough even looking at my keyboard after the week I’ve had at the LUG. Apparently it got so bad the last I read some people have blocked my address.  Now there’s a sign from Somewhere. Vengeance is not sweet. Mailing lists can be quite unforgiving.

Everyone’s got their excuses. Mine is that I had a jagged razor-like pain in my right ankle for several days. Instead of following my higher guidance to take a break from other living beings I thought I’d stick around and make everyone miserable. Not that it was a conscious decision, more like a lemming running to the sea.

I once received an email from a person I’d recently met online, and in it she said, “I guess it doesn’t matter what I say because it’s only email.”

Yes, it does matter. There’s another complex human being over here who can be just as blithely inconsiderate as you’re being right now or just as sensitive or just as hungry or just as tired. It’s not even a practice run, it’s the real thing. The wonderful paradox of computers.

In a split second they can wipe out years of work like it never happened, but every single thing we send across the ether is somewhere on a server forever. Every single word we send out to another person online is actually reaching another person. In the case of a mailing list, or a forum, maybe hundreds or thousands of people at once. After I hit the Send button I might as well consider my feet as being permanently attached to a soapbox in Hyde Park. There’s nowhere to hide.

One morning, awhile back, I was getting set to give myself a haircut. (We don’t have hairdressers in Canada, we have to do our own.) I don’t know if it was just too early in the morning, or what exactly all my ailments were that day. But I forgot to put the guard on the trimmer, and with one quick swoop I buzzed the right side of my head flat to the scalp. The very first thought that crossed my mind was Delete! Delete! My second thought was, “JL, you’re spending too much time on the computer.”

Other signs from Somewhere: A tech person came by last week and took my second monitor away and working with just one is too hard now. (Boy, it didn’t take long to get used to that.)

My travels have been delayed so I still have that to look forward to. All that sortin’ and packin’ and getting my mind in a groove to do something I don’t feel like. In the meantime, I think I’ll go fishing. Dig in the dirt, lay my old body down where the sun is shining.

If you don’t have Legacy 7 yet, it will be along momentarily.

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Geoff 5-29-2008 at 2:48 PM

Well I would like to join you… hang up this Genealogy hobby for a while… and maybe not pick it up again… it stopped being fun for me earlier this year.

Family historians are brutal if they ever decide to turn on you.

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Wendy 5-30-2008 at 4:49 PM

Ahem to that and Geoff’s comments……. down right brutal and vicious. At this current time, your blog is the only place I come for some relaxation, learning and humour (I’m an Australian, we put 2 u’s in humour, do Canadians?). Canceled subscriptions to LUG, all soc.genealogy usenets….the lot….nowt.

Hope you catch the big one that got away last time.

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Penny 5-30-2008 at 5:23 PM

J.L.,

As an old gal who’s been around several blocks several times over the decades … I can comment from experience that the toughest part of dealing with Internet mailing lists or Internet groups of **any** stripe is learning to not take any of the uncalled for negative stuff too personally.

You (and the nice folks at Millenia, too) have taken some nasty verbal attacks this week … none of them called for, imo. The childish morons will always be around on any online list and one has to consider the source before allowing their feelings and outlook to become too wounded. While that’s ezeersedthandun, it’s certainly worth the effort.

The essence of typical-two-year-olds’ tantrums have been well displayed on the LUG lately and I can certainly understand why you (and Geoff) are feeling like initiates into the walking wounded club. Still, I urge you both not to take any of it too much to heart as the majority of that foolish occurred more from mis-directed anger (they’re really mad at themselves and don’t want to admit it) than true anger at you and/or Millenia..

You have your supporters and it’s healthier in the long run to pay more attention to them than to the nay-sayers. A recent article on Dick Eastman’s blog had a wonderful quoted phrase … “the nattering nabobs of negativity”. It’s enough to make a body grin, that phrase.

I’ll be lookin’ for ya on your blog and on the LUG, too!

Kindest regards

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JL 5-30-2008 at 8:52 PM

Well, ladies, I did say a sign from Somewhere, leaving that to individual interpretation. See how subtle I can be.

I’m not a victim. Every once in awhile I can’t resist the urge to jump into the muck of an emotional sewer passing by. I just get in the mood for a good brawl. (You wanna mess with me? I can snap you like a toothpick.) Some people would say they fall in, or they get pushed in. But no, I jump in. Some of the people in the sewer probably spend most of their lives there — as in See those curtains over there? I put them up myself — and then some of us spend hardly any time there. But we need to check it out once in awhile to see how badly it stinks and find we don’t want to go back there again for a really long time.

I’m not wounded at all. At least, no more than usual. Spent yesterday poked with acupuncture needles from head to foot before heading down to the lake. The doctor said they don’t really want to kill me, their minds are just full of prime-time soap operas. I think he was referring to JR. Last I read the nabobs were off on a tangent discussing whether JL is right or JL should be shot.

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Penny 5-30-2008 at 10:34 PM

It’s smile inducing to know that my diagnosis veered into the hyperbolic! Good on ya’, my Canadian friend. A slight tinge of anything other than victimhood is a good sign in these thankfully brief situations.

May I offer you one other observation?

You know you’ve hit the big time when you acquire your very own bonified nay-sayers club. My dubious, but heartfelt, congratulations on obtaining same this week.

Regards

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JL 5-31-2008 at 2:54 PM

From Merriam-Webster’s online dictionary:

nabob

Pronunciation:
\ˈnā-ˌbäb\
Function:
noun
Etymology:
Hindi navāb & Urdu nawāb, from Arabic nuwwāb, plural of nā’ib governor
Date:
1612
1 : a provincial governor of the Mogul empire in India 2 : a person of great wealth or prominence

Do we really want to be insulting the Moguls?

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