With technology dramatically changing the interface and interactions of friendship, the internet has become a realm of possibilities. I'm not writing here about the perverts, possible kidnappers, or other facets of the DARK side of the Internet. I'm talking about REAL friends. Real people, that while you may never have met them in person, still have made such an impact on your life that you consider them a friend.
I first met many of of my "Internet Friends" on a discussion group for Days of Our Lives (yes, the Soap Opera). We started out talking about the soap, but we quickly progressed to learning more about each other, so much so that the creator of the discussion group created a "Personal Topics" (http://mediadomain.com/cgi-bin/netforum/dool_fan/a.cgi/1) page so that the people who were really getting miffed at things other than soap talk would stop having nuclear melt downs on the site. As such, the DOOLies were born.
So, about 1/3 of the original DOOLies remain at Media Domain (I find that I don't even visit that much anymore), while many of us have progressed to the age of Facebook and have become online friends in this capacity.
What always struck me as odd was how easily we transferred online acquaintances into actual 3-D friendships. Many of us have met each other in person, share commonalities such as same aged kids, divorce, re-marriage, and a lot of the difficulties of every day life. These we have been able to share, whether pseudo-anonymously or in person.
My husband still finds it odd that I could be "friends" with somebody I've never met, but with my fellow DOOLies, I don't even give it a second thought. It's like we always 'were.'
In actuality, I started this particular blog in July of 2010. In that time, we have lost some DOOLies to the Angels, and while that makes me very sad, it's a comfort to know that we have always been there for each other and likely always will be.
I can't discount the number of arguments and board fights we have witnessed and taken part of over the years (I'm thinking it's been since 1996 - but I can't remember exact dates). We were either in the thick of it, or we had our lawn chairs and margarita machines out and we lurked on the sidelines.
Through it all, I think some of these DOOL friends, though I have never met them in person, are some of the best friends I have ever had.
Now, I'm off to lurk over at 'the board.' Maybe I'll see you there.