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Yay Internet!

Leonicka Valcius: Yay Internet!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Yay Internet!

This is my first post since I moved from South Florida to the Greater Toronto Area. (Honestly it’s my first post in quite awhile but that’s not the point.) I have so much to write about: the ordeal and culture shock of such a big move (Canadians really do say “eh”!), the implications of Barack Obama winning the Democratic nomination (¡Sí, se puede!), and the failure of U.S. immigration policy (Because deep down inside we all know the Mexican are not invading as Lou Dobbs would have us believe.). But all that is on that back burner. Tonight, I’d like to write about my new love affair with the Internet.

Yes, I, who clung to pen and paper like baby koalas cling to their mothers, am now the Internet’s number 1 fan. I know what you’re thinking: What took so long? I guess it can be attributed to various reasons. The major one is what is usually called (in media circles) the “digital divide.” Basically, it’s the dichotomy between those who use the Internet and those who don’t. I was formally staunchly place in the column. For me the Internet was a chore and tool – to be used only if a malicious teacher assigned a heinous research project. Also, I only had restricted access to the Internet. The only computer that had Internet access at my house was in my parents’ bedroom. I could only go online when it was convenient for them to be standing over my shoulder. You know that fable about the fox who, try as he may, couldn’t reach the grapes and subsequently decided they must be sour? Yeah. I was the fox. And the Internet was sour grapes.

So why the big change? Well, college happened. Laptops happened. Moving happened. All of these things in some way helped my inch toward the Internet. First, my so called “best friends” decided to abandon me to go pursue “higher education.” Yeah. Whatever. We tried calling each other, but when we each got our respective phone bills, the daily phone calls were cut short. This created a need for an alternate form of communication. Then my mother, as a graduation gift got me a laptop. My friends got so excited, thinking I would join them in the 21st century. But it didn’t happen. See the laptop came with strings. There was no wireless internet at my house rendering the laptop useless unless I was on campus or in library – which ultimately perpetuated my view of Internet as a chore and a tool (see above).

The final push over the edge came this summer after the aforementioned move. I now have wireless internet (yay me!) but my friends are exponentially further than they were before. Enter AIM. So simple. So powerful. In the three weeks since I’ve moved I’ve talked to my friends more often than in the 10 years that I’ve known them. The thousands of miles melt away the instant you receive the message. (Please forgive the pun. It will never happen again.) This completely redefines relationships. Friendships used to be shattered by the words, “I’m moving.” The “long – distance” relationship used to be the anathema of dating. But now the distances aren’t so long and the move is never that far away. The world has been shrunk to size of your buddy list and perhaps we’re better for it.

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