All that FW: Stuff
I just had someone forward to me several long,
annoyingly large emails full of giant animated glurgey pictures and
sappy verse. (okay, you can tell I'm not much into Hallmark moments) I
don't usually forward anything, being one of the little 'dead-end
backwashes' in the river of the 'net...
One of them had an annoying animated cat-thing that commented how often the forwardee bothers the forwarder
with such things and said she had all intentions of continuing to do
so. The cat was meant to make it humorous of course, to make it
tongue-in-cheek, but it did make me think.
I find the sort of "communal pool" of stuff that gets forwarded all
over the net kind of interesting - and what's more, so often if you
mention one of the more common ones all the people around you know just
what you are talking about because it was forwarded to them too.
It's rather like the old-time phenomenon of "did you see what Hopalong
Cassidy did last night?" when most of the folks around you were
following the same storyline too - they were all tuning into the same
channel at the same time, all reading the same book, so to speak. A
massive group book-society, in an abbreviated way - a shared tale that
provided a common ground or superficial connection point between
You may even consider that the 'forwarded sappy email' is akin to
our own online society here, in a faint, shallow, shadowy way. Here we
all have a common point of reference to unite us - Tolkien's works.
While considerably deeper, richer and more complex than any email full
of dancing pigs and spastically reblooming roses it gives us that base
from which we can launch our connections to one another, the ability to
assume that the other person is at least passingly familiar with what
we are speaking of, knows what the quote or reference is about and
As Aesop said, one man's meat is another man's poison.
I personally prefer the tome to the greeting-card approach, but perhaps
both do have a legitimate place in this varied wide world, which helps
me accept yet another email of paintings with water effects added to
them and giant pink scripty effusions of affection. After all, if I
choose to connect to others by discussing (in depth!) such things as
the molecular structure of a mythical Ring that can apparently change
size when it wants to, who am I to deny others their connection to the
world with glurge?
Just, as you say, musing.