Social Butterfly Monster

3 03 2012

The unthinkable has happened; a monster has been created.  And that monster is me.

sully monsters inc social monster

Look at what I've become!! (hm, I just love my new colors...) (image courtesy of free-extras.com)

So what has happened to me?  You should sit down for this.  In fact, settle on in and I’ll tell you the whole story of How I Met Technology.

Syke!!  That would take a while.  Here’s the point: 12 years ago I could barely use the Internet; 7 years ago I got my very first cell phone.  Today, the last little bit of evil arrived on the FedEx truck, turning me into a full-fledged, hairy, slobbering, one-eyed-one-horned-flying-purple-people-eater scale monster.

From the beginning, I’ve had a love-hate relationship with it all.  I had the very basic flip-phone, I didn’t often post on my facebook, and I loved to brag that I liked being out of touch.

really old cellular phone

I am SO cool. (image courtesy of thepeoplehistory.com)

But the reality (that landed with a nice thump upside my head) is that I’m not out of touch.  I make my living on the internet.  A friend that works for the Forest Service commented that I’m the only person she knows that is not only allowed to access facebook at work, but actual gets on facebook for work.  And that right there is the catalyst that began this whole metamorphosis…

Let’s look back a bit. It started with Facebook, of course.  I was a sophomore in college in 2004 when I signed up, back when it was a networking tool for college kids.  Then a friend invited me to this site called wayn.com – Where Are You Now – all about travel and connecting with people from other places.  Cool!  MySpace popped up in there for a while, before it was a cest-pool of creeps.  I’m cool, I’m hip, I’m on all these.

After college and a bit of wandering, I land in Oregon and start working for a software/services company.  I’m suddenly immersed in search engine marketing, search engine optimization, web presence, social media – whoa.  A whole new universe opened before me.  Two and a half years later, I’ve gone from the terrified kid clinging desperately to her life preserver bobbing in the deep end of the pool to the kid swimming the English Channel.  (Ok, I haven’t come quite that far, but that’s the best metaphor I could come up with.  Once I learn a code language, I’ll be swimming the Channel.)

And my personal internet presence has grown right along with the knowledge I acquired in my professional world.  When our marketing department put the company on Twitter, they asked that everyone follow them.  Hm, guess I better sign up first…  Checking my tweet-roll (does it have another name??) has now become an integral part of my day.  (Shameless plug here:  follow me!  @kalistamay)  Shortly after that came LinkedIn.  Better join the professional world, now that I have a place in it.

Next came the best one yet: my blog.  My first desk job had me screaming for a creative outlet, and I finally hurdled the uncertainty.  Ksnapped was born.  (My first idea was for a photo blog.  That didn’t work out, but the name stuck…)  This little blog has become my joy, my get-away, my outlet, and my inspiration.  It has put me into a writing frame of mind, which I have discovered is right where I want to be.  And more recently, I’ve pushed myself farther into the blogging community, making friends, finding wonderful reading material, and creating a network of like-minded individuals.  Why did I wait so long?!

Lets just round this out, shall we?  I also created a Flickr for my amateur photog hobby.  Then along came Pinterest to suck away hours of my time and make me want things I will never have, dream of  places I’ll never go, and plan meals and craft projects I”ll never create.  Don’t forget about Google + !  Most people still don’t seem to even know what this is, but I’m on there!  Not every actively, because not many of my friends are there.  Oh, and don’t forget the ever-entertaining StumbleUpon – what a lovely way to discover!

mash-up of social media logos

Ok, so maybe I haven't explored EVERY social site out there... (image courtesy of storylinepr.wordpress.com)

So here I am, so much farther into the digital social world than I ever thought possible, posting, tweeting, blogging, stumbling, flicking, linking and listening, if you count the numerous music sites I’m also on (grooveshark, spotify, last.fm…).  “Out of touch?” I think not.  And now the kicker – I don’t want to be.

The minimum distance to friends and family for me is 8 hours.  Eight!  That’s in a different state!  Ok, that’s not true, I have friends around Washington now, too.  But my point is, most of my friends are far away, especially my college friends in Texas, and high school friends in Kansas.  I never see these people.  I rarely see people, period.  I also don’t get out much, I don’t have TV, and I rarely listen to the radio.  Social media now gives me news, connects me to my local community, brings the world to my living room, fuels my imagination, and updates me on my friends – in other words, keeps me sane.  It has become my life-line to the outside world. I’ve become a social media monster butterfly!

plush butterfly monster

This is more like it - RAWWR! I'M SO VISCOUS! (You can actually buy these from mintconspiracy at etsy.com!)

Now that I have wrapped my brain around all this, I took the last plunge: I upgraded my short-bus flip phone to a brand-spanking-new smart phone.  It’s gigantic, I have no idea of all that it’s capable of (and secretly hope it’s not artificially intelligent), and I’m still intimidated by the touch screen.  But as soon as I shoved back my mental block against it and started playing with it, I freaking love it.  The only thing I have yet to dabble in is YouTube, mostly because I never had much in the way of video-taking capabilities, or video-worthy material.  My fancy new phone with its HD camera just might change all that…

So I’ve gone from a nose-in-the-air social snob pretending I’m too good for this new-fangled phenomenon, to a fun-loving let’s-all-be-friends butterfly.  A monster butterfly.  As in huge.  Don’t forget to spread the love…and add me.  😀

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6 responses

3 03 2012
transparentguy

Great, now you’re carrying H.A.L. around in your pocket.

3 03 2012
ksnapped

Exactly what I’m worried about…

3 03 2012
transparentguy

The nightmare will begin with, “I’m sorry, I can’t let you dial that number.”

5 03 2012
ksnapped

Hahaha, hopefully it will start with something more beneficial to my overall well-being: “I’m sorry, I can’t let you tweet that.” Or “I’m sorry, I can’t allow you to access Facebook at this time.” The world would be in grave danger then!

3 03 2012
cristycarringtonlewis

And you’re gonna love that smart phone. I was like you…and way behind. A complete techo retard. Didn’t join FB until about three years ago. Just started my blog five weeks ago. But the blog love, in particular, is awesome. Just finding so many interesting, talented writers in one location is amazing. Before, I had to scour the corners of my small city – one that is populated by mostly aged Republicans – to find the few people who “get it” and “get me.” Finally, my sense of humor is not met by silent stares or my writing considered too “edgy.” Sink in and embrace the monster that you are – and realize that you are surrounded by other monsters who “get you.”

3 03 2012
ksnapped

Yes! So far that’s my favorite part – “hanging out” with all my fellow monsters! 🙂

Give it to me straight -

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