Monday, July 11, 2011

Not sure what to title this

As the title says, I'm not really sure what a good title would be, or what this post is really about. It is just late on a Monday night, and I am procrastinating going to bed. I logged on to Facebook (seems weird to capitalize the F when it seems to usually be lowercase in their logos), and it was weird.

It was weird to see that people still do stuff on Facebook. I'm not sure why, but I guess for me, Facebook jumped the shark a while ago. In fact, logging on to Facebook (ok, each time I've written it, I've had to go back and capitalize it... no more) will someday feel like logging on to AIM and seeing that some people from high school still IM. Actually, it is funny, because in highschool, I IMed a lot. And then I did a little bit before I went on my mission, but once I came back, it felt like I think of the past. But then Google Talk came along, and we all sort of got suckered into IMing again, without even realizing it was IMing. At least I didn't. And yet, here I am, logging into Google talk, eternally "busy." But mainly busy because I don't feel like I have time in my life to allow my time on the computer to be dictated by someone else's desire to talk. Similarly, when I message someone on Google Talk, it seems forced, and I worry that I am interrupting or wasting their time. But, apparently other people still find time to get on facebook.

I don't know why I find that so weird. It feels kind of sad though. It's as though I went to a party, and it was great for a while, but then I had to leave, and then hours later I still see and hear the party going on.

It has been frustrating trying to keep up with friends. I say trying to, but really it is more like trying to try to keep up with friends. I don't know what happened to my life, but perhaps getting married and being in dental school have something to do with that. And I love being married, and I usually like school, but somewhere along the way, my life became, not incompatible, but less compatible with staying in touch with people. Just yesterday I talked to my brother Caleb for the first time in months. I found out he had been dating someone for the last year. I didn't know that. I get in touch with my mom every few weeks. But friends are even harder. I've had emails in my inbox that I have been meaning to get back to, and I will some day, for months, if not half a year. Jana, a friend from highschool who lives in Germany, yeah, I'll get back to her. Brad, I got your email in April, it's still in my inbox.

My inbox is another frustrating thing. I've got things that people send me, that I some day want to look into when I have that free day that never comes, but I just never get around to it. And when I finally do have a free moment, I find something else to occupy it with. So my inbox has become like a cluttered desk, where you keep everything on the top because you want easy access to it, and fully intend to get to it someday, but instead it becomes this disorganized mass that every once in a while undergoes the process of prioritizing, where things lower on the priority just get bumped (like I will likely not read articles you send me, as interesting as they look), and other things higher on the priority but not high enough to be a priority, get relegated to the back of the line to one day be addressed.

In fact, all of my life has become this poor juggling act. Instead of all the balls being in the air at the same time, however, I throw one ball up really high (like I deep clean the house), and while that is in the air for it's brief moment of glory, I find the next ball that has been sitting on the ground the longest, and I chuck it high (I finally read through all my brother's emails since I emailed him last on the mission, and I reply).

Blogging itself has been something that I have been meaning to do for so long, but I never get around to it. If I could blog mentally, that would be great, because I'd blog a couple times a week. I always think, "This would be interesting, I should blog about this." Doesn't happen.

But back to friends. Sometimes I get bummed and feel like those I'd grown close to in the past no longer think about me or care to keep in touch. But then I realize that some do, Nathaniel's been trying to get in touch with me for a while. And then I think that maybe everyone's life is like mine. Is this the common path we've all found ourselves on? Does anyone have leisure time anymore? I really do want to keep in touch with my friends though. I think about people a lot. And often I think about getting in touch with people. But heck, I just checked the mousetrap in the attic two days ago, that I knew had to have had a mouse in it (and it did), and had been sitting there for probably 4 months. And the only reason why I did check it, is because I had to go to the attic for another chore. All along I had this nagging thought that I needed to check the trap, but somehow I really never got around to it. The most I could do was hope it was choosing the path of dessication and not decomposition, which it did.

So if you are a friend of mine, which you probably are since you are reading this, know that my absence of communication and apparent lack of ambition in staying in contact is not reflective of my feelings toward your friendship. It is just a product of my life, and me not knowing how to manage it yet.

It is interesting too, that I have this unfailing hope, almost confidence, that some day I will have caught up with things and life won't be busy anymore. Often times, that hope keeps me motivated and working.

I'm not sure what to do to improve my communication with my family and friends. I find it difficult to make friends of the same closeness as I had made at BYU or throughout high school, and so I do value them, but at the same time it seems like an impossible task to go through life and keep in touch with everyone you want to. Maybe I will post more, and this will serve as my communication to you friends, at least those of you that read this, and you can respond in comments. Maybe I will join Google+ and feel much less overwhelmed by the sheer number of "friends" to communicate.

I guess the questions I have are these... Do most people feel as unable to truly manage their lives and stay on top of things, including communication, as I do? Do they not keep in as good contact as they would like to as well with their family and friends? If so, who the heck is on facebook still? Another trend I've noticed is that the introspective blogging of yesterday has turned into the family newsletter. Which is fine, as I think about blogging what Alexia and I are up to as well. I just don't know whether blogging as a whole has become less introspective, or whether it is just a reflection of the life stages my friends are going through.

Anyway, it feels good to write again. I feel like I've become a less social and outgoing person since I've come to Pittsburgh, and I sometimes wonder if it isn't related to not blogging. I find myself keeping to myself more often. Perhaps blogging kept the pump primed for me when I used to do it more often.

I'll try to blog more often. I hope some people still read this:-).


Karianne Salisbury said...

Whaat? "A life in the day of..." is in my Reader feed??

Gabe, I was just talking about you and had thought, "Man I haven't talked to him in forever." So it was a pleasant surprise to get a little update via blogger from you. :)

Mary said...

Hey Gabe. Nice to see you again. :) We are still here, and we still think about you guys. I'm glad for the chickens, and that things seem to be going okay for you.

I've found that friends come and go, and I'm not that good at keeping up with them unless they're making an effort. That said, it's been a really fun experience for Barney and me to make friends with other couples as we all have shared experiences instead of trying to "catch Barney up" on my life with so-and-so. Maybe you'll find that too. And maybe life will start to settle a little and you'll find the time to do the things you've been wanting.

Sorry for my newsletter-y blog lately. Life gets busy, and people seem to like cute pictures more than my banter anyway. :)

Ant Quinn said...

Gabe, first I have to say, I’m so glad we are friends. I enjoy reading your thoughts so much, you always seem to be thinking similar things to myself, but you are able to articulate them so much better. I'm always looking for updates on you blog. I think you have some good and insightful thoughts on the social media trends, and a lifelong challenge I feel we all face. I wrote a really long comment, then decided to write a blog response, go read it here
Btw, we appreciated the call you and Alexia made a few months ago.

Sharon Quinn said...

"Do most people feel as unable to truly manage their lives and stay on top of things, including communication, as I do?" Hmmm. Managing my life? It depends on the day. But really being a stay at home mom brings very different life managerial challenges. I don't have to worry about meeting deadlines, or taking tests, or memorizing loads of facts. The challenges could go in their own separate blogpost though. At this stage of life I have to find cool small balls to juggle while juggling the awesome 25 pound ball named Ira.

"Do they not keep in as good contact as they would like to as well with their family and friends?" For me, yours seems to be a question of quantity vs. quality. I have ALWAYS preferred the second. That's why I didn't get a cell phone until I had been married for a year, or get on facebook until I was leaving Utah. I feel like when we have easy access to everyone we have ever known, it is impossible to feel satisfied with our communications with them. So, after living the first 17 years of my life in the same house, I've lived in at least 10 apartments as a single person, and going on 9 places as a married couple. Different room-mates, different neighbors, different wards, different jobs, different states, the list goes on. And in each of these places I've met people I love and hold dear, and really I keep in touch with very very few of them. If I do, it's probably because they are the ones being pro-active. I'm just so much better at communicating in a REAL social setting: face to face. I absolutely hate the cell phone commercials where people are missing real social opportunities because they're starring at their phone.

"If so, who the heck is on facebook still?" With the above rant being said. In my life, there is a place for social media and quantitative light chats. When an 18 month old is my primary daytime social world, there are times when I just have to share thoughts with fellow adults. Facebook is the place where I can say "Ira just peed on the potty for the first time!" and get some immediate feedback. It's nice that way. And I find it a huge blessing to easily look up a former investigator, or someone I've been thinking a lot about, and drop a note.

"Another trend I've noticed is that the introspective blogging of yesterday has turned into the family newsletter." sigh... In defense of my kind of boring blog, I use to send family updates as e-mails but then got requests to add them to Ant's more thoughtful blog. I believe there's still time for introspection as a married student. But really, this may the stress/pressure peak of your life and we understand if you don't blog every single interesting thought you have. We still know you're interesting. Which brings me to another point. My best friends are the ones I can go years without a word of keeping in touch and pick up with them in person, as if I hung out with them yesterday. Is that lazy of me? I don't know. I guess I just have very low standards of keeping in touch since it's impossible to have both quantity and quality communication with everyone I love.

cking said...

Gabe, it seemed like you hadn't blogged in ages and your posts are so fun to read. So good to see some new posts:) I've found the whole 'keeping in touch with people' is hard, it seems like friends' lives go in different directions once you aren't constantly with them. It was easy at school b/c you are surrounded by lots of friends all the time. I often wonder how this or that person is and think, I should get a hold of them. Sometimes I do and it's nice, but sometimes I don't and I keep wondering.
Anyway, hope you are doing well and surviving school. And chickens? We always ordered chicks when I was little and had 'home grown' eggs all the time:)

Gabe said...

Woah, thanks for all the comments. I turned off my comment moderation and I didn't realize I wasn't getting emailed when people commented. You all bring up a lot of good points. Thanks for your perspectives. It seems like we all are kinda at the same spot. More things to do than time to do it. And Sharon, I definitely agree about the best friends being the ones that you can pick up right where you left off.

Good to hear from you all! That's cool that you grew up with chickens Carianne:-). And Karianne, we will definitely have to catch up some day. Mary, don't apologize about your blog. It is great. There is nothing bad about an update blog, it just seems like the natural evolution from our original blogs I think? Maybe corresponding to our life stage:-)