Well, wait. That's not strictly true. Writing is everywhere these days. People communicate in texts more than phone calls. We email, we IM, we Tweet and update our statuses. Words, words, words, in the written (okay, typed, or texted) form is everywhere. I believe that I've spent more time communicating in writing in the past 10 years than I did in all the years previous.
My husband, an old-fashioned fellow, still writes the occasional letter. For me, it's only thank you notes. I can't recall the last time I sat down and wrote a proper letter -it probably was in the mid nineties, when my best friend was working in England. I'm saddened by this - I miss the thrill of discovering a fat envelope, laden with stamps, peeking out of my mailbox. I miss cool stationery, and the joy of writing with that perfect pen.
However, I also love email. I still remember the wonder I felt when, in 1997, I tracked down my friend Michiko, a woman from The Netherlands whom I had met in Ireland... on AOL. The idea that I could type out a letter to her, hit 'send,' and it would reach her in a matter of minutes (well, hours - this was AOL in the nineties) was mind-boggling to me. Now it's commonplace, and although some of the amazement has receded, I still appreciate the ease - and the ability I now own - to keep up with family and friends regularly, rather than in one big chunk every month or two.
And then there's Facebook. (I'm not a Twitter girl, although I haven't given it a decent try.) People hate on the Facebook, and although I understand the reasons why - I don't care about your virtual Farm or Kingdom or Zombies or Whatnot - and oh, that acquaintance from high school who is now a Tea Party Republican and has 6 kids and likes to talk about their poops - but I love it. I don't work in an office, so Facebook provides me with daily socialization, albeit virtual. I enjoy laying down a well-crafted status, and the often humorous banter that ensues... and I'm just going to say it: that counts as writing. No, it's not Dostoyevsky or even Jackie Collins, and it's no substitute for creating a story with a beginning, middle and end. But it does speak to that creative, writerly part of our brains, and that's something.
Plus, it's a little diary, not documenting major, heavy events, but tiny little moments. Here are some of my statuses from the past year. Just to prove that I have been, you know, writing.
***This is how it typically goes for Tony when he's trying to talk to me about baseball.
Tony (describing a baseball card): So, Felix the Cat, Felix Millan, he was a pretty good player for the Mets in the seventies - so he's standing at the base, and there's this Pirate right there... and this Pirate slides into second...
Me: Oh my god - did he fall on his cutlass?
... so anyway...
Don't believe that aliens have visited us and gifted us with their technology? I have one word for you: Accordions.
Ah... the Holiday Season. The time we gather 'round the yule log and remind ourselves that Amy Grant happened.
I'd love to start a fund for manatees, partially because they're glorious creatures and their environment is being encroached upon, but mostly because I could call my charity "Habitat for Huge Manatees."
Sometimes I find it exceedingly odd that we choose to share our homes with adorable little predators.
So, I walked into my back yard just in time to witness the 8-year-old neighbor girl, arms straight out, carrying a live, rusty-orange chicken - and then putting it on the trampoline. FOR SCIENCE!
In my shopping today, I'm picking up razors for Tony: "Remember, I use the Gillette Sensor Mach 3 XL Turbo Viking Marauder Supercharged Touchdown Pickaxe Razor."
And quite possibly my favoirte exchange of all time:
There are a dozen cardinals in our backyard right now!!! (Bird kind, not Catholic kind.)