Have you ever tried your darnedest to have a relationship with someone, but then finally gave up because talking to them was like throwing bricks at a stone wall? That's what happened to me today. On Friday, I found a message in my Friendster account that said:

you are so cute and you seem like a cool guy
So two days and a couple of AIM sessions later, we decided to meet up by the turd rock in Turlington. I had high hopes. I had a late-night session with my wingman over hot Denny's breakfasts, and I stayed half-awake all night listening to jazz, because there was just something right about it all. Then I actually met her... and nothing happened. No sparks, no energy. Not even a date: all she wanted to do was sit and talk, and she didn't even do that well.

I would guess that many noders have the same problem in relationships. We relish thought and discourse and (often) intellectual pedantry with souls we can't even see, but how many of us can translate that into interactions with real, meaty people?

The last time I had a "real" relationship, the kind where I was all over her and she was all over me, was an eternity ago. December 31, 1999, to be exact... almost four years now. They've been some incredibly short years, too. I spent my last year of high school oversleeping and waiting for college, and I've spent most of college oversleeping and waiting for graduation. So now, here I am, putting together my application for law school, and I'm nowhere near where I wanted to be.

There's no progress for me, in other words. Even though my life keeps changing, and my lifestyle keeps getting better and better, I ultimately never go anywhere. That's probably why I go around noding Japanese railway lines when I'm bored. E2 used to be an outlet for me to study and rant; now, it's just a place for me to live independently of the increasingly mundane real world around me.

Is that bad? Probably. I do well in the real world. I don't like the real world, though. That's probably why I dislike my chosen field, political science: it's the study of a real world that sucks.

E2 reflects reality, and it's "real" in its own way, but it's still ultimately a repository of shared fantasies and viewpoints. Maybe that's why I prefer it to reality: it's more alive. Everything appears in black and white, and the next stage is only a mouse click away. For me, the next stage is thousands of miles away, across thousands of miles of wasteland. At least the wasteland has ethernet.