Category Archives: telecommunication

Wonderful Words, Like Starshine

Starry Splendor in Core of Alpha Centauri, from hubblesite.orgThe Power of the Word

If you are reading this today, June 2, then you will see, to the right of this blog post, a Flickr thumbnail photo of a pregnant woman lying naked on a bed. If you read this tomorrow, or another day that is not today, then I think you can find the full-size photo by clicking here. The photo—“Laid Bare at 37 Weeks”—is breathtaking, but the comments made me weep like a fool… words of goodwill, out there in the cosmos, like starshine….

The photo’ed mama writes, “This weekend has been hell with Violet’s pox (We had to take her to the dr. today as she’s really poorly, turns out her whole mouth is lined in them and she needs antiBs…poor baby).”


Underneath are scores of comments… maybe hundreds… “stunning stunning wonderful beautiful picture” is typical.


It’s the words of consolation, encouragement, and compassion, though, that gave me a little jolt. All that power! It pounds, it pulses, it fairly runs off the page. (Wow! Sounds pretty erotic—unintentional on my part, but it works. Power is sexy. Sex is powerful. “Laid Bare at 37 Weeks” is living proof.)

Little prayers

  • I’m so sorry to hear that V is having such a toughie of it, though. What a rotten nasty infection. Poor thing, hugs
  • Hope Violet gets better soon – especially before your boy arrives!
  • Get well soon vibes for V.
  • So sorry to hear that V is so poorly. I hope she’s soon feeling better.

Do you suppose all these commenters know “Laid Bare” personally? Or are they like me, passers-by drawn in by a remarkable image and caught up in the drama of Violet’s virus? (It’s apparently chickenpox, by the way. I infer* from some of the idioms that “Laid Bare,” whose name is, I think, Lyanne, is British. Perhaps they don’t vaccinate babies for chickenpox in Britain, or maybe Violet’s mum and dad decided against the vaccine, as many responsible parents do, for whatever reason. Could it be that Violet had the vaccine and it didn’t work?)


In any case, Lyanne’s and Violet’s lives have intersected with mine, and now with yours, in a small way because of technology, and I say, God bless technology! I am not an active member in an Internet community. You won’t find me in MySpace. I use songlists from on my website, and several imeem users have asked to be my “friend.” I checked out the last person who asked, and she had something like fifteen thousand “friends.” I looked around a little, and lots of folks have even more. I don’t get it. Someone explain it to me, please. 

Make friends, don’t be stupid

The people whose job it is to worry while the rest of us fly by the seat of our pants—the control freaks who want to put warning labels on shoelaces (“Do not wrap these objects around your neck, or anyone else’s neck. Do not snake these objects up your nose. Do not slice these objects into little pieces and put them in your salad with cucumbers and baby carrots.”)—these people issue nonstop warnings about Stranger Danger. It seems that, before you agree to meet, in person—say, at Target for coffee at 8 a.m. on a Saturday—an Internet Friend hitherto unseen by you, you ought to have that person investigated, preferably by the National Clandestine Service, and “patted down” at the door.

Me, I’m crazy about the Internet as a communication tool, and I know of several joyous long-term relationships that originated online, with the participants’ observing a modicum of common sense before getting together face to face. In any case, I like to think of all the “vibes for V” converging on Violet like a gentle wind, or a soft white light, hastening the healing her little body already knows how to do.


* Don’t use infer when you mean imply. Infer is roughly synonymous with deduce: “You just smashed me in the face with your enormous, warty fist, causing me to infer that you are angry with me.”