The existential dread of Mondays, Part I: The helplessness of Internet friends.

I’ve always believed that friends are where you find them, especially in the Internet age. I have a lot of friends that I consider to be very close that I’ve never met in real life. I’ve Tweeted them. I’ve talked to them on Skype. But I’ve never shaken their hands or been able to smell their cologne or perfume. I don’t think that matters. The internet allows you to cut through that bullshit and get to the heart of the matter. When all you have is conversation, your on a direct road into someone’s brain. From the brain to the heart is not a long trip. And you can tell a faker or a tourist just as well online as you can in real life.

That’s what I think, anyway. I’ve never been catfished. I would like to think I can tell the difference between a real person and a person who wants to be real.

Having said that, someone that I believe to be real is having chemotherapy for the first time today. Because Mondays don’t suck bad enough, right? This woman has always been exceeding kind to me. She’s a fantastic writer, and she’s given Jim Branscome and I good, helpful notes on the scripts we’ve sent her for peer review. She always seems to want us to do well. She’s also incredibly funny, and seems to get my random, poorly timed jokes better than most.

I hate that she is going through this. I’m angry that something as small as cells can rebel against someone, turn against their host and become something dark and festering. I’m frustrated that words do not and can not make things better. I’m mad that I am here and she is there; that I can’t bring my whole family together and show up at the hospital with terrible things like sparkly shoes and 80’s wigs and cake and a shitty Michael Bay movie, and that we can’t hang out with her family and get to know each other while all this other bullshit goes down.

I am daunted by distance and by knowing just enough, but not enough.

I hope she’s reading this. If nothing else, I hope someone is reading it to her. I hope someone tells her that a lot of people think she’s brave, and that a sense of humour is the best thing to have in a situation like this. I hope someone is doing her makeup. I have reasons to believe that all these things are happening, and I am pleased by that.

I hope, also, that someone tells her there a lot of people online who think she’s real, and are thinking about her. Wishing nothing but good things for her. Ready to see her survive.

We’re writers. We tell stories, even when they’re difficult to tell. I’ve been reading the blog.
I’m looking forward to a few years from now, when the book comes out.

 

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