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When A Cyber Friend “Dies” October 6, 2011

Posted by nrhatch in Blogging, Mindfulness, Poetry, Writing & Writers.
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IMGP1472aRemember Andi?

* When A Cyber Friend Goes Missing

* She’s B~A~C~K!!!

Now she’s dead.
Or is she?

Did she ever really exist?

I never met her.
I never saw a photo of her.
I never spoke with her on the phone.

Several of us received the following e-mail today from “her brothers”:

Webook friends

Firstly let us say that it’s not Andi writing this email, it’s Sebastian, Ruben and Jesse, Andi’s brothers. This is a difficult email for us to write and send to all of you because we don’t know any of you. There is no easy way of telling you what happened besides just telling you.

We’re sorry to say that Andi has died. It was a car accident. She and a friend went away for the weekend and on the way home on Monday Andi’s friend who was driving lost control of the car and they crashed into an oncoming vehicle. The police told us that Andi’s friend died in the accident and Andi died on the way to the hospital in the ambulance. It has been filed as an accident, no alcohol or drugs of any kind were involved. We just thought you should know that given Andi’s regular use of tequila and marijuana.

Her memorial service was held yesterday and as was stipulated in her will, some of her ashes were buried with Logan, the rest was taken out to sea where we threw them to the wind. We played Poker Face for her one last time. She loved that stupid song as we’re sure you know.

We want to thank each and every one of you for being friends with our little sister. She spoke of you often and said that the friends she made on webook were like a second family to her just a little less crazy than we are. Your support and caring for Andi after Logan’s death means a lot to all of us, our parents included. We were really worried about her but she said she was fine, she had friends helping her.

Andi printed the letters that were written to her after Logan’s death and we read them, we hope we haven’t offended any of you by doing that but after reading them, we realized that you had the right to know what had happened to her.

Thank you again for being friends with Andi. We think that without the website and without you it would have taken Andi much longer to move on past the grief and continue living the full life that she had. We are forever in your debt.

Andi would have wanted you to know that Binx is fine. He’s moved in with our parents and still can’t do anything wrong even though he steals the bacon off our father’s plate at breakfast.

Thank you again.
Sebastian, Ruben and Jesse.

It’s odd.  She seemed more real than the characters in a novel ~ but everything we know about her could be complete and utter fabrication.  A fictional story designed to pull us in as she:

* Married Logan, the love of her life
* Honeymooned in Africa
* Strutted her stuff in provocative attire
* Endured the sudden death of her husband from a brain aneurism
* Popped pills in an attempted suicide
* Climbed rock walls
* Went missing from cyberspace . . . without leaving a trace
* Resurfaced after a six month sabbatical
* Filled us in on her new love interest, Nick, a rock climbing instructor

Most recently, she turned her attention to the future.  She shared her plans to:

* Sell the apartment she had shared with Logan
* Buy a new place
* Get pregnant from an unidentified sperm donor
* Raise the child on her own
* Throw a party for herself to celebrate her to-be-pregnancy

And now she’s dead. The final closing of the door.  An abrupt end to all her plans for the future.

But did she ever really exist?

I can’t find an obituary. Or an announcement of the memorial service. Or a newspaper report about the car crash. Or anything in cyber space mentioning her real name.

When a close family friend died recently, I typed his name and “obituary” and found ample evidence that he had lived . . . and died.

Not so with Andi, Andalib, or Ingrid Marks.

Perhaps she played us all?

Sometimes “fact” is stranger than fiction. Sometimes “cyber facts” are nothing more than fiction.  Perhaps Andalib Marks was nothing more than a cyber creation by someone with an over-active imagination?

Should I be mourning the death of a human being?  Or should I shed a few tears like I did when Dumbledore and Dobby the Free Elf died in Harry Potter?

If Andi really existed outside of cyberspace, would her brothers have sent this tidy little e-mail only three days after her death?

Would Binx the cat have been in the forefront of their minds?  Would Binx the cat already be settled in and stealing bacon from the table?

Or is Andi’s death . . . and her life . . . nothing more than a tapestry woven in space?

What say you?

Quote to Ponder:  Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma ~ which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary. ~ Steve Jobs

Related Posts:  Steve Jobs ~ Quotes To Share (Love Is The Answer) * Meeting My Serial Killers (The Idiot Speaketh) * What Blogs Do You Read & Why? * 7 Reasons to Press “Unsubscribe” * From Cyber Friends to Fast Friends * Weekend Challenge & Meeting Cyber Friends in Real Life (Sidey)

The Better World Handbook October 6, 2011

Posted by nrhatch in Books & Movies, People, Sustainable Living.
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Check out The Better World Handbook for small changes that will make a big difference in creating the 7 foundations for a Better World:

  • Economic Fairness
  • Comprehensive Peace
  • Ecological Sustainability
  • Deep Democracy
  • Social Justice
  • Culture of Simplicity
  • Revitalized Community

Whether or not you can afford to donate to charities on the front line, use their web pages to educate your family and friends about the challenges we face and the steps we must take if we want a sustainable future for ourselves, our children and our grandchildren.

If we start taking steps in the right direction at a local and regional level, we will see a filter up effect that will cause our elected representatives, as well as business leaders, to take notice.

Quote: Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has. ~ Margaret Mead

One small step by us . . . one giant leap for mankind.

What about you?

What are your favorite conservation tips and techniques? Have you found ways to save money while saving the planet?

How have you simplified your life or promoted peace or worked toward economic justice?

Related posts:   Crises of CapitalismJail Wall Street Crooks! * Food, Inc. * King Corn * Why We Fight * Good Night & Good Luck * Take Charge * Annie Leonard & The Story of Stuff * Marketing Manipulation ~ Dilbert * OMPM: Overkill * What’s Your DOT??? * The Wisdom of Ecology (Sandra Pawula)

The Story of Broke October 6, 2011

Posted by nrhatch in Life Balance, Mindfulness, Sustainable Living.
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The Story of Stuff

Image by Gauravonomics via Flickr

Exciting news!

I received the following e-mail from The Story of Stuff Project yesterday:

On November 8th, we’ll be releasing our new movie ~ The Story of Broke: Why There’s Still Plenty of Money to Build a Better Future.

Produced with the support of over two dozen environmental, civic and economic justice organizations, The Story of Broke challenges the prevailing wisdom in Washington that America is broke — barely able to pay our bills, let alone invest in a more sustainable and fair  economy.


Tell that to the oil companies getting tax breaks despite posting record profits. Or the mining companies that pay prices set in 1872 for the public lands they plunder. Or Walmart, which depends on taxpayers to help build the roads to their stores and share their employees’ health care costs.

The fact is, our government spends billions to prop up obsolete and destructive industries ~ what we’re calling the ‘dinosaur economy.’

We made The Story of Broke to remind people that there is money out there ~ it’s our money ~ and it’s high time we invest it right.

Starting November 8th, we’ll be asking you to stand up for investments in that better future ~ clean, green solutions like renewable energy, safer chemicals, and zero waste that can deliver good jobs AND a healthier environment.

For more information:   The Story of Stuff 

Let’s save our precious planet from enormous bloated bloodsucking ticks.

Related posts:  Crises of CapitalismJail Wall Street Crooks! * Food, Inc. * King Corn * Why We Fight * Good Night & Good Luck * Take Charge * Annie Leonard & The Story of Stuff * Marketing Manipulation ~ Dilbert * OMPM: Overkill