Monday, August 22, 2005

Cyber Playgroup

I love the internet. It's filled a hole in my life. I have my Playgroup back.

When I lived in Seattle, it took me a long time to find my people. Don't get me wrong...I had Soni, and Ben, and Bethany and we spent many a night lounging on the leopard pillows, drinking Henry Weinhard's (or Hank, as we called it,) and walking to QFC dressed as the Gorton's Fisherman at 2 AM to buy fishsticks. But B, B, and S were people I knew before I got there, so they are different.

In order to really feel at home somewhere, to really be comfortable living there, you have to make friends unique to that place. I'd been there almost two years before I found the people I'd retain from the PNW.

I met them when my housemate, Gavin, moved out and we had to get a new housemate. We advertised on coffee shop walls and in weekly papers, and we found Knox. Knox is funny and smart. He is a poet. He is adventurous and interesting and a collector of people...some really good, some not exactly to my taste, but all worth talking to for awhile. And Knox is full of life and is a true connector/maven in this world, so he immediately started the alchemy of mixing his people together to make gold.

Within months we had a Playgroup. There were six of us...Knox, Pam, Larry, Christopher, Vaughn, and me. We knew each other's lives, we had dinner every Sunday night at our house, we dragged each other to things when we needed company, we watched The Tick on Saturday's at LarryandPam's. We had a group crush on Pam's really hot neighbors. We threw a party where we invited people from the personals just because we liked their ads. We spent Christmas together. (I believe that we had Chinese food for three meals that day.) We had our own little family, sometimes dysfunctional, but we became an integral part of each other's lives for three years.

First I lost touch with Knox over something stupid. Then I moved to DC and Minnesota, and since I'm not much at emailing or phoning I lost touch with P, L, C, and V. When I'd go to Seattle I'd see them and I met Larry in Chicago one February, but none of us were very good at the distance thing. Vaughn left Seattle and lived in two cities before I even knew it, and I still can't tell you where Christopher went.

But then we started blogging. Pam is the pioneer there...she started living in Austria part of the year with her husband and she needed to keep in touch with folks. Then I moved here and started this so that I wouldn't do the same dumb thing and lose my Midwest people, too.

In a lonely mood one night, I started googling people I used to know and love, just to see who I could find. I found a pal from high school that kept me out past curfew pretty much every night for two years. I found Gavin, the former housemate, just in time to congratulate him on the birth of his first child. And luckily there aren't that many Vaughns from Odessa, TX, so a class reunion site helped me find him. Now Vaughn blogs, too.

And that brings me to my point. Somehow, 6000 miles apart, my Playgroup is managing to resurrect our friendship. It's pretty cool. Pam and I will be getting together on weekends once she's back in Austria for the winter. V and P and I start comment conversations on our blogs, we send emails, and we are aware of each other's lives again. Larry's not a blogger, but I got an email with pictures of his garden a month or so ago. Who would have imagined it?

These are good people. I'm really glad they're back.

Now if only I could get them here for Sunday Dinner.

3 comments:

Pam said...

Awwww. This is the sweetest thing! Sunday dinner in MK! No haggis, okay?!

Melinda June said...

I'm nothing if not a sentimental suck up!

Vaughn V. -- Scottsdale, AZ said...

Wow... Pardon me while I choke back tears and recollect the absolutely wonderful times that all of us spent together in beautiful Seattle...

It's definitely a time of my life that I think back upon with great fondness... "Bike Girl"... "Whatever Boy"... Sunday dinners... Dinners in the International District... Independent Films... Bill (sigh)... The HOT Boys Who Came to Sunday Dinner... Bill... :-P

BTW, the picture that Mindy and I took together at our friends', Brenda & Tim, wedding reception, sits on the the desk here in my office in Scottsdale. It's in a wooden, etched framed that reads, "Friends are a beacon to guide us, and a compass to help us steer a true course.

No truer words...

I'm all up for a Sunday Dinner or two in MK! But ditto on the "no haggis" thing... DEFINITE texture issues!

V.