How are you? I’m good; it’s like 3am, but I went to sleep around 7pm, so I suppose I’ve had enough sleep.
The term “real life” is used, in most cases, to describe the world outside of the Internet. In the Bloggosphere, it’s a term used to describe something not in the Bloggosphere, something that’s happened to us away from our blogs. But, being the awkward teenager I am, I don’t like that term, and I’m going to tell you why.
“Real life” implies that the world of the Bloggosphere is not real, as if it’s fake in some way. And it’s not. My blog is real; I am real, and every one of you – yes, I’m talking to you – is real too. There’s nothing pretend here, nothing that isn’t just as real as the four, dull-coloured walls that trap me. If anything, it’s more real.
Outside of the Bloggosphere, we are, to a certain extent, safe. Adults, like parents, look out for us, because they presume that our fewer years must mean we are less capable, or less experienced. In some ways, we are less experienced – how can we live 40, 50, even 60 years in just 14 sets of 12 months? But online, in the Bloggosphere, we’re together. Our experience is pooled, our advice listened to, our problems solved. And, with a little common sense, we’re all perfectly safe and happy here. When we reach adulthood, no one’s going to be holding our hands, telling us what to do, where to go, and who to talk to [or more importantly, who not to talk to]. Many adults assume that we’re not sensible enough to make those decisions early, to take our lives into our own hands at 13, 14, 15 years old. And I disagree.
At home, as I write this, I’m trapped. Around me, there are four dull walls, and outside of them, a fresh set of barriers, designed to prevent me from escaping, from abandoning the places that I “should” stay in. Within those barriers, the lights are off, because there’s nothing left to find. But, outside those barriers, on the other side of my walls, there’s a light, an open road and a hope. And I want to embrace that light, take that open road and grasp at that hope.
In the Bloggosphere, I think we share one ambition: to get out there. Some mean it in terms of fame, others just want to share their stories with other people, to make new friends and to escape those four walls. But by escaping those barriers, without technically moving an inch, society worries that we might learn too much, might work out that there’s more waiting for us, if we can just find a way out. And we can all find a way out.
And so, back to real life”. That’s not real at all; it’s a cut down, stripped back version of life, confined to four walls in which we are wanted to live. But that’s not living – not really.