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I’m blogging this from a motorway diner. We’ve been on the Stormhoek road trip for a week. Here are some thoughts:
1. Damn, I feel I know Tesco’s very well now. I have spent so many hours in Tesco supermarkets in the last week I feel their brand has been surgically implanted on to the inside of my skull. This is actually no bad thing. Well over one third of the South African wine sold in the UK is sold at Tesco’s, so knowing their business intimately on a shop-floor level can only further the cause.
2. I think I am well suited to life on the road. I have no trouble whatsoever turning up in a supermarket in a new town and promoting Stormhoek. Something abut connecting to ordinary people in the real world works for me in a way that old or new media just can’t reach.
3. Valentine’s Day is only one week away. And then I can sleep. Hurrah!
4. I’m enjoying being away from my usual “blog routine”, I have to say. Though it’s nice to have something which allows anything to to be published, by anyone, anywhere, into a global medium… like all media, to do it well is EXTREMELY time consuming. I spent five-odd years being sucked deeper and deeper into the blogosphere vortex [Current Technorati ranking: 86], and it’s nice to come up for some air, at long last.
5. The story is about to change. As always, everything I do in the blogopshere is part of a larger evil plan [Disclosure: gapingvoid is more evil than Microsoft. Just so you know.] My real reason, my true M.O. for doing this road trip, is about to be made public [Hint: It’s very, very evil.]. Can’t wait to spill the beans.
Bloody teaser!!! C’mon, out with it…you’re joining Microsoft to do what Scoble did in the States…make sure you have a Disclosure Manifesto prepared!!
i felt like the guy in this drawing recently. 🙂
“Something abut connecting to ordinary people in the real world works for me in a way that old or new media just can’t reach.” Beautiful. My sentiments exactly (so why am I on the keyboard writing comments to a blog, eh?)
After the tsunami, I spent most of the last two years just wanting to be with people face to face, in a very old-world way. Not intentionally but I did find myself drifting towards less and less time online. Two years of deep hanging out. And loving it.
Back in 2003 I was a big advocate for social networks like Ryze (I think it was pre-Friendster, or it was just beta) and was pitching this grand scheme to the internet division of Telecom Italia. Ha, ha, silly American. I thought I had something to teach THEM. In reality, each time I went to Italy I saw a completely different way of life and business and so in the end they taught me about friendship, about slowing down and getting to like your business partners over artichoke salad and arugula pizza. So it was I that was the student – and they taught me by example about social capital.
After witnessing how strong the social bonds were in communities I visited a year after the tsunami in Thailand and Sri Lanka, I saw that I didn’t really know folks in my own neigborhood, etc.
I think that’s what I care about intensely these days, intimacy and relationships and god I hate that word, but whatever, social capital. Not the kind of social capital that scores you an executive post at a Silicon Valley start-up (but not excluding that either) but the kind of social capital that sustains us together as humans. The kind of social capital where a neighbor that knows your name walks up to your door to enthusiastically show you the new robin on the block through their binoculars, or that time you’ve got a sore throat and a cold, a so-called homeless stranger you just met texts you: “would ice cream make it better?”
I like how Peter Hamlin in “Dialogue: The Fine Art of Conversation” frames it:
can either be used for more efficient isolation or more meaningful intimacy
is an opportunity to further develop this theme
Hugh, (sounds like already are) enjoy yourself out there.
Good to meet up with you at Tescos! This post reminds me of our conversation about the difference between blogging and meeting face to face.
I think your cartoons on the back of those cards are cute (well, some of them anyway). And it’s a neat idea.