Episode 5. In which we switch to numeric numbers and gumtree blows my mind.

I recently had cause to put an ad on gumtree.  I’ve never put an advert on gumtree before, or craigslist or anything like that, so I didn’t really know what to expect.

But I’ll tell you what I didn’t expect. I didn’t expect seven responses in the first 24 hours.

Some of these responses, I suspect, are spam.  A couple are well-meaning but not suited.  And a couple have real potential.  I had no idea how many people used it.  I mean, obviously, I know a lot of people use the website, and others of its kind, millions every day, I know that, of course I do.  But I didn’t really imagine that enough people would look at my advert, on day one, to get seven responses out of it.

I sometimes think I forget how popular the internet is.  I’m writing this blog trying to keep in mind that it’s basically here forever and ever, and, while I have every right to spout my mindbile (someone else’s word) all over my own space, I have to be careful about what I say, who I talk about, what I say about them, what I want people to know about me, my life, my friends, and the people I come into contact with.  To some extent you already know, there’s every chance you already know me in real life, or else you might have clicked on the links down the side of the page that would lead you to the blogs of my friends.  You’ll see varying degrees of reality on those pages, a variety of subjects, but mine is my thoughts on screen, and god knows who’ll read it before the Internet gives up and dies?  However long that takes, if an infinite number of monkeys with an infinite number of typewriters could recreate the works of Shakespeare, surely by the end of the Internet a fair few chimps will stumble upon this page.

Do excuse me if I skip a beat, Max Beesley’s throttling some bloke I think I recognise from childrens TV in the ’80s, it’s distracting.

I wonder what the difference is, in this context, between secrecy and privacy.  I think there’s an element of selfishness in secrecy, at least implied by the word without context, the idea that you know something that you choose not to share, for your own reasons, which may or may not be for the best.  Privacy implies honour, it implies that you’re upholding someone’s rights, keeping their peace, holding something for safekeeping.

The thing is, I want to stick to secrecy here.  Privacy isn’t quite enough, I think.  I’m not saying I don’t want a sense of privacy, I do, of course, but I hope it doesn’t get to that stage.  I hope I manage to keep things at the level of secrecy.  Because at secrecy you don’t know who it is I’m not telling you stuff about.  Rather than you knowing who they are, but my refusing to elaborate.

I hope that if and when I get that wrong, and if I ever overstep the mark and fail on secrecy and/or privacy for my subjects, if they mind, or if someone thinks they might, someone will let me know.

Diabetic moment of the day

On my way home I walked past a Cafe Nero, which, for some reason, had a lovely warm chocolate orangey scent wafting out of the vent beside the pavement.  And then I stood in Somerfield and stared at the Chocolate Oranges for ages, knowing I’m not allowed one.



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