Yup, it’s true, it can hurt.

I’ve been online for a long time, longer than I care to imagine.  I used to hang out in the Beginner’s Forum over at Runner’s World.  There’s were (and still are I’m sure) a wonderful group of people, young and old, who were just there for the love of running and friendship.  All was well until Runner’s World screwed it all up by changing their formatting software.  So, a group of runners from Runner’s World literally built their own running web site, called Runango.  It’s a small, homey kind of place where many of these runners who were ticked off at Runner’s World and their big corporation mindset.

Along those same lines, I’ve been part of a basketball list-serv through Yahoo for 10 – 15 years now.  I’ve got literally thousands of email dealing with all sorts of basketball topics.  I’ve learned an incredible amount about the game and about life from this amazing groups of coaches, ranging from youth/elementary ball all the way up to assistants in college.  It’s a great group to say the least!

In both of these groups, you start to make friends.  You start to talk about your families, about the worries and celebrations in your life, the up and downs of each day.  You start to make friends and care about those people who live across the country.  And life goes on.

The first painful experience I had was with a friend on the running board.  His daughter logged in and shared with us about his passing away quietly in his sleep the night before.  Whoa.  We knew this runner was sick, but not to that extent.  It was a shock and hard to imagine that screen name just suddenly being gone.

This week, a basketball coach from the Chicago area passed away.  Very similar situation, great man, one who should have been that role model coach who made a zillion dollars just passing along the wisdom and knowledge that he had.  Instead, he gave us daily motivational quotes and silly comics, gave us insight into that a 5 out offense might look like vs. a zone defense, and gave our email group life.  When it was shared he was in hospice, so many different coaches talked about how Ken just “made coaching fun”.  Many said they’d never met him, but his friendship was counted in their hearts.  Isn’t that what we want out of life?  To know we’ve made an impact far and wide?

Anyway, we talk being connected, but there are things out there, those unintended consequences of being connected.  Sometimes you get close to people.  And yet, I’m writing this for people I care about, will get off here and wish my #moedchat voxer group and happy Friday, and maybe tweet out some #ff (follow Friday) love.  It’s all relative and honestly, I’m just glad I have some of most crazy talented teachers in the world as part of my PLN.

So, stay safe. I will too and we’ll talk again next week! Plan?  Nice chat! 🙂