Friday, May 24, 2013

Authenticity, friendship, and happy birthday Bob Dylan

As I am towards most things, I am ambivalent about Facebook. By ambivalent, I mean of two minds. On the one hand, it gives me many benefits and has enabled me to make friends with people I would otherwise would not have privilege of knowing and interacting with, as well as maintaining connections with people I know from different periods of my life. On the other hand, due largely to some mistaken notions on my part, it can become a bit of a nightmare, a battlefield.

I am on Facebook and Google + for friendship, which is why I recently deleted my old FB account and established another account. I figured it didn't make sense to be "friends" with a whole bunch of people who I have either never met in person, or people from my distant past, like high school, with whom I was not particularly close during those years or since, and who I have blocked from my newsfeed and who have blocked me. So, our "friendship" consisted of placing each other on ignore in a virtual forum. No thanks. I also had one "friend" who stated plainly that she was not on FB for friendship and mutual exchange, but to market her own internet enterprise and give others the benefit of her opinion. I'll take a pass. I now deliberately have one-third of the "friends" I used to have.

I also tired of people copying and pasting things I wrote and posting them as original thoughts, not videos, articles, and the like, but my own words. This is just base behavior. With reference to those with whom I interact on FB I can now simply type friends with no scare quotes. I have asked any of my friends that rather than removing me from their newsfeed to simply to "unfriend" me. Authenticity, I think, is something to strive for no matter the medium, no less virtually than in person.



Here's the punchline, the foregoing was a segue into being thankful that a FB friend reminded me, after I put up today's traditio, that today is Robert Zimmerman's 72nd birthday. In my view, Dylan is one of the postmodern masters of authenticity, who, despite repeatedly being labelled things like "the voice of a generation," insists he is "a song and dance man." Anyway, here's something from the Καθολικός διάκονος archives: YouTube orthodoxy and Saturday miscellania and another one to mark Bobby Z's birthday three years ago: "They’re selling postcards of the hanging"

As both of my longtime readers are aware, I love Dylan's "Knocking on Heaven's Door." Over the years I have posted quite a few versions and covers of this song. So, for our well-deserved bonus traditio, here is Dylan singing this classic hit (one of those songs you have to know to be in the band) with Tom Petty:

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