Social Graces

tin-can-11I am at a wedding reception, enjoying the company. I see a friend dancing with her son, the groom. A guest, one of my long-time friends, tells me about her son making the dean’s list at Auburn. An acquaintance approaches and tells me about a great charity that will help her son obtain an experimental medical treatment–I gladly make a donation. I walk over to join a small group laughing over their goofy mistakes navigating the new online school registration system. A friend and I begin a conversation about a concern she had about sharing some sensitive information in the registration process.

Then, suddenly, a woman I have never seen before approaches the group. She slaps my face, calls me a fool and a liar and then waits for my reaction. I blink, stunned.

I spend a minute or two crafting my scathing and clever response, but then one by one backspace over each letter. I delete her comment and take a deep breath. There are some advantages of social media over real life interactions.

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