Saturday, November 28, 2009

From Stranger to special BFF in 48 hours: A True Twitter Tale [Guest Post from Kasey Crabtree]

Well, like everything, the guest post segments fumbled on Black Friday.  I finally got Kasey's blog post so Kasey is here to lead us off.  Her tale that is pretty remarkable considering how VAST our world is, but then again with advents in social media, our world has definitely gotten smaller.  

But first, here is a little background on our guest blogger. 

@KaseyCrabtree is a DJ with Classic Rock 98.5, WNCX in ClevelandOH ( and can be heard Saturdays from 10am-2pm.  Watch for the launch of her website within the next couple of months, and check back here for info on her own, yet-to-be-titled blog which will have its first official posting before her birthday on December 19th.

From Stranger to special BFF in 48 hours: A True Twitter Tale
by: Kasey Crabtree

That is how I would describe my relationship with Adam (AKA Throwing Quarters).  So when he asked for guest bloggers to help cover his posts over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend, it seemed the logical thing to do; the next progression of our friendship. It is also an honor to have this, my first ever blogpost, featured in his blog. 

But in order to appreciate where Adam and I are today, we need to look back and review how we got here.  Ours is truly a happy story of the ‘social’ aspect of social media; of some of the best results one could hope for from this new era of communication.  The coolest part: versions of this story could be happening to people everyday, maybe even to you!

The Common Question (?)

So how have things been?  What’s new? Whatcha been up to?
How ARE you?

How many of us will be asked these ubiquitous questions over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend?  How many times will we answer with polite, generic responses: “Things are the same”, “nothing much”, “I’m good”. 

I was recently asked these very questions by a friend I hadn’t seen in a few months.  I looked at her and I wasn’t sure where to begin. Instead of giving her one of the usual scripted responses, I was honest with her, telling her how I had been let go from my ‘day job’ on 4/3/09 – and I that am still job hunting.

I saw her look of concern and sympathy, but before she could say anything, I told her it was all ok – even better than ok. Now she looked puzzled. 

explained I felt like Dorothy when she opened the door from her black and white world to the new world of Oz in Technicolor, or, maybe more appropriately, like Neo, when he swallowed the red pill and wakes up in ‘the real world and begins to understand the true nature of The Matrix.

No, I wasn’t on drugs: rather, I had finally discovered the world of social media, and I couldn’t imagine how I had ever lived without it.  She looked skeptical and dismissive, possessing the same attitude I had toward social media only 6 months ago: Facebook and twitter are a playground for self-absorbed people with way too much time on their hands.

Extolling the virtues and conveniences of twitter (especially once I had been shown Tweetdeck) fell on deaf ears with her, and the glazed look in her eyes made me realize I was losing her.  I offered to give her an example of the power of twitterverse….  Here it goes….

The common (or not-so-common?) occurrence

My first day on twitter was Friday, 7/31/2009; just five short months ago. (I’m @KaseyCrabtree, BTW).  Two weeks later, Friday August 14, 2009, I experienced my first #FollowFriday using Tweetdeck.  It was so exciting - I felt like I had arrived! I think I had about 75-100 followers at that point and was excited to connect with new people. 

@TeamNEO (an organization that promotes business growth and development in NE Ohio) had several #FollowFriday suggestions, many were business, but there was one in the list that was just a name - @acgercak.  I clicked on it and stumbled across one of Adam’s great Throwing Quarters blog entries discussing an “off day” vs. a “day off”.  The quick read was entertaining, candid, witty and well written. I was intrigued.

I tweeted him back complimenting his writing, and so began a dialog between us.  Based on some of his writing, I wondered if he worked in retailyes he did; I then shared how I had recently been let go from high-end retail job myself.  As our short tweets continued back and forth, we both began to see a picture of each other and how many common interests we shared.  Moreover, he was working practically right across the street from my condo, AND we both regularly frequented the same Starbucks.  It was quite the series of coincidences!

I can’t remember the exact sequences of events as he discovered I work part time as a radio DJ (Adam also has some radio experience), and I then invited me to attend the taping of a ThrowingQuartrs podcast on Sunday Aug 16th at The Barley House.  Sunday rolled around; I went to the show featuring singer/songwriter Adam Taylor (@AdamTaylorMusic) and then found myself sitting in on the recording of the podcast, interjecting questions.  It all seemed so effortless, so natural, so comfortable.  By the time the night had ended, many smiles had been exchanged and pictures taken.

Adam seemed like a friend I had know for years, yet 48 hours prior, neither one of us had known of the other’s existence (Adam may have heard me on the radio).  Now, I couldn’t imagine not having this kindred spirit in my life.  I told him he was like my new BFF GF, but he wasn’t a girl, nor was he gay!  However, I felt like I could talk with him about almost anything, and I have!

We are still good friends; I have come to know his wife Jenn, and I tease both of them about the fact that they may have named their new daughter Addison, but I already had a 3 yr old cat by the same name.  See??? Yet another coincidence. 

Now rememberthis wonderful friendship is ALL a DIRECT RESULT of having connected on twitter.

So what did my friend think of this story? She was intrigued, but still concerned about my current status. I acknowledged that on paper, my situation might seem bleak:  I am divorced with no kids (I have 3 cats), I have been unemployed for over 6 months, plus I am deeply in debt and terribly behind on all my bills.

I smiled and looked her straight in the eyes.  All these facts are true; these are all hurdles for me to overcome.  However, I have more hope and a stronger positive feeling toward the future than I have had in over 10 years!  I feel that our society is on the cusp of a new dimension of communication, almost as significant as the invention of the printing press. 

Yet more importantly, I feel like I have finally found “my people”.  A community of caring, positive, foreword-thinking people who embrace change and the future, with excitement and awe.  I have happily stepped into the new world of Social Media, and with every bone in my body; I believe it represents my future. 

To paraphrase a line from a favorite book, please join me; please join US, as we tweet the road of happy destiny.  See you all in the twitterverse!


Vodka Logic said...

What a great first blog.

I so agree with your take on social media. I have met a couple of my best friends via the internet and don't know what I would do with out them. Adam is certainly a great internet friend and if not for the miles I am sure we would have shared a Starbucks by now.. and you too Kasey.

I tried to explain twitter to a coworker and they just didn't get it..or wouldn't is more likely. Their loss.

Thanks for sharing..can't wait for your blog

Will Burke said...

Great first post! Looking forward to your Blog, I'm sure Adam will let us know when it's up-and-running.

~Kenny said...

Great fucking story! I also became a friend of Adam's through my blog..and I then met a bunch of his great friends through that. It truly is a small world.

alexa - cleveland's a plum said...

twitter is such a powerful tool! can't wait for your blog kasey!

Bruce said...

cool stuff.

magda said...

Hey Kasey, what a terrific story, I love your voice. I could hear you talking tome directly as you described your courtship with Adam and your friend's near disinterest in social media. It is clearly a venue with immeasurable potential for you and I look forward to following you on your blog to see where it takes you. I feel as if twitter is for all the cool people and I would be like the geeky eaves dropper with my face pressed to the glass trying to get it on it all. Maybe that is because I am old. Similar to the even older people who still write checks because they feel threatened by the ATM card option at the grocery store.

Kick ass. I am glad I found you. I might actually get to one of Adam's posts if I am able to continue reading before the babies wake, again.

magda said...

uh oh.
your link to "off day or day off isn't working" (for me). baby crying. must try again later

kaye spector said...

good, well-written post, Kasey. and so true. "social" aspects of social media aside, i find there's tremendous professional benefits as well, which directly contribute to my improved ability to do my job. good luck with your employment search!

Heidi said...

Well done Kasey! My non-sm friends don't get this either. I suspect that they think I'm becoming some sort of hermit. Yet, I keep bringing new people I've met through Cle SMC and elsewhere to our gatherings, so eventually they'll ken that the online world reinforces the real world connections and vice versa.

Speaking of the real world, you, Adam and any other Northeast Ohio bloggers are welcome to join us for the next meeting of the Lake Erie Moose Society, next Monday at 6:30.

Cheers on your first post, and I expect to see you soon either in real life or via the Twitterverse. - @hacool.

Kasey said...

Thanks for all the kind comments and support, both here & on twitter. So now that I've given myself a PUBLIC deadline (my b-day 12/19)guess I'll have to have my blog up by then....

thinking of calling it "an honest Kase..." get it? any thoughts?