18 February 2008

On Brick Walls and Back Fences

Speaking of brick walls, there are entirely other ways to apply the same metaphor to communities besides gender roles. It can also be used to describe how people share their lives:
    I came across a great metaphor for relationships awhile ago - bricks and mortar. Bricks are the "big things" - the events of life that you share with friends. Mortar is the little, everyday stuff, that the people you are closest to just know about, often whether they want to or not. -- Darusha

Bricks would be things like weddings, funerals, births, deaths, new jobs, new cars, new pets, travel to distant lands, etc. Mortar would be announcements of "my mushrooms are frozen! O.o" while I'm making beef barley soup. Mortar bits of info are what make other people real and lifelike, and give a community its depth.

For the most part, people tend to blog bricks rather than mortar. Mortar just doesn't seem important enough to mention via such weighty methods as "publishing," immortalized for all the world to see for all eternity. But mortar is really easy in a realtime chat situation, or over an instant messenger, where it'll all just flow past and eventually disappear.

In the case of UCFers, we get into mortarlike things through blog post comments. Those aren't as weighty as actual articles, because they get lost in a big mishmash of other comments. But oftentimes they don't seem appropriate to say if they aren't on topic, and there have been quite a few times now where I wanted to say something mortarlike to people, but don't, because there's no real place to do it.

Enter Tom's Back Fence. Come say hi already, people!


Tom said...

I like that "bricks and mortar" analogy. I'm not a missing brick, or some strange kind of glue, there. I've got bricks and mortar.

And I like how you pimped the back fence. Shawn was there early this morning, and stopped by for a few words before going to work!


John the Scientist said...

I blog bricks because I'm careful with my privacy. For both professional and personal reasons. There are a few bricks I won't blog about either, for various reasons. And I tend to steal timne to blog, so I just don't have the urge to blog about mortar. My last post was probably mortar, though, although it related to the brick post on immigration.

TroyBoy said...

Nice blog, sir. I found you by way of Eric's blog, "On The Shoulder of Giant Midgets" (I hope I got that right).

I agree that we need to share more of the mortar of our lives. It's the very thing that holds us together and it's what makes us interesting. Great topic.

MWT said...

Tom: Heheh, that's hilarious that you're also pimping the back fence in a comment to the same post where I've already put in a link to the back fence.. ;) Surely that'll make people click on it more!

John: I noticed that. Oh well, every community needs a walking encyclopedia. ;)

I read your last blog post, and I'm still digesting. There were a number of parts I completely disagreed with but don't yet know how to articulate that.

TroyBoy: Welcome, welcome. My musical interests are probably nothing like yours, but hopefully that won't stop you from dropping by anyway. :)

Shawn: take your pills!

Nathan said...

My bricks are all pulverized and my mortar is more of a slurry.

Feel free to interrupt and let me know about your frozen mushrooms anytime.

Random Michelle K said...



Thank you for adding that!

(continues to giggle to self)

Random Michelle K said...

Also, I used to blog more about bricks, but now I tend to do more mortar.

Mostly because I haven't had the mental wherewithal to come up with a brick post.

But I've had one on the WV Supreme Court, brewing for a month it's been.

Tania said...

Waaah!! First, I can't see Tom's stuff form work, and over the last week, they've added Jeri and Shawn to the list of blocked sites...

And now from home I get the "You are NOT authorized" message when I go to try and share things from my mortar tray. :(

Tom said...

Tania, I had a deluge of spam some time in the past, and it caused me to block whole ranges of IP Addresses. I may be able to remove all those blocks because the directories they were after are no longer there. But just in case, if you can send me (tom@snave.org) your IP Address, or even just the first 3 numbers, I'll make sure you're not blocked.

Because, you know, I absolutely want you to be Authorized!

Tom said...

Tania, no need to send the IP Address. I cleared all the IP Deny addresses. But I bet your address is 216.x.x.123! I saw some friendly activity from that address. Blocked addresses are usually trying some unfriendly activities.

Anyway, whether or not that was you, you are now AUTHORIZED!

MWT, sorry for hijacking your comments, but I know you'll join me in welcoming Tania to " the back fence.

MWT said...

It's not a hijack if it's on-topic. ;) And I want Tania to make her way over there too.