Monday, November 2, 2009

Eggs over easy and Air Force One

"Hey Marketing Lady!"

"Who me?"

"Ya, you...why can't you ever put that Blackberry down? What's with all this tweeting and facebooking?"

No one actually called me "Marketing Lady" or asked those questions, but sometimes I hear those voices in my head as I whip out my Blackberry while waiting for a sandwich at the Deli. Or when we are with the kids at swim lessons and I can sneak a peek at some recent Tweets. Or sitting in traffic NOT MOVING (key phrase is highlighted in case you miss it).

But Sunday morning, in a drowsy, hazy, sugar hangover from all the Halloween fun, we took the kids to a local diner for some eggs and pancakes. We saddled up to the counter where there is a view of the Sunday morning shows on TV, complete with pictures of Barack Obama. My daughter sees it and blurts out how she's learning about Air Force One and Marine One in school.

Then it clicked. Twitter. Air Force One. I follow someone who works for NBC News and he recently shared a picture of him and his crew rushing onto that big ole plane. I'll show it to her...

Maybe not. My Twitter time line didn't go back that far. So I took a chance and tweeted him. He had just tweeted something which meant he might see mine and respond. I mean, he's only in DC and works for NBC News. He'll want to write to some lady in Boston, right?

Well, he responded. In one minute he was searching for pictures for us. Below is our conversation stream and boy did the kids LOVE getting pictures of the President's plane over eggs and chocolate milk. They believed in their heart those pictures were just for them. In fact, when we got home they asked me to print them up for them for their photo books.

*That* is why I tweet. The conversations. The cool people you meet. The idea that a busy cameraman from NBC News would take time out on a Sunday morning to send me links of his pics of Air Force One for my kids. A man I've never met, but who I follow because I find him to be interesting. There has never been anything like Twitter for me. I love to learn, engage and meet people from around the globe in 140 characters at a time.

So if you ever ask the Marketing Lady, I'll tell you social networking is about the instantaneous push and pull of information between people within a community, at any hour of the day, about any subject. Professionally, that is amazing for me and makes my job so incredible. But personally, watching my kids ooh and ahhh over my blackberry to "Mommy's friend who flies with the President"; that can't be measured in fun or cool or incredible because it surpasses that. I guess that's why it always seems like I'm on that little phone - and why I don't think I'll be putting it down anytime soon. And why the kids got a kick out typing their own "thank you" on the little keyboard. Manners first, no matter the technology!

Time line of our conversation:

From me to Jim: @newmediajim: Good morning - you don't have that AF1 pic link handy do u? Want to show my daughter but bberry won't go back that far :( thx!! 9:06 a.m. Nov 1

From Jim to me: @christinelexa hang on, lemme find you a good one 9:07 a.m. Nov 1

From me to Jim: @newmediajim thanks! We're at breakfast and she is so excited. This will make her morning :) 9:11 a.m. Nov 1

From Jim to me: @christinelexa this is AF1 in Tanzania i believe this is Bahrain 9:13 a.m. Nov 1

From us to Jim: @newmediajim thank you, abby (7yo on a blackberry for the first time) thank you, alex (4yo on a blackberry for the first time). So kind, thx 9:20 a.m. Nov 1

From Jim to me: @christinelexa aww tell them both hi for me! and tell them not to eat all of their halloween candy for breakfast ;) 9:22 a.m. Nov 1