The Cut

original photograph by Ryan J Zeigler   Making the cut.   It’s a phrase that’s used in a number of different types of cases where candidates of some sort go through a screening process where in some are retained and others discarded.    If you think about it,  the friends in your life right now are likely a selection of people who have made it through various cuts over the years.

I have been making and keeping friends online for a long, long time now and the fact that some of these people have known me all this time  (and are still willing to call themselves my friend) makes me stop and think.   Not just talking online, but talking totals here,  my life before I went online and my friends both face to face and virtual ever since,  I’ve come to realize that more often than not friendships that were based on sex very very rarely last for very long,  although that the relationship is sexual does not preclude it being long term.   Relationships that are mostly based on a common interest,  usually only last so long as both friends continue to be active in the interest that drew them together in the first place.    Relationships that are based on the fact that you genuinely like and care for someone are the ones that seem to endure.

In the end the vast majority of the people who make the cut with me are people whom I genuinely like and care about.   I never dismiss the importance of venue,  and when a web site or other tool goes away it is not that uncommon to lose touch with friends whom you mostly kept off with on the site neither of you use anymore.   It’s also not uncommon to reconnect (these days on Facebook) with someone you haven’t spoken with in many years but whom you are proud to still call a friend.    And really mean it.   And not just in the Facebook sense.

And finally today,  a shout out to two of the most awesome  photographers I know– Ryan J Zeigler whose photograph is shown above,  in addition to being an incredible photographer and having a day job he rarely talks about,  is something of an Empire Avenue expert who blogs at and can often be found hanging out with lots of other sharp, witty people on G Plus and Facebook.    And my good friend Henry Plumley who figured out how to prioritize and maximize his social media effectiveness faster than any other newbie I’ve ever scene.    A chat with Hank on Facebook was the impetus for this post.  And just by the way– Ryan’s photo was the #1 Google image result for the search phrase  “The Cut”.    That’s why I selected it.


31 comments on “The Cut

  1. Ryan J Zeigler is a great person – I began to know him after I joined Empire Avenue. Henry Plumley is new to me. We just began to invest with each other. I think they will ‘make the cut.’

  2. Hi Alan, I’m sure there are many that have formed, reformed and refined friendships and relationships due to social media. I agree with you – they last as long as they are needed.

  3. Sweeet! 😉 And those two can spell my name right, too. 😉

    Did I make the cut? Can I have some pie? Think carefully. If you answer “no” to either of those questions, I’m sending @prunebutt1 your way.

  4. Great article and very true as there are many folks who never made the cut at times in my life that I wish were still around. I am grateful now with Social media the way it is, I don’t have to make the cut any more. (exception being with toxic people)

    • You know, Candace, I don’t think I agree that social media eliminates the need to cut. Certainly it opens up the possibility of keeping friends who move far away a bit more easily than becoming “pen pals”, but I don’t think it changes the basic equation.

  5. Thanks Alan for the mention. You never cease to amaze me how you can pull things together and put them on paper, or on screen, in truly an artistic way.

    I do agree with the post overall, but am stuck wondering if those that make “the cut” do so because of a larger reason, not one that we chose. In the brick n mortar world it’s a bit more obvious why we choose to be close to the people we do. For me at least, it’s very hard to enjoy something I hate to do in real life with someone. By comparison, virtually it becomes easier to do so. Yup, that thought right there is a great example why I carry a camera and not a notebook ! Hope it makes sense to someone.

    Now what happens when YOU want to make someone else’s cut? That is the real hurdle! Especially if you think you made it, then realize maybe you didn’t! Only to find out you very much may have . . .and then you don’t know!


    • Hank, I’m fairly certain that much of what happens to all of us in this life is connected with higher reasons that none of us are in a position to understand. As for wanting to make someone else’s cut– that is called “charm”. My huzband claims I’m good at this when I want to be.

    • So, Hank, I see by your hashtag that you are in need of an angry dust bunny who likes to call itself my Muse and kick my butt when I start “metablogging.” I’ll let you borrow #prunebutt, but you have to give him back soon – I have a feeling I’m going to need the snarky little fuzzball in my #race2hugo.

    • Sharon, I’ve come to believe that it’s the friends who “have almost nothing in common:” with us that were sent to teach us the most important lessons. Thanks so much for stopping by.

      • Hard to learn anything from anyone in a homogeneous society, isn’t it? I love diversity. I don’t tolerate it, accept it, or look the other way – I appreciate it. Because I don’t feel threatened by it or necessarily forced to change because of it – but it sure makes the world a more interesting and enriching experience.

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