Accidental invitations link past to present

I recently completed a biography questionnaire for a class I’m taking. The process was an interesting experience and really made me think.


As a writer, I’m usually the one asking questions. I don’t typically have to think about how I would answer a question, but this time I did.


Some of the questions were easy to answer: Name, spouse’s name, address, occupation, length of time at occupation, etc.


The hardest question asked me to list my favorite book. How can I pick just one? Should I select a favorite children’s book, a favorite historical novel, a classic? That’s like asking me to pick a favorite friend. Each of my friends is special to me for different reasons.


Hmm. I decided to think about the book question. 


That caused a flashback to another recent experience. A friend sent me an invitation to be linked with her on Linked-In, an information-sharing network for professionals.

I wanted to be a good friend, so I accepted.


Once that happened, I received invitations from other people I knew, so I kept accepting invitations. Then I received emails encouraging me to send invitations to other people, so I sent a few of those.


One recent evening at the end of a long day, I noticed that I had one of those emails asking me to send invitations to other people I know. There were five or six people “selected” for me, and I had to “deselect” them if I didn’t want to send invitations to all of them. 


I recognized two names, so I deselected the rest ... or so I thought. I didn’t notice that there were several layers containing several pages of names that were selected for me.


I hit “send” without a second thought, and a message flashed across my screen that invitations had been sent to 256 people, pretty much everyone in my online address book.

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