Remember when we were kids and our parents would remind us every time we left the house without fail to remember not to talk to strangers, and we’d roll our eyes before trudging out the door? Thanks to social media today we don’t even have to leave the house to be faced with an opportunity to talk to strangers! We hear all the time about people being catfished or the negative side of the anonymity and mystery that comes with the Internet. It can be a scary place if you don’t take the right precautions, but at the same time it’s easily one of the biggest hubs to meet new people.
On Monday I got to meet two girls who proved to me that not every stranger on the Internet is bad, and sometimes taking a risk works out in your favour.
Backstory: On Monday The 1975 played a show at the Shaw Conference Centre here in Edmonton. My sister, being the real MVP of the day, lined up at 4 AM to secure our spots in line for the general admission show with the hopes of being front row. I showed up around 11:30 and met the two girls who got there even earlier than my little sister. We started chatting (I mean we had HOURS to kill until the doors opened) and in an effort to try to get to know the girls I asked how long they had known each other. I got an answer I was not expecting.
Kelsey and Marissa are both from Winnipeg and are self-proclaimed “Winnipeg’s biggest The 1975 fan” (as their Instagram bio states). After attending her first The 1975 concert Marissa told her friends that once they announced their Canadian tour dates she planned on going to every one, no matter where it was in the country. Her friends admitted they were too broke (#university) to join her and one steered her in the direction of a Twitter account ran by someone who was tweeting about similar plans. That someone was Kelsey. Marissa slid into her DM’s and they made plans to meet for breakfast to plan the trip. That’s right: two strangers bonded over pancakes, their love for The 1975 and had flights booked and ready to go before the check came.
When I met the two girls they were on their second of four concerts together. Having been in Calgary the night before for the concert, they pulled an all-nighter to drive straight to the Shaw and hopped in line just before 4 AM for the Edmonton show.
I’m still blown away by them. I’m extremely cautious as to who I talk to, who can see what I post and am overall just quite guarded online. Kelsey and Marissa knew nothing about each other besides their Twitter names and that the other was just as in love with The 1975 as them. And yet here they were across the country spending every waking moment together.
It’s quite the love story if you ask me. Social media allow us to connect with a ridiculous amount of people in a matter of seconds from all over the world. It’s insane. Common interests and passions bring us together online, and from that real friendships can form. Of course precautions are always important, but opening up online isn’t always the worst thing in the world.
Oh and in case you were wondering the concert was totally worth waiting in line all day, and I’d do it all over again in a heartbeat.