Does everyone have as much angst about staying involved as I do?
Last weekend, ESG had a big reunion in Silicon Valley (as a prelude to asking for money for this year's seminars). The [associate] director told me how it went. The alumni say they want to "stay involved" in ESG. My name came up more than a few times.
During college, I interacted mostly on the community level: being a presence, taking responsibilities, and generally participating in a human give-and-take that defined my communities. Now, by leaving those communities, more than one life's-worth diverges from mine, I lose friends, and I feel like I lose something of myself.
And I'm still essentially at MIT. But Claudia interacts on the individual level... and the two modes appear to be at odds.
The problem isn't "staying in touch"-- I now have a database for that (I still hope that a technological solution can solve that problem). The problem is that community interaction has threshold below which the ties fall apart, and my plans for personal growth have thresholds to get positive acceleration (I'm still working out the equations). The optimal solution is when the community and the opportunity for personal growth coincide, and I've lost that.