I’ve come to face the facts: for real communication on the internet, Facebook is where it’s at.
This is not entirely great news for me. To me, Facebook is… Prickly. Awkward. Not entirely User Friendly, as they say. I go there and find all sorts of information that I cannot use (updates that come to me because I am a “friend” of the person writing but that mean Absolutely Nothing to me) or find invitations to groups that I just don’t understand or am asked to take “quizzes” that (from a teacher’s perspective) are Loaded with Trick Questions.
As I wrote to a friend recently when she joined Facebook, I feel that entering those pages is like jumping into a swimming pool when you’d really rather not get wet.
Of course, sometimes one doesn’t even need to go there to get wet, so to speak. Just last week I discovered via my gmail account that I had been included yet again in a “compare people” Facebook thingamajig. The results of said evaluation informed me that I had scored in both the “best” and “worst” categories and, while the results seem both straightforward and relatively benign, I remain a bit mystified. What, for instance, does it mean to learn that one would be “the best person to be stranded on a desert island with”? All sorts of images come to mind. Perhaps this is a nod to the t.v. show Lost, which I’ve never seen, or the popular “reality” show Survivor, which I’ve also never seen. I’m really really hoping that it has nothing to do with the movie that was popular in my early high school days, that splashy Brooke Shields movie The Blue Lagoon, which, even in its sanitized-for-television format, could go Some Distance in educating the uneducated about how one discovers one’s sexuality.
Definitely hoping that my “best” award is a nod to one of the former….
In the “worst” category, I was awarded “kindest,” and this I also found mystifying and maybe even disturbing (this is a worst category? As in, kindness is a bad thing?). The social implications of such a statement are, frankly, Terrifying and I’ve decided not to think about it any more.
Just this morning, I find that I’ve been invited to take part in a (new?) Facebook quiz It’s called “Uniquely You” and, as its title seems to suggest that I won’t be comparing myself to anyone (something that I think we all do and should try to avoid whenever possible), I thought I’d give it a go. The quiz includes a variety of “goals” one might have in life, and these one is supposed to rank from 1-10. Problem is, I’m stumped from the get-go. What is most important to me in life, love or being married? Love is likely the “right” answer, but now that I’m married, one could argue that these are one and the same, or that I need to rank “being married” above love because of what that might imply, but then again that could also imply that I just want to be married no matter what which isn’t true but if it’s Bill Stevenson we’re talking about then it is true and do you see what I mean?
I didn’t take the quiz.
Once upon a time, in a fever-induced state, I actually tried to participate in one of these Facebook quiz things and it went very badly for me. I should have learned my lesson. Sorry, Friend-From-College-Shane-Whom-I-Recently-Rediscovered-Via-Facebook-And-Who-Invited-Me-To-Take-This-Quiz. Not gonna do it.
But that is what’s good about Facebook, I’ve discovered. It’s the Rediscovery. I’ve been “on” Facebook now for a while (over a year), and have recently experienced a rash of reconnections with friends from college and high school. Here are people I haven’t seen in Years but who occasionally cross my mind. It’s so great to suddenly see them there and to hear how they are and to have the opportunity– so much easier than snail-mail or telephone– to reconnect. This, O Reader, is Good.
Interestingly, as I was poking about on Facebook last night, a friend IM’d me– and this is a relatively new friend (in the scheme of things) and a local friend and, sadly, a friend I have not communicated with since August. We chatted last night and we’ve chatted again this morning, and now our whole family is going to her house tomorrow to spend the afternoon. Lovely.
See? Facebook is a Good Thing.
Nonetheless, I remain a blogger and will be for the foreseeable future. And I am not alone. One of my recent Facebook reconnections includes childhood-friend Jenny, who moved away to Atlanta at the beginning of 9th grade. It was great to hear from her on Facebook, great to see her photo, and really, really great to learn that she has a blog!
So I guess I’ll be spending more time on Facebook. But thank you (oh, thank you) for reading this blog.