Monday, February 23, 2009

Facing Facebook

Recently I was enticed, or shall I say bullied, into joining the Facebook revolution. Being a somewhat mature 40 something woman, I wasn't convinced that this was a networking tool I was interested in. My daughters, both young and hip (is it hip to call them hip?) decided I wasn't too old to have my own account. Then when an old friend of mine attempted to contact me through my daughter, that became the deciding factor. Sign me up I sighed.

I would comment on how easy it was to navigate the enrollment process but I paid my daughter, Melanie, to do it. Since she is still living at home, as much as a full time college student with a part-time job lives at home, she's the one left with the daunting task of trying to get me familiar with something that is 2nd nature to her. (We had a similar issue with the camera on my cell phone). After days of "take down that picture!", "how do I reply?", "why do I keep seeing this?" and "why are folks throwing beads at me?", I finally became comfortable with the basics.

Facebook in and of it self is strange. Is it really necessary to comment on your day to day activities? Rather than just getting on with the task at hand, I find myself trying to be clever. Typically when I'm tired, I just go to bed. Now, all of my Facebook friends know that I pass out like clockwork at 10pm. It's pathetic. The voyeuristic characteristics are undeniable. If you post a comment on somebody's "wall" anyone with friendship access can see your post. What's worse is they can read the response as well. I feel like a spy. Just call me Agent 99. Who needs a sidekick that talks into his shoe when I all have to do is read your wall?

Don't get me started on the whole "friend" status. In high school, which is what a friend of mine says Facebook is like only 30 years later, I had maybe a dozen people that I truly considered friends. Now when someone you remotely knew sees your name (I don't even post my maiden name) BAM!, instant friend request. What are the rules of etiquette for the friendship dance? Must I accept your request? What if I don't remember you? What if I didn't like you then and suspect I won't like you now? Is it okay to ignore your request? It's very stressful for me.

On a positive note, in the four weeks that I've been on Facebook, I've managed to wrangle 43 friends which is astounding because I didn't realize I knew 43 people. I've had the opportunity to reconnect with 5 of my 12 friends from high school. I'm even happier to report that most of them have gained as much weight as I have.

Will I continue with the day to day banter of being on Facebook? Time will tell. In the meantime, what's a clever way of saying it's time for dinner?

Monday, February 16, 2009

The Replacement

How unusual is it to be able to be okay with a life that has moved on?

Recently, I saw my former flame, aka Mr. Former, with whom I had had a five year relationship. It was the first time our paths had crossed in seven months. Ironically, he had married the very day I saw him and I met his new wife, Mrs. Former. Happily, on the surface, she appears perfect for him. We were surrounded by mutual friends, many of whom warned me upon my arrival, of the nuptials. "They may be joining us". "Are you going to stay"? "Are you alright"? "Are you sorry you didn't marry him"? Good grief, I thought you people knew me. I suspect those of you that do know me realize I would be nothing but the kind, gracious southern woman that my momma taught me to be, bless her heart.

As the evening progressed, Mrs. Former and I had the opportunity to talk. albeit, in the ladies room. She was curious about me. She knew of my meager existence and the time I shared with Mr. Former, but she knew little else. She was surprised that I was friendly, forthcoming, eager to share a small overview of my life with Mr. Former and a down right "nice girl". Guess what, my replacement has many of those same qualities.

I am happy to report that we (she & I) danced, sang and laughed our way through the evening. She, in the arms of her new husband, and me, in the cradle of a Coors Light. Not exactly the same happy ending, but happy none the less.