Friday, February 6, 2009

A Facebook Confession

I recently joined Facebook. Even as I was filling out the information to start an account, I wondered 'why?'.

I guess I was hoping to reconnect with a few friends from high school, curious to see what they've been up to.

I was unprepared for the sheer number of people I would encounter.

Or the fact that, frankly (whispering), I don't remember many of them. The names are familiar, especially after I see them over and over in the "Friends You May Know" section. But honestly, I don't have clear memories of the majority of these people.

Every time I see a marginally familiar name, I wonder to myself "Should I remember you better? Did we hang out? Did we ever eat lunch together? Were we 'school friends' but not friends in real life? Did I have a mad crush on you that I am still marginally embarrassed about? Were we frenemies?"

I. Can't. Remember.

So most school friends I see, I don't "request to be their friend" on Facebook. Sure, times have changed and even if there was love or hate involved in high school, I see few reasons to ratchet up my FB friends for the sake of amassing a collection. And that's what FB seems to be to - just a narcissistic, self-promoting, popularity contest.

I've found most of the people I wanted to be in touch with, so I'm just going to fade into the background a bit more, and let the friend tourists carry on.

fyi - Friend Tourist is a term we use in my house to label someone who has to be in constant contact with many, many acquaintances but actually has very few to no good friends. Big Daddy and I are both the type to have just a spare handful of good friends, and a double handful of acquaintances we keep in contact with.


Ted and Hilery said...

I completely agree! Ted and I just joined a couple of week ago.. and Ted found a couple of his best guy friends from highschool but he is already bored... I can't seem to find the girls I was looking for... so I am about done. A girl from highschool asked me to be her friend.. so I accepted only to remember that we were never friends and she only wanted one more friend (she is almost at 1000) to add to her collection.. dumb.

coloradolaura said...

My friend Dani calls it "Slambook." (If you don't remember those, you may have never participated in that rite of passage.) I accept most requests if I recognize their name. I figure if it makes their day by adding another name to their friend list - who am I to deny them that simple pleasure? Not to say, I have not had some "shady" characters ask for my friendship...maybe they were nice people. I don't care to find out when I have my identity stolen. I have loved it when the friends I miss and love find me and share what's going on. However, I crack up at the ones who change their relationship status to "It's complicated" or "Single" and I say to myself "Didn't I just see you and your wife last week?" or the status updates "John is waiting for the plummer." "Jane is going to work." Notice no one ever says they are taking a dump or shooting up heroin. These friends are crying out for help - really. Life has a normal rhythm - work, sleep, eat, drink, breathe. That's reality folks. I try to make a positive status, catchy quote or zany outlook. I like hearing about people and their family events, did you volunteer today? did you have a spiritual awakening? Did you read a great book? There are so many more things to people. It's like they are afraid to add more dimension to themselves. Thanks Ms. Amy - I had to vent...:) Now, did you reply to the FB quiz I sent you???