The Weirdness of Facebook (For a Woman of a Certain Age)

facebook

2007

“Yet another ‘friend request’ for this Facebook thing? Can’t be bothered. Too busy blogging.”

“What? That blogger, and that one, and that one are on Facebook now?” (Finally caves and accepts request from friend).

“Meh. I much prefer blogging.”

2008

(Facebook account has lain dormant, despite multiple friend requests — kinda like LinkedIn and Twitter accounts. Then two siblings and nieces urge me to get involved, and a young friend visits who talks up what a great way it is to keep in touch.)

“Okay, so what was my password again?”

“So-and-so is on Facebook?! Wow!” (Friend request. Friend request. Friend request — ad nauseam). “Uh-oh, I’m becoming one of those annoying ‘friend requesters’.”

“Why the heck is Jen Ladder-Climbing-Back-Stabber sending me a friend request (along with a LinkedIn request, a Twitter request, an anything-else-social-media-request)? Did she somehow miss the fact we’re not friends? That when we worked together, I basically never talked to her about anything un-work-related or did anything with her because I so disliked her?” (Accepts friend request anyway to see if she’s still as obnoxious and narcissistic as she was years ago. Discovers the answer is “yes”.)

“What? One of the goals of this thing is to try to have as many friends and responses from friends as possible? WHY?”

“How come Jen Ladder-Climbing-Back-Stabber has more Facebook friends than I do?”

“How come that really witty thing I posted only got one response from my 275 so-called friends?”

(One of my three siblings, all of whom have lived all over the country and world, have attended multiple schools, and been employed at multiple places, and none of whom I’ve lived near since I moved away from North Carolina in 1987, posts a photo of all of us when we were children, tagging me, so it shows up on my wall.) “Wait! Who are all these friends of my siblings commenting on this photo? I’ve never heard of any of them. When did my siblings all make friends I don’t know?”

“A friend request from Dave Forgot-Till-Just-Now-How-Much-He-Broke-My-Heart? Am I supposed to accept friend requests from exes (especially when the thought of looking him up never crossed my mind)?” (Goes ahead and accepts. Curiosity got the best of me.)

“A friend request from Mark I-Still-Feel-Bad-That-I-Think-I-Broke-His-Heart? The PMs from Dave were so weird. Do I really want to accept a request from another ex with whom I long ago lost touch?” (Accepts anyway. Good thing I’m not a cat. I would’ve died years ago.)

(Sends out friend request to Tina Funniest-Junior-High-Kid-Ever.) “What? What do you mean, ‘Do I know you? I don’t remember who you are’? We shared a microscope in science class. You sat at my lunch table. I laughed at everything you said.”

“Amy Name-That-Rings-Not-a-Single Bell? Never heard of you. You must have the wrong Emily.” (For once, does not accept friend request.)

“Wait, Amy Name-That-Rings-Not-a-Single Bell keeps writing comments on all my sister’s posts. And she’s friends with my other sister and half the kids in my high school class. Who the heck is she? Oh no! I’ve become one of those people who can’t remember her high school classmates!”

2009-2014

“When did we all go from third-person to first-person on Facebook?”

“Why am I suddenly getting posts on my wall from R.E.M., David Sedaris, the Grateful Dead, and Edgar Allan Poe?” (Finally realizes the phishing that went on when I first signed up and listed things I like. Revises them.)

“T.B.T.? What on earth is that?” (Finally gets it. Diligently posts old photos for a while every Thursday, until it begins to seem like too much of a chore.)

“I wonder what all these kids are going to think when all these cute photos/videos their parents are posting of them are out there for all the world to find when they’re fifteen years old?”

“I wonder what those running for President in 2030 are going to think when all these photos/videos of them as babies, toddlers, children, and teens are out there for all the world to find?”

“Huh! All the cool, popular kids/people who, all my life, never invited me to do anything with them are all still hanging out with each other. How come they never invite me to do anything?”

“Why on earth, at my age, do I still care what the cool, popular kids/people are doing?”

“Yes, yes, I was in [NC, VA, CT, NY, ME, CA, etc.] and didn’t tell you or see you. I’m sorry! I’m sorry! I only had so much time. (Note to self, never, ever again post where I am, where I’m going, or where I’ve been, unless it’s Sri Lanka or something.)

“Barb Haven’t-Seen-in-Way-too-Long was in Philadelphia and didn’t tell me?! Why not?!”

“When did it become a Facebook page and not a Facebook wall? And why am I like my parents when Esso became Exxon, still constantly referring to it as my wall instead of my page?”

“Are people really still paying attention to Facebook anymore?” (Posts picture of pets. Gets 97 “likes’.) “Yep, I guess they are.”

“Dear Friend, It isn’t that I don’t want to comment on your post. It’s just that I don’t want to get 55 alerts telling me about all the other comments on it.”

2015

“What would happen if I just stopped Facebook altogether?”

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4 thoughts on “The Weirdness of Facebook (For a Woman of a Certain Age)

  1. I love this post. L.O.V.E it. I ditto everything you said. I wish I could just cancel the whole thing, but will that make me look like a fuddy-duddy…wait…why do I can how I look? Or, maybe my “friends” will think I’m just not friendly. There are only so many times I can “like” a picture of someone’s baby (new ones posted daily), or videos of how to live in a tiny house or make fudge. And why would I want to see what someone has on his/her dinner plate. Thank you, thank you, for finally saying what I’ve been wanting to say for a long time. (By the way…should I invite you to be my FB friend? Just kidding. I’ll spare you). Very funny and delightful post!

    Like

  2. I am with you on this, Emily! And you missed out the whole, ‘Facebook just uses everyone for social experimentation, huh?’ element that made me leave last time. I can tell you that it’s easy to get sucked back in again but simultaneously very unsatisfactory.

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  3. Oh, yes, the social experimentation, also that annoying marketing research that means I’ll get a post on my wall from L.L. Bean, just after I placed an order, that says “Emily, you might like [the exact thing I’ve just ordered]”, because, you know, when placing the order, I never would’ve thought to buy duplicates if I wanted more than one.

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