Tuesday, September 23, 2008


So as not to make my friend cry, I've decided to not write about anything serious today. Instead, I'll write about Facebook.

I've known about Facebook for quite sometime, due to an incredibly smart husband who knew what "social media" was and the power of it long before it was even invented. But only recently did I create my page and really start using it. And it's become an addiction. There's really no better description than that. Someone else's Facebook friend called it "Facecrack" and it's totally true in my case. Right up there with my daily Starbucks.

There are a few things that surprise me: first, I commuicate on there more with friends who I see more often than with friends I rarely see. I thought it would be opposite, but I guess it makes sense that even though I see them every day - or just about - I still have the most to say to them.

Second - the family I've reconnected with. We've had two family weddings this past spring and I was lucky to connect with two particuar cousins at my sister's that I hadn't seen in at least 10 years. We don't communicate every day, but we'll send each other virtual drinks, add to each other's sea gardens, or just shoot a quick comment to on occassion. I've learned so much more about another cousin, his new baby and his recent successful book tour that I MIGHT have heard about a few months from now after the next time my aunt talked to my mom - and my mom, much as I love her, would have gotten some detail wrong - like the book tour being in Paris instead of London. So I'm really happy to have the personal connection myself. And the encouragement to keep writing from an actual writer who enjoyed my first blog post. (So blame him if the rest suck!)

And finally - the most recent connections I've made are with a few friends from college. At first I felt unsure about opening all those doors again. I thought that if we were such good friends, why did we lose touch to begin with? And I'm such a different person now than I was back then. But connecting with two particular friends today was such a good experience, I really think I'm ready for more. Yes, I'm a different person than I was 15 years ago. But then, aren't we all??

So I'm sure I'll be even more and more addicted as time goes on. I'll talk to some friends more than others; send more flair, bumper stickers, and shots; take stupid quizzes; chat; share and tag pictures; brag about my husband and kids. And to all friends and family not (YET!) on Facebook, get on there and be my friend. I'm dying to know more about you.

One more thing... if anyone out there can feed, water and pet my virtual dog Brownie, please do so. I'll be too busy super-poking more and more friends.


Anonymous said...

I know what you mean about Facebook being like crack - that is why I try to stay away from it as much as I can! I don't have the mindset to do all the Facebook extras of sending drinks or plants - so please don't be offended that I don't accept the "invite". I just don't want to add all those applications and get sucked in more!

I find the computer is like crack - once I turn it on, I am on for hours! Now I try to only be on the computer when I have something specific to do - not just checking emails. Sometimes that means I am not on email for almost a week though.

Keep writing and keep in touch via facebook or email. I am always interested to see what you are up to! :-)

Cousin Kelly... from one of those family weddings :-)

Prof Mark said...

Facebook is the ultimate social media tool, but what's interesting is that it was originally designed for people in college (you used to have to have a .edu email address to get into it) and now the fastest growing demographic is 35 and above.

The real question about the rise of virtual tools is the extent to which they will cut into "first life" interaction. There are many who think that social media tools like Facebook will actually discourage face-to-face interaction.

The Really Smart Husband
(shameless plug above)

Johnna said...

Thanks to you both. Kelly - no problem in the request department. I barely keep up with it myself. And Mark, in terms of FB actually discouraging face-to-face interaction, it's already happening. The current generation of college grads prefers to email or IM a colleague down the hall rather than get up and chat. I don't think FB is to blame.

Anonymous said...

I would like to note to Prof. Mark that people had the same concerns about e-mail, the telephone, and the plain old US mail.

More communication is good, as is any technology that helps facilitate it. I don't know anyone who's become a recluse since facebook was invented. It just gives people a chance to get back in touch with people they would otherwise not be.

In the same way that it's nice to be able to use Wikipedia or IMDB to look up information or trivia, it's also nice to be able to use facebook to find out whatever happened to that hot girl that sat next to you in 8th grade algebra, or your best friend from grade school who moved away.

Or your cousin that you never talk to except for 5 minutes at the occasional family function.