Thursday, 17 December 2009

Facebook: A No-Brainer?

The ornaments were finally added to the tree.  Not all of them, mind you.  Some of them were boxed up ready to go back into storage.  Some, I left out to attach to gifts; - not only Christmas gifts, but any-time-of-the-year gifts.  The baubles always look celebratory and melodramatic. I like that about them. For added impact, Sarah has painstakingly popped bowl fulls of corn and threaded them, resulting in festive drapery with a movie-theatre aroma throughout our living rooms.



"That must have taken her ages"
"Yeah, as if we haven't got enough to do"
"I wouldn't want to thread all that popcorn"
"You wouldn't catch me threading it, either. She was up really late and finally fell asleep, with her laptop and a Bob (our American Staffordshire terrier) on her bed - with bowls of popcorn all around her.."

It's fun eavesdropping on Mancubs*...

(*Man-cubs:  Not a boy.  Not a man.  A boy becoming a man - MW interpretation)

I thought about the time it would have taken our Sarah to do this task, which she had planned and enjoyed.  She knew there were a thousand more important tasks at hand, but this one had relaxed her.  It was a no-brainer. She didn't have to think.

I have a serious penchant for jobs, projects and hobbies whereby I don't have to think.  Facebook is one of them, - even though I've had a love-hate relationship with it for some time now.  I am of the opinion that quality is better than quantity.  I don't need 486 (or more) 'friends' to prove my popularity (or not).  There's no way anyone could keep up with that number of people anyway.  Nor could they offer each of those Facebookers the friendship they deserve by regular communication. 

Recently, I went against my own self-induced grain. I 'friended' a lovely gal who I had known on a Yahoogroups*tm group some years ago.  She responded very warmly.  Before I could write back to her, I went through a few days of having to leave the house.  I didn't want to fob her off with a 'how are you?" or such, and made a mental note to write a decent, chatty response. 

Days turned into weeks turned into months...

Then, to my shame, I received this note through my email, courtesy of Facebook:

"Hello, do you use this? Wondering why you invited me here a month ago, only to get the silent treatment ???? I dont' mean that rudely, just really wondering what's up."

In my moment of regret, and not wanting to seem, or be - a hypocrite, I deleted this 'friend', amongst others who I hadn't communicated with in ages -  from my Friends List.  This morning, however, a note from my darling cuz, regarding a close childhood (but recently deleted) friend from England:

"Im so sorry to tell ya helen J.A. died today, bbe xxx"
And so I realise that Facebook is certainly not a no-brainer.  I will be re-thinking my attitudes towards a few things, actually.  But then again - it's that time of year for self-reassessments.

7 comments:

Alan Burnett said...

Don't do too much re-assessment. Facebook should be a no-brainer. If meaningful conversations are required then lets talk or write letters or whatever. I like Facebook just because there is no pressure with it.

The Journey said...

hey friend me on face book. Linda H.

Michael Mattison said...

What a thoughtful post -- thanks for sharing, Helen.
(And you've got your tree up already! I'm way too late this year, yikes.)
Very happy holidays,
Michael

French Fancy said...

Keeping in touch with people takes so much effort and I know myself how one means to email/write/phone people and then the days become the weeks become the months etc.

I pop in and out of people's walls on Facebook and thoroughly enjoy it.Don't beat yourself up too much or for too long - it won't change anything and will just make you upset.

JPT said...

Not keen at all on Facebook myself but MANY people (inc my wife) love it.

Midlife Jobhunter said...

Indeed it is that time of year. Keeping up is most difficult. But then again, so was letter writing years ago.

Question: Why is it so difficult to get those ornaments on the tree? We do everything else and then that last seems such a chore. Oh, well. Mine are on for another year. Some year I'll learn how best ot hang them.

Lucy Corrander said...

Your header is delightful.

I've wondered if the strings of decorations I've seen in pictures are pop-corn. Now I know. They are.

What a brilliant idea to dramatise parcels with Christmas tree decorations. I realise I've been a bit utilitarian in my wrapping.

Facebook puzzles me. I suppose I don't want to put my life on show.

Was glad to read this.

Sorry about your friend though. It's strange when people who 'ought' to be here - no longer are.

Lucy