Monday, May 28, 2007

Facing Myself

Thanks to She of the Gratuitous H, I recently found myself invited to join Facebook. Although I had heard of this networking site, I had never thought to visit let alone join. Some of you may recognize the name as Facebook received quite a bit of press last month as students at Virginia Tech used it to check on friends and mourn lost comrades.

I should note that I’ve been “on” Facebook now for only a few days so if you look me up (and I hope you will) please don’t mock my small number of friends. In fact, feel free to “poke” me (I’m still not sure what exactly that is) and take pity on my constant loser state by “friending” me. For the uninitiated, Facebook has a lingo all its own. Friending, poking, and gifting are only the beginning of the puzzling road that newcomers must traverse.

After hours (and I do mean hours) spent attempting to upload my picture onto the site, I gave up and decided to look for people I might know – that, after all, is the point of the entire thing. I started by looking up my high school and was shocked to see how skinny everyone was (*pout*), how many of them appeared to have children, and how many of these once staunchly feminist women were now married like me – the staunchest, most unlikely to marry of the entire gaggle.

The biggest problem I have encountered thus far is fear. Will So-and-So remember me? Do they like me? Did they ever?! Will So-and-So respond to my lame, loser-girl request to be friends and not ban me for life because I was that geeky girl with her socks pulled up to her knees in ninth grade?!

From what people have told me, the paranoia and instant reversion back to a high school clique mentality seems to be part of the appeal. You join networks and groups just like you were sixteen again. And, like then, you sit and wait for someone to acknowledge you. Some people, the popular kids who don’t have neuroses, aren’t worried – they know that someone will answer, tell them they’re witty, and the rest of us will wither a little more inside.

So what have we all learned from Typ0’s foray into Facebook? Yes, I’m really messed up and evidently have been for a very long time. Hopefully you have also learned that if you know my real name, are on Facebook, and want to take pity on me, that you should look me up and offer to be my friend. Most of all, we’ve learned that I can kill hours and hours of Internet time on just about anything. And that’s cool too.

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