Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Facebook Fossil

     Okay, I'll admit that I'm tired of being the dinosaur in the family.  I was the last to learn how to use a DVD, the last to learn how to use a cell phone, and the last to learn how to use a computer.  I finally brushed the cobwebs out of my brain and took a computer class geared for geriatric-aged people.  For months I tinkered around on the computer and discovered how much I liked watching weird videos on YouTube, reading blog sites and emailing friends who had given up such relics as stationery, ink pens and postage stamps eons ago.  My kids also set up a Facebook account for me but I rarely looked at it.  In fact, I thought it was kind of silly spending all that time chatting away with people I hadn't seen since Jimmy Carter was in the oval office.  At the time I was also sharing the clunky, old , family computer with three other people in the house, so it seemed pointless to get into a juicy conversation with an old friend online when my kids were hovering nearby, waiting their turn to neglect their homework in favor of socializing on Facebook.
     Life changed the day my husband surprised me with my very own computer for Christmas!  It was the Holy Grail of communication for me, and every time I lifted the lid on my laptop, I swear I could hear the Hallelujah Chorus when the keyboard lit up.  Suddenly I couldn't get enough of it---I was zipping through videos, blogs, emails and googling stupid stuff like kangaroos trained to play Ping-Pong in Australia.  It was a heady experience, all that power at my finger tips---with one click I had access to THE SECRETS OF THE UNIVERSE...or at least a great recipe for low fat meatloaf.
     And then one day I let my fingers do the walking through Facebook, and I discovered this whole, new neighborhood filled with hundreds of people who at one time or another were important in my life.  I badgered my kids daily to help me set up my profile, upload nice (i.e. flattering) pictures and to locate people I haven't seen since we marched out of the high school auditorium with diplomas in our hands.
     That's when the real fun started---friend requests were sent and received like rapid gunfire over the internet.  I was sending friend requests to EVERYONE...including people I hadn't seen since nursery school.  "Hey, remember me?  We shared a mat together during nap time in Mr. Jim's class..."
     Even more fun was checking up on the Facebook status of each of my children, and leaving silly comments on their walls.  One son threatened to "unfriend" me for reminding him on his Facebook wall to brush his teeth before going to bed.  I kept forgetting that my comments were like a neon sign on his wall for the entire teenage population to see.
     I had to adapt to computer lingo before I could join the Facebook community.  Stuff like LOL, BRB, LMAO, DK, BFF, TMI, UR2, TXT, TTYL, and ROFLMAO.  Pretty soon my fingers were flying over the keyboard so fast, I was making up my own abbreviations:

     Bking choc pi w/ntz 2 nte 4U. RU2 cmg ovr 4 dnr?  (Baking chocolate pie with nuts tonight for you.  Are you two coming over for dinner?)

     Pretty soon I started talking in abbreviations as well, and both my husband and kids looked at me as if I'd sprouted a third eye because of my garbled lingo:  "pza 2nte 4 dnr.  I'll BRB from Dr. off. TTYL."
     At this point my kids were nauseated by my Facebook enthusiasm.  They never expected this old fossil to become a Facebook aficionado.  I was obsessed with it---not only could I catch up with old friends, I could share recipes with them, videos, music, photos of the grandchildren and get good advice from dozens of people on how to stop my dog from pooping on the living room carpet.  I could change my status daily or even hourly, and there was always someone out there reading it, ready to send me a smile or a sympathetic ear to my daily grumblings.  My husband just shook his head and asked, "Why do you need to know who's cheating on their diet right at this very moment with a strawberry and cream frappucino from Starbucks, or who's secretly sucking down vodka martinis in a Spiderman thermos at their kid's soccer game?  Why do you even care?"
     I couldn't explain to him that it was all just part of being involved in the Facebook community.
     Over time I have learned that there are certain, unwritten rules that need to be adhered to while using Facebook.  For instance:

     #1.  You've heard of drunk texting?  Drunk Facebooking is worse.  DO NOT get lubed up on cheap beer or wine and stalk old boyfriends/girlfriends or write depressing messages on your wall about feeling unloved or under-appreciated.

     #2.  If you've got food poisoning or the flu, please refrain from sharing your symptoms, in detail, in your day's status.  Some of us already have weak stomachs.

     #3.  Leave negative comments to yourself.  If your best friend posts a picture of herself in a new pair of jeans, don't ask her if it's too late to get her money back.

     #4.  Do not discuss politics on Facebook.  Pretty soon forty people will be arguing on your wall over who would make a better president/senator/governor.  Eventually they'll all agree that Pee wee Herman should be a write-in candidate.

     #5.  If several of your Facebook friends are dieting, do not post pictures of the calorie-laden, mouth-watering meal you just consumed with a Rachel Ray description of every bite you took.

     #6.  This is the most important one of all.  DO NOT TAG YOUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY MEMBERS IN UNFLATTERING PICTURES!!!  To me, this is the worst offense on Facebook.  It's hard enough to be a middle-aged person trying to look ten years younger and trying to post a flattering picture of yourself on Facebook.  After all, EVERYONE sees these photos---old lovers, ex spouses, high school rivals, distant cousins, the family've got to look NICE in these pictures!
     When you finally think you've got the best pictures of yourself posted on Facebook (you know, the ones with your stomach sucked in, chest out, chin up, hair perfectly coiffed), something terrible is bound to happen that will shatter that image of perfection on the computer screen.  Your kids (or a not-so-nice friend, in-law, etc.) will take great delight in posting a horrendous picture of you from last Summer's backyard barbecue---the one where you're mid-bite into a juicy burger and there's mayonnaise all over your face.  Or that picture taken last Christmas that the kids think is so hilarious because they caught you on camera at 3:00 a.m. putting presents under the tree.  No makeup, wild hair, ratty, old pajamas and looking very much like a rabid possum.  They shamelessly tag you in these photos on Facebook.
     The definition of blackmail?  When your kids post these God-awful pictures while you're out of town (and miles from any WiFi spots) or schlepping around Walmart, and you have NO IDEA that the entire universe has already viewed the REAL YOU in living color.  This can scar you for life, and you'll end up shouting in your sleep, "DELETE! DELETE!"
     The ultimate revenge in this case is to return the favor and post on Facebook old photos of these same people, whether it's an old high school friend who once sported red satin pants, a sequin tube top and a poufy 1980's hairdo while engaged in a hotdog eating contest, or one of your kids (prior to puberty) when they went through that awkward, chubby, mouth-full-of-braces look in a bathing suit two sizes too small.  Post these embarrassing old photos on Facebook, sit back and chuckle while the comments roll in on your wall.
     Who says you can't teach an old dinosaur new tricks? LOL!


  1. This is a phenomenal read, so much fun to read it. You are a nice mama!

  2. i thought what you said about your kids deleting you on facebook was funny. My step daught who is 19 also told me the same thing and she did:)

  3. and i tot ur from usa but wondering why ur website link is showing ".in"

    hahaha momma from usa it seems .. ROFL

  4. haha! My aunt just realized that there is an email type function in Facebook and just replied to something I sent to her in August! Coming by from Bloggers!

  5. So true to all the above.....I'm now learning after nearly 3 years on facebook, that what people post and what they say, are only the person they want you to believe they are. Never make the mistake of thinking you know someone well based on their facebook persona. Remember they don't call it facebook for nothin'! Okay, I guess it's obviously I'm a little bitter - had a few bad experiences. I've learned to keep it light and keep it minimal when it comes to social's my only salvation :-) Love your blog Marcia - keep us smiling and laughing! <3

  6. Nice Share...
    i like this .>> Go on !!!

  7. Brilliant post Marcia...who says you are a knowledged fossil. You have made me smile yet again:) .

  8. Pee Wee Herman as a write in candidate. Hah. At least his wrists are strong! (grin!) Good observations and good validation as to why I don't FaceCook or MyPlace.

    I do frequent a clown car racing site called MyRace.

  9. What a fun and enjoyable post! Thanks for sharing. Keep up the good blogging!

  10. You're right!! This is funny! My step daughter has moved from Facebook ("passe")to Twitter. Facebook had too many parents lurking about and was "uncool". lol. I hate politics on Facebbok. Makes me so disappointed in my old college buddies.

  11. thank you for the help.. I need all I can get..I am so far behind the techno curve I can't even see it... :)

  12. My husband and son have hooked our TV, stereo and everything else up through speakers and I have no idea how to use them. If I'm by myself I watch the small one in my bedroom because it's less complicated.

    I still can't understand text speak and have no idea what people are saying half the time. Great blog, glad to find you. :o)

  13. Very wise, very funny observations about FB. It's so pervasive, it seems to have taken over our lives and some people forget how powerful it can be. And I bought a DVD/VCR player years ago and it's still not set up ...

  14. A great post, I really enjoyed reading it, thank you for posting it.

  15. Wonderful post! My mom is this way. She has no clue how to operate a computer, let alone my macbook. It's so funny but I'm trying to get her to get more into technology. I've accomplished getting her into the habit of having a cellphone. She loves even though she hasn't mastered the skill of texting.

    I enjoyed your post!

  16. I think about half my Facebooking is done drunk. The worst is that no one can tell I'm drunk, which says to me what I say when I'm sober is nonsensical.

  17. I am so happy that I came to check out your blog, oh my god this stuff is so funny! LOL

  18. I love the one about not posting about politics on FB. So very true!!!!!!!!!!!!!! You make me laugh!

  19. Useful post, thanks for sharing. I got much from this blog esp about facebook.

  20. I love this post!

    ♥ Shia

  21. Great post. I wish that some people that I care about were able to use the internet and read your blog. :)

  22. Oh this is toooo funny and I can totally relate..My kids were so proud of me when I started on facebook. I've used a computer for quite a while but my most recent dinosaur experience is this
    I don't usually leave a link..but I think you will really enjoy!
    Blessings and Happy to have connected on!

  23. awesome post:).

    You are so young :). Keep doing .

  24. I was grinning while reading your blog post. :) Well written!

  25. Thanks for following me on Bloggers! Would it be possible to
    visit my actual blog site ar
    and sign up there as a follower as well under my Google Friend
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    I would be very grateful and happy to do the same for
    you if you like! Thanks!

  26. Hi, I really enjoyed reading your blog! It's so funny and made me smile so much as I was reading it.

  27. OMG I had to read this again and again, so many parts are my favourite. Im tring to learn all the lingo with abbreviations slowly. My kids are still young and only learning to talk now, let alone all this shortening of words, but I want to "try" to keep up with the times so Im not the oldest most boring mum ever when they reach school and all this begins. I got an iphone last year, and for me, that was the most exciting thing ever, haha.
    Thanks for brightening my arvo, all the way over here in Queensland, Australia.

  28. Hi Kids Activities! DK is "don't know" and TMI is "too much information"---in other words, don't tell your kids anything about the romance in your life because they'll be totally grossed out by it! Guess they think once we're married we become celibate!!!

  29. woah! i definitely keep those unwritten rules in facebooking
    LOL...followed you already! ^_^
    im so happy to be on this blog..cant stop but smiling and reading

  30. Thanks, Clai! Glad I could bring a smile to your face!

  31. Awesome post. Thanks!!Keep going!

  32. Replies

      Your FB experiences definitly strikes a chord with all of us here!

      If you ever stumble upon the Secret To the Universe, or at least a good lo cal recipe, plesae enlighten us!!

      TTYL BRB!!

  33. Hello!
    Thanks for adding me up on Bloggers. I'm following your blog now via GFC. :)

    Great article, by the way! :)

  34. This one is really entertaining. Can you see the smile like this =D on my face? lol

  35. Very glad to be able to bring you a smile today! Thanks for following me!

  36. Nice post! Totally worth reading!
    Enjoyed reading this one post in particular!
    I shall follow you! :)

  37. I am a young girl in my early 20's but I have to admit that this post is so amazing... You bring out your thoughts so well... Also, you kind of give me some ideas about what women can actually do to tackle a situation in her married life... And also I am sure you must be a great mom:)

    1. Thank you so very much for the kind words! Glad you stopped by to read my blog!

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  39. Facebook is evil, the end but we all love it.. or love to hate it. either way we're still there...
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