Monday, February 16, 2009

Facebook (pros and cons)

So, as I mentioned the other day, I got on Facebook, and tyranist made fun of me immediately. I guess I deserve that, because I do tend to jump into these these head-first (selling on eBay--I spent a thousand dollars on stuff to resell the first month; World of Warcraft--I played a hundred hours the first week; religious cults--I killed five non-believers the first two days; gay porn . . . well, you get the picture).

And yeah, the darn thing is super habit-forming. First it was just filling in the slots of what I am a fan of. Merrill also mocked me, that I'd wake up at five in the morning, remembering I'd forgotten to list some book I like ("Oh no, what if someone reads my profile and doesn't see Men Are From Venus, Mars Needs Women on there and thinks that I'm a tool..."), and have to put it on there before I could go back to sleep.

Next it was adding friends and searching for people I had crushes on back when I was alive. After adding a friend, they can type in what they're currently doing, and you can hit a refresh button to see if anything's changed with anyone. And yeah, that's not a humongous time-waster.

Then it's sticking photos up. Back in the day (which, I guess was January and before), I was hesitant to ever stick a picture of me on my blog or my other websites, just in case people started sending me invitations to the Steve Buscemi Lookalike Society (Burn Victims Branch). But once I'd stuck up one picture, I couldn't stop. I put up five, then ten, then thirty, then I started downloading random pictures of celebrities and photoshopped myself into them. The madness never ends.

Now there are games you can play with other users, or by yourself, or sending virtual Star Wars figures to people, or taking little quizzes with five questions that you can't get right because one of the answers is written wrong, and before you know it, life has passed you by.

Ho hum.

But there is a silver lining, though. I got an email today from a friend of mine that I guess I would have categorised as an ex-friend of mine, or merely an acquaintance, and he was lamenting the fact that we didn't stay in touch, but now, thanks to Facebook, he knows how to contact me and what I'm up to. He wrote a long, way-too-early-in-the-morning email, and I realised something:

This guy didn't stop being my friend because I was just a tag-along who wasn't worthy of him . . . we stopped socialising because of that nasty little thing called life.

Hearing from him made me feel really good. You can never have too many friends.* And I gotta say, even though I've wasted pretty much all of my youth (but what else is new?) . . . I don't regret joining Facebook at all.

How's that for a silver lining, be-otch?

Rish "Social Butterfly/Distortion" Outfield

*Dude, that reminds me of my October Scary Story Event tale of 2007. It was about a loser guy who moves away from Los Angeles to his crappy little hometown and gets a job at the run-down movie theater on Main Street. His uncle has spent all of his savings on renovating the place and offered him the job of ticket-taker. Later, when business amazingly/mysteriously begins to pick up, the uncle hires the prettiest girl you ever did see to be the new ticket-taker, while our main character is relegated to selling popcorn and watered-down soft drinks.
Well, naturally, our main guy is attracted to the pretty new girl, so he tries to chum up to her. She brushes him off, and he says, "I'm just trying to be friendly," to which she says, "I've got enough friends, thanks." Before he sulks back to his little butter-and-salt-smelling cubbyhole, he mutters, "NO ONE has enough friends."
Well, that damn story was meant to be about fifteen pages long, but after reaching twenty or so, and still not getting to the Horror-part, I abandoned it. As I so often do.
But typing this and hearing from Brian makes me want to dust off that old story and write it through to the end. Thanks, dude.

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