Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Facebook; a Weapon of Mass Destruction

I love Facebook. Admittedly I spend too much time on there, checking out what my friends are doing and who’s dating whom. I have found friends I haven’t seen since the 3rd grade! It is amazing and entertaining to see how people have changed and what people are doing. I even like most of the applications. I enjoy hugging my friends and sending silly kisses or smiles to people who I think need them, or for a giggle. I must admit I even get a good belly laugh from the “Send a Sperm” application, nothing quite like getting a biker chick sperm to cheer me up. Shamefully, I must admit I even enjoy some of the quizzes, finding out what my Scandinavian Stripper Name would be, and finding out when I will get married or when I will die was a waste of time, yes, but it had its enjoyable moments and a snigger, mostly because I am slotted to die before I ever get remarried.

Some people get addicted to the games. Apparently this is such a fad, I heard one lady was totally forsaking her family so she could play Farmville and tend her fake crops in her fake garden on her fake farm and was so “at a loss as to what to do” she had to go on the Dr. Phil show so that he could tell her to plant a real garden. I mean you don’t have to be a psychologist or psychiatrist or whatever kind of quack Dr. Phil is to tell someone to grow up and fix dinner for their family. I am not much of a gamer, I enjoy the occasional Wii fitness game, bobbing those shoes and hitting those soccer balls with my ugly avatar Wii head can be a fine waste of time too, but I just can’t get into computer video games. Maybe I am too dumb to understand them, but none-the-less they don’t captivate my attention. And, whereas I wish that people would stop sending me cigars in Mafia Wars (come on people I don’t even smoke) or Tigers in Zoo World, it is all pretty easy to delete the stuff that just irritates me.

Mostly I like hearing about people’s milestones, celebrating their achievements, and even mourning their losses with them. It’s funny actually I am closer with some of these people now than I was in high school. Some of them I don’t remember, although they seem to remember me, some of that I blame on my stroke and sometimes I think they are just being nice. I have even had former school mates contact me when they have a behavior problem with their dog, or questions about animal health. I giggle to find out that some of them live within an hour or two of me, even though I live half a country away from my hometown, and I like hearing what is going on back home. Hearing about the weather, or the old neighborhood makes me feel somehow strangely connected to a life I once knew. I even find it interesting to see what everyone has made of themselves. The people I thought would be successful from a business standpoint often aren’t and some I thought hated school are quite well educated and successful now. I think Facebook can be an amazing place and I enjoy reconnecting and getting to know new people as well.

I love posting things when I am excited about an accomplishment and having people cheer me on. I beam when people comment on my pictures. When I ran my first race, I came home and immediately went to Facebook to share my crucial moment with my friends. I love when people post comments it makes me feel good that they care enough to keep up with what is going down in my life. I am even fond of people giving me the “thumbs up” when they like my wit, charm, perseverance, my advice, or whatever I am experiencing. I share even when I am sad because my friends have a way of cheering me up or sharing a similar experience with me, and I think that is essential to good mental health. Don’t get me wrong, I have “real” non-cyber friends too, to relish life with but I like my cyber buddies as well. And, I love it when my boyfriend posts love notes, I tell him it’s like getting flowers delivered at the office, I like that my friends can see how romantic my boyfriend is and how in love we are with each other. I am proud of my relationships and the bonds that I have made!

What I don’t understand are the people who specifically use Facebook as a secret weapon, or as some kind of weird competition. A weapon of mass destruction I like to call it, see now if only George Bush had looked on Facebook he would found what he was looking for all those years. A little history for you who don’t have Facebook, your friends are often connected. I know Bill who knows Susan who also knows me who knows Peter who I went to school with…you get the idea. So when one of these passive aggressive people decides to make a defaming and/or derogatory remark about someone who is admittedly on their list, the remark is seen by everyone who is connected to that one person and the people who share a friend’s connection. So, if Susan had a bad date with Bill and says he is a horrible kisser, or she thinks he’s gay, or he is a horrible husband or father, not only do her friends see it, so does Bill and all of the friends he shares with Susan, and sometimes his children. This is a wicked way to get any point across to anyone. People should be ashamed for stooping so low.

I absolutely hate passive aggressive behavior. I guess one of the reasons is because I work with animals and children and neither usually understand passive aggressive behavior. “Because Rex didn’t do it right I am going to give all the other dogs in the class a cookie”, or “I am going to try and embarrass him in front of his furry friends, that will teach him a lesson”. I like a direct approach. If you have a problem with someone specifically, go to that person and share your grievance. If it is not handled to the point that you think is appropriate, then break ties and un-friend them, or seek another solution. YIKES, you gasp? Yes, I said it un-friend them. But don’t spend your time thinking of all the hideous things you can say about someone publicly and then post them for the world to see, this only makes you look like a bitter ass. It seriously takes someone (who is in need of a grave hobby, maybe they should try Farmville) and someone who is wicked to do such a nasty thing. It use to be you could “pants” someone on the playground, now I guess that childish behavior is reserved for publicly humiliation and lies on Facebook.

I personally don’t care, to be brought into someone’s drama and most people don’t want to read your trash. I read enough garbage and grotesque news in the papers and on the internet, when I go to Facebook I want to get pleasure from my relationships, not to be ashamed of people’s childish behaviors. If you want to sling mud, creep back into the swamp where you belong.

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