It's like accidentally making eye contact with that chatty person who sits next to you on the plane, or hesitating to be flat out rude to a phone surveyor when they call your house at 6:00pm. Or answering the door when a Jehovah's Witness or a Hoover salesman knocks on it. You get far more than you were bargaining for....
There's nothing worse than sitting in front of Facebook with the promise of 16 notifications, only to find out that 16 complete strangers have joined in a bit of banter with one of your acquaintances, who you also happened to get chatty with in a bout of loneliness the previous night. On the rare occasion, it might be someone you know but who isn't your 'friend' on FB and that can be good value. A bit like eavesdropping.
But for the most part it's booooring and so disappointing and most definitely undeserving of a seductive red notification square. In the past, I've raced across the room at the sight of that red flag (I'm a SAHM, it might be the ONLY adult interaction I get all day) but the frequency of let down has increased exponentially since upping my commenting.
I really need to just shut the fuck up.
And why do notifications from friends you really care about disappear into the Facebook vortex....?
I realize a lot of my issues are user related. I am a Facebook numpty, let's be clear. In spite of the extensive screen time I give to Facebook, I have no idea what I'm doing on there. Now I have my own page, my cluelessness just doubled. I figure it will all become clear to me eventually (when Facebook has surrendered power to Google+ and Twitter, and only us techy imbeciles are left poking each other and liking ecards).
Incidentally, is it just me (Milly no mates) or has activity dropped in the last week?
I did not intend to start a FB rant - I love it for the most part. Did I already mention I have a Go Momma FB page, - you can LIKE it now if you like!
Writing this post has made me really look at my Facebook page for the first time (sad, I know). And it appears I have two News Feeds. The one on the far right looks a bit like Twitter - except there's no witty running commentary, just comment updates, and like updates and status updates, but it expands when you hover over it.....
Then there's my main feed that is currently giving me updates on School friends that I'm pretty sure never liked me. I should probably do something about that.
When friends of mine 'like' or make a comment on a total stranger's post, that gets into my Facebook 'Twitter' News Feed (I just made that clever name up), I think along with anything and everything SOME 'friends' do or say. Remember I'm no expert.
I'm thinking this is what makes some Facebookers mad as hell - I've been prompted by some friends (of late) to change my settings on our 'friendship' so that my banal commenting on other friends doesn't pollute their News Feed. I get it. Even I don't care to know what I'm thinking half the time!
I don't really care what News FB cares to share with me (or keep from me), although every now and then it mildly pisses me off (depending on how the rest of our day is going).
Today however, I was hovering my little pointing hand over the Facebook Twitter feed and something expanded. A friend of mine had liked a stranger's status - a really long one. So long in fact that I was compelled to read it:
'I'm standing in line at Walmart tonight waiting for the line to move. A young kid stands in front of me with a cart full of odd and end things. No parent no adult or anyone else with him. He starts to unload his cart and you can see the wheels turn as he had left over money. Instead of grabbing sweets or drinks. This kid makes a mad dash for clothing. I asked him where if he got Christmas money or birthday money and he said not really. He had moved and was starting a new school. He had waffles. A new monopoly game, a football, 3 pairs of pants, socks, underwear and a few other things. After his mad dash the cashier stands and apologizes to me as I shy the apology off, he comes back with 3 shirts. He said that he didn't get much for Christmas and he needed clothes for school. He had 140.00 flipped out on the counter. Everything rang up to 144 and some change. He had to put something back. He could have put the clothes back. He could have put some pants back. No. He chose to put the game back. I told the cashier to stop and I flipped out a 5 dollar bill and laid it with his other money. The kid couldn't even say thank you as tears welled in his eyes. I said you're welcome kid and told him to work hard to play hard. He shook his head in agreement. The lady was giving me back the small change and I said that goes to him...she was shocked, the lady behind me was shocked that the kid would give up his game to make sure he kept his waffles and clothing. Kid almost made me cry.....dang....'
I read this stranger's status through a haze of tears. It's amazing that there's such soulful beauty all around us, on Facebook and even in Walmart. And this time at least, I'm so glad I took the time not to miss it.
Thank you to both my friend for liking it, and to my friend's friend for writing it.