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10 years gone

Annnd we’re back!

Sorry about the mini hiatus. As some of you know, I went home to Maine for a long weekend to see my friends and family. Oh yeah, and to attend my TEN year high school reunion. I can barely believe that – though the more I think about it, it feels like it’s been longer. It was nice to see some close friends and say hi to a few older ones, but for the most part, the reunion wasn’t all that much different than a day in high school. Pleasantries with the people you aren’t really friends with and real conversations with the people you are.  I suppose it depends on the school and the class, but I maintain that ten years isn’t long enough before having a reunion. I can’t even fathom the classes that do five year reunions – they must still have books from classes and cafeteria food stains on their shirts. I feel this way mostly because of the emergence of Facebook – the people you’re close to you keep in touch with, and the people you’re not close to can update you on their lives too.

Andy and I were having a conversation one night about social networking and Facebook. He has a love hate relationship with Facebook (mostly hate), and on occasion will dwindle his friends list down a little further. His most recent purge, more than three months ago, resulted in one of his “friends” noticing last week that they weren’t connected anymore. She sent a message asking why.

When did we take a left turn into crazy town? Since when does “friends” on Facebook = friends in real life? How did we begin to equate online profile sharing and electronic messaging with human connection and common interests? Is it now assumed that if I remove you from my friends list, the next time we run into each other will be awkward and uncomfortable because I ended our “friendship”? And how long has this been going on?!

Needless to say, Andy isn’t sure how to respond to this girl’s message. He hasn’t seen her for a few years, and when he did see her last, it was a chance meeting. And you know, I wouldn’t know how to respond to her either. I’m not sure I’d respond at all. If I did, it’d probably end up being easily misconstrued as mean. Do they have a sarcasm button for the internet yet?

Some of this might sound harsh. But please, if I ever have the energy to purge my own Facebook list, please know that if you get removed, it does not mean that we’re not friends or that we’re not friendly in real life. It likely means that while you’ve meant something to me at some point in my life, we haven’t spoken in a long time. Or I don’t agree with your politics. Or your Mama dresses you funny. Any of those three.

And now I leave you with this! Happy Weekend!

Psychology of Social Networking

 

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7 thoughts on “10 years gone”

  1. skf says:

    The reunion blog is finally up! Glad you had a decent time. It was so nice to catch up with you and your mom while you were in town.

    1. Aerin says:

      Yes! Good to see you too. Believe it or not, 2.5 hours is not the longest amount of time I’ve spent at Selah Tea – glad you got to try it out 🙂

  2. benjammin says:

    Here’s my tip for Andy for social media: instead of unfriending people, block them! That way the person you unfriended will probably just think you aren’t using Facebook any longer.

    1. Aerin says:

      But if you just block them, can’t they still see your information on their feed? I think he wants them not to be able to Facebook stalk him either.

  3. Marsie says:

    Ga! I’m with Andy, I have a love/hate relationship too. I’m easily annoyed by posts like “Going to the gym” or “my political views are this and I’m making a difference in the world by posting it” or “why is everyone so dumb except wonderful me” and thoroughly tired of sexy faces in the mirror photos. Facebook just reminds me of what drunken asses Americans really are. Perhaps its time to log off facebook for good.

    1. Marsie says:

      Or maybe I’m just a cranky poo 🙂

      1. Aerin says:

        no no, you’re right. I just don’t have the strength to do that myself. Too many useful bits to me. Le sigh 🙂

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