06 January 2013

stream of consciousness.

Nearly every day of my life, I spend way too much time on Facebook. And it goes without saying that there's a compelling argument to be made that any time at all on Facebook is too much time—but for the sake of argument, let's suppose there's a hypothetically healthy amount of time to piss away on the Walmart of social-networking sites. (Think about it. Even their logo colors and sans-serif fonts look like kissing cousins.) I can't help but speculate, however unscientifically, that the point at which the site delivers me to apoplectic fits of rage is a reliable symptom that I've surpassed that healthy time limit. My internal egg timer should then go off—and in the interest of my own mental health I should probably flee the internet and start meditating or taking sitar lessons or something.


But I never learn, do I? What is it about this inane website—so brimming with venomous, ungrammatical proselytizing and banal chit-chat—that lures me back again and again? Why don't I just hole up in my blogspace and write angry letters to the government like any self-respecting crackpot? Good questions. I'm tempted to believe that this is a Train Wreck phenomenon—in which the spectator is repulsed but also endlessly fascinated by tragedy—the tragedy in question in this case being the decline of Western Civilization—and, since the internet no longer recognizes discrete geographical borders, the decline of Everything and Everyone.

A bit too grandiose? I think so. What's interesting about Facebook isn't that it's causing the world to be more fucked-up than it was pre-Facebook, but that it's broadcasting the evidence of this fucked-uppedness—immediately and without the intermediary of 'respectable' media—so that we can't live in denial anymore. 


Before Facebook, for example, I probably wouldn't have known that some of my friends—and by extension so many Americans—were borderline illiterates. Arrogantly perhaps, I would have assumed that we were all in the same linguistic ballpark. This isn't a conscious assumption, mind you. I'm not delusional, after all. But when a question doesn't assert itself directly in our lives, we tend not to supply an answer. If I never had any cause to wonder if my friends and relatives were butchers of the English language, I probably wouldn't have considered it. 

Facebook is like that. It tells us so many things about other people that we never really asked. We might have been aware of so-and-so's political leanings, generally speaking, but we might never have known the sputtering anger and hatred that informs his individual positions if Facebook hadn't come along and supplied a handy soapbox for any and all to mount and declaim from. 


What bothers me about Facebook more than the typical bugaboos of political posts and those obnoxious Facebook game updates is the outrageous banality of so much of the communication there. In real life, when we meet up with vague acquaintances, we're likely to engage in pointless small talk, just to fill the blank space that arises between us, but Facebook presents us with a permanent blank space to fill—and users are all too eager to fill it with the minutiae of their everyday lives—what they're having for dinner, what the weather's like, whether they're feeling tired or excited, how their day's shaping up, what their plans for the weekend are, and so on and so forth. 


I'm one of those cranks who believe we shouldn't speak (or post) unless we have something to say. And by 'something to say' I mean something that might be interesting to the general public outside of the hermetically-sealed domain of our egos. If we want to hear ourselves talk, there's such a thing as an internal monologue. We can talk our own ears off inside the hollows of our private consciousness without cluttering up the world with more noise. The world is already noisy enough these days, and as the tentacles of technology keep reaching to heretofore unimagined corners of our lives, the world only promises to get noisier. Admittedly, this isn't an exact science. What we think is interesting might bore anyone in our vicinity to tears, but I think most of us are endowed with a self-awareness that tells us that our laundry or toenail-clipping probably doesn't require a formal declaration or press conference. 


It must be a horrifying history lesson for militant Facebook users to discover that a century ago people had to content themselves with a private knowledge of the dishes in the sink that need washing. They couldn't tell the whole world about it. Can you imagine? All of that ordinary, self-referential cognition without any outlet? (Oh, the humanity!) They couldn't even pick up a (land line) telephone and call up their mothers to tell them. They lacked the technology to inflict their egos upon friends, family members, and complete strangers halfway across the globe.  

Before Facebook, I had absolutely no idea how boring most people are. It never occurred to me that if you gave the average schmo a megahorn to broadcast his thoughts to the world, all he'd be able to come up with are reports on how he slept the night before or the status of the lawn: does it need mowing or not? Don't get me wrong. I understand that the ordinary details are (generally speaking) the substance of our lives, but I try to remember that my ordinary details are the substance of my life, not yours. 


Facebook reveals how difficult it is for people to think outside of themselves. Maybe as society grows more accustomed to social media as a fact of life, it will learn how to contend with a captive audience. I hate to equate a person's life with a movie or other entertainment, but it's about time Facebookers understand the economics of attention spans. When Cuba Gooding Jr. started making nothing but crap-movie after crap-movie, people stopped paying attention to him and his movies got lost in the direct-to-Netflix market. Likewise, people need to understand that when they yammer on and on about how they hate Mondays or about their dentist appointment later in the day people will stop 'listening' to them. They'll be hidden from the news feed altogether, which is really akin to not existing at all in this strange new world we're embarking upon. 

Please always remember your freedom of expression is not free. Your Facebook friends have to pay for it.

The status updates featured in this blog post were not generated by any of my Facebook friends or any of their friends. These are status updates from people I don't know (and don't wish to know). The names have been withheld to protect the innocent extremely guilty.

40 comments:

  1. Awesome. Did you know that I was slowly weening myself off Facebook and had almost completed the transition until I met you and all those other Goodreaders? That is what piqued my interest again. Not my real-life friends (who are, on FB, boring as fuck), but you people. So now I'm hooked again.

    Disclaimer: My real-life friends are not boring in real life.

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    1. GR people are really the only reason to be on FB.

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    2. Same thing Jason wrote/said.

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  2. This was just waiting to be written. I think I dislike Facebook more than most. I was there for a little while, but just had to get out. For me, the worst part about FB is not all of what you've written above (although it is all true), but the fact that (in my experience), whenever you DO try to have a conversation with substance, FB'ers actively discourage you from doing so. Try to talk about some non-celebrity-related current events, people tell you to stop being so serious. Want to have a discussion about the big social issues? People tell you "Hey, this isn't the place for that." It's like Facebook encourages a culure which monitors itself to keep itself as superficial and irrelevant as possible.

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    1. I don't know, I think this depends on who you've befriended on FB. I've definitely had serious political arguments/discussions without anyone telling me it's not the place for it.

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    2. Yes, results will definitely vary, depending on your friends. Many of my FB friends were very substance-adverse, especially people I had gone to high school with. It was kind of disheartening.

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    3. Yeah, I agree with Jason. Facebook can be a vehicle for discussion if you're friends with like-minded people. (Not like-minded in the sense of having the same opinions, but like-minded in wanting to have serious discussions on Facebook.) Obviously, Facebook isn't at fault, BB—it's your lousy friends! ;)

      (I say this with full awareness that I was one of your friends when you were on Facebook.)

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    4. I also love it when people put something up (usually political and somewhat controversial) that generates a lot of discussion, and the original poster will not engage or reply. I do notice that almost none of my friends reply to my posts if I post an upsetting piece of news or a strong opinion on a meaningful topic (meaningful to me anyway). People look to FB for pure entertainment it seems. I'm sure I've been hidden by many - especially with my animal welfare posts.

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  5. Love it. I am guilty of putting articles up on my page that I and a select few of my friends find interesting, because I'm too lazy to post them individually on their walls or private message them. However, I do try to limit the "had breakfast. it was meh." commentary to a select few subtle jabs at some of my fb-friends, who are constantly regaling the social media world with updates regarding mundane meals and reminding us all yet again that they love their significant other. That was one ass-long sentence. You're welcome.

    As far as politics, one of my cousins, who I had assumed to be a reasonably intelligent and rational person, turned out to be a raving political and religious lunatic who unfriended me because I kept challenging his statements and asking for facts to back up his claims. I have found some folks that I didn't know I had so much in common with, but for every one of those there is one who has shown me such an unattractive side that I can never look at them the same way again. That's okay. I'm glad I know that the offenders are insipid at best, and bigoted, ignorant ass-hats at worst.

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    1. Of course, you knew one person I was specifically thinking of when I wrote this.

      I have no problem with articles/links on people's pages. I have actually read some interesting stuff through other people's links; it's just when people tell you that they're doing the ordinary things that everyone does all the time that my blood pressure rises. I don't see the point. But I don't know why I expect there to be a point—in anything. It's expecting a point that drives people insane in the end.

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    2. By the way, I'm going to go to the bathroom now. But it's just number 1.

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    3. I agree with being a bit lazy and selfish about what I post. Like The Third Partier said, I could seek out individuals to engage. However, the other thing I tend to do is use Facebook as a kind of personal diary or library. I do like posting some pics of my pets or liking pieces of news, or photos from a special restaurant because I like to have record of them. Also, I sometimes use FB to create organized photo albums which I never do on my computer. It is fast and easy and chronological. It's just nice to have everything in one place.

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    4. Hey there, Big D. Did you deactivate your facebook account as per the discussion below? Or did they do it for you? My timeline is a lot more white bread the last couple of days... just sayin'.

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  6. This was begging to be written, and I'm glad it was.

    I have a lot to say on this subject, but I'm between feet during a toenail clipping session so I'll keep it brief. I think what ultimately lies at the core of these mundane Facebook posts is not so much ego (e.g. I ate a salad for lunch today instead of the enchiladas I wanted. Isn't that fascinating?!), but the desire to connect with another human being, however tenuously, through the Internet. The posts are saying 'I exist/Acknowledge me/Hear me.'

    Sometimes I think of this and I forgive the self-indulgent, inane, or dramatic outbursts (cryptic and not so cryptic). And other times I think 'Oh, just shut the fuck up.'

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    1. I disagree, and I think we've discussed this before. I think most of the minutiae reported on Facebook is a result of people not thinking outside of themselves—not an attempt to connect with others. Many of these banal comments don't really offer much opportunity for connection anyway. It's like 'Sandy' at work; I just don't think she can stand being quiet.

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    3. Buckwheatloaf, why'd you delete? I was coming back to respond to your post, but now there is nothing to respond to.

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  7. David!! Remind me why you wanted me to join Facebook? Join the dark side and delete your account! As you can imagine, I can't handle living in a world where my ex-boyfriends are not dead and people shit their uninformed political views on my computer screen on a daily basis. Not to mention my belief that Facebook (and mainstream media in general) is a tool used to strip of us our autonomy, subjecting its consumers to mind control and a psychological addiction to a giant Simulation. Resist the ingestion of misinformation! By willingly ingesting this crap, you become the victim of the science of mind control -- reinforcing the belief in the illusion of personal freedom. By engaging with the Simulation you are willingly submitting yourself to a life under surveillance while being subjected to useless distractions and vanity fueled drivel. Free yourself! You know you want to.

    That being said, I did recently join Pinterest and Mubi.

    Oh, and I'd like to expand on one point you made about Facebook. You said: "What's interesting about Facebook isn't that it's causing the world to be more fucked-up than it was pre-Facebook, but that it's broadcasting the evidence of this fucked-uppedness—immediately and without the intermediary of 'respectable' media—so that we can't live in denial anymore. " While I agree, Facebook wasn't the initial cause of the fucked-uppedness, I think it has provided a platform for it to become socially acceptable, and thus the fucked-uppedness has metastasized into a cluserfuck of fucked-uppedness. In short, I contend that Facebook enables the narcissism that has pervaded our society in recent years. (And I'm sure I've made this argument to you before.) This is all somehow related to the celebrity and reality TV culture we live in and this misconception that all people are special snowflakes. Like everyone thinks that the banality and minutiae of their lives is fascinating or important because that is what we are inundated with in the media. I mean, ten years ago, would we have ever imagined that we'd be watching a TV show like Extreme Couponing? Or TV shows about pawn shops? Or TV shows about renovating a house? And on a tangentially related note, what do you think about all these food shows? When did this obsession with food start, and where did it come from? And then this comes back to social media and people feeling compelled to share what they've eaten or food they've cooked.

    Also, another thing that bothers me about social media is the laziness of it. I mean, the main argument proffered in its defense is that it's an easy and convenient way to keep in touch with people. But isn't that kind of awful at the same time? Doesn't that imply that some people aren't worth the effort of making a phone call to see how they're doing or writing a letter (god forbid) or even an e-mail? What I mean is that the presence and ubiquity of social media has kind of replaced the need to make an effort to engage in a meaningful interaction with someone. Because instead of making an effort to engage with someone you presumably care about or like, you can passively interact with them effortlessly on social media to see what they're doing, where they have gone and with whom, what they have eaten, what they are thinking. OK, I'm sure you're sick of my pontificating on this subject! (But you did put this out there... presumably the purpose of what you publish on your blog is to spark a dialogue and you know this is one of my favorite subjects to rant about.)

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    1. Okay, where to begin?

      I know... Is there really a TV show called Extreme Couponing? What channel/time? I need to set my DVR. But I do have to remind you that there was a show about house renovation thirty years ago. It was called This Old House with Bob Vila. If you've never heard of it, then you're too young and I HATE YOU I HATE YOU I HATE YOU!

      Ahem. Where was I? Oh, yeah... Facebook. I have to admit that even a card-carrying misanthrope like me thinks you may have gone a little far with your argument. First of all, Facebook is whatever people make of it. The vast majority of my friends on Facebook are intelligent, funny, and insightful people, and they don't post updates like the examples above. The ones who are guilty of minutiae-sharing are usually the people I don't know well who request me—or the people who request me that I don't even remember. That said, I am pretty aggressive with the 'hiding' feature on Facebook. It's like the Gong Show for social networking. Everyone gets a trial, but if they post stupid or boring stuff nonstop, then they are getting hidden from my feed. It's the only way to preserve one's sanity in this Age of Overshare.

      I do think Facebook is an easy and convenient way to keep in touch with people—an argument that you presented in order to demolish it—but for me it's a supplement to, not a replacement of those other things: phone calls, emails, face-to-face meetings. It lets me keep in touch with these people on a daily basis, when in fact I'd seem like a psycho if I called them everyday. I mean, it may not be the most meaningful interaction, but many of the interactions we have with people we see on a daily basis aren't very meaningful either.

      I'm not clear on how Facebook is subjecting its users to mind control. Help me out on that one. Yes, I know that some people become addicted to Facebook in a very unhealthy way, but these are usually the weak-minded people who would just become addicted to something else anyway in its place if it weren't there.

      I've never minded the surveillance aspect of Facebook because I only put information out there that I want to be out there. If Facebook wants to analyze my data for marketing purposes (or whatever), I don't really mind. I'm more concerned about the government telling people what they can do in the actual privacy of their homes than about Facebook compiling data.

      Oh, and... you can't delete your account on Facebook! ;) I'll bet that scares you to death, right? You can only deactivate it—which means it's always out there in a dormant state ready to be reactivated at any time.

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    2. Don't be so jealous, David. You hate me now, remember? Besides, it's only natural that someone else would be able to recognize and appreciate my pants crapping awesomeness.

      Thanks, Velocitor!

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    3. You should probably know that Velocitor is a libertarian wacko.

      How do feel about agreeing with a libertarian wacko?

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    4. I feel sad that your jealousy is so intense that you have now stooped to making ad hominem attacks on Velocitor.

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    5. You have to read between the lines, Janice. He wants in on a threesome. Personally, I'm cool with it, but you know us Libertarian wackos are pretty much "anything goes".

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    6. Velocitor, I'm into it, provided both you and David furnish the following pieces of information for my review, subject to my approval: A background check, credit report, recent medical history and physical, STD screening, IQ test results, the names, photographs and contact information of every person you've ever dated, employment history, bank statements, tax returns, college, high school and lower school transcripts, the longitude, latitude, time/date and altitude of your physical location/home, confidential files from any psychiatrists, attorneys or other counselors retained, and hmm... have I left anything out? David, it should be fairly easy for you to collect this information for me, as most of it has been collected and stored by Facebook anyway. ;)

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    7. Tax returns, you say? Kinky! My kinda girl...

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    8. you can delete your account. deactivating is another option, and if you choose to delete it only deactivates for two weeks, but if you leave it alone for that period of time it deletes.

      not saying it, you know, becomes erased from the internet. but that's not the same thing.

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    9. OK, here's my serious reply to your questions/comments:

      1. Yes, there really is a show called Extreme Couponing. I'm flattered that you think I'm deranged enough to create something that frightening. http://tlc.howstuffworks.com/tv/extreme-couponing http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Extreme_Couponing
      And I'm ashamed to admit that I've actually watched the show. Repeatedly. I'm kind of surprised you don't know any 'extreme couponers' out in South Bend. It seems like something your 'Sandy' would be into. Please report back with your comments after you watch it.

      2. Yes, I am familiar with Bob Vila and This Old House. I was raised on an almost exclusive diet of PBS (which should explain a lot). I'm pretty sure my parents watched it.

      3. However, I didn't understand your reference to The Gong Show. I wasn't alive in the 70s.

      4. I've been aware of your feelings of animosity towards me for some time now. You did encourage me to join Facebook -- a website that you know I find personally abhorrent. You also tricked me into watching The Turin Horse -- a film that provoked feelings of overwhelming rage and suicidal ideation. These are obviously acts of abject cruelty and sadism.

      5. I'm confused about what you think is so extreme about my argument. Please elaborate.

      6. All of my arguments are meant to be applied as generalizations about the average American Facebook user. Obviously, you may very well fall outside of that spectrum, and you and your friends may utilize it differently. Also, keep in mind that I'm basing my opinions on hearsay and on the posts you supplied above, as I am not and never have been a member of Facebook.

      7. My point about Facebook controlling your mind is nicely evinced by your not minding the surveillance aspects of it. You are an intellectually sophisticated man. I find it troubling that you don't recognize how problematic the surveillance is on a philosophical level, at the very least (not to mention a pragmatic one). Because you derive a certain amount of pleasure by using Facebook, you are psychologically and politically castrated into passive acceptance of an unreasonable intrusion on your privacy and personal information and the potential danger of this intrusion. If your telephone company admitted that they recorded all of your conversations, and collected and sold information collected from these conversations and saved them in perpetuity, would you really be OK with this? Also, it's naive to accept what Facebook tells the public what they do with this information. How do we know it really ends with marketing? The fact of the matter is, we live in a police state. A prosecutor's office in NJ recently admitted to utilizing Facebook to monitor criminal suspects. This has become the norm. This is happening at an alarming rate. Law enforcement can monitor people through social media WITHOUT A WARRANT. A prosecutor's office in San Francisco was able to use Twitter to issue subpoenas against political activists. Just because you may not be personally implicated in these disturbing trends, doesn't mean that these nefarious uses are acceptable.

      8. Yes! The idea of not being able to delete your Facebook account is terrifying to me! Although there seems to be some discrepancy on the accuracy of this assertion, this seems to indicate that it is difficult to delete your account permanently, which is equally troubling.




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    10. "You said: "What's interesting about Facebook isn't that it's causing the world to be more fucked-up than it was pre-Facebook, but that it's broadcasting the evidence of this fucked-uppedness—immediately and without the intermediary of 'respectable' media—so that we can't live in denial anymore. " While I agree, Facebook wasn't the initial cause of the fucked-uppedness, I think it has provided a platform for it to become socially acceptable, and thus the fucked-uppedness has metastasized into a cluserfuck of fucked-uppedness."

      I don't really blame FB for the "fuck-uppedness". I think the internet and mobile communication in many ways "metastasized" the fucked-uppedness. Think of all the forums where people found each other to indulge in their fetishes - both legal and illegal - well before FB. There are sites now called "Man/Boy Love" - or something to that effect - where grown men defend their rights to sleep with young boys. Pornography of any imaginable scenario exists in infinite supply - we now have the privilege of knowing that "looners" exist (people who get off on blowing up and popping balloons). Texting was the official breakdown of spelling and grammar and this now persists on FB and any other social platform

      With that said, there is something good about people being able to find like-minded people for support and friendship, but at the same time, some of the things people who come together over don't really advance society in any way. But to David's point these people were always out there - technology just helped them find each other and put their things out there for all the world to see. If anything, I think FB can lead to a lot of conformity - it's another way people seek to fit in.

      DISCLAIMER: I don't mean to come off like a prude - whatever floats your boat so long as it consensual and not harmful. I just sometimes wish I didn't have to know about all of it - there are some things that are personally distasteful.

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  8. i agree whole-heartedly with this post. i took a four-month break from facebook in 2010 precisely because facebook was filling me with rancour. i found it so demoralizing: people sharing mundane details; people whinging about problems that seemed minimal or exulting in their successes that fell into their lap just became hard for me to stomach. it took keeping up with the joneses to a whole new level. but i also missed it because i love the immediacy of the contact. crowd-sourcing friendship, camaraderie, and support is a lot easier on the soul than leaving messages or sending emails sometimes feels like shouting down a well. (i know: here's when people tell me if i had "real" friends they would always reply to my emails promptly, further compounding my feelings of failure.) and i feel like i've tempered my own facebook posts accordingly -- i don't know if you'll resist the term, but i think we all need to curate our facebook feeds. i'm happiest about using it when i feel like it's my own personal radio show "stream of content", and when i hate it, it feels like it's a case where everybody i've ever met is standing around at a party talking loudly to themselves, while giving each other the stink-eye.

    i actually loved myspace a lot more. goodreads seems similar in that you have gateway friends on goodreads who lead you to others you have never met in real life.

    and while we're at it, david, i wished you link your blog to twitter so that i could easily retweet your blog posts. nice to see you come back in full force this month, mister. :)

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    1. Those are very good analogies (the personal radio show and the loud party). And I also think 'curate' is a very appropriate term. The thing is this... when we are actually WITH people, visiting with them in real life, we generally don't tell them the boring things some people post on Facebook... so why do we/they feel free to post them here? Is it because we don't have to look someone in the face who's eyes have glazed over in boredom? Is it because we don't have the physical cues from a real audience telling us whether we are interesting (and should continue talking) or whether we are mind-numbingly tedious (and should shut the hell up)? That's probably part of it. But then again I think I have a very low tolerance for boringness. I want people to tell me something that matters or nothing at all. And by 'something that matters' I don't mean anything momentous! I just mean something that isn't a report of their errands and everyday activities. Tell me an opinion. Tell me something weird you noticed—no matter how big or small. Tell me something that has to do with you, and not something that is blandly common to everyone. You know what I mean?

      And I will link to Twitter from now on. (I'll try to remember!) ;)

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    2. an acquaintance ripped off the party analogy after i told it him last year and put it in an article he wrote. :P

      here's the thing... i definitely agree with you about how boring people can be when they aren't talking about things that matter. i'm just not sure that facebook is any less tedious in content that IRL personal conversations (bear in mind i have just returned from a business conference so i'm particularly traumatized right now), and maybe i have more sandys in my life than you do but even when i am with real-life friends i have experienced the glazed-eye effect -- both giving and receiving (somehow the interest in speaking to me when i have two wine glasses in my left hand i'm trying to drink from simultaneously becomes less interesting when i explain that the left hand is sinister in latin) while i agree it's much easier to be flagrant with one's own tedium without the physical cues that can curtail it that you mention, i just think we as a culture have almost totally embraced hyperbole and every little aspect of our lives is being promoted as part of this cult of celebrity that our lives have become, to the point that the conversations i have are really this mundane and yet designated as important enough to share. we must alert everyone to everything we acquire. it's why i tell my furnace story all the time, simply because i couldn't believe how vapid life had become!

      one of my sisters thought bob vila was hot. :P

      and i looked up the twitter feed thing -- if you want, you can do it automatically so you won't have to try to remember... check 'er out: http://www.ehow.com/how_4893932_autofeed-blogger-posts-twitter.html

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  9. I tried to like some of those status updates in your post.

    I like Facebook. It's a constant reminder to me of how much I despise my fellow man. One thing I will confess to noticing in some of my less-than-literate friends who are big into it is that some -- but only some -- have actually become better spellers as a result of their usage. They might even have a shame gene in there somewhere, underneath all the status updates about Obama being the anti-Christ and how awesome deep fried macaroni is.

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  10. Hi!
    Let it be known that I've been reading your blog for a while, for the obvious reason of you being a fantastic, original (god do I hate that word) writer, and so I don't feel like a stalking creep anymore.

    I feel I should add something about facebook since I'm commenting anyway. I don't hate it because of boring posts, but because I resent having to know that much about people and that much trivia clutters my brain space. I like coherent stories, with a beginning, a thesis, emotional involvement on my part, and and end if pertinent. Funny one-liners get a pass but every other kind of whatever the fuck my friends did yesterday is setting me up for disappointment.
    Just now I logged in and this guy from last year's classes I thought was my kind of people had a status update with a quote from Galileo about knowing oneself being the greatest wisdom and what-not. Is that an inward joke? Because if not he's been downgraded to the guy with the corny updates merely on the grounds of me having read your post and felt compelled to login.
    And if any of my friends is generally being awesome, but I'm not involved in said awesome, I really feel they shouldn't rub my face in it. I get jealous.

    I'm sorry that your recently discovered reader is such an awful person.

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    1. Kino0, for some reason I didn't get an notification on this, so apparently I'm 9 months late in responding. Oops.

      I appreciate stalking creeps, by the way. They are my bread and butter.

      Since I wrote this post, I've discovered the (psychological) benefits of hiding certain people from my feed. I don't particularly like doing this (because if I don't want to see someone's posts why I am 'friends' with them anyway?), but propriety/sanity seems to demand it. Propriety is an asshole though.

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