When you first came around it was awesome. Facebook made it easy to stay in touch with people, make sure you didn’t forget the names of people you’d recently met, and post pictures of stupid and funny things. In later years I grew tired of you because of too many interface changes and all the pictures of babies people can’t help but post. But now I’ve come to realize you are perhaps the best thing in the world. Why?
Because now I never have to talk to people again simply to find out what they are up to. Here’s a good example. There was a girl from my childhood days, nice as could be. We had at least one class together from 3rd grade all the way up to 12th. We were never friends, but still knew each other well because of proximity. We went to different colleges but then she transferred to mine. Then I heard there was a tragic accident and she was temporarily wheelchair bound. The last time I saw her she was sitting in her mom’s car in a handicapped spot at school. Her mom was leaving the science building and she knew me so we chatted for a minute. It was sophomore year.
In generations prior she would always be someone I would wonder what happened to. But I’d never care enough to pursue or even ask people that might know her better. Perhaps I’d run into her at a high school reunion or something. But thanks to you Facebook, I don’t have to wonder.
Thanks to you, and her posting every bleeding (literally) detail of her life I know all too much. Since the last time I saw her, I know where she transferred, what she majored in, who she married, where she works, where she lives (not far from me), every detail about her husband, what her mom is up to, even her baby’s middle name. You can flip through pictures and updates and it feels like you were in the delivery room with her. I know more than I ever want to know thanks to the timeline. I’ve since blocked the updates.
Why does this make me happy? Because it destroys any reason I ever have to figure out what happened to people I’ll never speak to again. There’s no reason for school reunions or ask about people. It’s crazy, if I ran into her in a store somewhere she would literally have nothing to tell me about what she’s been up to all this time. So for what it’s worth, either thank you or screw you.
To all the Facebook users out there: Leave just SOME mystery about you to be discovered in person. There is not a single person on Facebook that cares about your pregnancy that you don’t talk to on a regular basis in person. If you want to know how I am or what I’m doing, you’ll have to ask. So Facebook, for what it’s worth, thank you for making it so I never have to care about people I don’t really care about.