No Such Nonsense

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Thursday, October 18, 2007

My Facebook

Over the summer, a good friend suggested I try out Facebook (c'mon, everyone's doing it! It'll be fun! What's the harm?)

Oh, it's fun all right - but even more so, it is endlessly disturbingly addictive. I've spend hours playing Scrabulous, answering trivia questions, filling in ridiculous surveys and quizzes. I even adopted a little virtual pet (he's a penguin) and make catbook pages for my kitties (hey, don't judge me! Stop that. Stop with the judging!) Because millions of other people have done pretty much the same thing. The Toronto network alone has more than 900,000 members. That's a lot of inappropriate computer use at work, I'm thinking.

So what's the appeal?

I've been delighted to find a few old friends I thought were lost forever. A few folks found me that, to be honest, I hadn't really minded losing (I can't bring myself to say no to a friend request - it seems so Mean Girls). So, there are even one or two people on my friends list who I don't remember at all. All in all, reconnecting with lost friends - that's a big plus. Getting a quick update on friends' lives - that's another. The status updates alone provides a quick and dirty insight into what is up with your network.

An article in the Star today gives a whole other Facebook pastime: looking up old boyfriends. While this strikes me as a sort of bizarre form of self-flagellation and a nerdier version of that Bill Murray movie where he visits all his old girlfriends, I have to admit the ex-boyfriend factor is one I didn't anticipate when I signed on. It's an emotional landmine. The high school sweetheart of whom I have only happy memories - we're online friends, but in name only. His choice, not mine. The university boyfriend I shamefully treated worse than anyone ever in my life, well, he found me and has been gracious, funny and sweet about the whole thing. Which makes me feel a little bit worse but mostly a whole lot better.

I can't say I'm planning on looking up the rest of the old crushes and flings - self-flagellation has its limits.


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