Friday, October 29, 2010


Somehow a friend long ago enticed me onto Facebook. For a great while I seldom bothered with my Facebook account; then inch by inch I was drawn deeper into the Facebook gravity well, until now I at least log in and take a look almost every day. Somehow I've acquired a long and growing list of Facebook "friends," and I've come to realize that some people on Facebook fall into predictable categories.

There are the Political Fanatics, rigid extremists out on the fringe, now waxing more loquacious as the elections draw near. These people cannot refrain from making frantic, emotional-pressure-cooker remarks about their pet political issues, and usually about the horrors of their eeeevil opponents, which predictably lead to long angry partisan threads in which people sling mud back and forth at one another. The Political Fanatic, of course, is only being "perfectly objective"; all eeeevil lies on the opponents' side of the issue.

There are the Fortune Cookies, who occasionally will post a sugary cliche, "Life hands us a tough situation we never asked for, until we reach the point of sacrificing and sacrificing again, but one day we will look back and be glad we did it." The Fortune Cookies are usually women, and they often refer to their better half as "DH"; I think sons and daughters are abbreviated "DS" and "DD."

There are the Gamesters, addicted to Farmville or Mafia Wars or whatever. Your page will be flooded with a Gamester's messages, "Oh no! A poor little strawberry calf wandered onto So-and-So's farm..." I think I've long since blocked most of the games played on Facebook.

There are the Compulsive Detailers, who have to inform you every time they run out to the supermarket for a few groceries. Then after they get home they have to leave another message, describing just which groceries they got, and just which weren't on their shopping list but they broke down and got them anyhow...

There are the Mystery Complainers, who will write something like, "With a day like today, I should have stayed in bed!" No details as to what or why. Seems usually they're hoping to snag replies (and attention) from friends, "Gee, are you feeling down today? What happened?" I say, please don't feed the energy creature.

Why did I ever get on Facebook in the first place? Sometimes I wonder. Though now that I'm drawn in this deeply, I suspect there's no getting out. Better to stay and keep a cautious eye on things, than leave and lose all control over all the personal information Facebook has gathered on me.

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