I often wonder what life was like before facebook. How did I keep in touch with all my friends?
Oh, wait. I didn’t.
What did I do when I had a spare moment of time and didn’t have a facebook account to check?
Probably something really productive. Or intellectually stimulating. Something more noteworthy than commenting on a funny youtube video posted by a friend.
These examples sum up facebook, I think. It’s ridiculously useful when trying to keep in touch with friends and family and it’s stupidly counterproductive to anything else really useful in my life. Yet as much as I want to jump on the bandwagon of hating facebook for a million socio-political-ethno-reasons, I have to admit, even with all the negatives, facebook is still pretty badass.
Case in point: the other day, I was driving down the road and I saw a man cross the street and I thought to myself, “He looks familiar.” A few minutes later, I thought, “I think that was Spooner.”
Spooner. A name I hadn’t thought of in at least a decade. He was a guy I really, really briefly dated over a decade ago. In short, he was a cool guy and I basically ditched him and was a total bitch in the process.
Come on, I was young. And stupid. And immature. O.K., I was a raging egotistical mess.
So, after his name popped into my head, I thought, “I should apologize to him.”
But since I couldn’t remember his real name (Spooner, of course, was a nickname), I sent my friend Katy a text, and by the end of the night, she had texted me his name back, and then I did a simple facebook search, found him, and sent him an apology message.
And, he responded and accepted my apology.
While my apology was hardly life changing for either of us and probably on many levels not necessary, I still am glad I took the time to apologize. I’m glad facebook made it so easy to find him.
In the end, guess facebook can be whatever you really want it to be. I check my facebook daily, but not obsessively at all. I use it to communicate with friends and family, but not stalk random strangers (like a lot of my students do. You should hear their stalking stories!). I’m pretty thankful for facebook today and for the chance to send out a small apology from a short period of my life. Small, but significant.
P.S. I’ve been trying for years to find Aaron Farnsworth on facebook with no luck. Aaron was in my 3rd-6th grade class. In 6th grade, he was the oldest of 12 kids (I’m serious). His family was really poor and none of his clothes fit—his pants were always at least 4 inches above his shoes and all the kids made fun of him, including me (though, to be honest, not as much). He was totally bullied by all the bigger boys in the class (and this was before bullying was a school buzz word, and so he really had no protection). I still think about this kid and feel bad all the time. I want to apologize so badly. I guess facebook can’t make everything right, so to make it public:
Aaron, I am so, so, so sorry for the way I behaved when I knew you in 3rd-6th grade. You deserved better friends and better school protection against the bullying and teasing you endured. I would do anything to go back in time and be your friend.