Tuesday, August 03, 2010

I Don't do Facebook

I do not have a facebook page.

I do not have a twitter account.

I do not use myspace.

I, apparently unlike millions of others desperate for their share of the 15 minutes of fame, do not crave attention like a crack user seeking a rock. This is the only way I can think of to describe these millions of facebook, twitter, and myspace users who lust for as many online friends as they can get their cyberspace hands on. Never mind the fact that most of these users will never actually have face-to-face contact with the people they connect with electronically--it is also highly unlikely that any of these people will also actually carry out an actual verbal communication with any of their so-called cyberfriends.

This, my friends, is the biggest part of my problem with these services. These so-called "social networks" are actually doing the opposite of what they may have been originally intended to do: They are discouraging the development of basic social skills.

Add on to this that it is a known fact that these services are often trolled by predators, sexual and otherwise, looking for vulnerable victims. Victims, I might add, who are not exactly making themselves hard to find. The amount of information some of these people are willing to share about their lives makes me shudder.

I have actually become quite surprised with myself that I write this blog. I've been doing this for more than six years now, and there have been times when, quite frankly, I have shared some of my more intimate thoughts with the 3 people who read it.

An aside: I often refer to "the 3 readers of this blog" in many posts. I have no idea the actual readership. I've gotten comments every now and then. Its existence is not advertised anywhere but in my e-mail signatures.

It is important to remember, however, that I don't write in this blog for attention. I write it so that my personal thoughts, experiences, and opinions will be available somewhere other than in my own head. Over the past 6+ years, I have written some things here that I am, at various times, proud of, scared of, ashamed of, and, quite frankly, confused by. But this is what I have written. I will never delete anything, rewrite anything, or do anything other than make minor grammatical edits to anything I have written or will write here.

So now, climbing off my soapbox...

Let me conclude this post with a little story: I have heard that there is a program available on facebook that allows you to plant, cultivate, and harvest "virtual vegetables". I have no idea if this is true. But if it is, let me ask this of the people who spend time doing this: Have you ever pondered turning off your computer, going outside, tilling some dirt in a garden plot, planting real vegetables, harvesting them, and making yourself a nice dish?

I grow tomatoes every summer. I enjoy using them to make my homemade spaghetti sauce. Try it sometime. It's really delicious!

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