Facebook: Entertainment for the Adults We Grew Up to be

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I’ve been on Facebook for something like a year now and I must say that I have enjoyed the experience. It has been fantastic for loosely reconnecting with old friends and friends whom I have known for a long time. (Ha! See what I did there?) Therein is one of the reasons I like Facebook: it allows a loose connection to people. By “loose connection,” I mean a connection that you don’t have to maintain like exchanging E-mail addresses and occasionally pinging them to see if it still works, etc. It’s a nearly maintenance-free connection that’s there for use if you want to use it.

Why else might I like Facebook?

Another reason I like Facebook is that it provides something of a performance venue where we interact with our audience. After reading a years’ worth of updates from 400+ people, I have reached the conclusion that, for the most part, we post status updates for our own entertainment. We throw something out there and hope that we get a response. Sometimes, we expect the audience to laugh. Other times (especially when deriding our favorite politicians), we hope the furor is kept down to a dull roar. Nonetheless, it’s fun to make a ripple in the pond and see what happens.

The other very interesting aspect of the pond that is Facebooks is that I’m getting to know a bunch of very diverse and fascinating adults who grew out of the kids I once knew. There’s the French Horn player who became a music teacher. There’s the wicked-cool guitar player and A.A. Milne fanatic who grew up to own a recording studio and label. There’s the kid who always liked bikes and grew up to be a personal cycling coach. As adults, all three like cycling, just like I do (though with different degrees of intensity), something I wouldn’t know without Facebook. We occasionally discuss gear and rides. And perhaps, one day, I’ll get to ride with one or two of them, which would be neat because, as adults, they sound like very interesting people. As kids, we never really got along.

And who knows? Perhaps today, as adults, we wouldn’t get along, either. Some of my reacquaintances (as I call them) were frontin’ and hatin’ as recently as our ten-year high-school reunion, which was a little over a decade ago. But I had a civilized discussion with one of them regarding one of the finer points of grammar (neither one of us could figure out who was right). It was fun.

My point? We grow up, most of us, and since I can’t know these people in person, it is most excellent to be able to know them via the interwebs. There are some really cool people in this world, and I went to high-school and college with a fair number of them. Not that they might think I’m all that cool. Heck, I’m pretty much still the same geek I used to be. Or that’s what I tell myself, anyway. But perhaps I’ve grown up, too.

Anyway, Facebook allows that loose reconnection to occur, and I have enjoyed it.

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