Facebook is the number one online social network in the world. Truth in advertising – I use Facebook as well. I have over 400 “friends” on Facebook. Some of my “friends” have well over 1,000 of their own friends. In actual reality, I have about twenty friends. Of those twenty, only three do I consider close friends.
I can tell when my friends or I am taking a mental vacay because I (like them) am very apt to take inane quizzes such as “Which Sex and the City Girl Are You?” Or “What Decade Are You?” Other folks tend toward Farmville or Sorority Life or some other virtual reality game. Secretly, I love when my friends post their game updates. There’s a way to hide those updates on the news feed but only when they show up in your news feed first.
As of late, I’ve been using Facebook as a news aggregator. I get my news updates and fixes from my select organizations. But the problem is that those pesky “friend” updates get in the way of the newsy updates. Like the guy that went to my high school but graduated two years after me. Or my daughter’s former lacrosse team member’s mother. It’s not that I’m easy and can’t say no. It’s that I was a closet “friend” collector, trying to fulfill the saying that “She who dies with the most friends wins.” In my old age, I’m becoming more like Thoreau and his three chairs.
My conclusion? I plan to ruthlessly unfriend many of my Facebook “friends”. My cousin’s high school sweetheart? Gone. My former co-worker who now lives in Greece? Gone. Two friends from actual reality who have since passed away? As much as I love their memories, their Facebook pages have become remembrances by people who can’t seem to come to grips with their own mortality. Gone.
After all, as Samuel Johnston said, True happiness consists not in the multitude of friends, but in their worth and choice.
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