Saturday, February 07, 2009


I succumbed. Invited to Facebook, I joined. Hesitantly, nervously, fear and trepidation.

I made a Profile. Friend options appeared. Eleven 'Friends' right off the bat, even with tight privacy controls and pickiness.

I've Chatted with my sister. I've posted to others' Walls, commented on their Comments, looked at Photos of people I normally don't communicate with - my, have their children grown - time marches on and away. My high school/college past has pretty much stayed there, in the past. With exceptions, of course.

Amazing to me how, naturally marching in-step with time, physical aging has grabbed ahold of these once teenage associates of mine. I shouldn't be amazed. Seriously, I have a mirror. But I remember full heads of hair, round, mischievous eyes, straight, square-shouldered energetic bodies. Who are these old people looking out at me? Gray-haired, bald, 'mom' hairstyles, cookie-cutter middle-aged people who look like....well, parents and grandparents? Which is what they are. Which is what we are. But I don't feel the way these familiar faces look. Shocked me. It's normal. I understand why decades ago my sparsely seen childhood relatives patted me on the head while exclaiming, "Look how tall she is! Why, she was only thiiiis big last time I saw her."

Reality check.

The Facebook connection with a favorite high school friend and a beloved college friend is nice. We've always sent Christmas cards. Efforts to get together have fallen flat for the most part. Time and distance, lifestyle and family. After the initial Facebook "How ya doing? We really should get together!" and quick catching up, well, what does one say?

It's interesting, this Facebook thing.

But this blog, your blogs, there is depth there and conversation, thoughts, dreams, humor, beauty, pain, real sharing. It feels like real life. In getting to know you through blogs I feel I've been invited to easy-chair relax with you in your living rooms, to a degree. I've met some of you face-to-face and felt like I've known you for years. Blogs give me a much-desired sense of slowly simmering community full of surprising tastes and textures, an enriched, intricate belonging. Family.

Facebook feels like fast food, or like watching commercials or those entertainment magazine shows on t.v. - fast, flashing, blabby, shallow, annoying. And random. So random.

Yet, I visit Facebook regularly. Curious, you see. And I am sincerely interested in my 'Friends'.

I'll give it more time.

Who knows what goodies may be shaken out of this tree.


Wandering Coyote said...

I like Facebook for the Scrabulous game and I like the fact that everyone's in the same place for easy contact. I've reconnected with a lot of people over it and have stayed connected with it, too. But yes, it will never replace blogging or even come near to doing what blogging does for me. Same thing with Twitter, as you found out on my wall! ;)

tony said...

People at Work got me to join facebook a year or so ago.I never really got into until last week when i got found by unknown relatives in Argentina! It has it's uses!!!
But,generally, its "blogger-lite".& i dont like the way it tries & "harvest"email info.
How You Doing Cherie?

Cherie said...

WC: I am probably being hasty in my judgment - first impressions and all that. Facebook seems more demanding than blogging, more pressure somehow. The upfront, all in one place aspect does save time. Yes, I did find out about Twitter, thanks to you. ;)

Tony: Nice to know it has its uses. Argentina! That's fantastic. I noticed the attempts to 'harvest' my information spread it out there through various 'applications.' Seems rather insidious. But, I shall poke around a bit more, shake the tree, see if I can find any long lost relatives or such.

I'd doing well, Tony, thanks for asking. Heading south to see my parents for the day. Had a rocky week, as the blog does attest, but things are smoothing out. I've high hopes for next week. We shall see.

tshsmom said...

You found the PERFECT metaphor for Facebook-fast food!
Facebook is like text messaging to me, fast and shallow. None of my friends or relatives, other than blog friends, seem to be on Facebook. That doesn't really matter, as I keep in contact with the ones I want to anyway. I'm only on Facebook to play Scrabble with SME and WC, and I haven't even been doing that lately.

All of the mindless applications on Facebook drive me insane! Every time I sign in, I have at least 60 invites to meaningless drivel.

To me, blogging is all about the beauty of the written word and TRUE communication. Blogging is a life-giving therapy for me.

Gardenia said...

Oh, what a good post. I finally became fond of Facebook - but it is a whole different level of communication - its quick, easy to keep track of folks if they post to it regularly - deep? Not a chance. Like you, that's why I love blogspot - it can be deep - I always love your blogspot posts.

Yah, odd how we can look at some old friends, acquaintances and wonder what happened - sometimes old is all in the mind - er "older" - I find myself suprised too when I haven't seen an old friend for a long time -

Cherie said...

Thanks, Tshs! Meaningless drivel. Yes! And 'blogging is all about the beauty of the written word and TRUE communication. Blogging is life-giving therapy for me.' Yes, yes, yes.

Gardenia: Maybe I'll become fond of Facebook eventually. I do enjoy chatting with my sister - we are so silly together and make each other laugh. But I feel such pressure to keep up. Like I said, I'm new. I do find that I'm on there tooooo long. I get up and hours have passed and my legs are cramped up and I swear my bum is bigger!

cecily said...

OK, so I'm a facebook addict. You make it what you want... go for private messages for the deeper conversations, stick on the main wall for the shallow things. But I agree, if I want to really connect, I phone or write a letter. :-) But facebook is handy. Not sure about the way it has turned me into a voyeur though!

May I hunt you down please, or is that crossing the blog-life barrier? :-)

Cherie said...

I've been giving it more time as I said I would and am finding it a bit more interesting than I thought. It fulfills a completely different purpose than a blog. Maybe I was wrong to compare the two.

Still shaking the tree....