The name is familiar but I don’t recognize the Facebook . . .

On Friday The Oregonian published an article by Peter Ames Carlin’s which struck home . . .

It hits your life like a virus. You may have had it in your system for months or even years. Maybe a family member brought it into the house, or maybe a friend sent it to you. And maybe you didn't get it at first, or got it and mostly ignored it. All you know now is that one day it hit you. And now everything is different.

Because now you're into Facebook.

Or, more accurately, Facebook is into you.

You filled out the profile page information and became one of the social networking Web site's 150 million users. You found a friend and asked him to be a Facebook friend, then began receiving "friend" requests from other people. Some of them are people you see every day; others are old friends you haven't seen or spoken to in years. Decades, even. . .

Next thing you know you're trading notes with friends
from every era in your life. They're posting notes on the "wall" on your Facebook page, sometimes chatting among themselves. In your mind Facebook feels like a virtual party, featuring virtually everyone you've ever met. You feel compelled to check in as often as you can, posting public notes about everything you're doing, thinking and feeling. . .

Soon you're spending more time communicating with friends and family online than you do in the old-fashioned, face-to-face way. And sometimes you have to wonder: Is this the best thing that ever happened to my social life, or the worst? Is it even healthy? Is everyone else as caught up in this as I am?

I signed on to Facebook Monday, less than a week ago, and so far have connected with 87 friends spanning two and a half decades, with more “friend” requests in the works. Am I hooked? Think so!

Let me explain:

Shortly after getting married, and moving into our first apartment, Evie and I met Brock and Julie Stout. We had much in common and quickly became close friends. For several years we lived in the same ward; in fact we lived in two different wards with them during those few years. Then events took them to Japan. Our friendship was separated by 5,790 miles! Nearly half the globe! Granted the distance that separates us now is less than half that distance, with them living in Nauvoo, Illinois, but it is still a separation.

First, e-
mails were exchanged but they weren’t the same. Next was setting up a blog, which certainly helped; this way we could read what the family had been up to and see photographs of the family and keep up to date on how fast the kids were growing up. But still something was missing . . .

For me, here’s what was missing: Life! You know, a pulse, a heartbeat!

You see Facebook allows us to put life, or feeling, into those simple exchanges of pictures and words. For instance I can now sit down at the computer, type on some assignment, and get nearly instant messages from a friend or family member on my Facebook page.

Just the other day, January 21, I learned that

Brock believes that Lucky Charms cereal is one of our civilization's great advances, but is supremely disappointed by Chocolate Lucky Charms.

Now, that may not mean much to anybody else, but to me that is classic Brock wit; dry, quick, and cle
an! Humor I haven’t really experienced for several years. Now it is nanoseconds away! It’s as close to being live as you can get.

Here are more examples:

Brock believes the fundamentals of the economy are sound. But it is sort of a sucking sound. It is the sound of money being sucked from my wallet.

Brock's kids think he looks like Patrick Dempsey. If Dempsey were having a really bad day, that is.

Then there is his wife’s Solomon-like wisdom, which mimics my own I must admit . . .

Julie just doesn't understand skiing...the cold, the altitude sickness, the compound
fractures, torn ligaments, surgeries, and even deaths....not worth it.

Maybe it’s just me but those are little gems that make me smile and brighten my day!

There are other, noteworthy reasons why I like Facebook, such as the embarrassing photography, and commentary that get posted either by friends, or family!
Like Brian Larsen asleep with a popsicle stick in his mouth? By the way Holly, he knows it was you that put the picture out there . . .

Or be
tter yet, you can watch your “friends” do the “Get Your Shine On” dance at Girl’s Camp. Though the video is too small for you to tell that it is Scott and Cambria Llewellyn Blair, the point is is that it is embarrassingly funny, in a really cool sort of way, right Cami?

Or what ab
out learning from an unknown post on your “friends” wall that when he was a young man he wore parachute pants, ran a breakdance crew and sported the nickname “Turbo.” I mean come on, this stuff is top of the line ammunition for future teasing. (Don’t worry Sean Noble, your secrets are safe with me! I could never rat out my Bishop . . .)

I suppose there are however, some drawbacks to the system. I turn again to Brock for some enlightenment on these:

Brock has realized that life's aim is not to accumulate money and possessions, but Facebook connections.

Certainly, nobody wants to be know as a Facebook floozy! Though by the number of friends listed on some of your walls you didn’t get the memo!

Then there is this problem, which is always a problem if it draws you away from more important or higher activities:

Brock may check himself into the Betty Ford Center for Facebook Addicts.

Needless to say good things can always be taken to an extreme. Consider the article which appeared on the Drudge Report a few days ago out of Great Britian.

British man killed wife over 'single' Facebook status
Jan 23 01:07 PM US/Eastern; Breitbart.Com

A British man
who murdered his wife after becoming enraged when she changed her relationship status on Facebook to "single". . .

Edward Richardson, 41, stabbed wife Sarah, 26, to death in a "frenzied and brutal" attack at her parents' home in Biddulph, central England, last May after she altered her profile on the Internet social networking site.

I would hazard to guess they had other issues that needed dealing with besides this; however, this might be something to consider if you haven’t yet updated your relationship by getting your spouse a Facebook page of their own and listing yourself as married, or at the very least “its complicated.” lol

But my most favorite reason for Facebook, and the reason I am hooked was a little thought that whispered to me when I looked at a picture earlier this week. You see along with finding friends and family to link to I’ve also found, and even better had requests from, former youth from the past when I was the Bishop. It is nice to know they remember you, but it is even better when you see such pictures as this one on their "wall" and realize there is “no greater joy than to hear that [your] children walk in truth.” (3 John 1: 4)

Popular Posts