Tag Archives: facebook

I Should Have Been a Cat

14 Mar

It would be nice if everyone could just stop being so super awesome and successful at everything for just a gosh golly minute so I can gather myself and catch up.

Don’t you feel like you’re constantly being bombarded with news of other peoples’ awesomeness?  I do.  And it’s usually people my age being awesome.

Do you know who topped the Forbes list as the number one highest paid musician in the world?

Taylor Swift.

That’s right: the Swifty.  A girl about my age who picked up a guitar and started writing mediocre love songs is a billionaire and topped the Forbes List over a band like U2.   Or how about the Olsen twins?  Two chicks also about my age who are billionaires, icons, and own their own fashion line.  Or how about Lindsay Lohan?  Also my age, except unlike Swifty or the twins, she now makes money for being so awful at things.  

And for taking off her clothes and getting wasted and whatnot, but you catch my drift here.

In fact, some of you may recall my campaign to host SNL over The Lohan, wherein I compiled a list of reasons I would be a better host than her.  And you know what? I was right.  I would have been a better host.  But it doesn’t matter.  Because in spite of the awful reaction she got from people all over America when she hosted, her episode had the 2nd highest ratings of the SNL season.  She’s so successful at being unsuccessful that she’s successful.

How can I possibly compete with that?

I shouldn’t care, but I kind of do.  After all, how can I see list after list of people who are in their 20’s shooting into stardom because they made a Ryan Goseling tumblr or a site featuring cats who spell things improperly, or a page that documents what students say on hiking trails without somehow feeling like I’m missing some great calling to create something stupid and phenomenal that whips me into an Internet sensation? 

This cat sleeps for almost the entire day and is still currently more famous than me.

I blame the Twitter Machine.  It’s feeding me information so quickly about people who are young and fabulous and full of society-altering ideas and thoughts and it makes folks like me feel like they’re at the back of the herd.   I’m the limping, cross-eyed zebra of the magical Interwebz, where young, blossoming starlets and dashing entrepreneurs are tweeting the view from the front of the pack. 

I should probably just disconnect.  How can I possibly feel like I’m accomplishing anything when Twitter is throwing top 10 lists of awesome possums at me and Facebook is constantly updating with engagements, marriages, house/car/pet/job acquisitions, and (Lord help us) creepy sonogram photos?   When the world is constantly shouting at you the things that others are doing that are perfect and lovely, it can be hard to remember that we’re not all going after the same things and it’s okay to not be an OlsenLohanSwifty.

We just have to remember that we’re all on different paths.  Mine is to have a blog where I talk about how I don’t like to do laundry so sometimes I just buy packs of underwear instead.  Or how people leaving long voicemails makes me want to scoop my eyes out with a melon baller.  Or how life is too short to get nervous about pooping in public restrooms.   And while that’s not as profitable as a celebrity fragrance line or a TMZ headline or penning young chick country songs, it serves a noble purpose that only I can serve.

Because somewhere out there, someone has lots of packs of new underwear, a hamper full of dirty clothes, and reads my blog to feel better about it.

Keep on keepin’ on, person somewhere out there.  You’re doing just fine.

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The Times They Are a-Changin’

16 Nov

The blog is blue today.  Don’t freak out.

Are you okay? I don’t want you to get too worked up.  Take some time with it.  I know it’s shocking.

Today I have a pretty huge announcement.  Well, huge for me because I stay up until lets-not-kid-myself-I-didn’t-go-to-bed-at-all trying to figure out how in the hell to make a Facebook page.

I’m sorry to call upon the terms of Hades, but holy goodness it takes me a YouTube tutorial, written out instructions, and a few examples of other people’s pages just to get moving on the whole thing.  Not to mention I had to make an image in Microsoft Paint.  Let’s not forget how charming those are:

from "Plight of the Ginger Sperm"

From "Wrestling with a Poltergeist"

From "There Is No Jackie. There Is Only Mindee"

You get the point. 

Oh, I guess I kind of breezed over the whole “exciting news”. 

I have a Facebook Page! 

Like, a fan page.  Not just a Jackie page.  You see, when I wrote a post about giving up Facebook for good, I got a lot of grief from people who don’t want to subscribe but want to click on my posts through Facebook any time they please.  And since I think that’s kind of demanding and ridiculous and they think I should just take what I can get, I’ve decided to compromise by making a Facebook page just for The Jackie Blog.  Now my friends don’t have to get my blog tweets and posts and you don’t have to be my friend to get them. 

I like to think that everybody wins.

Except me, who was up all night fumbling through simplistic code and struggling with the reality that at the ripe age of 25, I’ve already passed the age of comprehension for new developments in technology.

They keep making my brain obsolete.  I have about 60 more years of that to look forward to.

Anyway, I’d be real tickled if you’d click that button on the top right of the sidebar and check out my Facebook page.  Heck, maybe you could even like it while you’re there.  I mean, if you’re feeling ambitious.  I’m not going to beg.

But there is a picture of a kitten.  And a cookie.   Listen, you should probably just go look.

At any rate, I’ve changed the background of the blog to something less… purple.  And I’m gearing up to change that header image soon.  Hopefully really soon.  You know, because I only have like… a month and a half to go before the whole gig is up.  If I’m going to give Yo Gabba Gabba the boot, I need to do it soon.

But it will be glorious, you’ll see.  And until I can make that happen, I’m just changing the background to blue and throwing a Facebook button up.  Because I want to ease you into change slowly and gently, like a compassionate lover.  I understand your struggles.  I have them too.

Which is why today I will be needing a massive vat of coffee. ♣  

P.S. If you don’t want to go all the way up there and click the button, you can just click here.  And if you’re a Twitterer, you can also follow my Twitterage here (also located in the sidebar for your convenience – remember – compassionate lover). Woot for the Interwebz.

Transitioning from Facebook to Google+

28 Sep

Before we begin, let me be clear: I’m not against change.

I’m against rapid change that I can’t get a handle on in my old, crotchety age.  I need time to adjust to something before it goes all snickersnack on me and shakes up again.  Else I feel lost in the ebb and flow of a technological sea that leaves me blubbering at the bottom, wondering why I ever even dipped my toes in.

I use this long, unnecessary sea metaphor to say one thing: I’m going to Google+.

Now I know that some of my readers are in fact old and crotchety and not just pretend old and crotchety like me and may not have any idea what I’m talking about.  So allow me to explain that Google+ is Google’s answer to Facebook.  Basically, Google+ is an attempt at creating a social networking platform where folks can share content with a sense of greater control over whom they share it with.  Google introduced the notion of “circles”, so that instead of simply “friending” someone (like on Facebook), you just add them to circles that you set up yourself.  For example, you might name three circles: family, friends, and coworkers.  Then you drag and drop appropriate folks into appropriate circles and then you have a choice to share your updates and information with one, some, or all every time that you add content.

It’s a great way to avoid that picture of you face-down on the bar with your bra strap showing ending up on the screen of your current boss.

Circles have a variety of fun possibilities.  For example, since no one knows what circle you have them in, you can name them anything at all.  I prefer a Seussical system, wherein coworkers are West Beasts, friends are Glotzes, and family are Zooks.

Anyway I have this whole theory about Facebook leading the way to George Orwell’s 1984 and am finally uncomfortable enough to make the switch to Google+.

I see the irony in how I feel safer with Google, which is clearly taking over the world.  I’m also aware that Dante also put people in circles.  I’m carrying on in full knowledge of the would-be legitimate claims of hypocrisy, and this is how:

Facebook answered Google+’s ideas by allowing people to create lists to sort their friends and share certain information with certain lists.  It also introduced a feature called “subscribe”, which essentially just means I’m electing to have someone’s updates show up in my news feed.  But the beauty of this feature isn’t in subscribing, really.  It’s in unsubscribing, and it will pave my soft, flowery path to the Googlemeister.

Over the past week, I have been slowly unsubscribing from people on Facebook who I don’t really care about.  I’m not trying to be mean – I’m just being honest.  Do I care that this person who I went to elementary school with but haven’t talked to since they bullied me in the tennis courts in third grade is eating a ham sandwich for lunch?

No, I don’t.  And so I shall unsubscribe from their ham-eating updates.

What’s better is that they don’t even know.  They’re friends with me – that’s all they see.  They have know way of knowing if I follow them or not.

So first I will unsubscribe from people I don’t care about.  Then I will unsubscribe from people that don’t ever have interesting updates.  And so on and so forth until I am left with only the cream of the crop in my mini-feed.  I will systematically chop people out of my information IV like a ruthless ruler.  And when I’m left with a very small group that represents those who I am interested in either for entertainment value or for the fact that they really are my friends and I care about them in a virtual sense, I will aggressively campaign for those people to come join me on Google+.

It’s a pretty solid plan and I think more people could make the switch if they slowly weaned themselves in a like manner.

There are a few matters of business to be carried out, of course.  For one, I have every single picture of myself for the last 7 years harbored on Facebook.  I stopped taking pictures when I realized that my friends would take pictures for me, log them, and label them.  So now I have about 600 pictures that I need to get Facebook before the switch or I will have no physical evidence of me being alive for what are supposed to be the most exciting times of my life.

It will be an epic undertaking.  There’s rumor of an app for that.  I shall Google it and relish in the irony.

But the most important thing that must be addressed before I can deactivate my Facebook account is what the appropriate terminology for enjoying something on Google is.  On Facebook you just click a thumbs up and say you “liked” it.  On Google+, there’s a little plus sign (+).  But how does one express that as a verb?  They plus-ed it?

I can’t just go joining  a virtual group of people without knowing the appropriate term.  Heaven forbid I throw out “Plus-ed” in casual conversation and it be wrong.  But once I get that taken care of, it’s off to the Googlemeister for my social networking needs.

That’s it for me and Facebook.  It’s going to be a slow, slightly painful, and definitely awkward transition.  But once I make it to the land of the Google, I can hang out with all my Glotzes, Zooks, and West Beasts.

Facebook: A New Frontier in Social Awkwardness

10 Aug

Facebook is getting so awkward, isn’t it?

Personally, I can’t take the pressure.   It was bad enough when our parents, aunts, and uncles began to join.  I don’t know about you, but sometimes I still manage to forget they’re in my contacts and I say something wildly inappropriate only to be scolded seconds later.  Then all these apps and games and silly questionnaires came through and all the sudden I’m forced to virtually break up with my friend because she won’t stop telling me to water her virtual crops.  Sure, I could just weed through my privacy settings and try to block app invites, but if my friend is the kind of person that constantly bugs me to water her fake crops, do I really want to be her friend anymore?

These are the sorts of hard-hitting questions I’m faced with every time Facebook ‘upgrades’.

Things got even more intense when Facebook leveled-up to real-time updates so that when you stare at your mini-feed you can actually see someone’s comment post at the very moment they do it.   And now, the ultimate mega stresser: Facebook chat.

It could be the super awkward hermit in me, but the chat is where I draw the line.  The beauty of Facebook used to be that it was casual and cool.   People could post on each other’s walls at their leisure.   In a world where the weight of a cell phone text or an email is so heavy that people expect a response immediately, Facebook was the one place I could still go if I wanted to socialize at a relaxed pace.

Facebook relaxation is now dead to me.

When I log on, I have updates that need tended to.  I have people commenting on pictures or saying hello or writing on my wall to ask me to hang out that same day.  I have messages from friends who haven’t caught up in a while and think email is too impersonal.  And sometimes while I’m tending to those things, someone is online at the very same moment and responds immediately.  Immediately! Then there’s all this pressure.  Do I have to follow up? Can I go log off?  They’re on.  They see me.  They know I updated only 5 seconds ago; it’s stamped right there in cold, gray text. I can’t possibly just leave – I have to finish the conversation.

I also have to manage my status updates.  Because if I tell a friend I’m too busy to hang out one night but I update my status at 8:35pm saying how much I love Arrested Development, it’s voluntary incrimination.   It doesn’t matter if it’s on in the background while I’m working.  It doesn’t matter if I thought of a funny episode and it wasn’t even on television.  That friendship is doomed.  

Doomed.

Don’t even get me started on birthdays and engagements.  Talk about stress! Seriously?! Every year on my birthday I have to be wished a happy birthday by hundreds of people I haven’t talked to in ages.  On one hand, it’s nice to feel loved.  On the other, you know that if any of those people really cared about your birthday they’d have called.  Or written.  Or emailed.  And now I feel inclined to follow up with them to see how they are, but I don’t know if they were really reaching out or if they just wanted to hop on the birthday bandwagon.

I don’t even recognize some of their names.

I’m not the only one who feels this pressure.  I know it.  Because not long ago, some dear friends of mine got engaged.  And while I was relishing in the happy moment with them, they admitted that they were quite exhausted because they had to be sure to call every single person that was even remotely close to them to let them know they were engaged before those people saw it on Facebook and got offended that they found out online and not from them.

You see? What are we doing to ourselves?!

So no, Facebook, I will not be utilizing your ‘Facebook Chat’.  The last thing I need in this too-accessible age is to log on and be immediately available to a thousand people, try to figure out how to end conversations with everyone because I don’t want to deal with them, and then worry about what to update my status to that will be amusing but also not indicate that I was having too much ‘not-too-busy-to-chat’ fun.

Lord help us; Facebook will be the end of us all. 

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