Wednesday, November 23, 2011

"I'm super efficient at wasting time as it is." - Fran Smith

There is definitely a part of me that hates the phrase "in the grand scheme of things." I hate it because it sets up an inevitable comparison between two completely unrelated things, an apparent dichotomy that should never exist, much less be used to "help" someone maintain perspective. Example: I know you stepped in a mud puddle, but there are children without food in "country that you likely know very little about, yet use as an example of underdevelopment." I hate it because all things are not relative. We are entitled to feel hurt or angry or frustrated without guilt, constantly reminded of those who have it so much worse.

Well, no kidding, of course things could always be worse.

With that being said, however, the tiny part of me that doesn't hate the phrase, understands why it is so commonly tossed around. It is the disclaimer that allows us to go ahead and say something utterly insignificant and feel justified in doing so. It is the "bless her heart" that gives legitimacy to - and that magically wipes away guilt from - the insult that will surely follow. SO...

In the grand scheme of things, I realize that Facebook is not that important. It is filled with some stupid, stupid stuff: far too personal postings, the likes of which I would never tell Caroline, much less an entire online community; deep thoughts such as "It's cold this morning!" or "Love this!" (I have used both); an inexplicable hatred of Nickelback; and far too many "bro"s, "tat/tatted up," "lmao"s, and "prayer chains" that spiral into nosy Q&A sessions, for my liking. BUT...

It is also the "place" where I read stuff that makes me laugh out loud while sitting alone in my living room. It is the place where I can see pictures of Terry and Tommy Staley with their grandchildren that make me respect them even more than I already do. It is the place where I can read the Annie Ruby's menu and snippets of my favorite blogs. It is the place where "The Art of Piddling" and "Random Thoughts of Very Little Significance" flourish. It is the place where I can see glimpses of just how funny T.j. Morgan, Jessica Cossel, and Neal Poindexter are. It is a place of shared experience, even if that experience is, by all reasonable understanding, dumb and/or insignificant ( the grand scheme of things).

And, thus, it is this notion of shared experience that makes me feel okay about devoting a little time to it each day. It's nice to take something that would normally be quite frustrating and, via a quick Facebook post or comment, turn it into something that you can laugh at with others. It's nice when quips from unsuspecting bystanders somehow make you feel as though you're not the only one "XYZ" has happened to. It's nice when you know something you've done has made others smile.

It seems, therefore, that Facebook is just me being super efficient at both time wasting and community development.:)

For two of my favorite Facebook posts of all time (and the related events happened to occur on the same day), see:
The "If anyone has a fence down..." post.
Is it a "u" or "e"?

1 comment:

  1. Your entry said everything that I also feel about fb. I, too, am drawn to it for the same reasons. Isn't it funny how connections are made between people you hardly know or those you have not communicated with for years as well as those you see on a daily basis? Through some of my families' posts I realize how silly and ridiculous us Turner girls are. Just imagine the fun we have when we are actually in the same room. Thank you also for the Ted video. I sat and cackled out loud while watching the underwear segment. You have a gift of writing, and I always enjoy reading your posts.