I've been reluctantly dragged in to Facebook because it's the only way to keep up with the relatives scattered from here to kingdom-come. It's a nice way to keep up with friends that I don't often get to see. So, I check in regularly, but I can't say that I'm enamored with the whole thing. It's a means to an end, I suppose. That's all.
A couple days ago, my friend Alan put up a comment. He said that he's learned a great deal from watching Bugs Bunny. Another fellow commented that his favorite was The Road Runner. I made a comment to the effect that he'd learned from that, too. Unless he was currently dangling from the jaws of a coyote. Guy flipped a gasket. Felt that he'd been 'slammed'. "Uh. No," I messaged back. "I don't believe in that. It was meant as a joke, sorry for any offense." I guess that's what happens though. You don't know who's on line. You don't know how your comments will be taken. I guess that is the thing that makes me uncomfortable with facebook, all the strangers lurking about. If I don't actually 'know' the person who's requesting to be my friend, I don't accept the friend request. It makes me feel a little guilty, but hey. It's how I roll.
I've recently had the 'opportunity' to watch facebook wielded as a weapon. An acquaintance sent me a friend request some time ago, and I agreed to it. Tim worked with her husband, I knew her from church. We both know her in-laws. Always visited with her a little when we saw her at the Walmart. Now the marriage is over. Or at least headed that way. She's posted some pretty shocking pictures of herself on line. I'd call them soft porn, to be frank. A recent posting stunned me. She's getting bored with the subject of Ted Bundy, and was looking for the name of another killer/rapist from Canada. The most recent conversation hinted at a very good and intimate time with "____". Immediately, Mr. _______ posted, using his own name and saying how fine it had all been. His ex-girlfriend commented, hurt and angry. He taunted her with the relationship. My 'facebook friend' thought it funny. It made me sick, to read it, the gloating and the rage and the hurt right there in my face. It was mean, like the popular kids in high school.
I was trying to think why. Maybe it's because Tim and I had our own hard time earlier in the year. We're okay. In fact, probably better than we've ever been. It wasn't easy. It required a lot of talking. The thing is, though, even when things were at their worst, we didn't hate each other. Our concern was almost always for the other person. Our hearts were breaking. The only thing that we knew is that neither of us wanted to divorce, but despite that, we seemed to be in a place where that was the only answer. It was devastating. The idea that one or the other of us would have gone on line to be critical of our spouses, or to flaunt our new intimacies in front of them, or to inflict pain on others, well. It was unthinkable. I knew that Tim was hurting, and I would not have wanted to make it worse. I'm pretty sure he felt the same way.
I don't know. Maybe I'm old. All I know is that really, I'm rethinking the whole facebook thing lately.