Thursday, January 08, 2009

DW&F: Facebook Fun and Foul Language

Hello everyone!

Night #2 of sleeping on the new bed went just as well, if not better, than the first night. But I once again had a tough time getting out of bed in the morning. Like the night before, it wasn't that I was still tired, but that the bed was so wonderfully comfortable that I didn't want to leave. I hope I don't end up with a job that starts extremely early in the morning because it will be hell getting out of bed. I realize that companies sometimes scour the Internets to screen their applicants, so if you're reading this because you're thinking about hiring me, I assure you that if hired I'll regularly show up on time! I just might not like it too much. But that's why I have this blog--so I can complain about it here and get it out of my system before coming to work. That way you won't have to hear my complaints! I can't think of a better reason to hire me!

Speaking of which, I'm back in a bit of a routine, except instead of school work, I'm job searching and filling out applications. It's a bit exhausting and draining, not only because of the application process (I abhor bragging about myself, and I feel that's what resumes, cover letters, and applications are all about) but also because there is hardly anything available right now in terms of work. Fortunately, I still have my tutoring gig, which I really enjoy, and Cathy has a great job with excellent benefits for both of us (no bennies for tutors), so we're not in trouble at this point. This means that I can still be somewhat choosy about the jobs I apply for, and as a result, all the jobs that I've applied for thus far (or plan on applying for) are ones that I could actually see myself enjoying. It's a really nice feeling.

But the main reason I'm looking for something other than tutoring is that we'd like to buy a house someday, and my measly tutor salary isn't enough to save for a down payment. So I fill out application after application and mail and/or electronically submit resume after resume, all the while hoping someone will call me for an interview. It's not much different than turning in paper after paper and waiting impatiently for the grade, just like I did in school. Good times!

Daily Win and FAIL!

Win: Facebook fun

I went through a MySpace phase not too long ago. It was great fun for a bit because I was able to connect with people I hadn't seen in a while, including some I hadn't seen or heard from since my high school days. But eventually I got frustrated by its annoying graphics and ads, as well as having to enter a CAPTCHA for damn near everything, and so I started messing around with Facebook. And I was able to get back in touch a whole bunch more long-lost friends, as well as staying in touch with local friends who, for whatever reason, I rarely get to see anymore.

Most of my "Facebook friends" who I haven't seen in a really long time are people I went to high school with in Michigan. I've communicated with some of them, and it's been fun if not awkward. I also have other "Facebook friends" I knew in Michigan--some fairly well--who I've only extended an invitation to be friends with (or they with me), but we've never really communicated otherwise. I've really wanted to send each of them a message or just say, "Hi," but that just seems too awkward and uncomfortable. So I've done squat.

It's really strange because in all this I often find myself experiencing the same insecurities I had when I was back there back then, as well as emotions I haven't felt since then. I also catch myself sometimes slipping into the same behavioral patterns I had back then during my recent interactions with the "Facebook friends." It's pretty disconcerting. In a way, I feel like some part of my past that I was fortunate enough to get away from once I left and headed west is now coming back to haunt me in a way. I am very much aware that I didn't like that time very much for a variety of reasons, most of which had little to do with the kids I went to school with. But most of all (not to sound like a cliche) I didn't like myself. I was a jerk. I know that's difficult to believe. Okay, maybe not so difficult. In my defense, however, I have to say that I really didn't know any better. I thought that's how people were supposed to act, or at least how men were supposed to act.

Some of my schoolmates in Michigan were people who treated me like shit back in the day. I also treated some many of my schoolmates like shit, though usually not the same ones who treated me that way. So this whole Facebook thing is a blatant reminder of so many things I wish I could take back.

I really think people who say they have no regrets are assholes. I learned a lot from my mistakes, and they led me to where I am now, so I wouldn't change a thing in that regard. But dammit, I hurt a lot of people who didn't deserve to be hurt, and that's what really gets to me, and it's what I can't let go of. Although all this stems from a period in my past that seems like a lifetime ago, I also realize it's as much a part of who I am now as anything, so I can't simply just ignore it.

Wait a minute!

Wasn't this supposed to be a "Win!"? How did we get sidetracked with all this Oprah crap?

Sorry about that.

Anyway, the original point of all this was was to simply point out an interaction with a couple of my Michigan "Facebook friends" that happened over the past couple days, which I thought was "Win!"-worthy.

A girl I went to school with (who I'm sure is a currently woman in her mid-thirties with a daughter, but she was a high-schooler the last time I saw her, so I can only think of her as a "girl") posted a status update (for you non-Facebookers, a status update simply allows you to tell your "Facebook friends" how you're feeling or what's on your mind, as well as allowing your "Facebook friends" to respond with comments). Her status update lamented the ridiculousness of all the corporate-sponsored college football bowl games with the sponsor's name in the bowl tile by "wondering when the Kraft Mac and Cheese Bowl is going to debut." Of course, being who I am, thought of a million responses but settled on this:

"I'm waiting for the Kotex Cotton Bowl..."

Yes, not my best work.

As soon as I hit the "Comment" button, I felt a pang of regret. How would she take it? Would she be completely offended and think I'm just some creepy, inappropriate jerk, or else some one who's trying to be funny, but, like Dennis Miller as a football commentator, FAILs miserably? Would she regret ever becoming my "Facebook friend"?

Suddenly, I was again transported back to high school. I went to a small school, and so everyone more or less knew everyone else. But she was two grades ahead of me, and I wasn't close to her. Also, that was almost a lifetime ago, so even though she seemed to have a sense of humor twenty years ago, she could've lost it since then. Furthermore, everyone else who was friends with her or with me would also see my comment, so I began to wonder what would they think? Would her "Facebook friends" wonder who she was "Facebook friends" with and decide to no longer be "Facebook friends" with her, causing her to hold a grudge against me for the rest of our lives and become some creepy stalker who chops me up with an axe while screaming about how I ruined her Facebook life?

Okay, I really didn't worry about that last part, but you get the point.

Anyway, I considered deleting the comment. But if someone comments on your Facebook, you get an email and tells you what the comment was. This meant the damage was already done, and I would just have to face the music. Fortunately, there was another person in my class who is apparently even more inappropriate than I am, and he commented on my Kotex Cotton Bowl comment by saying:

"I heard it's a real bloodbath."

Awesome! Suddenly, my inappropriate comment looked downright appropriate next to that one! I was instantly off the hook, like when you go to a party and get a bit tipsy and say something stupid and you're all embarrassed, but then someone else tries to start a fight, knocks over a lamp, and then pukes all over the couch, and at that point you realize nobody is going to remember the stupid thing you said and you're in the clear. Yes, just like that. Win!

FAIL: Naughty Language on TV

Here's what I'm talking about...



FAIL!

Isn't that just terrible? I only have one question:

Why would these fine, upstanding people, particularly Grover and Mr. Rogers, say all those naughty words? I guess being on TV just proved to be too stressful.

That's why I stick to blogging.

Rob

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