Grey, drizzly October morning. End of the garden. Heating is on, because two days of shivering is quite enough thank you. Funny time of year.
I got told I spend a lot of time on Facebook. This is true and not true at the same time. I leave that window open 24/7. So in some ways I'm actually always there. However, sometimes I'm asleep, outside, or in another town. Some of the time I'm right here at my desk (no actual chains) but oblivious to FB because I'm busy on something. I hear the notifications noise (sometimes only just, because of loud music) but it has to wait. Sometimes the noises annoy me and I mute them. I don't like phones ringing either.
Quick tangent then - I think phones are rude. "I demand your attention. NOW." Good luck with that. I only answer the phone if I know who is calling. When I make the silly mistake of picking it up before the Call Display kicks in, it's invariably Air Canada thanking me for my business (last used them in 2010 and never again if I can help it), or Google saying my business listing needs updating. And that's even ruder. Demanding my attention NOW and then hiding who you are, that's totally unforgivable. It's like banging on my door wearing a disguise. It makes modern etiquette an oxymoron. If you want me, email me. I'll get to you in due course. No, you can't text me. I don't have a cellphone. Mine broke, well, its battery did anyway, almost two years ago, and I don't miss it. I do not rule out buying another one, but right now, if you need me it'll be on my schedule, not yours.
Anyway, another good way to get hold of me is Facebook messaging. Different noise, makes me actually check it (well, usually) if I'm in the office.
Lately I've been getting criticism, if that's the right word, about some of the things I share/post.
Here's the knee jerk response:
My wall, I'll post whatever I like.
Here's the more mature answer:
I do share a lot of pre-made stuff, or "memes" as they have come to be known. See previous post for a bit of a guide there. They save me a lot of typing and some are just pretty. Like this one:
I think that's one of those adult colouring book things, not sure. Anyway it's a sort of mandala. And I love mandalas. If you missed the post where I explained about my relationship with Buddhism, I'll be doing a new one this week, also by request. So watch this space.
I have a Facebook page called "All One". I don't always remember but most days I post a meme that is supposed to make you think. They are usually positive, semi-spiritual, and at the very least inoffensive to all but the most cynical or fundamentalist anything. They represent who I am very well, because I am essentially positive.
But the world around me is full of nasty shit. I have the luxury of being able to be positive because most of it does not affect me. Like most of my Facebook friends, I have a very easy life. I have it far easier than many. I'll dwell on that in the next post, but suffice to say, I can complain about nothing, on the mundane, personal level.
So, sometimes you'll see me share stuff like this:
You are not required to respond.
You can, if you choose, pull a sour face and scroll on. For a variety of reasons.
You can, if you choose, engage me on the topic, and you can choose to support it (with just a thumbs up "like" or a full out rant) or you can pull it to bits (but please see yesterday's post before making a tit of yourself).
And guess whose choice it is as to how I respond to your response?
Just so we are clear on that.
You do not have to agree with me. Some of my FB friends almost never do. Some of my dearest friends and I disagree on some really huge issues. The reason we are still friends is probably because I enjoy the debate, or that you are fun in some way, or you have redeeming features. Whatever, we don't always have to agree in order to be friends, we just need core values that play well together.
And then there's quantity.
Well..................I read/listen BEFORE I write/speak.
There this other meme, that pre-dates "memes". And it goes like this:
A wise old owl lived in an oak
The more he saw the less he spoke
The less he spoke the more he heard.
Why can't we all be like that wise old bird?
So, when I settle at my desk for the day's work, before I do anything else, I read. I read all my emails and mull them over before responding (customer service, you know, deep breath, don't murder anyone), I read any PMs on FB. And I scroll through my feed. That's what I do. Every day.
Maybe you engage with the world differently, the radio, the TV, a newspaper, other humans, etc. I don't. When I get up the rest of the family are either already gone to work, or sleeping in after a late shift. I am alone. Eventually Tom gets up, but for a while there, it's just me, the animals, and Facebook. I read.
After I've read, caught up, heard the latest, then I may be ready to respond. But sometimes all I feel the need to do is share. So you may well just see a slew of posts arrive that are "memes". Overkill? Sorry. I see 'em, I like 'em, I share 'em. Please feel free to scroll on, or if need be, limit the notifications you get from me. I will not be changing my ways to suit anyone.
I know that some of you bristle at some of the things I share. It's mutual. All's fair in love and war. You don't like my left-wing stuff? That's fine, I don't like your right-wing stuff. We both have the choice to ignore or engage. That's the beauty of it. It's not like I stopped you in the street, or at the watercooler, or phoned you, and started a rant. You have such freedom of choice as to how to deal with what comes from me, it is unprecedented.
I've known some of you a long, long time. Auntie Pat - I think we met before I was a week old. Some of you remember me from school and are horrified at how much I've changed, or not......!!!!! Some of you ran in and out of my life at some point in a job or whatever, didn't stay in touch at all, and now we found each other again, how about that? 7 billion people on the planet and we stumbled back into each other's lives. Some of you started out as internet friends on MSN nearly 20 years ago and have become like family, quite frankly. Some of you are FB friends of FB friends, and I don't even know what you look like, but we hit it off. We share stuff. We make each other smile. All of you are my friends because you've never done anything to get culled off my friends list (it takes quite lot, actually) and clearly, I haven't annoyed you quite enough for you to do it to me.
So, in some way, even though you aren't always happy with what I post or share, the fact that you're still here says a lot.
I am not going to stop doing any of it. This is who I am. I'm opinionated but I'm kind. I rant, but I smile. I'm not bitter but I can be quite firm. I don't forgive, but I almost never actually take offence, so it's irrelevant. I have a large personality, I am confident and sometimes a bit full of myself, but I don't take me too seriously. One can't. (That was a two word joke. A record?) What I do most of is love, and the reason I post stuff that bothers you is because I see harm going on, and I prefer love. And I will argue, because I'm not a fucking doormat. Ask my family.
You don't like Facebook - but you still use it. You are ambivalent about it, but it has its uses. You use it all the time but never stop complaining about it. (That's 3 different yous, pick one).
I LOVE IT. It has a lot of stupid aspects, and a lot of stupid people (not on my friends list, but on friends' friends lists etc) and I LOVE it just the same. If it were not for Facebook, can you imagine how inappropriate and eccentric I'd get up here with just a bunch of crazy people around me? I mean how much MORE inappropriate and eccentric I'd get........
I need Facebook. And whatever mass social thing that eventually supersedes it. It's good for me. If you find it causes you problems, you need to adjust your settings. Cull a few people. Facebook is no better or worse than the people you choose to interact with, right?
So, really if you don't like what I share, at all, ever, in any way, there's a button for that. Bye.