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Facebook Friends

Facebook is a fascinating phenomenon with currently about 850 million active users worldwide. I've done several posts on social media, one called Networking and the other called Connection VS Closeness, in which I explored different aspects of today's growing online existence. I won't rehash what I said in those posts. Instead I'll share some fresh humor related to Facebook (FB) and other social media, all of which came from Facebook friends.

As rapidly as news comes to us from traditional news sources, social media often delivers news even faster. Saturday evening I logged onto Facebook to wish a Happy Birthday! Joyeux anniversaire! or Alles Gute zum Geburtstag! to FB friends with birthdays that day. I noticed at the top of my FB page an update from a friend with whom I graduated from high school. She was lamenting the passing of Whitney Houston. Becka and I did not otherwise hear that news until 11:00 that evening.

Then on the Sunday morning edition of the Today Show, we were treated to something similar to the following cartoon about what happens when a famous person dies:

Facebook is the modern day leveler of humanity. It's where I find out who's dating whom, who got married to whom, who just added a new baby to the family, etc. As fast as young people update their "status," I wonder how far from reality the following cartoon actually is....

As I understand it, today's "smart phones" make most, if not all, the social media available virtually anywhere anytime.

Friendships on Facebook can be interesting, encouraging, and discouraging. Lots of people I know are doing lots of fascinating things, but some are going through difficulties or are headed towards tough times if they don't do course corrections. All in all, it's been a blessing to reconnect with classmates and former students, as well as family in France and other friends in other parts of the world. What it means, though, is a friend count of 1,600+ (mostly former students), and what that means is that there's no way in the world I can keep up with most of their news! I have ignored some requests because I truly have no idea who the person is and we have no friends in common. This next cartoon hits the nail on the head.

I probably should do a bit of housekeeping and delete some FB friends that I'm not sure I know and accepted in a moment of weakness. 🙂

Facebook is just one of many networking tools out there. Here's a good explanation of some of the most popular kinds of social media.

I'm not personally familiar with several of those, so I only marginally enjoy the humor.

I like not only things that make me laugh, but also things that make me think. In the last couple of days, several of my friends have posted an interesting critique, comparing traditional hymns with modern songs.

I would say that is a valid criticism of some of the newer music that's out there.

However, another friend posted a rebuttal to that critique.

That rebuttal is an equally valid criticism of some of the music that's been out there for a long time. I appreciate that the music pastor at our church chooses the very best from both older and newer songs, leaving out those with little value and using those good ones in the conservative musical style to which our congregation is accustomed.

As fun and interesting as social media can be, it can all consume an enormous amount of time, if we let it. I have read all sorts of figures about how much time people spend on social media — some putting it at hours a day! It's probably hard to calculate since, for those with smart phones, etc., the stream of incoming info is unending, what with all the texts, Tweets, status updates, e-mails, etc. Believe me, my presence on FB is underwhelming, and my time spent there is honestly negligible.

In connection with that, here's something from a FB friend who is a former student of mine. This one is especially dear to the heart of this French teacher.

For those who don't read French, it says, "Conjugation of the Facebook verb — I post, you comment, he likes, we share, you make public, they laugh, and no one is working." Probably humorously and sadly true. I wonder how much work time is lost due to employees' use of social media on the clock....

The use of social media brings certain consequences if it is used without discretion.

For some reason, I'm not seeing the "joy of tech" in the looks on those faces....

I'll close with a picture that's absolutely my favorite find on Facebook in quite a while — a picture of our new granddaughter Madeleine Grace Hawkins.

Maddie was born this morning at 10:48, weighing 7 lbs. 6 oz. Mother and baby are doing very well. Megan said everything went perfectly. They even let her hold the baby before they finished stitching her up. The Lord has blessed us with a wonderful little Valentine and we can't wait to meet her.

Do you use social media? Any thoughts on today's post?


"True repentance of sin grieves not merely over the calamity that sin brings, but also over how sin defames God and puts us out of sync and fellowship with God." — Drew Conley

=^..^= =^..^=

Q: Why is Facebook like jail?
A: You have a profile picture, you sit around all day writing on walls, and you get poked by people you don't really know.

Q: Why is Facebook like a refrigerator?
A: Because every few minutes you keep opening and closing it to see if anything good has suddenly appeared there.

Q: Why should you create a Facebook account with the name "No One"?
A: Because when somebody posts something stupid, you can click on "Like" and it will say, "No One Likes This."

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11 Comments on “Facebook Friends”

  1. #1 Gaye
    on Feb 14th, 2012 at 8:24 pm

    Is there a “like” tab here? 🙂 Love the verb conjugation. Hope you don’t mind if I share that with my Spanish classes! Beautiful granddaughter! Congratulations!

  2. #2 Ron
    on Feb 14th, 2012 at 9:09 pm

    Loved it: ) Congrats grandpa, what an absolutely beautiful granddaughter you have.

  3. #3 garrison parrish
    on Feb 14th, 2012 at 9:10 pm

    Ha, loved this post! i personally spend way too much time on facebook by chatting with friends, but i do a purge every once in awhile and try to keep it to only people that matter. Loved the Facebook jokes! And Congrats on the new addition to the family!!

  4. #4 Elizabeth
    on Feb 14th, 2012 at 10:33 pm

    There was a lot going on in this post, but I especially appreciated the contrast between the two “Worship- w…what happened” criticisms. Matt and I have been discipling a friend who recently became a Christian. The other night he said, “I’m starting to think the conspiracy theorists have it all wrong. The biggest problem in our society isn’t some deep-rooted, complex plot – it’s apathy.” I believe he’s right, and that it is true of worship as well. That apathy is neither new nor corrected.

    As far as social media, I am grateful for the opportunity to keep in touch with distant loved ones and to reconnect with old friends. However, I had to laugh a little self-consciously at the cartoon of the wedding. I purposely joined Facebook right before I expected to get engaged so that I could broadcast it. But that was a long, long time ago, and I’ve grown a lot since then…

    Thank you for posting. And congratulations on the newest addition to your family!

  5. #5 Eileen
    on Feb 14th, 2012 at 11:41 pm

    I love the FB verb conjugation. 🙂 That’s my favorite bit from this post. Merci bien!!

  6. #6 Charis Manka
    on Feb 15th, 2012 at 2:23 am

    I like the “No one likes this” joke. 🙂 🙂 Could even be something like, “No one wants to be your friend on Facebook.” 🙂

  7. #7 Michael
    on Feb 15th, 2012 at 9:01 am

    Great post today! You balanced humor, honesty, and sobriety very well. My wife and I used to be on Facebook but it just ate up so much time. We eventually lost our internet connection at home and couldn’t monitor our pages anymore. So, we canceled them. We may get a page as a couple in the near future since we have internet at home again. We’ve observed that it could be a good way to keep up with friends and family and we’ve also noted that several in our church use it effectively to keep in touch with one another and to be aware of needs they may have.

  8. #8 Vikki
    on Feb 15th, 2012 at 9:30 am

    Congrats Grandpa!!

    I love the famous person newscast. It’s always interesting to hear newscasters try to fill up the time with banter in an attempt to keep people from turning them off while waiting for an event to happen or updated news to come. That’s why they’re paid the big bucks. But your translation of the process is right on the money as far as what’s really being said.

    I’ve been able to keep up with friends and family across the county through Facebook, but some times I see posts that make we wonder why they felt it was relevant for them to announce to the world that they just burped.

  9. #9 Betty-Ann
    on Feb 15th, 2012 at 12:46 pm

    Congratulations on your beautiful granddaughter. Enjoyed the “no one likes this” FB joke. Becka posted on her blog. Really cute baby.

  10. #10 Deborah
    on Feb 16th, 2012 at 8:13 pm

    I *like* (actually *love*) the verb conjugation of facebook! 🙂

    Congratulations on your new granddaughter! She’s beautiful! (But you already know that!) 😉

  11. #11 Carrie
    on Feb 18th, 2012 at 11:32 am

    I like the worship posters, but my favorite part is your beautiful granddaughter. She is just so sweet.