Days of Our Facebook Lives

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DAYS OF OUR LIVES LOGO

 

Did you ever watch daytime soap operas? Those tales of unusually large, wealthy, extended families set in small towns where somehow everyone knew each other yet only found out at just the right time that they were also related in some dramatic fashion. It was somehow supposed to be a reflection of something as simplistic as “The Days of Our Lives” as if housewives (the target audience of course) could somehow relate these outlandish tales as being reflective of *their* own lives. Or, more specifically, a fantasy version to distract them from their more mundane reality.

At any rate – who needs that anymore? We have Facebook! I would imagine that anyone there who has amassed at least 100 friends can pop on at any time of the day and find themselves reading updates that span the full spectrum of what is, truly, the emotional ups and downs of life. And if you throw in following the updates of a handful of entertaining pages of public figures or oddball media sites, you can guarantee some giggles will be found and downright chin dropping updates will also pass by.

For instance, here’s some ups and downs and everyday status reports from my own feed with all names withheld of course, just within the last 72 hours:

  • A photo album of professionally done family portraits with a newborn (aww)
  • An Instagram photo marking the 5 month birthday of a premie baby (double awww)
  • Photos celebrating the 11th birthday of an adopted child (triple awww)
  • “Car repossessed. This is rock bottom folks. #Fail.” (oh no!)
  • “We said goodbye to our nephew today. He left this earth surrounded by those who loved him.” (much sadness)
  • “Am I wrong to hope that soccer is rained out today?” (life does go on)
  • “Rolling Bachelor Party Headed for Kentucky Derby Finds Dead Body in RV” (Deadspin of course – WTF?!)
  • A picture of an adorable cat/dog. (Awww again)
  • A picture of a lovely mixed beverage with an umbrella in it and a smiling couple with the beach in the background. “Vacation!” (feeling jealous)
  • “Today is my one year anniversary with my live in boyfriend! Hubby packed the car so we could go off and celebrate! My life is so weird!” (hey, whatever floats your boat for all of you, but yeah, that did strike me as rather unusual!)
  • “College update – he chose Northeastern!” (lots of proud parent moments go by each day)
  • “Told the kids about the split today. It was as hard as we thought, but also a tremendous relief.” (oof)
  • “Will potty training EVER happen?!!” (see the update directly above – it does eventually!)
  • “I’ve only been gluten free for a week, but I’m already really annoying!” (Hah!)

It’s all there – births, deaths, love in many forms, heartache, tragedy, accomplishments, humor, and the simple things that keep us smiling & laughing through the mess.

Also – it inspires blog topics when you are committing to daily posts and need anything you can get!

Oh Hi

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February is the Monday of months according to the always currently relevant Garfield The Cat. It’s also clearly Blogging Prevention Month around here.

My writing energies are all used up by the pergola site. With the ebook on sale – one book sold last week! – I have to ramp up the promotion which means article writing to drive traffic and then updating some of the old pages of the main site.

Then there’s Pinterest. I’ve been ignoring that latest trend. I noticed a few folks posting from it on Facebook. OK, so in reality I got pissed off by friends flooding their timelines with stuff. It was a deluge! Yuck. Too much Pinterest spam and I was about to block that app. Then…as I was watching stats on the pergola site, I noticed an incoming link from there. Hey now! Someone had “pinned” our site! That’s cool.

So, I joined & started playing. And as I set up my boards for fun and trolled for those aforementioned Facebook friends to connect with them, I pinned the site & put it in the Gardening category. That pin? Was “liked” & repinned over 25 times in an hour. By total strangers! I clicked on the website stats and? 5 hits in 5 minutes. 1 signed up for our email list! No book sales, but I suspect now that the email series I write previewing the book is rolling, I think those will convert.

Meanwhile, I already found two recipes I want to try on other peoples boards.

IOW, when I am not working, writing for PDIY, monitoring the teen study habits, running, doing taxes, or driving oldest around to his job & appointments…well, I’m having deep debates on Facebook & the Aug Moms email list, watching my tv shows piling up on the dvr, and I’m pinning crap.

But I turned off the Pinterest Auto feed to Facebook & Twitter – that shit was annoying as hell.

Be careful what you share on Facebook. An illustrative guide on how lies and misconceptions are spread.

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Be careful what you share on Facebook. An illustrative guide on how lies and misconceptions are spread..

Fascinating look at how you really need to question what you read on the internet! People are so very easily misled. Since it’s technically about a political article, I posted it over on my Politics and Media site.

Happy %$#^&*(@ Birthday already!!

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Are you on Facebook? Well, then, you get the title of this post don’t you? Whether you have 50, or 500 friends, you will get it. Because, for some reason, birthdays happen in clusters. On my friends list, it’s summer. July & August are a veritable birthday feast. Every damn day I sign in and see the dreaded Birthday Reminders. It’s never just one. For two solid months it is 2 or more every day.

You look through the list of names and click on them and start in:

First one: “I hope you have a fantastic birthday filled with love & laughs!”

Second one: “I hope all your birthday dreams come true!”

Third one: “Have a great birthday!”

Fourth – 100th: “Happy Birthday!”

Ok, that last line is not true. After four, be honest – do you even leave a message? Or do you start with the bargaining when you see a day with a long list? Lemme see, her her & him, I *have* to leave a message. Him? Eh – he wont care. Her? Hell, she has over 1000 friends anyway – she wont even notice! Him? Aw crap, I’m going to see him later today and how weird is it NOT to leave a message when I’m going to see him?

Yeah. Don’t want to be caught making THAT Social Media etiquette mistake!!

So you dutifully fire off little messages through gritted teeth because you don’t want to seem rude.

And yet…

If not FOR Facebook would you even know when everyone’s birthday is? Think back 10 years ago…I’ll wait, I know it’s hard. Try not to get distracted by a tweet as you flash back….

How many of your friend’s/co-workers/heck, even family members birthdays did you KNOW? How many were in your little black book or important dates to remember calendar? 10? 20?  50 tops? Did it matter if you were not telling people Happy Birthday? Heck no!

But now? You check Facebook to see what your friends are up to. Check for any newly loaded incriminating photos or videos…er…cute..I meant cute, not incriminating (why would I say that? :-)) and you are guilted into writing out birthday wishes on wall after wall.

And just when you think you are DONE! There is NO WAY this can possibly matter worth a damn to people, well, your birthday rolls around.

And there they are. Wall post after wall post wishing you a Happy Birthday or some variation thereof. And as you read each one they make you smile & make you think of that person & why you know them and perhaps some fun memory you share. And then there you are at the end of the day posting the obligatory “Thanks all for the birthday wishes!” response. Only it isn’t really obligatory. It is, in fact, very sincere because you *have* enjoyed every single one.

And so when you sign in the next day and see those Birthday reminders you heave a sigh and click into each page and leave a message with perhaps somewhat less tightly gritted teeth.

Still, when you are in the midst of a birthday wave as I have been this summer, you cannot help but break into a grin when you see this lovely image in the top right corner of your home page staring at you when you sign in:

NOT A SINGLE BIRTHDAY REMINDER!!! WOOT! Now that’s cause for celebration 🙂