How Much Time Do You Spend On Your (Facebook) Appearance?

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Facebook.

Love or hate it.

FB Feast or FB Fast.

I ran into a long lost pal of mine at Trader Joe’s, a girl
that I had been pals with in my teens. We had both been theater geeks in
Washington DC together and there we were in the middle of a Los Angeles Trader
Joe’s, coffee samples in hand, shooting the proverbial shit.  Even though it had been close to thirty years
since we’d seen one another, it didn’t feel that way, due in large part to
Facebook. 

I’d seen the pics of Evie and her fabulous life. There were photos of Evie, with countless men, holding her
drink at yet another social or work “gathering.”

Turns out, Evie’s life is not so fabulous.

Nor is mine, for that matter, but you’d never know it from
our Facebook pages. Why? Because we both give good Facebook.

We both know that Facebook is–

THE MUSEUM OF US.  

And that’s what Evie and I, chewing on a sample of cranberry
crunch granola, were deeply pontificating about.  Not about our professions or our kids. Not
about our lovers or husbands. Bloody FACEBOOK.

“What you post says a lot about you,” Evie said. “I
can’t stand people who don’t know the rules, the etiquette. We don’t want to
hear about your bad day with the plumber. Come on!”

She’s right. We are the curators. We are the “content
specialists” and it is our job to showcase our “heritage” in the best light.  We add flattering photos of ourselves that shave
off ten years, the family-friendly pics that display our offspring, the
non-offensive posts that won’t offend our base. We brand ourselves. “Marathon Mom”
“Nerdy/Witty Writer” “Porn Star Wanna-Be.” 

But sometimes, just sometimes, there are people who break the rules. Buck
the system. 

They make snarky comments. 
Post political diatribe.  Post
overtly sexual pics of themselves. Tag people who don’t want to be
bothered.  Cause fights and name drop and
wreak conversational havoc.  Their candle
burns out fast but then they re-emerge, under a new pseudonym. Now they are
“Frankenstruedel” or “Joe Shmo” or “FB White.”  When you’re in a “war” with one of these
rebels, Facebook can be a very disturbing landscape.

“Facebook is like a vacuous lover” Evie continued. “It fills
that hole inside you. You post pics of yourself, of your loved ones, then feed
off all the adulation. It’s a quick fix. Then you need a cold shower, ‘cause
you feel like a WHORE.”

That’s one way to look at it.

Another way to look at it is that Facebook is like having
your own talk show.  As effortless as late
night comedy shows make it look, stand-up is a hard gig.  We all have that one Facebook pal who is
perpetually witty. Every post they make cracks us up. 

This is a rare talent and
most of us are not up to the task.  KNOW
YOUR TALK SHOW.  If you’re more daytime
Katie Couric or sassy Wendy Williams, stick to that format. Don’t try to be
Craig Ferguson.  The Scottish accent
alone will trip you up.

My friend was passionate about a few basic Facebook rules:

1. “People should not post what they are eating. Please! By the
time they post it, they will have chewed, digested and excreted it.  It’s already part of the sewage water!”

2. “If you’re going to post only pics of yourself drinking,
that’s fine, but know that we’re all going to think of you as still in high school.”  And lastly…

3. “Your ‘selfie’ is Exhibit A. 
Know your lighting.”

Off the record, I admire people who are too busy, too secure
and just plain over Facebook.  They have
a life.  They already have enough spackle
to fill their pot hole. No need to contract out.

Okay kids, I gotta run. 
It’s been 12.6 minutes since I checked my new profile shot.

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