Thursday, January 29, 2009

25 tidbits: Face(book)ing the past

I opened a Facebook account last week. I could blame my wife - she wanted to chat with me while I was at work.  But secretly, I wanted to. Being the social stegosaurus that I am ( I was trying to think of the opposite of butterfly), I surprised myself. I'm not so naive that I think my Facebook "friends" are really my friends, though some are, of course. And I've been "friended" by people who seem to know me but who I can't remember. I'm getting old. I finally decided that for me it came down to "Am I even remotely interested in what this person does/wears/listens to/reads/dreams/thinks/eats/etc?" For some, I am. Part of me thinks that the whole thing is kind of weirdly voyeuristic, but on the other hand, it's not spying since you only see (or show) what people choose to post, and while a lot of it may be mundane, some of it is interesting, some is touching, and some even occasionally profound. The weirdest thing - in a kind of Twilight Zone way -has been getting "in touch" with some folks I used to know nearly 30 years ago from Encounter, the college-age group at Easthill Church in Gresham. With the exception of my friend Chris, I lost touch with a lot of people who were, honestly, the center of my life for several years. I bailed for reasons that had to do with age, church intrigue, my faith, and probably some other stuff. In some ways that period of my life has been an embarrassment to me (the naive confidence of my faith, the Jesus pop music, the hair) But like an Eagles reunion (minus the money), the painful past has taken on a rosier glow and I find I'm able to revisit it with fondness. Someone found me, told me there's a Facebook group for us, and now we're "friending" each other all over the country, catching up on jobs and kids and marriages (and divorces) and sharing some really frightening pictures of each other. My wife and kids have been amused and horrified.

I also think it's interesting how Facebook has made "friend" a verb. Does this mean we have no further use of "befriend?'

I got this little activity from a "friend" a couple days ago - a kind of mini-autobiography. I had fun with it. It's all true.

25 things about me
Rules: Once you've been tagged, you are supposed to write a note with 25 random things, facts, habits, or goals about you. At the end, choose 25 people to be tagged. You have to tag the person who tagged you. If I tagged you, it's because I want to know more about you.

Here's mine:

1 - married very well.
2 - would like my children a lot even if they weren't my children
3 - has 7 nieces and 7 nephews. So far.
4 - had a 1.7 GPA at end of 1st year of college.
5 - once won a bicycle by writing an essay about why I should.
6 - has seen a snow leopard print in the wild.
7 - did not receive a high school diploma.
8 - has never been to a graduation. Including my own.
9 - once had a ponytail. Which I still own.
10 - rode my 1st (and 2nd) century this year.
11 - can use a sewing machine.
12 - has eaten yak and water buffalo.
13 - hates cheese.
14 - has rock climbed in Yosemite.
15 - has made a pot roast from a steer named Bufford.
16 - Rode a Greyhound bus to Michigan. And back.
17 - first "real" job was throwing pizzas (see # 13).
18 - once worked on a mink farm. Part of the job involved sweeping up the feet.
19 - still likes Electric Light Orchestra. Unapologetically.
20 - Used to think John was the greatest Beatle, but is not so sure now.
21 - annually rides more miles by bike than he drives.
22 - has summited Mount Hood at least 25 times.
23 - Worked at Old Faithful Lodge.
24 - was sniffed by a grizzly bear
25 - has not yet vacationed in Italy with his wife, climbed El Capitan, baked a pie, run a marathon, or ridden Paris-Brest-Paris, but plans to someday.

Afterward, I though of some things I could have included. 
The Footnotes:
 - got my first tattoo this year.
- took 10 years to earn 1st college degree.
- has worked as a chimney sweep.
- has never podiumed
- has 4 chickens
- has broken ribs, fingers, toes, nose, clavicle, and jaw, but never a limb.
- prefers to sleep outside the tent.

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