Last weekend my cousin and I drove out to Rehoboth Beach for a quick last-bit-of-summer day in the sun. I sunk into my beach chair, the umbrella up giving me the illusion that I need not wear sunscreen, toes dipped in the sand, no agenda. I couldn’t help but notice the epidemic of cell phones being wielded out in front of oneself, arm extended . . . just . . . far. . . enough to capture the moment. I wondered as I watched one woman, relatively fit for her middle age, what she was going to post on Facebook, along with her “selfie.” I imagined her post would sound as if she was having the time of her life, or at least cast a shiny veneer over any insecurity she might have felt prancing about in a bikini. (Oh wait, maybe that’s just me!)
Back and forth, we shared our commentaries on the lives we imagined were those of the people surrounding us on that crowded beach. I told my cousin that maybe I should have an “UnFacebook” Day where all my posts shared the moments of my life that play out all too often but are far too unglamorous, embarrassing, or mundane to share with anyone else. We had a good laugh about people who take pictures of their food. Imagine years ago if someone had told you that one day we would all carry phones in our pockets and take pictures of our dinner to share with our friends. And even more, we would touch them up, make them glow and play with the lighting so as to enhance the image of our free-range-chicken sandwich on focacia bread with alfalfa sprouts and sweet-potato fries. Then we would post it on the world-wide-web to share with all our friends, family, and acquaintances, as if we had just found a sizable nugget while panning for gold.
Even still, I do enjoy my Facebook account and find it a helpful way to stay connected, mostly to people I still actually see in real time. On some level, it provides a springboard into conversation, into one another’s worlds; in some small or big (depending on how you look at it) ways, it serves to remind us that we are not alone. And few of us are without friends.
But in the spirit of my UnFacebook Life, here is a real look at my week and the events of my days that I did not post for all to see:
My son was yelling today, so I yelled at him to tell him to stop yelling. Hope the neighbors didn’t hear me.
I almost gave my pastor the middle finger last week. At least he laughed about it.
I just got the mail.
Slipped on wet grass tonight and almost fell down in front of a lot of people.
Yes, that was my kid running back and forth over and over and over again in front of everyone trying to watch the outdoor movie tonight.
Not sure how soy sauce and parmesan cheese are going to work together, but at least I made dinner.
I just got the mail – again.
Oops, really did give that guy the middle finger.
Wowed and amazed my kids chewing bubble gum and impressing them with the bubbles I could blow.
Forgot to get the mail.
I think I’m late paying my credit card bill.
I just wrote a blog post where I lied about giving people the middle finger.