Social networking & me

Often i find myself trying to come up with complex answers to this innocuous yet loaded question: “Are you on Facebook?”. At times, i do wish i was a geriatric or slightly more older looking-the daddy type with the beer gut- so i wont have to wind up in a conducive situation for that question to be posed in the first place. However, being a sprightly young and somewhat outgoing individual, there surely has to be some sort of cogent explanation as to why i am not swimming with the school like many of my contemporaries do. Obviously, I am one of the few odd ones out. Odd?How…odd?

Okay, let’s get this clear. I am not a sociopath with an abusive childhood history whose smile resembles a grimace; neither am i an anti-social  who grew up playing all alone in the sandbox at kindergarten and wouldn’t share his toys with others; nor a budding closet psychopath who loves to dream up dastardly deeds down in the dank basement or cellar and getting his panties all up in bunch just thinking of them.  I use the previous descriptions because when the first word of my answer to that question is a ‘no’, the range of expressions i get from my questioner starts from a subtly raised eyebrow to ones more pronounced such as the incredulously voiced: “No *#$!*&*#** way!”. The non-saintly reader is asked to insert an appropriate expletive for the last one. Good. Now that’s out of the way, on to more concrete plausible things.

First and foremost, i did have a Facebook account when it was at its nascent  and relatively exclusive stage-reserved for students of some certain colleges. Still do as a matter of fact. Back then i was just “trying” it out and being in the lab or library almost everyday with my close pals, the likelihood that checking for messages posted via Facebook from those same friends  and receiving something from them had slightly less than good odds to put it gently.  Using my all my fingers and toes, i can count the number of wall messages i did get from them. The problem today,however, is that i cant for the life of me remember which password i used to create it. Oh boo hoo, a lame excuse right… just a click on the “Forgot Password” and i will be emailed a reset link. Well, that only works if i still had my college email address up and running and could peek in its inbox from time to time. A little problem of graduation perhaps? So, effectively locked out of my account, why don’t i create another? Ah,the crux of the matter.

As with all social networking sites, an online presence must be updated frequently to stay relevant; from uploads of albums to constant updates about what one is up to or is planning to be up to? Being an engineer with a background in security, i naturally tend to see a lot of online stuff with a healthy dose of “danger”. Nope, i am not of the alarmist stripe. There’s a saying that the Internet is written in ink. It’s an apt statement. What i usually tell people  is that when they delete anything posted online, what they have done in reality is to deny themselves access to that data. Although something is “deleted”, a back up  may or may not exist somewhere for whatever reason and uses hidden in that never read yet agreed upon finely printed End User Agreement, Terms of Service or Use.

Contrary to what the reader may conclude at this point, the one overarching reason i did not create another account is that i don’t want to socialize via machines-servers, monitors etc- and have a firm define who a friend is to me. I already have a working one along with their qualifications: A good friend is one who bails me out when in jail, but the true friend is one who will be sitting next to me saying: “we really messed up”. I am an old fashioned fella who loves to travel to see, and chat with friends in person. Keeping in touch is okay. By that i mean the good old hearty gossip and reminiscing on the phone.  But keeping in touch and knowing their every single move exact to the millisecond is a turn off.

“Do you tweet?” usually follows…I am not of the avian species!