I first joined Facebook, believe it or not, at the insistence of my kids who thought it would be a great way for me to stay in touch with the youth group kids who had gone off to college. That was maybe eight years ago, and I am here to tell you that we have ruined Facebook for everyone else.
Facebook used to be this crazy, exciting, borderline profane place for college students to have this huge conversation about crazy, exciting and borderline profane things. Now, we grown-ups have turned it into a den of lies and posing through the practice of “Facebragging”. You know exactly what I’m referring to, don’t you? There’s that mother of three angels who treats us to this status or something close to it every morning…”My adorable husband got up early today to fix me a homemade croissant and I’m eating it out by the pool along with my freshly brewed cappachino with the soft wind blowing through my hair as I read my favorite devotional. God is so good!” This status hangs heavy with the clear implication that “…and in my case, he has reason to be!!” Or there’s that middle aged man in denial who posts something like this, “Just got back from my 10 mile morning run in 73 minutes, A NEW RECORD! Now I’m hopping into the shower, then heading to work where I think I’m going to win Agent-of-the-Month…again! Why does God love me so much?!!”
If you’re wondering why Facebook is now losing members and its share price is in the tank, you need look no further than your newsfeed. Gone are the inappropriate pictures of drunken sophomores, gone are the to the death arguments over who was a better band, Pearl Jam or Nirvana. Now we have 50 year olds posting idyllic Instagram photos of their new puppies, old ladies posting political conspiracy theories about Obama being from Mars, and a plethora of those insipidly cutsie Hallmark formulations like, “My Sister, My Friend…share this if you love your sister, ignore if you don’t”
So, kids, let me be the first to apologize for screwing up your perfectly fine social website. In the interest of honesty and in an attempt to inject a little realty back into the medium, how’s this for a status:
In the last 24 hours I have dealt with a severely painful degenerative shoulder, the humiliating purchase of a CPAP machine, and a violent bout of diarrhea. My 55th year is off to a blazing start!