Email from Face Book

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It’s been 48 days since I deactivated Face Book, so I’m a little more than halfway to my 90 day commitment.

Face Book has taken to sending me emails that say stuff like: Your friend so-and-so has updated their status. Go and see what they’re up to.

Uh-uh, guys. I know if I click and enter my password, I’m reactivated. Although, in a way I’m glad Face Book wants me back enough to chase me. I miss my online friends and family.

As for the photo, this is the first–and maybe only–Siberian iris so far this year. If it truly turns out to be the ‘only’, I’ll need to plant more.

 

 

 

 

Times When I Thought I Needed Facebook

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I deactivated Face Book on April 1. Here it is, April 27, almost 30 days without FB, which before deactivation took at least an hour—and probably more—of my time each day. But. What have I missed?

  • Wishing happy birthday to my FB friends. One FB perk was the message it sends to remind me today’s so-and-so’s birthday. Wish them happy. I guess if I remember in time, I’ll wish folks a happy birthday here on the blog. Or send a snail mail card. If I forget, forgive me. I stopped keeping track of dates when FB started.
  • Finding out the hours of operation for some of the odder places I want to shop. Now you’d think I could ask Alexa or Siri or Google, but without FB, I couldn’t find out when Sullivan’s Greenhouse is open–only Saturdays, in April and May, 9am to 4pm. For that one I had to ask my husband to check his FB page.
  • Happenings in my groups. I especially miss all my African Violet and Daylily friends. I wish some of them had followed me here.

Will I reactivate FB for these reasons? Dunno. Maybe. But that extra hour a day is nice to have, and I surely don’t miss all the political wrangling.

In fact, I’m thinking of leaving Twitter…

Oh, and the red tulip? It comes up every year, it’s the only red tulip in the yard, and the blog gurus tell me to use photos to attract readers. Hope it works.

What Civil Discourse?

I thought I’d miss Face Book. I don’t. I miss the photos and messages from friends and family far away. But Face Book? Nah.

I thought I’d be looking for the app on my phone—I deleted it. I don’t look for it and I’ve stopped checking Twitter too. Imagine.

This morning, my husband, Jim called me into the living room to show me something on HIS Face Book. Something about calling Social Security checks a Federal Benefit check. I will not get into the whole “I paid for that benefit and that’s why I’m entitled to it” discussion. Rebranding Social Security isn’t the problem. Just don’t think you can stop sending the cash (that we paid for out of every paycheck) without consequences. 

But I digress. Below that post, was another post about California and sanctuary cities. And a cryptic comment from Jim about hunger.

Now a little backstory. Jim has a lot of friends from high school—and their spouses—who are on the other side of our current political discussion. That’s fine. We’re both in favor of—well, for want of a better term—a civil discourse. Back in the ‘70’s we used to call it dialogue.

Addressing Jim’s post, one of those friends asked the burning question “Huh?” I did mention that Jim’s post was cryptic, right?

I’ve lived with the love of my life for more than a quarter century, and I knew exactly what he meant. I also knew he needed—oh—probably another 30 words to explain what he meant to folks who don’t live with him.

But. Just below Jim’s comment and his friend’s question was a GIF of a guy talking to a brick wall. And someone—maybe one of those old high school buddies—had added, “They have no common sense. This is what it’s like talking to a …” Maybe a donkey. Maybe an elephant. 

Okay. I get it. We’re on different sides of the current political argument. But c’mon guy. Stop with the insults. We’ll never get anywhere if the discussion starts with name-calling.

And for me, that’s what Face Book turned into. Family photos, cute kittens and puppies, flowers, and verbal abuse from ‘the other side’. It’s like we’re all in a boxing match and when the ref calls ‘FIGHT!’ we take our respective corners. No handshake. No punches.

No one will ever win that fist fight. Instead, at some point, weapons will be drawn.

The next time I’m asked to look at Face Book, I think I’ll put my fingers in my ears and sing. Lalalalalala…

OMG: Deactivating Face Book for 90 Days

When I posted—on FB—that I planned to deactivate my FB account for 90 days, family and friends offered various reactions, from ‘terrible idea’ and ‘oy gevalt’ and ‘yikes’ to several likes. If you want to know why I plan to deactivate, read on.

I’ve always had a love-hate relationship with Face Book. I love staying in touch with far-flung family, distant friends, and meeting new people through interest groups. I have ‘friends’ in, Bulgaria, Canada, China, France, Israel, and Romania, people I’d never know except for FB. So. Love it.

But on the negative, I’ve seen friends lose jobs over ill-conceived FB posts. I’m totally burned out on politics. I’ve learned to just move on by the hundreds of shared posts about donkeys and elephants, conspiracy theories, killer toxins, and, yes, even cats. Unless it’s something that interests me—like health care or publishing or African violets–I’m probably not reading.  And even so, FB took up WAY too much time.

Last year, I decided to look at FB twice a day, morning and evening. I limited my viewing time to half an hour. But wow. That’s still an hour out of my day.

And then I had to seriously consider all the political bots, fake news, the Analytica data grab in light of my high irritation levels and blood pressure spikes. Why wouldn’t I deactivate my account for 90 days and see what happens?

Back in the 1990’s, I had a highly stressful job and decided to see what happened if I didn’t watch the news for a while. One day, about six months after I turned off my TV, a co-worker stuck her head in my office door to announce, “Gorbachev’s back.” My reply? “I didn’t know he was gone.” See? I missed the agony of all that drama.

So what do I think I’ll miss this time?

Messenger. Although I believe my family and friends can be retrained to text me.

Updates on friends living in foreign lands. Hope they’ll join me here.

The many, gorgeous gardening (indoor and outdoor) photos posted daily.

But I won’t miss the daily histrionics and crises that make me angry, crazy, and worried.

It’s an experiment. In the late ’90’s I went back to watching the news. Maybe I’ll reactivate FB at the end of this trial. Join me here, and I’ll let you know how it goes, but please note. This blog site is a work in progress while I try and figure out the latest WordPress setup. Be patient with me. If you’re a WordPress guru, don’t hesitate to tell me how to achieve a better result.

I’ll probably write about some other things—stress management given post-modern frustrations and political chaos, gardening in the brave new world of climate change–FYI, it’s Easter, it’s snowing. And who knows. Maybe some thoughts about health care and publishing.

If you’re coming on board from New Gardener Blues, thanks for making the switch. If you’re here from Face Book, welcome! Glad we can stay in touch for the duration.

Finally, if you’re new to my blog–or to me–I hope you’ll enjoy.