March 13, 2013 - Okay, call me kookie, but I have been flirting with the idea of ditching my very own, personal Facebook page. I know, I know. Younger folk will think this is totally un-American -- but I have to admit, the thought has been bouncing around inside my cranium since January.
It's nothing against Facebook, the company, and more about Facebook, the idea.
If you talk to folks who know me (including family members) and ask them how forthcoming I am about my personal life, they might answer something like this: "Donald. Hmm. He's male, middle aged and works for a newspaper, I think."
I don't like sharing intimate details. Personal stuff, by definition, is personal stuff -- not public stuff.
Feelings = personal
Finances = personal
Life when not working = personal
I don't like talking about that stuff in real life, so I really see no need to cyber share about what I think during moments of "social networking." Because of my reluctance to "share" I was slow to swim the murky waters of Facebook. My very own sisters hog-tied and beat me with a rubber hose until I submitted to their demands.
Since I was so closed-mouth in person, I think they figured they could communicate easier with their big brother via Facebook. What has happened since is I communicate just as good on Facebook as I do in person. I have missed family outings and probably whizzed them off big time. Sorry, little sisters.
I know, I suck.
I am much better "sharing" in print. In a newspaper there isn't much opinion, so mine stands out. Maybe I'm just a shallow, shallow man. On Facebook, everybody's got an opinion and they all share it, freely, frequently. Since everybody is shouting what they think, the highly trained and honed opinions of yours truly are drowned out. I don't like the competition. Like I said, I am a small, shallow man.
Facebook is taking over folks' lives. They share everything -- and I mean everything -- with the world. Love-life things, religious views, political rants, to when their first born has a good bowl movement.
I think I should be the leader in Saving America from Itself and Facebook. Right here and now, I propose we have a Facebook-off; one day without posting ANYTHING on Facebook (yes, and that includes those oh-so-cute moments when Lil' Jimmy plays in the toilet or spits up a crayon). This I say: April 1st -- no fooling, no Facebook.
So written, so let it be done.
* * *
I am starting to scare myself. I think micro-satellite technology is eroding my manhood. The old, rough and tumble, ruggedly individualistic and self-reliant Don has been replaced by some namby-pamby scaredie-cat Don. And, I don't like it!
This revelation hit me hard the other day whilst I was driving to work. I felt funny. Insecure. Unsafe. I got about five miles from home before I realized I didn't have my cell phone with me. Despite being the cheapest guy in town, I turned around and drove back home lest I be without the danged cell phone, wasted gas be damned!
What did we do before mobile, cell phones? How did we survive? I drove all over this great country of ours as a younger man. I drove to places I had never been and where they didn't even speak English -- places way up in Canada where they spoke French and places way down in the Appalachian Mountains where they spoke -- I don't even know what it is they spoke, t'warn't English is all I know.
I did all this with no fear and no cell phone.
What happened to me?
That stupid cell phone is with me, or near me nearly 24 hours a day. It's my alarm clock in the morning, flashlight at night -- my buddy all the time. Thing is, I can't escape my new pal, Cell Phone.
I think I need to go into the woods and find myself. Time for me to be one with nature. No electronics. Crap! I am really starting to scare myself. Is this how Ted Kaczynski started?
Comments for the anti-Don can be emailed to: Don@ShermanPublications.org
Don is Assistant Publisher for Sherman Publications, Inc. He has worked for the company since 1985. He has won numerous awards for column, editorial and feature writing as well as for photography. He has two, sons Shamus and Sean and resides in the area. To read archived copies of his columns, click on his name, just under his picture up top . . . He can be e-mailed at: firstname.lastname@example.org