Monday, November 30, 2009

While I am flattered at your invitation, I believe that I will decline.

Is it kind of a thing to do posts complaining about Facebook these days? I think it's become kind of water cooler small talk: talk about the weather, last night's So You Think You Can Dance, and Facebook. Well, this isn't so much a complaint about Facebook as a social networking site, as it is an observation of how it can mirror your social circles in real life. Do you have someone you know, that upon seeing them, you look the other way? Or you pretend to be on your phone so you don't have to talk? Or you feign death?

(That has got to be the best Far Side cartoon ever.)

Several months ago, I got a friend request from a woman I didn't know, but who shared my maiden name. I assumed she was in some way related to me--she looked to be about the same age as my parents and is from the same region. I thought that maybe I'd even met her before at some long since passed family reunion and that it would be rude to ignore her. You might be wondering why I was worried about being rude to someone who I didn't know and have never actually seen or had a conversation with. Hi. I'm Amy. Have we met?

So I accepted the friend request only to find out as my dad later told me, that he doesn't know her and that we are in no way related to her. No big deal, though, right? Ever since, though, I have been getting approximately umpteen thousand invitations from her on Facebook. At least 2 a week. Sometimes several in one day. I pretty much ignore all of those types of things on Facebook anyway. Except when they're for the purpose of organizing an event or rallying behind something, you know, important, it just seems silly to me. (Well, okay. I did join the "Derek Zoolander Center for Kids Who Can't Read Good and Wanna Learn to Do Other Stuff Good Too". But honestly, who wouldn't?)

So I don't wanna post her real name, as that's not very nice and as Becky pointed out, what if she googles herself? But her first name is kind of different. It's something like "Dippy". So let's just call her that. In the past two weeks, I have received at least 8 different invitations from Dippy. Here's some samples of the group names:

  • Almost Kinfolks (uh, wouldn't that be, like, everyone in the world?)
  • Signs of Our Times (I really don't want to know what those might be.)
  • _______ High School: Alumnus, Faculty, Friends and Supporters (Didn't go there, don't know anyone who did, never been there.)
  • When Mama said "Let's Eat!": Mama is Bobbie Lee ______ ______ (Who I also am not related to. Plus, what does this even mean?)
  • _______ -_______ School: Best Little Schoolhouse in Alabama, Maybe America (Well, I have to admire her love of education. Or at least her love of obscure schools.)
  • I've Lived in a Trailer and I've Lived in a Trailer Park But I am Not Trash (Whoa! I never said you were, Dippy. And I don't really see how this applies to me...?)
There is more. So much more. And tomorrow when I check my email? There will be still more. I don't want to burden you with my pain. This just makes me think of the people in real life who you know, but you don't know how or why you know them. And you don't really want to know them. So you do your best to kind of politely ignore them.

Yes, I could unfriend her. And I maybe eventually will. But for now, it is a kind of comic relief to see what ol' Dippy is up to on the Facebook. What causes is she championing? What stereotype is she railing against? I've started forwarding all the invitation emails to my sister Becky. Just like in real life when you share a "No. she. didn't" glance with a friend. Becky somehow missed the sweeping surname dragnet that Dippy did on Facebook and she isn't friends with Dippy. But I am.

And that is one of many, many reasons that I am special. Very special indeed.


  1. It really WAS a dragnet. I think I was lucky enough to be in the bathroom when she swept through.

    Those group invites crack. me. up. What the hell is that "When Mama Said 'Let's Eat'" one?!? And the trailer park one? I'm sensing some insecurity in our almost-kinswoman.

    And I would add that while her name is like Dippy, it also rhymes with Hinkey. If that gives anyone the picture.

  2. Yes, what in tarnation is the "Mama said" invitation about?? Very confused!

    Hey, it's December where you live. :)

  3. Facebook: providing a life for those who lack one.

    I guess "ignoring" (in the FB sense of the word) her doesn't make the requests disappear... more's the pity.

  4. Wups... I didn't mean to slam FB overall. Honest. Only the people (Dippy et al) whose entire existence clearly -- given the number of hours in a day divided by their posts and other FB activities -- centers around it.

  5. I joined FB when I was playing Scrabble with you and Becky. Then when they pulled Scrabble off, I found that I forgot completely to ever log on. Then when I did,I would have like 37 requests or invitations of one kind or another. Too much pressure for a retired person!
    By the way, CONGRATULATIONS!!! for a wonderful blogging month. I enjoyed so much your posts every day. Are you gonna continue it into December ?

  6. Yes, here's to you for blogging every day! It was fun, wasn't it? I'm going to miss knowing that you'll give me some fresh content with my morning coffee.

  7. I personally vote that you continue your blogs daily. I get the biggest kick out of reading both yours and Becky's. Y'all are so very hip and cool!! I am proud of you girls.

  8. Amy, I totally get what you mean. I agree!

    And the "Mama Said..." thing? NO IDEA. It's clearly some inside joke that I'm supposed to know about.

    And thanks for the blog props, ladies. I'm not sure I can maintain an everyday thing, but I will post more often for sure!