"Where will you be in 10 years"? That was usually the question of the day in school. The answer, "Raising farms, fighting mafia wars, writing parking tickets, publishing stories, and busting gems". Ambitious students ready to face the world and make their teacher's proud? Nope just a few wasted hours on facebook.
Or are they wasted? In elementary it was "will you be my friend, check yes or no", in middle school it was "why won't you be my friend what's wrong with me"?, and in highschool it was, well it was highschool and I guess having one good friend meant you were surviving those awful years! Flash forward almost 20 years later and it's "you have a friend request" to which you don't dare deny because that is breaking the unwritten facebook code of conduct. I met a woman in the library last week and the first thing I thought of was "oh are you on facebook~I'll friend you". Followed by an internal "LOL" and when we parted I sent her a little <3 sign which made my hand cramp into a frozen 3 shape, making me look like a gangster which definitely would have come in handy in Mafia Wars.
I didn't have many friends in school. For reasons I'll never fully understand and will just chalk it up to school was dumb. But on facebook I have over 200 friends and ironically most of them are from my hometown school. I've "friended" some and some have "friended" me. 20 years ago we probably would have "unfriended" them with a rumor or a label or anything else that would have been filed under school was dumb.
I realize now that I love most of these people who I haven't seen, heard from, heard of, or talked to since those days in the hall. I realize that we were the same in school; we grew up in the same small town, we had families that worked or farmed or stayed home, and we all wanted nothing more than to get out of that small town and out of that school. And most of us did. A few of us from that small town are closer now via the powers of facebook. We share so much and we care about each other. Some are lost childhood playmates, some are acquaintances, some have become BFFs, some I've deleted & blocked.
And so we write on each other's walls as we did in each other's yearbooks. We no longer look at our yearbooks and wonder what happened to our LYLAS friend (for those who did not grow up in the 80s that would be Love Ya Like a Sister now it's BFF) as we now come to facebook and see when the last time said LYLAS friend peed.
No, I don't think facebook is a waste of time. I've not only reconnected with old and new, near and far, but I've formed some bonds that never would have lasted through 3rd period and I'm a better person and friend for it.
Oh and just for old time's sake...all of you who made fun of my family farming when I was a kid...who's got the bigger farm now? HA!