Social Networking

I clearly remember sitting in a sidewalk cafe in Florence writing postcards to all my friends in the States. That was in 1965. I still write an occasional postcard when I think it’s a particularly beautiful picture, but the world has changed incredibly since 1965. Now it’s more likely that I will snap a picture with my iPhone add a short text message and email it on the spot to a friend in the United States or Europe. Instant communication is the norm now. That takes care of the touristy kind of correspondence that lets friends and family know that you’re still alive and well in some far off place.

Until now I’ve been resisted other forms of social networking. Some will say I’m slow when it comes to commitment, but that’s another story. I did join MySpace a couple of years ago because my grandchildren were on it and I could see (and hear) things they posted. My grandson, Larsen, is a talented rapper and I was able to hear him in action. Still, I never really got attached to MySpace and although I was a member I never posted a profile or picture. In the last couple of years Facebook, LinkedIn, and other sites have grown like mushrooms, but I still didn’t buy in.
But – today – I caved in and joined Facebook, in spite of a National Public Radio feature last week that was entitled “Oh, my God, my parents are on Facebook.” What about “Oh, my God my grandfather is on Facebook?” Actually, I think they’ll approve as long as I don’t get too hip, start sexting or acting like some depraved predator. It’s a deal kids – nothing off the wall. After all, I don’t want to be seen as some aged teen wannabe. What I really want is an up to date way to communicate with as many of my friends as possible, and the Facebook network is the way to do it right now.
I don’t need to tweet on Twitter. My friends don’t need to know that I’m stuck in Saigon’s nightmarish traffic. They don’t need to know that I’m watching CSI or the Dancing with the Stars. But, I would like to let them know the things I’m doing that might hold their interest for more than a minute or 140 characters.
Oh, by the way, I Skype too.

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