Here’s the deal. I need Facebook. Or so I’ve been told. I’ve been told by ones who claim to know that I need to tag and tweet so I can begin to trend and connect and link with a flurry of meet-up types who just might be moved to like me, or at the very least follow me, and then, if all goes well, like me again. But there’s a problem. I am terminally Facebook-phobic. And Social Media-suspect and worse, Twitter-Terrified. I know I need to post and tag and comment and wave those little thumbs up like proud flags flying over the United Republic of Me! Me! Me! But I can’t stomach the notion, much less fly the flags. I’m stuck in troglodytic paralysis. Post that on Facebook.
So I decided to hire a Facebook guy. Yes I did. He’s supposed to be some sort of consultant who manages Facebook pages for people who can’t so much as look at Facebook pages. Its not as though I haven’t tried. I tried and tried and each time I tried to communicate with friends and friends of friends of friends, every time I tried to figure out what on earth I wanted to SAY to all of them, or not say but mildly suggest, or not suggest but ignore altogether, my stomach tightened and sweat glands swelled and gathered in places I never knew existed. So yes, I will be sending the Facebook guy my password, turning over the key to my identity to an absolute stranger. As if anybody would know the difference. I haven’t actually talked to him yet and am not exactly sure what I’m going to ask him to do but knowing he’s out there makes me breath just a little easier. I imagine him living some place like Idaho, or Iowa, someplace I’ll most likely never visit. For all I know he sleeps in his van, together with 15 cats and a senile mother who brings him stale oatmeal cookies and ham sandwiches (she cuts off the crusts) while he sits, bug-eyed, in front of his best friend The Screen, morphing into the Facebook ME one careful click at a time.
The Facebook guy was referred by a friend of an actual breathing, sweating friend (the one who can’t seem to wipe the crumbs off her lips when she scarfs down her sandwiches) who insisted I contact him. She said he could help me make the book I wrote visible to as many people on the planet as possible with the outside chance they might be inspired, or better yet ignited, to run out and purchase a copy. It’s a plan, and not a perfect one. But like I said, I’ve been told that without a Facebook presence, I might as well live in a tree.
Hopefully this Facebook guy will be able to make me go viral, to make me trend, to twist my intentions into so many likes I’ll need bug spray to stop the itching, gnawing fear that surfaces whenever I think about knowing people I don’t know, being liked by people I don’t like, or don’t know enough to like, or like enough to know, dodging clicks and likes and tags and comments like some kind of paint ball game where random squirts of information fly around and land haphazardly, exploding in misconception or irrelevance.
And he’d better tell me what to do when I get tagged. Really. I need to know. I was tagged this morning by a perfect stranger and I don’t know whether to feel pleased or call the cops. I haven’t yet deciphered the sensitive implications of commenting vs. tagging but I’ve got to find out, I’ve got to do something and just listen to me ranting on and on like this, I can barely catch my breath, the screen is filling up with a sea of brand new ‘likes’ and I fear they may swallow me whole. When’s this Facebook guy gonna call me????
I look away from the screen. Turn my head to the wall and there she is—the face in the mirror—remember her? Turn those eyes up, take a deep dark breath, put your nose smack up close to something alive. Suck it in. Life. Remember? The touch and feel and ache of living interactions with real (remember?) friends. Go take yourself for a walk. Better yet, call a friend: the one with the crumbs on her face, or the one with gunk in the corners of her eyes, or the one that speaks in whispers and smells of coconut. Lean over the table, touch her, 2-thumbs up, and tell her all about everything you’ve ever seen or done or thought about doing, or tell her nothing at all.