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Facebook: Love it or...

By BARBARA GONZALEZ- VENTURA, The Philippine STAR Published Jul 10, 2022 10:21 am

Someone sent me this press clip on Facebook:

For those of my generation who do not, and cannot, comprehend why Facebook exists: I am trying to make friends outside of Facebook while applying the same principles. Therefore every day I walk down the street and tell passersby what I have eaten, how I feel at the moment, what I have done the night before, what I will do later, and with whom. I give them pictures of my family, my dog, and of me gardening, taking things apart in the garage, watering the lawn, standing in front of landmarks, driving around town, having lunch, and doing what anybody and everybody does every day. I also listen to their conversations, give them “thumbs up” and tell them I “like” them. And it works just like Facebook. I already have 4 people following me: 2 police officers, a private investigator, and a psychiatrist.

To me, this was really funny because it reflects exactly how I feel about Facebook.

Have you thanked God for everything He has done for you today? It’s messages like that I get from Facebook. When asked, I am grateful that I got reminded and say from my heart, “Thank you, God, for all the things you have done for me, for all the gifts you have sent me, even for all the heartaches from which I learned.” I say that sincerely from my heart. I don’t just type “Amen” then thoughtlessly go to the next message that tells me to type in a word that starts with B and ends with N.

Communication is simple, though it seems I have to worry more about being understood. 

One thing I like about Facebook is it dares me to remember English words. It has been a long time since I have been with many people in an office. There you have so many challenges. You have to meet with clients and figure out what they want. Then you have to work with other people who sometimes refuse to get what the client wants and insist on doing what they want. You have to write memos. You have to find the right words that will not inadvertently insult anyone. Now that you no longer have to do much talking, your language languishes. I don’t talk when I’m making rosaries. Who would answer me?

Now I don’t have to talk with anyone but my husband’s caregiver and our part-time house help. Communication is simple, though it seems I have to worry more about being understood. 

 “Please put garbanzos (chick peas) in the chicken. You know what garbanzos are?” I asked just to make sure.

Finally, how do I really feel about Facebook? I love it for the connection it gives me to my old and new friends. Other times I wish I could find someone to teach me to erase the things I consider junk.

“Yes, ma’am,” she said. But there were no garbanzos in the chicken. So I asked her why. She said she had put them in. She fished the plastic label out of the garbage to prove her point.

“That’s the chorizo,” I said.

“I thought it was garbanzos,” she said. My hair wanted to frizz.

My husband and I speak in Spanish. I am grateful my grandmother spoke Spanish and that I had a brief stint in Madrid. But my husband has had a stroke and doesn’t always speak clearly. I ask him to repeat until I understand and thank God daily that he is patient enough with me because I am impatient with myself for taking so long to understand.

My son sent a Facebook message, “If you couldn’t sleep last night, bow.” I hardly slept the night before. I typed “Bow wow wow.” A pun, I thought. A cousin my age repeated my bark. He didn’t reply. He might have thought — those crazy old women just didn’t get it.

This is the latest Facebook message I got: “Many died yesterday, some died today. If you are still holding your phone right now, you should thank God for keeping you alive.” Isn’t it obvious? I want to tear my hair out.

But I use Facebook, too. My columns that come out on Sunday I post on my Facebook page during the following week, if I remember. That’s the problem I have. I am now more forgetful than I used to be.

I enjoy the comments I get on Facebook where I also have a page titled Twee Jewels. I forget about that quite often for long periods. Not recently I posted a few rosaries then forgot I had done that. Now I am told I got 139 responses. I must teach myself to constantly update my Twee Jewels page and to remember I have done it.

Finally, how do I really feel about Facebook? I love it for the connection it gives me to my old and new friends. Other times I wish I could find someone to teach me to erase the things I consider junk.

But I have not yet walked down the street asking, “Have you thanked God for everything He has done for you?” Sadly, no one is following me... yet.