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Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Friends

OK, it bothers me, I admit it. I know exactly how many Facebook friends I have at any one time. I've lost 6 in the last 2 weeks. Could be people closing their accounts. Fair enough. But it bugs me to think someone is mad at me or something, and unfriended me.

Even with 864 friends, you must know that I don't take such things lightly. I have never seriously contemplated unfriending someone. There are people I met once, and maybe will never talk to again, but you never know. I feel bad when I can't remember someone's name, but I know that no encounter with another human being is a light matter.

It stings a little when you see a profile of someone you were friends with, and it gives you the option to add them. Since I know I wasn't the one to drop them, I'm not going to add them again. On the other hand, it might make the person tell you why they dropped you in the first place. Remarkably, I've had people drop me and add me again, twice, without explanation. Well, if they don't want to share, I won't pry.

What does "cleaning out your friends list" mean, anyway? It sounds like another excuse to be callous, if you ask me. But no one ever does.

Some of my friends are outright communists, or something close, and as mad as their mindless idiocy makes me, I won't unfriend them, either. You'd have to do something way more heinous than be a moron to have me not call you a friend any more, either virtually or really. [Not exactly politically magnanimous of you.--ed.] Well, 'moron' is pretty tame compared to "vicious, poor-hating, racist, religious nut-case." I digress.

Anyway, things to think about. A little button with a check-mark means more to people than you think it does.

1 comment:

Christopher Lake said...

I have only very rarely unfriended anyone on Facebook. It takes quite a bit for me to reach that point, and I almost always send a private note first to reach out and attempt to dialogue, or, if there seems to be no hope of that, to explain why I believe that things have reached the dire point of "unfriending."

By contrast, I have been unfriended many times, including by a former pastor, and I don't think that I have ever received one note of invitation to dialogue or one word of warning about it beforehand. People just do it and then, seemingly, they easily move on with their lives-- even if they once sang in church (ecclesial community) and worshiped God alongside me. I don't get it. I do get that people have sharp disagreements over religion and politics, but... man! I have Catholic, Protestant, Orthodox, Jewish, pagan, agnostic, atheist, conservative, libertarian, liberal, and socialist friends, and I have no desire to unfriend any of them...