Saturday, July 18, 2009

Some thoughts on Facebook

I know Facebook is not part of the 27 Things, but I wanted to write about it anyway. For a while, I had actively maintained a Myspace page, but I abandoned that about 2 years ago. I started a Facebook account, but I didn't do much with it until a few months ago. I did the usual joining some silly groups (I even started one--Powells for Powell's Books) and looking for classmates and so on. I friended my sisters and realized I could start "collecting" my cousins when I saw my sisters' friend lists. This is wonderful! My grandmother died in 1998, and so it has been harder to keep track of all the family's doings especially since they are mostly on the East Coast. I miss all the fun of being part of a large Irish Catholic family with regular get-togethers, and Facebook allows me to keep up with the Reilly bunch. For example, Bridget and her family went on a picnic at Lake George, and Erin is on her way to Cape Cod (I'm so jealous!).

I just recently decided to actively look for my cousins on my father's side, and so far, I found and friended my cousin Mike. (That is right--I am related to Michael Myers. What do you expect of Rosemary's baby??) Mike wrote that he is excited to stay in contact with someone from the Myers side of the family and that his brothers are not on Facebook but maybe we can convince them.

I am also friends with some of my grad school buddies. John is probably very relieved I can get some of my passion for the FSU Seminoles out with Erich so he doesn't have to listen to it. He'll tell me that his grad school's football team is undefeated, but that is because they don't have one.

Lastly, I went to a very small Catholic high school for girls, which, like Loretto this year, closed in 1990. My class had only 42 students, and we have never had a reunion. Thanks to one very sweet person, a group for our school was created and I joined it soon after. My mother always said you'd be surprised who you do and who you don't keep in touch with after high school. The girl that I would describe as my best friend during high school blew me off soon after graduation, and the last time I saw her was 16 years ago. Thanks to Facebook, we caught up on our lives and now keep in touch. She even posted photos of us at graduation and with our "gang" at her house that summer. Recently, 3 more of our class joined the group, and I have friended all of them with the hopes that we will get a 25th reunion after all. I also friended a girl in the class ahead of me that rode the same school bus. We traded a lot of "remember the time when?" messages about riding the bus with the Christian Brothers Academy boys and snowball fights with the public school kids when we got to certain red lights. She rightly said that it was hilarious to us, but she would be horrified if her kids experienced bus rides like we did. Still hilarious, though.
Overall, Facebook can be a time suck, but it has greatly reduced the sense of isolation I feel from people back home and for that I am grateful.

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