I was riding high.
I had a ton of friends. I loved reading posts, seeing pictures and laughing at jokes. I chose to ignore the political ramblings. But I always remained “friends” with everyone. I continued to drink out of the half full glass while wearing my rose-colored glasses. But then something happened. The conglomeration called Facebook starting taking control of my life. I don’t mean I was addicted to it, because I wasn’t. No, this wasn’t about me…this was about someone’s baby. To be exact, Mark Zuckerburg’s little bundle of joy.
For some reason,
FB (I use its initials since we are on such an intimate level) started going all “Hal” on me. For those of you not of the Baby Boomer era, Hal was the computer in the movie “2001 A Space Odyssey” that started off as the nice guy (“I am putting myself to the fullest possible use, which is all I think that any conscious entity can ever hope to do”) and then morphed into the psycho, control freak serial killer disguised as a computer:
Dave: Open the pod bay doors, HAL.
HAL: I’m sorry, Dave. I’m afraid I can’t do that.
Dave: Why not, HAL? What’s the problem?
HAL: I think you know what the problem is just as well as I do.
Suddenly, I understood how Dave felt.
Here is my recent dialog with FB:
Me: Login, password and enter.
FB: I’m sorry, your password is incorrect.
Me: It’s the same password I’ve had for 6 months! And even though the name of my childhood dog is not included in this one, I know for a fact it is correct.
FB: Fine, I’ll let you in. Although I don’t know why you are even bothering. I’ve decided that you are blocked from adding any new friends. You are entirely too friendly. Seriously, were you not loved as a kid?
Me: Blocked from friending? What? You are kidding right? Who made you the boss of me?
FB: Now you are kidding, right?
You started this. Now I will show you who is boss. I am going to block you from a special group that you belong to. And to prove my point further, it is a sub-group of a group that you actually created. Who is boss now, Karen? Hmmm?
Me: Ok, seriously, this is silly. C’mon, let me post in my writing group. It’s important to me.
FB: Again, needing those affirmations a tad bit too much, don’t you think? Afraid you won’t live a day without one of your little virtual hug, post a heart and smiley face, “real deep” discussions? Tell you what. I am going to scan the gazillions of people on logged in right now and have them post something very negative that you will in turn, take extremely personal. Then what started out as a good day will magically turn into just the opposite.
Me: You are cruel! I don’t want to feel like I’m banned from the Jr. High lunchroom – much less not be able to sit at the cool kids table. I feel like you are putting me onto the Island of Misfit Toys.
FB: Well, if the shoe fits, Karen…just sayin’.
Me: Ok, just for that I will not even attempt to go onto FB for at least four days, um, four – no three hours! How does THAT feel? You bully.
FB: I’m sorry, Karen. I was not built with emotions. Yours are being wasted here. And be careful what you say – remember I can read lips. Do not even attempt to destroy me. I know darn well that Twitter will not be enough to feed that addiction you have. You are mine, all mine.
Sigh. I truly have given FB way too much power. Want to know the worst part? When FB laughs his crazy laugh, it’s scarier than a morph of Vincent Price and Jack Nicholson. I’m sure this is not the last time FB will channel Hal, but next time I’ll be more prepared. I’ve got a few tricks up my sleeve…and enough friends that can help me beat the FB bully every time. And in 3 ½ days I can add even more.