Monday, December 3, 2012

Stealing My Thunder

This past Saturday, a bunch of us rode my old Cathey's Creek 200K permanent. It was a great day on the bike, starting chilly but getting decently warm later, with a wind coming up out of the south only when we were finally done with the southward-riding part and could enjoy a good tailwind. Eight of us came out, and we stayed more or less together as we pedaled along talking about nothing in particular, albeit in spastic verse as we labored up a few of the tougher hills.

We'd started literally at sunrise, leaving Starbuck's in Franklin at 6:30 am, and hurried through the controls in an effort to finish before dark. I was able to scarf a cinnamon roll at Marcy Jo's and drink half a cup of coffee, but we were barely there 15 minutes as opposed to our usual hour-long breakfast stop. By the time we were 50 miles in at the third control, we were pretty tired.

None of us succumbed to the Bench of Despair, however, and we managed to make it to the finish by 4:30.

By the time I got home, however, and began to tell RandoGirl about it, she had already heard about most of the ride from Jeff Sammons's posts on FaceBook. She had even seen me at the start, and then again at Marcy Jo's and at the Mount Pleasant Grille.

Which got me thinking, again, about the 10 reasons that FaceBook is going to ultimately destroy civilization:

  1. It makes us lazy. Once upon a time, people would read lengthy newspaper or magazine articles. Now, if you can't fit your message into a Status post, nobody will read it. The real world just isn't that simple, so we're all going to end up pretty stupid if we go on this way.
  2. It makes us liars. For the sake of oversimplification, we edit the message down in such a way that it leans the way we want. This happens both with political posts, and with the mindless updates some people love to throw out. (Was that really the best corned beef on rye you ever had? Be honest, now ...)
  3. It reinforces drama. If I want drama, I'll go watch TNT ("We know drama"). If you want to drop Status updates like "OMG! Life sucks!" just to elicit a knee-jerk sympathy chain ... well, I think we know then why your life sucks.
  4. It makes those of us with normal lives feel like ... well, like our lives suck. While you're out there posting beautiful pictures from your trip up the Amazon rain forest, the rest of us are back home working hard and thinking, "Why can't I go do that?" Put a few pictures of the fat German tourist who's on that boat trip with you, too, breathing bratwurst in your ear, or show the scab where you pulled off a leach. Basically, inject a little reality into your self-edited reality show.
  5. It breaks up marriages. I know two people who have at least temporarily lost their spouses to old lovers who rekindled a relationship via FaceBook. It kind of goes back to that self-edited, lying, lazy reality show -- the grass sure looks better from here, and it's easier than dealing with whatever problems you might be having in your marriage. Real problems don't fit in a Status update, either.
  6. It's a time-suck. Sometimes I think that there are people who don't do anything at work other than post crap to FaceBook, and then read and respond to crap that other marginally-employed idiots have posted to FaceBook. Why can't you waste your work day writing a blog like I do?
  7. It lies about us. A couple of months ago, RandoGirl told me that FaceBook said that I "liked" WalMart. I don't like WalMart -- I merely consider it a necessary evil that I must, on rare occasions, visit. Maybe FaceBook knew that I went into WalMart earlier that week to pick up trash can liners, which really makes me concerned regarding the insidiousness of FaceBook and/or WalMart.
  8. It is greedy. It's always suggesting other FaceBook stuff in which I have absolutely zero interest. Bikini waxing? Software to teach me Romanian? Cycling jerseys with Led Zeppelin cover artwork? Where does it get these ideas? And why is Zoosk sharing a link with me, trying to get me to meet local singles? Hooking up with my high school girlfriend isn't enough?
  9. It ruins friendships. Like everybody, there are some people that I enjoy seeing every so often whom I consider "friends." That's real-world, however; if I become Friends with them on FaceBook, I am suddenly subjected to their rants on subjects we would never be so rude as to discuss at dinner. Even worse is the FaceBook Friend from whom you are daily bombarded regarding what they are planting on a virtual farm and/or killing in some virtual gang war. Eventually, you "de-friend" this Friend and he/she no longer wants to be your real-world friend. Yeesh!
  10. Finally, it's a little too immediate. I wanted the chance to bore RandoGirl with a long story about Saturday's permanent, but she'd already seen the highlights in Jeff's posts on FaceBook. If this keeps up, I won't have anything to write about in blogs! OMG, that would suck!


  1. I wanted to read this post, but I realized that I didn't need too because I had seen it on Facebook. :)

  2. Out of principle I am not going to like the link to this post on facebook.

  3. I miss Randoboy. Where is he?