Blog Index
The journal that this archive was targeting has been deleted. Please update your configuration.
Navigation
« I'm sick and tired. | Main | A Face Made for Radio? Hardly. »
Friday
Dec052008

For My Facebook Friend Who Is Not Creepy*

I have one friend request.

I open the request.

I look at the name.  It's vaguely familiar.

Vaguely.

You went to high school with me.  Or elementary school.  Or University.  Or something.

We barely talked.  You were just this person in a blur of faces.  A name in salad bar of names.

Why did you send me this request?  I'm just a name to you.

It's a little annoying, you know?

We weren't really friends, then.  Why should we be friends, now

After all this time?

But I click "accept" to your request.  I ask myself, "Why not?"

Because I know that I'm not the same person I was so many years ago.

I'm better.  And you could be, too.

And because we're both better, maybe this time you might have something more to offer.

And I might just see more this time.

You might be someone who takes a moment to look through my profile.

You might find out that I have a blog.  You might visit that blog.

You might leave a quick comment, "Hey, Faiqa, I didn't know you had a blog.  Wow, good job."

And you might not know that at that very moment as you write that comment, I might be asking myself, "Why am I bothering?  Nobody reads this crap.  Nobody really cares.  I have nothing important to say."

But, I write another post, anyway.

And you comment again.  And again. And almost every time I write a post.

I realize, somebody out there is actually reading this.  Somebody is listening.  Somebody actually cares about what I have to say.

So, I write more.  I get better at it, too.  I get braver about expressing myself honestly because I know someone is listening.

And, then, I visit your blog.  And you teach me that being yourself on your blog is an important part of writing your blog.

It draws people to you.  Your outlandishness.  Your snarkiness.  Your sarcasm.  Your goodness.  Your honesty.

And I learn that I can be honest, too.  I can be sarcastic, opinionated, vulnerable, even angry.  I can be myself.

And people might just like me, anyway.  Or they might not.

But you taught me that fear has no place in the art of writing.  So, I push the fear down, and I try to be honest.  I try to be myself.

So I write.  And write.  And write a little more.  And then it stops being about people liking me.

It starts being about me liking me.

It starts being about understanding that I should write openly about what's on my mind because that could make a real difference.

Not just to other people, but to me.

I realize something.  It doesn't matter if we weren't good friends all those years ago when we barely knew each other.  We can be friends, now.

Because the politics of socialization, of what you wore, what you looked like, how smart you were, or how popular you were (or not) is gone.  It's the past.  It doesn't matter anymore.

On the Internet, it's just me and it's just you.  It's just this moment.

We're two people who have room in our hearts for another friendship.

And there is a friendship there because we have more in common than we don't.  We care what happens to each other.  We support one another in small, yet important ways.

I know there's a difference between who you are on your blog and who you are in real life.

But I also know that what you write on your blog reflects some of the essence of you.  It's what you want the world to know about you.  It's what you want to believe about yourself.  And, generally, what you believe is good.  Good enough for me, anyway.

When you read what I have to write on my blog, you see what I want you to know about me.

The essence of who I am.

You become a friend that is unencumbered by the baggage of who I have been over the past fifteen years.  Or the past ten years.  Or even last week.

You see me as I want to be seen.  Your friendship supports my belief that I am the person that I think I am.

I trust that you are who you say you are.  And you trust that I am who I say I am.

And that is the heart of a friendship.  A real life one.

So, I'm glad that you sent me a friend request.  I'm glad that I said, "Why not?"

I'm glad that, albeit unknowingly, I opened myself to a connection that feels important in some small way.

I'm glad that by opening myself up to the possibility of your friendship, I opened myself up to the reality of dozens of friendships with extraordinary and amazing people.

Because, in this world that can seem so lonely at times, what do human beings really have if we do not have each other? We serve as reminders to one another of the untouchable things: hope, inspiration, laughter, and, yes, friendship.

The truth is that,  real friendship is the prize reserved solely for the humble few who exhibit the courage and openness to accept it in whatever forms it might possibly arrive.*

...

I see a name in my Facebook sidebar of someone I knew a long time ago.

I send them a request.

They open the request. The knew me.  Vaguely.

We weren't even very good friends.  We barely spoke.

How annoying for them.

But they think, "Why not?" They accept.

Because they're better, now.  And maybe I am, too.

And maybe I might have something to offer them.

And they might be able to see... more.

*Inspired by this past Wednesday's episode of Clearly, You're Retarded, hosted by the extraordinary Miss Britt and My Facebook Friend Who Is Not Creepy. Well, most of the time.  Truth is, he can be extraordinarily creepy.

** Unless the guy has been keeping track of you since the third grade and shows up in your college dorm room.  That's just damned creepy.

Reader Comments (20)

Awww, what a sweet post!

I was going to cry, but I think I'll go masturbate instead.

Um, are you reading a different blog than I am? Because if Adam's got some other blog out there that I don't know about -

well

that would explain a lot.

December 5, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMiss Britt

He's only creepy when you pay extra for it.

This is a wonderful post, but it's so hard to be serious when we're talking about Avitable.

December 5, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterFinn

@Avitable: Oh, and did I mention how mature you are? Yeah that too.

@Britt: No same blog that you read. My sentiments don't apply to every single post or every single line of every post....but I stand by them.

@Finn: Sigh, I know. I had to stop about three times. But, you know, it's not really about *him*. Though it does kind of come off that way, I guess.

December 5, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterFaiqa

This just became my favorite post of the year. Well done! :)

December 5, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterJanelle

Beautiful. And I'm so glad that you found each other because in some round about way, it let me find you and I so enjoy your posts. And our developing friendship.

December 5, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterShelli

It's pretty amazing what this whole Internet thing can do, it brings people together. The old and the new...
Thanks for your support on my blog ;)

December 5, 2008 | Unregistered Commentermariah

What a lovely post Faiqa!

December 5, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterTami

@Janelle: Wow. And it's December, which is the end of the year, so, that means it's competing with eleven other months worth of posts. Did that even make sense? Anyway, thanks.

@Shelli: My sentiments exactly.

@mariah: It's a good blog, the more I read, the more of a favorite it becomes.

@Tami: Thanks. :)

December 5, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterFaiqa

I am so confused.
Not really.
What a good post and awesome point!
:)

December 5, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterSybil Law

You sure you're talking about the same Adam over there? ::wink::
Good friendships are awesome, aren't they? :)

December 5, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterRobin

That was really cool. I think in the back of my mind, I react like that when someone I barely know sends a friend request; only now I realize what it is I'm thinking rather than, "uhh, sure, I guess..."

MM

December 6, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMichael Melchor

Faiqa-
Yeah, its strange, the adds we make, like me and you! I respect your blogging, it is beautiful and transparent (the good kind).

December 6, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAmad

as much as i hate facebook, i'm thankful it reconnected you with adam because i most likely wouldn't have met you otherwise. and apparently i am selfish.
love yew!

December 6, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterhello haha narf

Well said. It's amazing, this social media thing. I've reconnected with a number of people that way.

December 6, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterKarl

@Sybil Law: Thanks. I like how I got a friend invite on facebook from you seconds after you wrote your comment. You're such a woman of action.

@Robin: You know, I just reread the post, and *I'm* not sure if it's the same Adam. Heh. No, it is.

@Michael Melchor: Yeah, I like to think it' pushing the fear down, and opening yourself up.

@Amad: Awww. That is so sweet. If you were here, I'd give you a big ::hug:: for saying that.

@hello haha narf: Oh, we would have met. Because you are my destiny. Hahahaha. Truly, I'm glad for you, too.

@Karl: Despite all the discussion around social media, few people directly address the fact that it is changing the basic way that people socialize with one another in general. It's not just making things easier and quicker, it's also broadening the scope of connectedness that each human being feels to other human beings in this world. And, personally, I can't think of the negative of that particular point.

December 6, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterFaiqa

So far reconnecting with people on Facebook has only worked out with one person. Ironically, it was the same person I just commented about on Britt's blog. People change, thankfully.

December 6, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterPoppy

@Poppy: I read that comment on Britt's blog...I've reconnected with a lot of people from the past. I think I'm revisiting those relationships because, well, I feel like I was kind of a jerk when I was younger. ;-)

December 6, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterFaiqa

I'm a nostalgic person. Well, I used to be. Those were the days.

December 10, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterwhall

[...] one hand, Facebook has allowed me to reconnect with people I haven’t talked with in ages.  We’re talking friends from elementary school, Boy Scouts of America acquaintances, and former... Thus I can’t say that Facebook is all [...]

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Post:
 
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>