Let me count the ways……but first, would you care to join me for dinner?
I don’t want to be rude…….
Fantastic red wine, and a scrumptious salad from the local Italian joint. Mmmmmmm. Yummy, now where was I? Oh yeah.
Why I ❤ Facebook, let me count thy ways. Yonder my true love waiteth on thee application of thine interest.
Whoops. I suppose I should start with why this is coming out tonight, rather than waiting until Valentines Day. Heck, I figured if the stores could start putting out Valentines stuff after New Year's, then I could tell my story weeks before Valentines Day. Besides, single people need to know. I need them to know.
My workmates were accusing me of not being able to keep up with my friends on Facebook. ME?? I talk to EVERYONE. Okay maybe not all of them, but I’d like to think – I know what’s going on. Some of the time anyway.
I have 600 friends. This is a snapshot of my profile. I have added who the six randomly displayed are in captions.
Now, before you get all judgy on me, that I couldn’t possibly know that many people. I’ll admit. I don’t. But the potential to know them is there. If I were not friends with them, the potential to know them is gone. I would have zero interaction and zero chance of it. Make sense?
And I can hear you now…how can you be friends with strangers? Keep reading, you’ll see. It’s really not so different from blogging or making friendships in person.
From the display pic above, I know all of them except for one. Scratch that, I’ve met in person all but two of them. Cheryl and the question mark guy. That guy, I’m not sure who he is, but according to his profile. He is single. Most likely I became friends with him through this app.
Except back in my usage day, the pic was a smiley face. 🙂
Here is what the info says for this application.
Are You Interested? is the leading social dating app to meet new friends. Click YES on people you like and find out who likes YOU!
Basically, a picture comes up tells you what state they are in and maybe some profile information. You click yes or no. They get notified. Then, your picture, and brief info comes up to them. They can then click yes or no. Yes is a match and goes in a certain place, so you can see those who LIKE you. Whooppee! From there it’s up to you what you do. Add them as a friend. Send them a message. Poke them. Or even forget it. You can even change your yes to no (do they know women or what?).
In all seriousness, this is mostly for fun. Because there is a LOT of weeding. Liars. Married guys. Turkey grooms (as in the country). Nuts. As long as you don’t take it too seriously, or get too offended. By being turned down, or grossed out by someone like Fester Adams clicking yes on you. It’s just FUN. If it’s not fun, for gosh sakes, don’t do it.
I became a member of Facebook somewhere around May 2007. I was invited by my Canadian girlfriend Michelle. At the time we were online friends from ediets. Later that year, we met in person at a thirty-something ediets get together in Ohio. We dubbed it Girls gone Wild – GGW. That weekend all she could do was talk about Facebook this, and Facebook that. And shut up already! Ha, love you Belle, but she must have got to me. When I got back home, I started using my Facebook account for serious.
I did what I do.
I play with it until I figure it out. I obsessed. I was hooked. The games, the fun, the many different people from all walks of life. Some extremely interesting. Some not. Sometime later that year, I got my laptop.
I got on Christian Mingle. I used the message boards (except the Theology board-whatever you do- DON’T go there-shudder) to get to know people, rather than profile shopping. The relationships and dating board, he said, she said, and many more. Good people just having fun talking about anything. It’s really a much better way of getting to know someone by their interactions with others. Over 200 of my Facebook friends are Christian Minglers. Over a 100 of those, I have actually met in person. Making connections was easy because of my openness.
Now, that’s my Facebook and online history in a nutshell. I’ve been online a LONG time. I’ve been on Facebook a LONG time. I know everyone who is a friend, if not from school, work, Church or in person – then at least how I became friends with them and from which application. I cherish them all. I am interested in what they do and have to say.
Which brings me to the WHOLE point – some of you know – Jason was on Facebook in the early days. The days that myspace was all that and a bag o’ chips. I didn’t have one, neither did he. I had Facebook. People would say, “Facebook WHAT? That’s just for college kids.” I’d always add, “And Canadians! Who are way ahead of the United States. You wait, and see.”
Hmmm, Can I get an I told you so? My Mom has a Facebook. Myspace? (what?) Can’t hear ya now…but I digress.
My days on Are you interested? began around fall 2007, after my divorce. I was especially nice some days, and friendly. I clicked yes on everyone. I even clicked yes on a picture of UT (not even their face) which is INSANE because I am Boomer Sooner. ANYWAYS, that guy ended up being married although he posed as single. JERK! No picture? They are married! Please single people, use your common sense. But don’t be too paranoid either.
Some days I clicked no on everyone. Rather harshly I might add. Two time divorcee, it’s an ugly place to be and I’ll freely admit. I had guy issues. Mkay?
You know what I really see? A smiling person. Now he could be 300lbs, super hairy, wearing a pocket protector in the rest of that picture, but he was smiling. My ex #2 NEVER smiled in pics. He was Italian mobster cool, handsome, a tough guy, who would show no emotion. I clicked YES on Jason’s beaming smile. 🙂 Who cared about the rest.
I don’t know if I added him as a friend, or he added me. Some days I was brave and added anyone, and everyone. Some days I didn’t. However it happened, and neither of us can remember. We became friends. At the time, it didn’t mean much. Anyone in your city had access to all of your Facebook page. Nothing was private. I could see his pictures. He could see mine. I got his status updates, and he got mine. Back then you couldn’t comment on status updates like you do now. You had to send a message and there was no chat. Friending someone was more of way of saying, I’d like to get to know you better.
We played games; wrestling, scrabble, friends for sale and (lil) green patch. We’d send Starbucks, hearts, and play quizzes. You get the idea. Banter, fun, and frolic.
His pictures were nice, but few. He wasn’t 300lbs but he looked short (from what I could tell). Cute girls (just babies). Nice house, that he had just bought. He told me right away he was separated and going through a divorce. My heart broke for him and his little children. Having just been through a divorce and many DivorceCare sessions. I knew all to well the pain of it. I was still raw myself, but not nearly as fresh and tender as his wound was. She wanted the divorce not him, that always makes it harder to get over.
He knew he needed time before he would date. I knew it too. Friends we could do. Come to find out, as we messaged off and on, out all the people from all over the world on, Are you interested? Jason lived 6 miles from me. What are the odds?
It never crossed my mind to meet him. We were just friends. I did meet a few other guys from, Are you interested? Yeah, they turned out to be REAL duds. Even worth some horror story post some day. God blessed the broken road. I figured them out quick. The signs were all there. If you don’t let yourself get wrapped up in the petty things (they’re so cute, sexy, funny, attentive, tall) then you’ll catch on to them. Have faith in yourself. Use your guts and instincts. If you have reservations, there is a reason.
Obviously Jason and I eventually met. That’s a story for another post. Come to find out, there are many Are you interested? success stories. How cool is that? I’ll have to submit ours.
My point, resulting from the conversation today about all my so called “friends” is this…. I would have never met so many great people had I not reached across cyber space and added them as friends. Like Jason. My love. My light. My incredible partner, supporter, and dear, dear friend.
I would have never met, Sandy. She is like a sister to me. I met her this last fall. She was a Christian Mingle buddy from the message boards, that I became friends with on Facebook after I left Mingle. There are many others the same way. Patty Lynn, Anita, Clyde, Stephen, Becky, Mary Lou, Shane, Bob and many, many more.
I opened my life to the possibility of new friendship way before the time of real “social networking”. It paid off in the greatest reward of all. My future husband. Think about that.
To this day, it’s the gift that keeps on giving. I make new friendships, and open heart doors all over. Twitter. Blogging. Catalogs, and clubs. It’s like God’s front porch. Along comes someone that he sweeps up to sit next to you on a rocking chair. Maybe you are little surprised and standoffish. You move back and forth sharing your banter watching the world go by, sipping some ice tea.
Next thing you know, they are an old familiar friend. You don’t know how you lived without them, and you can’t imagine how in the big wide world you ever even met them. How? When the world is so big, and we are so small. It had to be divine. Had to be.
My friends, if you are not social networking in a decade of social networking, you are missing it. Go see what it’s all about. It’s not just spam, and sales. You just might be surprised. Give it time. I didn’t start with 600 friends, nor did I start with more than 5 twitter followers. Be patient. Be open. You might meet someone that changes your life. Or maybe, you yourself, might change someone’s life.
Jason, thank you for smiling your way into my interested heart. I am interested. I am so interested. Interested in our life now, and interested in our future life. Oh, how I adore you. I am so glad you stopped to chat on my front porch. I am so glad I wasn’t afraid to share, who I was with you, and the online world. What I would have missed.
For all you fanatics – all things wedding – just launched wedding website http://jasonandangelia.com. This will be updated as we go along.
What’s your online story? And why haven’t you added me as a friend? 🙂
Disclaimer-I have dated off and on online since 1998. To this date, no crazy has stalked me-well for long anyway-harmed me or my child in any way. Not saying it couldn’t happen, or wouldn’t happen. Just saying, it didn’t happen to me.