Tuesday, April 22, 2014
Tired of Facebook..
No you may not be tired of life. The streams of other people's lives can be overwhelming: It may make you a retro-phile, full of nostalgia for the secret gossips or unrequited love, or all those things that were staple of the 80's teen-life. Suddenly, what was boring - you may not even remember how you really spent all the time that you now spend on Facebook - may look exciting. The fact that you can't find the girl who fascinated you in college on Facebook may be pathetic - you should have told her then - but then Facebook won't really change all that. Facebook or not, you are still alive.
Oh yes, Golden Age is always in the past, just around the time when one was twenty! If only - and there goes another list of moments missed, things unsaid, all those mistakes and missteps. But then, is it not a happy feeling that those are safely buried, gone, hopefully forgotten, rather than protruding out in your timeline? At times like this, should it be called Facebook Fatigue, forgetting seems to be the sweetest of all human capabilities: Because you forget, you live again.
So, if we don't want Facebook as a chronicle, what about Facebook as a conversation? This continuous stream of words, photos, videos, love and hatred, politics and pure emotion, the narratives of connection and disconnection, of those various lingo rising and fast falling in fashion - isn't this the primordial soup of modern life? Isn't this where our relationships are born and made? One at a time, you may say, in love with all those analog life-forms which come as person and not as streams. You may still want the lazy but the routine walk that never makes a good photo, the conversation about dreams which wouldn't be video-worthy, that utterly incorrect thing that you want to say without attracting moralising gazes - you may still want to live, without Facebook.
What about Facebook as a convenience? Would it not be nice to have everyone on there, so that we can keep in touch? But then, you may think keeping in touch is an active business: You reach out, you meet, you call, you write, you pursue, you want to know, you remember - when did keeping in touch become equal to being 'fed' the details of someone's life? If so, you are keeping in touch with Justin Bieber every day.
No, this is not Anti-Facebook, because it is so dear to those one loves, but it is the rejection of the expansive claim - that you sign out of life if and when you sign out of Facebook! Facebook is a big nation, bigger than those we don't care to know about, such as Bangladesh: But that's the precise point - it is not a nation and you may not want to immigrate there yet. If you feel drowned by all those lovely photos, inspiring quotes, uplifting videos, smart quips and funny jokes that keep coming, you are still living: And life goes on, if you forgot, outside - and once you close the lid of your laptop.."And how the silence surged softly backward,/ When the plunging hoofs were gone."
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How To Live
"Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs even though checkered by failure, than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much because they live in the grey twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat."
- Theodore Roosevelt
- Theodore Roosevelt
We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time.
- T S Eliot
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