Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Innocent, Curious Perusing

I have a guilty pleasure.

No, it's not the one where I buy outrageously expensive coffee. Nor is it how I hide a bag of Reesce Cups in the highest cabinent with no intention of sharing them with anyone. My love for "The Bachelor"?, not the subject of this post. My affection for Gordon Rasmay? Not today.

Let's discuss: FACEBOOK.

More specifically - Facebook STALKING.

Now, I don't mean stalking in the creepy - follow you around, hide in the bushes, watch when you go pee, kind of stalking.  That's scary. And, weird. And, illegal.

I'm also not talking about checking out my Facebook friends - you can't stalk someone who lets you see their page. They invited you in, out of the bushes!

My guilty pleasure is "stalking" a few people I do not know and a few people I do know, but do not have as friends. I shouldn't really call it stalking. Maybe I should call it " Innocent Curious Perusing".  Don't you hate, because many of you do it too! While Wilo finds this all super strange and will surely shake his head at this post, I have a core group of girlfriends who assure each other that this is perfectly normal.

It's ALL Facebook's fault. How many times can it tell me I should be friends with someone I don't know without me giving in and looking? Apparently the 21 friends we have in common find it ok for me to sneak a peak. So why not?

What's this? A public page?


There is this one person who's page I check regularly because it's public and I enjoy the perpetual snarkiness they post. I don't know this person, but they sure do entertain me with their gloom and doom cynicism. I also find their outward, absurd political views completely fascinating.

There is another page that belongs to a virtual stranger, but since we have friends in common, facebook thought we'd be great buddies. This page is also public and I check their page solely because I am a jerk. They are a complete and total disaster and proud of it to boot. Their drunken antics and misspelled, outrageous status updates are like a train wreck that I just can't seem to pass by without gawking.

I have another page at my fast typing fingertips - of someone I used to know - who's life must always smell like roses. They must breed unicorns and sleep on piles of money. I am pretty sure blue birds fly around them praising them of their perfectness with song. So perfect that it leaves me pondering what the heck is secretly wrong with them, because you KNOW there is something.

My favorite people are the ones who put their page on lock down and then leave all 500 picture albums public. What? Seriously? Do you think I am just going to give you the courtesy of NOT looking? You don't want me to see what music you like, but you don't care about showing me your past 7 Christmas mornings?

There are people who air all kinds of drama on Facebook, and then become very snotty about people being "all up in my bizness". Well....um....you TOLD us. You don't want us to see your drama? Don't post it. You don't want people you don't know to look at your page? Don't make it public. Don't want people to see how bald you are now? Make that album private.

Now, I know that this all goes both ways. The "Stalker" can very easily be the "Stalked". I once had a Friend of a friend send me a message that said: "We don't know each other but I think you are pretty funny" and another one say, "Hey, your blog is pretty awesome!". Or another friend of a friend comment on a link.

I also had a mutual friend comment to a real life friend: "Wow, I really wish I was more like Melissa. She seems to have it all together." WOAH. While this was very sweet, and flattering, it made me review my updates - there are no unicorns around these parts! Am I being 'real' enough in my posts?

Maybe there is someone right now who finds this blog as their own guilty pleasure. Or maybe they need to feel better about how messy their children are and they check my page to see what kind of disaster my kids created that day. Maybe they say to their own friends, "Did you see what she posted today???" Perhaps they look in envy at how beautiful my kids are... I don't know. I do know that I open myself up for that.

I am perfectly aware of what I share online. I have a blog for goodness sakes. I invite people to take a look into my life. I'm not upset when people are curious. But, I'm also savvy to knowing that anyone, anywhere can read what I write.

So, take a peak. I left you some blankets and some snacks in the bushes.

Don't want me to look? Lock that page up!

Of course, if you do it now, I will know that you totally read my blog.