My Facebook Manifesto

In light of the growing popularity of the social networking, I feel it only necessary to make public my policy where Facebook is concerned.

I know.

It’s long overdue, but still.  “Better Nate than lever,” is what I always say.  *Editors note – If you’ve never heard the story about Nate the Snake who was in charge of guarding the lever that would cause the world’s demise, you just read the punch line without going through the trauma of hearing the entire story.  You’re welcome.

 

Congratulations on your wise decision to participate in the extended virtual hand of friendship with me.  If you’re reading this right now, you fall in one of the following categories of people I know:

  • Family – You can pick your friends, but you can’t pick your family.  Exactly.  For the most part, you’re pretty much locked in on this one.  Even though I strive to be the one member of the family which makes you cringe, I’m afraid I tend to fall short of my goals on this one.  Even still, I have had a few family members dump me from their pages in my tenure at Facebook.  The reasons for doing so have varied, however I would like to extend my apologies to one specific family member whose bathroom I neglected to spray with a potpourri spray after severely altering the ambiance with the challenging aroma of lactose intolerance.

 

  • Work – There are several people on my friends list who either work with me now in the middle of cubeville, or back then at the other joint I wandered in an out of during the 90’s.  Even still, the mere fact that we grace each other’s friends pages on Facebook does not give you the autistic license to set up camp at my 8×8 fabric covered box to discuss stuff in which I could give half a rat’s ass.  Stunts like that will get you a permanent indentation in your forehead the approximate size and shape of a good three hole punch.  If you’ve visited my cube before and left without such a cranial adornment, then your presence is welcome.

 

  • Church – By my count, there are four ordained ministers on my friends list.  One of them is the CFO’s uncle and presided at our wedding.  There are also several members of my congregation which view my page on a regular basis.  Watch your @!#*ing mouth when you post @#*$* on my wall.  I’ve got appearances to maintain.

 

  • School – If you attended public school in a small town in the middle of a rectangular state sometime in the 70’s and 80’s, I most likely knew you.  If you are a female I knew in high school and have since married, I probably won’t remember you unless you either cough up your maiden name or you were really hot and there was no way I could have ever forgotten you.  Even still, let’s hope I can find you in the yearbook.  There are a few of you out there, I just plain don’t remember.  Fortunately the magic of Facebook mixed in with the wonderful anonymity of the internet prevents the plethora of awkward moments which would otherwise come as a result of a face to face meeting.  If you knew me in college, there is probably no way I will remember you.  That is unless, of course, you were really hot and there was no way I could have ever forgotten you.

 

  • Baseball – I’ve been involved in junior’s baseball career since the first day he stepped to the plate and adjusted his junk.  If you’ve seen junior adjust his junk at the plate, or been victim to his dugout flatulence, you probably grace my friends list as well.

 

  • Other –  Uuuummmmm, yeah.  I’m still trying to figure out why you people are here.  Some of you I knew over on another network and I continue to cherish our friendship.  What’s with the rest of you though?

Now that you’ve been properly pigeon holed and indexed into a category within the TharpSter World, let’s discuss what I will and will not do here.

Status Updates – Nearly every day, I will update my status.  I don’t take this duty lightly though.  If you live in the same region that I do, you know what the weather is like.  I’m not going to announce that it’s a beautiful day for trimming the hedge.  I’m also not going to discuss the monotonous, day to day activity on there either.  I strive to come up with something creative which hasn’t been lifted from a website that specializes in funny Facebook status updates.  Feel free to respond to my updates as you see fit.

At the same time, I will review the status updates on the home page of all of my friends who have published updates.  Ninety percent of the time, I will respond with a smart ass remark.  Would you expect otherwise?

If your status update reports some sort of turmoil in your life and you’ve asked for prayers, I’ll respond with “Prayin’”.  Rest assured that “Prayin’” is exactly what I’m doing.  You made it a point to ask, the least I can do is to do it.

Instant Messaging –  For those of you not aware of it, Facebook has an instant messaging feature in it. Please don’t use it with me unless there’s some sort of social networking emergency which demands my immediate attention.  Even then, you should probably run it by me first to validate the crisis. 

Sometime back, a former co-worker sent me a friend request.  I hadn’t seen her in years, and even then I found her to be heavy on the ‘pseudo’ and light on the ‘intellectual’.  I politely accepted the request and hoped to leave it at that.  Over the next few months she littered my wall with applications (see next section) and fired up several instant message chats which served as a reminder to me that the ‘e’ comes before the ‘u’ in the word ‘pseudo’.  I expelled her from TharpSter World sometime later after she obtained a highly coveted position at the top of my fecal roster over a matter outside of Facebook.

Applications –  Simply put, I’m not a farmer or a Mafioso.  That applies to the real world and to the internet.  As such, I honestly don’t care if you indentured a virtual sharecropper on the back 90 or used a G-string as a garrote on some turncoat snitch.  I don’t answer questions about any of my acquaintances that I haven’t seen in twenty years.  I don’t like Chinese food, so I’m not really interested in the Fortune Cookie which was just delivered.  Stop poking me.  Why do you keep doing that?  When I go places, I don’t check in to let you know where I am.  I really don’t care what musical note, mineral, color, and mathematical occurrence best represents you.  What Led Zeppelin song and Star Wars character are you most like?  Don’t care.  For what it’s worth, I’m most like Yoda, Dazed & Confused, and a Fibonacci sequence.  I’m here in my world, not yours.  

De-Friending TharpSter – In my time here, I’ve probably been dumped somewhere in the double digits.  Some left Facebook, others got a clue, and at least one that I know of read my blog.  In my own opinion, reading my blog and finding out my point of view on things is probably one of the stupidest reasons to remove me as a friend.  I can assure you I haven’t left those on my friends list with different political views than mine.  So much for tolerance in liberalism.

So there you have it.  Do you still want to be my friend?

Randy Tharp

TharpSter is a husband to one woman, a father to two kids, a master to two dogs, an occasional cubical occupant, and unable to make up his mind on an adequate theme for this website.

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