Social Butterfly

I like to think of myself as a social media butterfly. I really, really enjoy it. But who knew there were so many forums for it? I mean, for awhile there was only MySpace, and as a college administrator and instructor I saw what it was about through my students and so, no thanks!

And then along came Mark Z. and we had Facebook. I tentatively created an account in 2006 because if you wanted to know what students were talking about you needed to join in. Oh, now we Boomers are credited with hijacking FB and the younger set had to find Twitter, Instagram, Reddit, Pinterest, and ones I’m sure I don’t even know what you are talking about. Are there still chat rooms? Never joined in that craze. They seemed like a scary place to go.

I do have an alter ego in Second Life named Boston Scarborough. She is much cooler than I. Really I don’t know what she’s up to these days because my life there was short. I couldn’t see using real money to buy virtual clothes and shoes for B.S. when I could divert that cash into real stuff for me. I hope she’s doing OK.

My SM butterfly worlds and my real world often cross paths and sometimes collide. For example, my colleague from work makes fun of my social butterfliness saying such things as, ‘are you one of those people who know people only from the gym, and no where else, and then you become Facebook friends with them?’ Duh! Of course. She introduced me to one of her lifelong friends in Chicago last year; he and I became FB buddies before I left his house that evening. I think she finally got tired of me telling her what Patrick was up to and created her own FB account.

Then there’s Linkedin. I know. I know. Keep it professional. It’s the snootiest of all my social networking. But, I do have a lot of people as connections that I’d never have on FB. And so, as boring as it is, it serves a purpose. I do know that people have gotten jobs from using the upgraded features through it.

I have a Twitter account but I don’t Tweet (should tweet be capitalized?). I don’t follow anyone’s Tweets. It’s way too far removed from reality for me. Do I really care what Kanye West thinks? I rather think not.

Now are games social media or not? I say yes. I have some good neighbors through my farm on HayDay and I count them among my SM friends. My besties are Melsville, C-O-W-E-I-E-I-O, Opin, and Triple T. We buy grain, fruit, lemon pies, and bolts from each other through secret methods like not advertising goods to the public. We save up double planks, carrot cake, or blackberry jam for each other. We put deep discounts on the merchandise such as 10 boxes of nails for $1. There’s a great spirit of neighborliness and friendship. Of course, I don’t know their real names, genders, ages, what country they’re from, what time zone they’re in…..nothing.

Mel and I (she calls me z) were conversing the other day.

Melsville: I have a hard time calling a person cow, so I call him/her ei.
Zfarm: well, I’ve been calling him/her cow for some time now. He/she doesn’t seem to mind. But I think I’ll call him/her ei too.
Later C-O-W-E-I-E-I-O weighed in on the subject. ‘You can call me Holly. That’s my name.’ And that’s life on the farm in HayDay.

And now, as of six weeks ago, I’m a blogger. I did not know there was this whole world of bloggers out there. I just thought you wrote something, posted it to a website and hoped someone read it. Oh no. It’s way more sophisticated than that with your own little algorithm based on tags, categories, what you ‘like,’ who you follow, who follows you, etc. It’s WAY cool. So now I have my friends in Blog World too! Some of them have real names and some of us don’t. I even have pseudonyms for family members I mention. I don’t know why, it just seems logical. I converse with my new blog buddies as if I know them. I like it. Of course, reading another’s thoughts on paper (computer screen, tablet) is one good way to get to know him or her.

Never joined any of the dating websites because I married way before the advent of such activity. I know a lot of people who use them and I think they are great for others. I met my husband the way we used to meet people. He showed up in my office for an appointment one day. Yes, I’m one of those creepy instructors who dated and married one of her students. I swear he was graduated (and 37 years old) before we ever went out!!!

And so it goes for a Social Media Butterfly. Sometimes I think I’m much too open with my life. But then I say if I’m enjoying it, and I don’t use it to hurt anyone else, why not? Many years ago I would say that I wish I could create a new town and all the people I love would live in it. Well, now they do. Except for my mother and brother who still reject the use of social media, including the telephone. Oh well, I can always see them at Thanksgiving.



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