Monday, September 14, 2009

Foiled again by the evil powers of Facebook.

I just noticed on my Facebook profile that I was tagged in a photo by my cousin's teenage son. I found him recently and, perhaps against my better judgment, added him as a friend. That may sound weird. It's not that he's not my friend enough for Facebook. Please. It's virtual friendship. Everyone qualifies. But this is different. He's my family - someone I've known forever. Since he was the adorable baby my sister accidentally dropped down the stairs (totally unrelated, just, you know, kinda funny). In my mind he is, and will always be, a little boy. Seeing his Facebook profile and realizing that 16 is so not the same as 6 is kind of a rude awakening.

For one, it makes me feel old. Not because I'm doing that math like, If I was in high school when he was born and now he's in high school, that must make me... No. That's way too complicated (and besides, age ain't nothing but a number). It's just that, and I hope no one takes this the wrong way, teenagers seem kind of... weird. I mean, when you're not one. When you are one they are totally bad ass and awesome (although I don't think they ever refer to themselves as teenagers). But once that ship has sailed it's a little like observing an unfamiliar species. The way they look and talk and dress and interact - well, it's why I haven't been able to watch MTV since The Real World left San Francisco. I would need to hire a translator to figure out what the hell is going on and that is way too much effort for watching TV.

So I have no idea how to talk to this kid. I think the only thing I've ever said to him on Facebook was, "Give your sister a happy birthday hug for me!" Which, let's be honest, may as well have been, "Such a handsome young man...come over here so I can pinch your cheeks!" Gah!

You might be thinking, So what? You're twice his age. Who cares if you're out of touch? Well, I do! For one, it sucks to realize you're old. But much more importantly, if I'm this bewildered by the youth culture today, just imagine what an old fart I'll be when Liam is in high school! He'll be growing pot in his bedroom as a "project for science class" while I crochet doilies and adjust the volume on my hearing aide. I'll say things like, That's nice, dear and, Oh, you kids today! And I still won't know how to text message effectively so our lines of communication will be totally shot.

I should start saving up for a translator now.

So as you may have guessed, the photo he tagged? Not so good. It's not even a photo exactly, which might sound like a relief if you've been the victim of an unflattering tag, but let me assure you, it's much much worse. It's something called a Fan Check Photo which is a nice way of saying, Here's a collage of the 20 people who are cyber stalking you on Facebook! Here's what his Fan Check Photo looked like (or at least how it looked to this old bag):

And then, smack in the middle of all the high school cuteness - me:

Okay, maybe this is me:

But still! I look like a freaking member of the KGB or something! Like I added him on Facebook just so I could spy on him for his mom. Ack! That is soooo not the case. And, really, I don't even know why I would be one of his top stalkers in the first place. Just because I looked at some of his photos when I first added him, now I have to get called out as a fan? How embarrassing. And I'm sure it's even worse now that I had to go back to his page to see why I was tagged. Soon I'll be his number one fan and his girlfriend will want to know who the hell the cougar stalking him on Facebook is.

So, if you're considering finding out who your top fans on Facebook are, don't do it! Or at the very least don't share it with others. Really, no good can come from such information. Trust me. I'm older and I know better.


rowena___. said...

first: you are SO NOT OLD. even when liam is in college, you will still be YOUNGER THAN I AM RIGHT NOW. and my child is only three years older than yours. :D

second: i have a 13 year old nephew that friended me on facebook. i just don't look at any conversations that are not between him and his mother/my sister. LOL otherwise it is just too much info combined with my lack of ability to relate to the sorrows of losing one's mall privileges.

Molly said...

I almost added him too but thought twice. I probably wouldn't have turned into a fan, stalker.

Molly said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dylan Riley said...

This was brilliant. They not only are another species, they are an invasive one. Thank you for this blog, it may have saved the lives of many old people, including myself.

Linnet said...

I'm glad you've explained the fan thing. I was at a loss. Now that I know, I will avoid it like the plague. oh facebook . . .

Anna said...

ha! i love it! i read a seventeen magazine the other day while getting a pedicure and was baffled by all the articles about "convos" and "hiding behind emoticons." made me feel ancient!

Amber said...

Expanding on Anna's experience, maybe we should all gather for a Seventeen Magazine reading party. Wouldn't it be a hoot? We'll all sit around drinking wine and wondering what's so great about those Jonas brothers and quizzing each other on whatever it is they quiz about these days. Who's in?

Katie said...

I love that you non-chalantly added cougar in there! Maggie, you are still a MILF I believe, cougar status is not for a few more years. You are still a young pup:)