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My cousin recently discovered Facebook. He adores it, in my respectful opinion far too much. He loves the new applications most. He sends messages, he “pokes” me incessantly and posts things on my wall. He throws sheep at me, he uses the force on me, he loaded the vampires application and “bites” me.

I’m waiting for the application that allows me to kill that sheep. I will load that one.

Put simply, he annoys the living hell out of me. I routinely ignore his requests and decline his invitations, but he doesn’t get the message. No sooner had I turned away his invitation to the “superwall” application – which enables friends with too much time on their hands too draw ladybirds all over your page – than I was thrown yet another sheep. I’m waiting for the application that allows me to kill that sheep. I will load that one.

One application I do have is the ‘honesty box’, which allows your friends and acquaintances to tell you exactly how they feel about you. Most of us are at least vaguely interested in what others secretly think of us, so if we can look past the insinuation that we can only tell our friends the truth when under cover of cyber darkness, this is a clever program. I shrugged off the implicit insult, loaded the application and now, a few months down the line, I have several bean-spilling messages in said box.

Facebook will tell you, by means of a blue or pink stripe (because, you know, boys like blue and girls like pink) whether the sender is female or male, but even this information can be kept from Facebook should the sender desire to be sexless. In such circumstances Facebook somewhat needlessly apologises, saying “No colour: We don’t know”, as if it is ashamed of itself. Some friends – like the one who always spells the same words wrong, or the one who refers to a nickname only he/she knows I have – seem determined to be found out, but of around 20 messages I am sure of only one sender and would probably guess only another two right. I’ve been called “a wanker” by a boy, “inscrutable” by a girl and “totally American” by a “No Colour”.

There have been other, less publishable entries, though thankfully I’ve not been too harshly slammed yet. Mostly, there have been declarations of affection, a polite inquisition into my sexuality, and a few messages that simply don’t make sense. One such entry was the straightforward, and undoubtedly honest, “Not sure”, posted by one of the sexless ones sometime last month. This is quite acceptable. I too am not sure how I feel about a lot of people too. But the point of using an honesty box to register no opinion is beyond me. It’s like queuing up for hours to vote in an election and, when presented with the ballot sheet, writing “No idea” on it and walking out with a smile and a sense of accomplishment. Or phoning a radio station to answer a poll only to say, “I’ve just called to say I haven’t the slightest clue. Ok, bye!” What exactly does one say to that? I have no idea.

Matthew
The Editor
extravirgin@virginmoney.co.za

 

 
 
 
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