|Facebook Helps Remind Man Why He Lost Contact With All His Old Friends - January 10th 2010|
Keith Wilson admitted today that he had finally realised why he had failed to keep in contact with the 215 friends he had found himself reacquainted with on Facebook over the last four years. When he originally signed up to the website at University in 2006 he had not anticipated the networking opportunities it would present to him, particularly the opportunities to hook up with the girls he used to spy on through the hole in the changing room wall when he was fifteen years old.
“There were loads of good reasons to get signed up to Facebook back in the day,” He reminisced, thinking about his days at the University of East Anglia, Norwich, “My professors said I should sign up so they could keep me up to date with timetables for lectures, my family wanted me to sign up so they could keep in touch with me because I never phoned, my best mate wanted to co-ordinate pub crawls so we could go out and get drunk every afternoon before our final class.
“But ultimately there was this hot girl who wouldn’t even talk to me, she was on it and I thought it was like MySpace. I thought I would be able to browse through her photo albums and find some photos where you could make out the shape of her boobs – but back then Facebook made all photos private so I couldn’t see anything. Other than the tiny little thumbnail of her profile and that only showed her above the neck.”
Keith Wilson explained that back ‘in the day’ as he called it, Facebook didn’t really appeal to people like it does today.
“It was basically one giant networking site. Anyone you needed to communicate was on there, no faffing around – you could organise future events, share photographs of recent events and keep in touch with friends who were on travels abroad. It was really useful.
“The thing was, it wasn’t really a conversation starter. I went into my local pub when I came back at the summer. I was talking to this girl who worked at the local corner shop, I didn’t have my phone on me and I said ‘Oh, I’m on Facebook’ – she looked at me as if I was crazy. I then had to explain what it was and she told me I was ‘sad’ and went over to talk to the guy who seeing how many packets of tomato ketchup he could swallow before he was sick.”
Keith Wilson said this almost made him turn his back on Facebook, however when he returned to the pub the following year the same girl asked him if he had Facebook.
“I was going to explain to her we had had this conversation a year ago and she had called me sad. But she was quite drunk, she proceeded to tell me that it was the coolest website ever and she was going to throw a sheep at me if I had it.
“I was not sure what that meant, but that night I acquired a dozen new Facebook friends and when I logged on the next day my notifications feed had gone crazy – I had had six sheep thrown at me, a dozen ninja pirates attack me (I did not know that pirates did ninjaring) , I was challenged to a race, two fights and some superheroes were stealing my powers.”
Over the next few months, Keith’s friends list expanded from the select Uni few and the large breasted girl who accidentally accepted his friend request because he had put ‘Accept this friend request and all your wishes for the next 6 months will come true” as his personal message, to include a wide range of people from girls he met at the pub, his dentist, some tramp who promised to give up booze if he got a million friends, another tramp whose girlfriend had said he could turn her house into a giant bottle of vodka if a million people joined his group and all the people on 42 bus route from King’s Lynn on June 16th 2007.
“It was the end of 2007 when it started though,” Keith remembered, “Suddenly all my old friends from high school signed up. I had maybe 10 friend requests a day at some stages. Of course, I was looking at the photos and the names thinking ‘I remember you’ and was accepting them as fast as they came in. Before I knew it I had over 300 friends.
“Three HUNDRED friends. Most of them from school. Now, I might not have been the least popular kid at school but I don’t remember evening knowing the names of three hundred people, or even two hundred people at school. And as for them being my friend – man, if I had 10 people at school who were really my friend then my English teacher obviously hadn’t taught me the definition of friend correctly.”
If his notification feed had been busy before, now it read like a real time news ticker at the bottom of a 24 hour news channel.
“Seriously, I would log into Facebook, get that news feed and watch as the news item scrolled down the page with people adding their updates. Most of the time it was a comment to a status. And most of the time that comment was ‘LOL!!!!1111’
“And most people’s statuses (or is that stati?) were a comment on how drunk they had got the night before. WHEN DO THESE PEOPLE NOT DRINK? I swear that there was one guy who said he was off to the pub to get rid of his hangover. THAT WON’T MAKE THINGS BETTER. I was seriously considering lobbying parliament to make every kidney transplant committee check out each patient on Facebook before deciding if they were fit for new organs.”
No longer at Unversity, Keith was now checking his Facebook at work. It soon cost him work friends though as he recalls how it was his Facebooking that got non-work-related browsing banned at work.
“It wasn’t actually the time I was spending on it that was the issue,” Keith told us, “It was just teh bandwidth. My Facebook feed used up ten times the amount of bandwidth as a YouTube video. When I logged in one day I caused our video conferencing session to glitch and almost blew a major deal. I would have been in less trouble for watching porn. Even gay porn.
“I kept my job so I decided to have a cull of my friends. So I went through them all:
“Martin Jameson? Why did I accept your friends request? You used to spit on my head on the school bus get me to choose between being punched hard once, or being punched not so hard for 5 minutes. And all you have done as my Facebook friend is write “LOL – GAY!!!” under all of the photos of my dad.
“And Claire Sayer? Facebook is littered of photos of you drunk off of your face, most of the time wearing a school girl’s outfit two sizes too small for you – there is even a photo of you taking a piss in a public toilet. WHY HAVE YOU NOT UNTAGGED YOURSELF FROM IT? Unsurprisingly, you were the girl at school who slept with every guy. Except for me... so why I am friends with you? DELETED!”
Keith Wilson explained how he went through every friend on his list and deleted two hundred and fifteen friends that evening.
“At the end of it was left with less than a hundred. All of my family (well, except for one cousin... but I’ not going there), a few friends from high school (there were maybe three girls that have managed to keep themselves hot) the odd uni friend that I was exchanging emails outside of Facebook with anyway, the co-workers I actually like and that hot girl that I signed up to Facebook because of to begin with.
“So Facebook says I have 96 friends now. And it keeps telling me I don’t keep in touch with my mother often enough even though she rings every night.”
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