A few days back I opened a Facebook account for ma. She was wanting to know what is that is so special about it. Now, following is what happened post that (Names of person have been changed to X and Y and the likes to maintain secrecy):
Me : So how was your first day on Facebook?
Ma : Good but I had a question?
Me : What?
Ma: Isn’t X and her husband staying with each other anymore?
Me : Of course she is. Why would you get such a stupid idea?
Ma : Oh then why was she telling her husband what she should tell him in the realms of her bedroom, in the public space for all of us to see?
Me : Cause that is the new age love ma.
Ma : So the new age love means discussing your bedroom secrets in public?
Me : Yes ma…
Ma : Oh !!!
Me : So how was your second day with Facebook?
Ma : I want to delete Y from my profile. He is a sadist and not my friend.
Me : Ha !! What did he do?
Ma : I wrote today on my wall “I am not feeling well” and he went and liked that comment. I thought he was a friend, but he is a sadist and no friend of mine.
Me : No ma. He is. Liking, is the Facebook language which interpreted in your language, means he does not like you having fever.
Ma : Ha ??
Me : Leave it. It does not make sense to me either.
Ma : Oh !!!
Ma : What kind of a friend of yours is Z?
Me : Why?
Ma : He sent me a heart which had some romantic message on it, today. I did not know how to react, so I deleted it, but he needs to know he cannot send me such things. He is old enough to be my son?
Me : LOL. Ma he was not sending you his love. He was playing a game
Ma: A game?
Me : Ya. If you had accepted the heart you would have moved one step closer to solving a jigsaw puzzle. Currently I own 115 hearts and on level 16.
Ma : Oh !!!!
Ma : Who is this A? Does he have no manners?
Me : He is a friend of Cousin B. What did he do?
Ma : He has no manners. He does not know me and even if he did, does he not know he should not go poking ladies? Today when I logged in, I saw an alert that A has poked me. Had he been in front of me, I would have whacked him. Rude, insolent urchin.
Me : Ma !!! He was just saying Hi to you…
Ma : Hi to me? By poking me?
Me : Yes ma, that’s the Facebook language of Hi.
Ma : Oh !!!!!
Ma : I have new follower today for my blog, a Mr J who uses “Networked Blogs”
Me : Congratulations !!
Ma : He said he liked my blog and is following it and has asked me to follow him back in his blog
Me : So do so.
Ma : But isn’t it the norm to follow blogs when you like them and plan to keep reading them?
Me : Yes, so?
Ma : No, just that his blog is in Spanish, and mine is in Bengali? So……
Me : Oh !!!!!
Me : Ma, why have you written in your FaceBook wall that you are going to the loo?
Ma : Well I was seeing everyone updating their every move every minute. And after you told me everything is today’s Facebook way of life, I thought I had to update every minute of my life there. And today I did nothing which I could update about, so when I went to the loo, I thought let me update that? Why? What happened?
Me : Ma !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Me : So how has been your experience so far in Facebook?
Ma : Well I learnt that whatever I have learnt so far in my little over of 50 years of life is all trash.
Me : Meaning?
Ma : Well for starters I learnt that it’s ok to go poking ladies you have never ever met and its considered fine. I learnt it’s ok to talk about your bedroom details in public or wash your dirty linen in full view of others, and its not considered crass. You can be a sadist and enjoy your friend’s misery and you are still considered a friend. We were taught as kids never to talk to strangers but here we can merrily add strangers as friends and never knowing who they really are. The phrase “You scratch my back and I scratch yours” has now changed to “You follow my blog and I will follow yours”. Must say in 7 days I never learnt so much as I learnt via Facebook.
Me : So you continuing?
Ma : Hell No. I am 50+. I don’t think I can handle so much of unlearning at this age. I will go delete my profile tomorrow.
Needless to say, contrary to all her misgivings, its been nearly a month and ma is merrily continuing on Facebook. having learnt all the Facebook language and nuances, and I suspect quite enjoying the ride. Guess end of the day, that is the pull of Facebook….
PS : This is part fiction and part reality