The woman who didn’t Facebook

“Are you on Facebook?”  I’m getting this question more and more these days, from friends and acquaintances alike.

My answer, always said with a slightly apologetic tone: “No.”

Let me say up-front that I don’t consider this a moral issue. It’s not like I think Facebook is the online equivalent of shooting heroin.  I just don’t think it’s something I should do.

My main reason is a practical one.  From my friends who are on Facebook, I hear that it’s a real time-suck.  Trust me when I say that the LAST thing I need is another reason to spend time online.   It’s kind of similar to my resistance to getting Tivo: I don’t want another excuse to plop myself in a sitting position in front of a screen.

“But it’s a great way to catch up with people,” say my pro-Facebook buddies, and I believe them.  I’d love to reconnect with people from high school, to get frequent chatty updates about what is going on in people’s lives.  As an author, too, I know that I”m missing out on a golden chance to network and promote my book and meet other people who are also kinda crazy about Mary.

But I know myself.  I know that it would be very, very hard to self-regulate when I could have the fun of logging on every ten minutes to see who has posted what.  This is exactly why I don’t buy industrial-sized  bags of gummy bears: I like them far too much.  That makes them far too dangerous.

I’m not a total Luddite.  I do blog, and email, which keeps me pretty busy as it is.  I fear that having something else to do online would steal time not only from these pursuits, but also from the soul-nourishing activities that are already getting short shrift: my books, my photo albums, my garden.  My prayer life.

Having said all that, I must in all honesty add that I could change.  My grandma used to have a saying framed on her kitchen wall: Lord, make my words tender and gracious, for tomorrow I may have to eat them. I may decide to jump into the Facebook pool at some point;  when I’ve figured out how to be better with my time, say.  But for now, I’m just blogging and emailing: you know,  those quaintly old-fashioned ways of communicating.

So what are your thoughts about Facebook?  I’d love to hear them.  I could still be swayed ….

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