Facebook Nostalgia in Your Thirties

I was on Facebook tonight saying happy birthday to a friend when I accidentally clicked the wrong button and was suddenly transported back to 2011.

Time traveling back a few years in Facebook time brought me to London. I was visiting my then-boyfriend and was very excited to see him. I scrolled down and watched myself quote Pablo Neruda a half dozen times, recommend 3 “brilliant” plays I don’t remember seeing, sit backstage jittering before going onstage and performing, invite people to donate to numerous kickstarter campaigns, and link to The Onion as much as I could humanly link. I also posted a few things that I would laugh scoffingly at now such as “Happy. Peaceful. Joyous.” Gag.

And then there were a few things that I would absolutely still post now, including all my travel/work updates/stories such as “In Mexico City trying to work but failing at Spanish language. Thought people here spoke English but was sadly misinformed. Now being laughed at by customers as I read Espanol verbatum from product brochure.”

I was actually about to write a post for this blog when Facebook dredged up these strange throwbacks. The darn site ended up keeping me on guiltily for an extra 30 minutes, as I nostalgically read over post after post dated all the way back to 2010. I hadn’t seen any of them in years, yet, for most, I remembered exactly how I felt when I wrote them.

Though I’m prone to nostalgia anyway, Facebook has a special way of pulling up sentimentality in me, I’ve been on the site since college, and now that I’m thirty, it’s become this time capsule of so much of my young adult life…but in these strange little quippy bows that aren’t exactly how things were at all.

It’s funny to think that a lot of the younger generation isn’t really using Facebook anymore but has switched platforms to other social media… such as Instagram and …god knows what else. Haha, I can’t think of the new forms of social media. Am I really getting old? WhatsApp and Snapchat come to mind, but they’re not really social media… It’s kinda sad/kinda funny how unaware I am of the new wave of Social Media apps. And I’m usually a pretty techie person…

I actually went and looked up “Facebook in your thirties.” I wanted to see if there were articles about Facebook dying off in the younger generation while still being a mainstay of this one. Instead I ended up coming across article after article about how Facebook just introduced a new nostalgia-inducing feature called “On This Day.”  Apparently there will be a new button on Facebook, similar to Timehop, that’ll take you back to what you did on this day last year…and up to 4 years ago. This new feature was introduced March 24, otherwise known as ‘today.’ Pretty ironic, huh?

When I Facebook time traveled back to 2011, I didn’t push the “On This Day” button. I don’t even have the button- it’s apparently rolling out to users in waves and it’s not on my computer yet. I just happened to accidentally click into the past on the exact same day that Facebook rolls out a new nostalgia feature. Sometimes life can be funny like that.

But then again, life always has been sort of funny, hasn’t it?

 

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How To Say Goodbye

“I have to go.”

Why are those words so hard to say sometimes?

Occasionally I’m on the phone and have to get off for whatever reason. Sometimes I really need to go to sleep because I have work very early in the morning. Other times I have to do work right then- maybe I’m in the middle of packing for a trip or doing my taxes or getting ready to go out.

I’ve never gotten much better at cutting off long conversations gracefully, even though I’m in my 30’s. I still find it super difficult.

If I was talking to someone I didn’t really like, then it’d be easy to get off the phone with them. I’d wait for the quickest pause, and then interrupt with ‘I’m so sorry, I better go to sleep because I have to wake up at 6am tomorrow” or “Sorry, I’m going into a subway tunnel,” or whatever. But why would I be talking on the phone to someone I didn’t really like? Usually, I have the opposite problem- I’m talking with somebody that I really DO like, and I know I have to go, but I don’t really want to. However, I’m getting more and more anxious about the time. Then I can barely concentrate on a conversation I really like, because I’m distracted by when I need to end it, and I don’t really get to enjoy the end of the talk anyway. And then I’m late.

This happens to me in person too. Sometimes I know I have to be somewhere or do something, but I’m just having the best time hanging out with someone. Then it starts getting later and later and anxiety creeps in. I’m worried I’m going to be late somewhere and I get distracted and can’t enjoy myself as much.

I wish I was better at figuring out these situations. Not only am I fighting myself with my obligations versus fun friend time, but I’m also worried about hurting another person’s feelings by cutting them off in the middle of a great conversation.

Jane, my lovely co-blogger, is way better at finagling this than I am, so I ran the issue by her. Even though I’ve experienced her gracefully end conversations with me numerous times because she had to run, she told me that even she feels like she has major problems here and feels anxious about it.

I’m trying to recount how she, and other friends of mine, are able to end conversations so tactfully and without hurting my feelings. Here’s what I’ve come up with:

1. Find the quickest pause and then start with something nice.

In order to end the conversation, start with telling the other person how much you’ve loved talking to them so far. For example: “This has been so great, …but I have to get home and pack or I’ll get no sleep. I’m so sorry!”

2. Start the conversation with an end in mind.

If you know you have to end at a certain point, preface with that. For example, “Just so you know, I can’t talk too long because I have to pack for my Tahiti trip tomorrow. I apologize!” (Darn those Tahiti trips.)

3. Make a new plan

You can always end with a raincheck. For example, “This was great. Sorry I have to run…maybe we can catch up again tomorrow? You around?”

That’s all I’ve got. I’m going to try implementing these strategies and see how I feel. What do you guys think? Are you good at ending conversations gracefully? Do you worry about hurting others’ feelings? Or missing out on something great?

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