Lately, I've taken to finding and chatting with old friends via Facebook. Yes, I admit it. Eve, who never liked technology, who was the last person on earth to buy a cell phone, who shunned TV remote controls (why not just get up and turn the knob for crying out loud??) and computers (I have a perfectly good manual typewriter right here!) back in the day.
I started off slowly. Casually. Socially. Looking up Carrie from junior high or Stephie from UCLA...people I'd lost track of over the years and wondered what ever happened to them. I'd say "Hello." They'd write back and update me on their whereabouts. We'd exchange phone numbers and email addresses and promise to keep in touch.
Very quickly, FB-ing took on a life of its own. Suddenly, I was finding more old friends through mutual friends, and receiving friend requests from people I'd known in 5th grade and hadn't even thought about in, um, a lot of y ears. Then, suddenly, we began exchanging silly wall posts, leaving vulgar comments under photos, passing martinis around, baking virtual cupcakes, playing Duck-Duck-Goose, and creating sea creature aquariums for each other.
It hit me last night, as I was engaged in several of the above at the same time, that Facebook is high school all over again! You can "friend" and "de-friend" people in an instant, show off your flair for fashion, gossip on a giant virtual "bathroom wall" for all the world to see, brag about how popular you are by showcasing your number of friends, get "drunk" off virtual beers, play poker, discuss books and politics, and even join clubs like the "Obama Club" or the "No on Proposition 8 Club" or the "Save The Wolverines Club"!
(I don't think there's any kind of "hooking up" with a cute guy/girl feature, but I'm sure it's coming soon! That should be interesting...instead of "Click HERE to send Dave a pink octopus for his sea garden" it will say, "Click HERE to..." Never mind!)
For people like me, who loved high school and love to reminisce with long lost friends, Facebook is fantastic! Another added bonus is that I'm finding this to be a fabulous tool for YA book research and helping me regress back into the teen mentality. The other night, I went back and forth with an old girlfriend for a few hours (I'm recovering from knee surgery here and can't really move off the couch yet. That's my excuse for slacking and I'm sticking to it!). We rehashed so many forgotten stories of parties, heartbreak and crushes...it was amazing, the feelings and memories that flooded back.
*IMMATURE AND JUVENILE ALERT*
We even made lists for each other of the boys we kissed in high school and those we wanted to kiss, then laughed hysterically (virtually) when our lists shared a common guy. It was like the most entertaining thing I've done in a long time! This FB-ing has really enriched my writing in so many ways. Reliving my teen years with these friends and even the mention of a familiar name often gives me authentic plot ideas I never would have come up with on my own. Unfortunately, this FB thing is on its way to becoming an addiction for me. Fortunately, I'm pretty sure I'm going to end up with a really great novel!