Remember when we used to take a vacation? Once we arrived at our destination, we had a dandy ole’ time, and then we returned home. We took lots of pictures and couldn’t wait to pick them up from the photo shop. We’d share them with our family, and maybe show them to a few friends when we’d get together.
Remember when we used to go out to dinner? We’d choose a restaurant, had a delightful meal, great conversation, maybe a cigarette with an after-dinner drink, and then we went home. We might tell a friend or colleague about the restaurant the next day. Then again, we probably didn’t.
Oy vey. Things have changed. Now I see countless Facebook posts showing smiling faces and sights from cities around the world. Muffy and Mickey in front of the Taj Mahal; Shari and Stan on Melrose Avenue in LA; Rhonda and Rufus yukking it up on a boat in Venice.
Not to mention the smiling faces at countless dinners. Louisa and Larry with 5 friends at a pizzeria in South Beach; Simone and Sammy at a French bistro in Atlanta; Mary and Max with their darling kids at a diner in Chicago.
If everyone is having such a dandy ole’ time on vacation, why are they spending any time creating countless posts—every step of the way—to show and tell their thousands of good friends and family members about it?
Surely, they can wait until they return home to regale us with details of their fascinating trip. Do we really need to know that they’re on their way to lunch at Cipriani in Venice, or on a train from Paris to London?
Now a word about the dinners everyone is enjoying. One acquaintance posts endless group photos at dimly lit restaurants. Everyone is idiotically smiling at the camera and the caption on the post says something like: “With my west coast family — at Gary’s Grill @ La Mancha Resort & Spa” (the names have been changed). A lovey-dovey couple looks up from their candlelit dinner to tell us how they’re relishing their time away from their kids.
Enough already, folks! Perhaps your mother, son, cousin or best pal is thrilled to know where you’re eating or exactly what you’re doing at 6:35 pm on Wednesday in Palermo or Atlanta, and although the rest of us are thrilled you’re having a good meal and a nice trip, we really don’t need all the details. At least, send us some interesting tidbit you learned about Turkey or Timbuktu.
Get a life, away from Facebook!
P.S. By the way, you might be questioning why I keep all these restaurant & vacation-goers on my newsfeed, if I find their posts less than thought provoking, motivating or interesting. It’s because I’m fascinated by the social sea changes in our society today and what better place than Facebook to see how people are thinking and acting? Facebook has unleashed some pretty dramatic behaviors, including people’s intense needs to be popular. If she has 500 friends she must be 10 times more popular than I, with my 50 friends. And if I don’t post on Facebook at least three times a day, my 50 friends might think I don’t exist, I will lose them all, and I will disappear into a puff of smoke.