Of the Negativity that Oozes Out of the Term “Unfriending”… and Other Bits

When a friend of my said that she wanted to leave Facebook, but felt uneasy about “unfriending” people, I told her that she was nuts. “It’s just a social media platform,” I said. “You can keep up with friends through email, your blog, Instagram, Twitter, smoke signals…”

She continued to point out that some people would take it personal. “They’ll get upset,” she said. “Trust me. I’ve been down this road before.”

I said some nonsense about how I had gone to high school, too… and how we are thinking grown ups now… I’m sure I’ve said other things, which I totally take back now… Since I decided to leave my Facebook profile behind, in favor of my page, I have received the strangest reactions from friends. And I’m not even talking about the people with whom I interacted on a regular basis. The ones sending uncanny messages are individuals who rarely commented on anything I shared. The following wee list, are my responses to some of the inquiries I’ve received on the subject of no longer using my personal Facebook profile:

1. No, I’ve not gone from a profile to a page because someone did something terrible to me.
2. No, I didn’t stop using my profile because I’m mad at you and don’t want to admit it.
3. No, I’m not being stalked (thank goodness), or forced to leave my profile against my will.
4. No, my actions are not my way of thinning my Friend List, so that I can avoid certain people.
5. No, I swear that I’m not dying (at least not any faster than anyone else is… that I know of). Don’t laugh, my Wicked Luvs, more than one person asked if I was leaving Facebook because my illness took a turn for the worse and I’m “trying to let people down easy”.

I’m not quite sure what the last bit even means. If I were dying, I would probably friend more people, and make a lot of noise… You see, if I knew when I was going to die, I would make sure that my funeral was the party of the decade (perhaps the century), and it would be celebrated while I was still alive. As Granny Weatherwax might’ve said, “There is good eating at funerals.”

As you might imagine, I apologized to my friend (and told her that I was writing this post, and that she wasn’t nuts at all). I guess she knows more about these things than I do. I wonder if the word “unfriending” (a rather negative and inaccurate term, if you ask me) has anything to do with the way people react to this kind of thing. What do you think, my Wicked Luvs?

I decided to write this post because, well… writing stuff down, and sharing them with other thinking brains and feeling hearts, helps me make sense of things. And because a link to this entry will be added to the last post I’ll share on the wall of my personal Facebook profile, before I clear my Friends List of every name but 3: my Piano Man (if I remove him people might start asking if I murdered him, divorced him, or something), my Mother in Law (how else will I keep up with the news and with the best sociopolitical memes ever?), and The Boy (his heart would probably break if I stopped my motherly surveillance of prospective girlfriends, on whom I practice my wickedest mock stink eye). I shall do this on April 3rd.

The main reason behind all this has to do with the fact that having a Facebook profile and a page, which share the same name, makes it rather difficult for people to tag the right one. Speaking of tagging, the easiest way to tag a page in a post or comment is to add the @ symbol at the beginning of the page you’re searching for or tagging (i.e. @Magaly Guerrero).

Oops, this post got so long that I nearly forgot the “Other Bits”:

1. Dark Fiction for the Cruellest Month, 2016, starts on April 2nd.
2. 30 Days of Micro-Poetry in April, hosted by Rommy Driks and me, on our Facebook pages: Kestril’s Rhythms and Groove and Magaly Guerrero, respectively, starts tomorrow (April 1st).
3. I will no longer use my Facebook profile, but my Facebook page will include the same information I used to share on the profile. Only the location is changing. Also, here, at my cyber-home, everything will remain the same. I’m active on Instagram. And when the mood strikes me, I even tweet. Yes, the birds, too, find it a tad weird when I start chirping like a lunatic.

Facebook Page of Magaly Guerrero

Memories Afire

He brings the stack of letters to his nose. The words stink of gun oil, sweat and loss. For the third time, he lets his eyes linger over the emptiness overflowing her side of their closet. There is little of her left… only dry letters, confused memories, and a twisted hanger next to his service uniform.

“We’re ready for you,” his sister says from the door. “Rid your mind of rancid thoughts. True cleansing must start deep within.” She walks to where he stands, and touches his face—gun oil, sweat and loss are overtaken by frankincense, patchouli, and a smile. “You’ll be whole again.”

He watches the joy in her eyes reach for the sorrow in his heart, and he wonders if sisterly love can really be that strong or that blind. Can’t she see his dead bones under nearly decayed flesh?

They walk hand in hand towards the open door. And like with the womb, his sister steps out first. She guides him into a circle of women dressed in crimson and veiled in black, chanting around the dancing flames of a bonfire. Without speaking, she kisses his cheek before joining the chant.

He doesn’t know if he believes in magic, but his sister does. “And I believe in her,” he whispers, throwing the letters, one by one, into the fire. As his ex-wife’s words are unwritten into ashes, he visualizes unwanted feelings fading away with the smoke, and feels his bones breathe anew.

memories afire
consume tales lost to winter
and rebirth a heart

.
inspired by “Fear”,
winner of the tenth Expanding Bits of Fiction and Poetry into Haibun
and linked to dVerse (Open Link Night)

a wee note: the eleventh Expanding Bits of Fiction and Poetry into Haibun won’t be posted until the first week of May, after the conclusion of Dark Poetry for the Cruellest Month, 2016.

Enfuego, by Timothy Richard Lavelle“Enfuego”, by Timothy Richard Lavelle
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