Mostly Cloudy


An evening conversation: goodbye, pal

By Stephen Cameron

There is another breakup coming in my life.

Yep, another piece of technology — lifeblood and lifestyle of the 21st century — must endure a divorce for my own piece of mind.

And to keep me from confusing my friends any further.

I never quite broadcast this, but I’d already abandoned Twitter months ago.

It can turn you into an obsessive, frankly, and in the wrong hands (mine, for instance) it can become a monster than makes you want to spend hours and hours in a cave — communicating with total strangers, 140 characters at a time.


It was driving me nuts, so I quit. Cold turkey.

There is probably some shrink term for halting tweets with a single, sudden stop.

In my case, the proper phrase was “relief.”

This next breakup will be tougher. I’m leaving Facebook.

And if I’m honest, I’ve been thinking about doing something drastic like this for awhile.

I mean, if I were to take a quick peek at my Facebook “news feed” right now, I’d be buried with fuzzy items from acquaintances of cousins of friends who used to be pals with people I originally “friended” several years ago.

Who are all these people remaining, and why do I want to share personal insights with them?

On top of my other issues with Facebook, the page itself has become a weird, twisted maze of things that mean nothing to me.

The last straw came this past weekend, when I was looking for something else on Facebook and realized there was a world map —showing places where I supposedly had lived or visited.

Only three or four places were marked. I thought: That’s not very accurate, because I’ve been to lots of other spots.

I had a few minutes to spare, so…

To shorten a fairly embarrassing yarn, I knocked out a whole load of places, from Buckie in northern Scotland to Lanzarote in the Canary Islands.

I was briefly proud that I’d caught up, when I started getting emails from friends, all of whom had been notified that I’d made a pretty exciting posting.

What had appeared on my Facebook page was this: “Steve is now in Amsterdam!”

I had to rush back and do an emergency post: “I am NOT in Holland, for heaven’s sake.”

Of course I’d ticked some wrong box when I was catching up on the locations, because technology does not come easily to me.

But it was a sign: I’ve been toying with abandoning Facebook anyhow, and here was proof I’ve got to go.

So sometime soon, I’ll do one last post that says something like this: “If you know me well enough, you have all my other contact information. Stay in touch. If you don’t…adios.”

Look, I’m just from the wrong generation for all these techno toys.

Except for my Kindle, of course — and the precious iPhone which directs every moment of my entire existence.

Hey, I’m not crazy enough to go THAT far.

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