Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Facebook Cards

It's going to be less effective to write this post without using anyone's real name, but I guess you'll have to use your imagination.

LJT and I have been chatting recently about how collecting Facebook friends is a lot like collecting baseball cards. Within this circle of authors, excluding, of course, Side Bar, who hates Facebook, everyone has the Walt Clyde Frazier card the WinIt card and so forth. These gies are like having a Bobby Meacham or a Kevin Elster, no big whoop. But then when you go out and get one of the more random people in your network the joy is akin to getting a great card. And there's different levels, too.

Getting the guy who you had a bunch of classes with in high school and were friendly with but, for whatever reason, you just don't keep in touch through normal communication channels is an ok Facebook card. For purposes of this blog, let's say Yankel since he's a cool guy with a recognizable nickname. A Howard Johnson or something. On the same token, getting a good friend of a friend is no big deal. One of the Hollywoods, say. On the other hand, there are the amazing Facebook cards.

Getting the girl, for example, who you went to elementary school with, but who moved away in middle school would be a great get. The dude who went to your high school and played on the basketball team and was a couple years older than you would be a great get. You get the idea. In order to be a great Facebook card the person has to be either really obscure, someone who you wouldn't necessarily immediately equate with having the ability to use a computer for anything useful, or maybe way cooler than you but still willing to be your Facebook friend (not necessarily an issue for some Facebook users), or just a rare get for some other similar reason.

All of my recent Facebook activity has generally been geared toward acquiring good Facebook cards. And then once you acquire them you get to find out what all those people are up to, which is genuinely interesting, despite Side Bar's argument to the contrary.

On a related note, what do you think is the appropriate scale for the ratio of Facebook friends to actual friends? I, for example, have like 275 Facebook friends, and probably like 9 real life friends, three of whom are authors of this blog, and one of whom is my wife. (Think about the phrase "one of whom" for a moment. Isn't it strange? No, I'm not stoned.) That's like a ratio of 30 Facebook friends for every real life friend. My ratio is probably a little high. I wonder what the average Facebook:Real Life ratio is.

12 comments:

Open Bar said...

If anyone can track down Jackie Faragouna, she'd be like my '52 Topps Mickey Mantle of Facebook cards.

Yankel said...

I appreciate the shout out, and agree all in all on the post. I keep in touch with a good number of people from undergrad and grad school who I see when I'm travelling, so my ratio is probably closer to 1 in 10. If anything, the THS people bring me down since I only catch up with a handful when I'm in town - which should be addressed in future visits.

Y'all look like you're waiting for dicks in your mouths! said...

This is the gayest post ever! "The dude who went to your high school and played on the basketball team and was a couple years older than you would be a great get." Are you serious? Brian Wein is your idea of good facebook friend to get? Homo!

ChuckJerry said...

wow.

Open Bar said...

Yeah. I think we might have another gay reader, yay!

The Notorious LJT said...

i wonder who it could be that is enraged by an innocuous post about facebook? hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.........

ChuckJerry said...

For what it's worth, I wasn't actually thinking of that particular gie. Which of us could have a preternatural fascination with him, however? And be angry enough to take time out of his day to call me a homo?

I think the last time I was called a homo must have been 1995.

Side Bar said...

Angriest. Comment. Ever. WTF?

Yankel said...

Well at least it wasn't a knock on me or St... whoever the other person was that wasn't named.

Walt Clyde Frazier said...

That angry poster is bizarre. Definitely the first time I've seen a sign-on name "Y'all look like you're waiting for dicks in your mouth!". Given that you all live in NYC, I'd imagine that if any of you wanted a dick in your mouth, you wouldn't have to look very far.

Anyhow, I've been thinking about your question about the ratio. I think there's too many shades of gray of what constitutes a "friend" vs. "acquaintance". In our old age of early 30s, those lines are not as clearly drawn anymore.

But there are definitely a few people on Facebook that I haven't had a conversation with since 1994 or so. They shouldn't, therefore, be "friends".

What constitutes a "friend" sounds like fodder for a future post.

Walt Clyde Frazier said...

** "look very far" should read "wait very long". I ruined the punchline of my lame comment.

Anonymous said...

I laughed out loud when I got to the part about the phrase "one of whom". Good stuff ChuckJerry.