Monthly Archives: April 2012

facebook, google, can they coexist?

i’m so sorry, mark, there is a possibility that facebook will fail.  that would be awful for me, because then i would have no social life since i made a new years resolution to meet all my facebook friends in 2011. i succeeded at my resolution–way better than those resolutions to lose five pounds and give up white wine–but i also gained new friends.  i really like facebook.

mark made this possible. however, i am not stalking him. so no temporary restraining orders please! however, i think he has to watch out for google. specifically google chrome. . . it's pretty, it's catchy, and it isn't mark's friend.

 

google chrome didn’t exist three years ago.  now, it’s threatening to topple internet explorer as the dominant browser.  why should facebook worry?  or rather, why should mark worry?  well, the problem is that google doesn’t want to be a mere browser tool.

i'd like to be a browser tool but maybe i'm too old. after all, fifty one is rather ancient.

 

google has ambitious plans with google plus, the company’s “spine”, and uh oh, maybe it can topple the facebook empire.  mostly because google has so many interesting products–google, gmail, android, google search and my favorite google translator which is how i communicate with my peeps.  since i can barely speak a word of english much less any other language.  and if google browser is the gateway drug of our internet we’re going to have to take a few extra steps to get to facebook.  google chrome is now 30.9% of the browser market and they want you to use google plus.  omg, mr. dreamy, remember that dude?

wait, does this mean that fortunes can be won, lost, and won again in this business?

 

in any event, my use of facebook is quite simple.  i connect, reconnect, re-reconnect with friends and family and i have made it my mission to meet these friends in person.  like, actually where we are both there.  without a computer.  without a laptop.  even an ipad.  it’s really weird.  and it’s changed me.

 

 


thank you mark zuckerberg!

i just got this email and i had to share it with you!  it was such a treat especially given that i’m working on my tax return and am figuring out that no matter how i smoosh and squeeze the numbers, i still owe the government major cash.

 

Hi Friend,

My name is Mark Zuckerberg, Chief Executive Officer of Facebook. We have recently joined up with Apple mackintosh for a one-time promotional event today, we are giving away complimentary Apple iPhones and iPads to randomly selected individuals who have been fortunate to be chosen as one of our latest winners for today. We randomly selected users from our systems database and you have matched with our latest drawing.

We have partnered up with Apple to advertise their hottest product yet, the Apple iPhone and iPad. Once yet again, we are operating this campaign for one-day only. All you need to do is CLICK HERE to check out our web site made for this promotion and fill out this short survey to recieve yours for free. Just make sure you enter your email so we may locate our records to make certain that we have reserved one for you. That’s it!

Congrats on winning a free Apple iPhone4 and iPad2. If you have any query or concerns, feel free to e-mail me back. However, you should claim your free iPhone and iPad 1st to ensure one will be set-aside for you before the deadline ends. We do understand that you may well not receive this e-mail until after the deadline, but, we suggest you check out the site and enter your email to see if we still have got yours on hold, which we often-times do because others have not claimed theirs in time.

Mark Zuckerberg
CEO, Facebook

 

isn't he dreamy? and so thoughtful of him to give me a present when i really could use one! this week has been one of major setbacks and i was feeling alone and lonely and very sad. i feel so cherished by mark. but funny thing about his email address!

 

naturally, when i tried to reply to mark zuckerberg — who will forever after be referred to as Mr. Dreamy — i noticed the email address. . .  cdonallbymcdo@hotmail.com  . . . i emailed mark to say how happy i was, and am awaiting his response.  maybe you could email mark, er, mr. dreamy at this account and ask him for some gifts as well!


the tax code explained just in time for april 15

on april fifteenth, the internal revenue service wants to hear from every american . . . . and this year, there are some americans who feel like pulling out their hair.

get out your calculators! figuring out your taxes is fun and easy! oh, and i'm lying about that.

 

i brought home from the library a two hundred page, single spaced manual that is the 1040 EZ tax manual.  so, armed with a calculator, coffee, and a sense of civic responsibility, i will spend the next three days calculating how much money the internal revenue service wants from me.  on the other hand, there is a simpler explanation:

 


on love, change, and that pesky habit of falling in love with someone and then wanting to change them. . .

facebook makes it possible to meet new friends we never would have expected to enjoy and f2fb friend #313 sara kolorowicz is definitely someone i wouldn’t have met without the help of facebook.  in part, it’s because she simply does not leave the house she shares with her parents.  without a job or school because of her agoraphobia, she survives on social security disability payments.

i also probably wouldn't get to meet her without facebook because frankly, sara is cool. she is what i wish i had been when i was twenty two--beautiful, honest, forthright and smart as hell. maybe if i dye my hair pink i have a shot at being a cool fifty one year old.

i felt honored that she invited me into her house.  it’s been quite some time since she’s allowed visitors.  oddly enough, she was engaged to a man from texas when we friended each other on facebook at the beginning of the year.  they met playing an online video game and their friendship turned to romance and from romance to an engagement.  he drove up ten times from texas, a twenty four hour marathon drivefest.  at first he was totally okay with sara’s life but then his desire to change her became more than the spirit of wanting the best for someone you love.   and that gets to be tricky–the line between wanting the best for someone you love and thinking that they have to change in order to be with you.

i like sara just the way she is.  i also hope one day she will be able to get out of her house, in part so that others can see how beautiful she is!  on the other hand, i have also introduced her via facebook to a video game designer.  . . that’s a job she can do from inside her castle walls!


a facebook matchmaker experience-a return to detroit

i enjoyed my time with f2fb friend #312 marguerite joseph and for those of you who have facebook, i hope you’ll look her up and send her a birthday greeting!  she is one hundred and four years old but doesn’t look a day over seventy five.  oddly, facebook doesn’t recognize its users as ever being older than 99 so i guess she can take that to the department of motor vehicles and get a new license.

it was back to detroit that i was heading, with matchmaking on my mind.  i revisited f2fb friend 301 brenda jeffries because i believed i had some unfinished business.

across from brenda's home is a vacant lot, not an unusual circumstance in her neighborhood. she has created a shrine to her daughter raven, who was abducted while playing there when she was six years old. three days later, the amber alert went into effect and raven's body was found. i brought three baby duck statuaries and a mommy duck to the shrine to represent brenda's family. the city of detroit owns the lot and is willing to sell it to brenda for four hundred dollars.

in some neighborhoods of detroit, there are so many abandoned lots that city services like garbage pick up, fire protection and police patrols are inefficient.  if there’s only one house occupied on each of ten blocks in a neighborhood, it really stretches resources.

the city is implementing a program where there are "zones" where city services will continue to be offered and residents of detroit are encouraged to move into those zones or to face life with only their own resources. some corporations are purchasing land outside of the zones with an eye towards developing farms, industrial parks, etc. but what about brenda, who definitely doesn't want to move? what to do with the land that includes what is for her the sacred place of her daughter's spirit? well, it got me thinking. . . about the christmas box angel memorial i visited with f2fb friend #310 julia kovach. . .

both of these friends, julia and brenda, are members of a club nobody ever wants to join–the club of those who have lost a child.  in southgate michigan is the christmas box angel surrounded by the healing bricks that memorialize the lost children.  but don’t you think brenda’s neighborhood could possibly carry that grief and turn it into a positive?  maybe the synergy of julia and brenda together could do that!

julia is also a writer and when i told her the story of raven’s abduction and murder, i realized that she could approach the story with uncommon sympathy and so i have put the two women together.  a story, a memorial park, something good is going to come of their friendship!  on this easter, i think of renewal and i think of the shrine on brenda’s block as the first part of that renewal.

however, i hope she doesn’t throw out the ducks when she’s renovating.  i have become fond of the shrine because it represents the greatest of loves.

brenda's granddaughter paris is adorable and i love holding her and spending time with her! she is a great comfort to brenda!


nobody (except my f2fb friend #312) lies about their age on facebook!

i left southgate michigan striking north towards detroit, thinking about how i was going to persuade f2fb friend #311 julia kovach to help out another facebook friend. . . last year my new year’s resolution was to meet every one of my 325 facebook friends.  to get out from behind the computer. . .  to spend real time with real friends.  now i think something intriguing is developing in terms of putting together facebook friends who need each other.

but first, my oldest facebook friend–she’s marguerite joseph (f2fb friend #312) and she’s 104 years old.  facebook has lots of rules.  for instance, i can’t have more than 5000 friends.  not just me, nobody can have more than 5000 friends.

i was put up for adoption when i was three years old. i tracked down my biological parents when i was twenty five using a private detective--this is b.f. before facebook which has definitely made it easier to locate missing relatives. a few years after we met, my mother aleta decided she didn't want anything to do with me. i tracked her down on facebook and sent a friendship request two months ago. as it stands now, even if she hit "confirm" we might not be able to be friends because i have 5000 friends. i guess there's a good reason for the policy but i sure hope if my mom decides to be my friend that mark zuckerberg will allow that!

 

my friend marguerite joseph is 104 years old.  she is turning 105 on april 19th. however, facebook only recognizes a maximum age of 99.  doesn’t facebook realize that centenarians use facebook too?

here i am with marguerite and her granddaughter gail marlow (f2fb friend #109). the last time i saw gail was last year as part of this project. she owned a nightclub in cincinnati. that evening, i met a wonderful young male dancer who explained he was only doing it to put himself through medical school. i also got a jello shot licked off my chest. really, maybe i should shut up!

 

marguerite definitely looks younger than 104 and she was a most wonderful hostess for the evening.  i stayed overnight and prepared for the next day’s meeting in detroit with not one, not two, but three different facebook friends.  each of whom needs another of my facebook friends. . . . well, at least i think they do!

p.s. log on your facebook account, find marguerite joseph, send her a birthday greeting (tell her you’re my friend)–i promise that her granddaughter will read each greeting to her and when you’re having your one hundred and fifth birthday, i’ll send you a birthday greeting on facebook!  even if facebook says you’re a mere 99 years old!

i wonder. . . do you think facebook could shave 6 years off my official age?

NAH!

nobody lies about their age on facebook!


a christmas box angel and a little facebook matchmaking

some facebook friends astonish me with their courage and their strength.  the things they have overcome, the things they have left behind, the things they endure.  f2fb friend #311 julia kovach is just like that.  and i have given her a task and i sure hope she doesn’t let me down.  but first. . .

i slid into coldwater michigan and spent some time with f2fb friend #310 blake parshall. his mother molly is a facebook friend who has trouble leaving the house. she was having a bad day but blake and i made the most of things. please don't tell the michigan state police, but i let him sit on my lap in the driver's side seat of my car and we did a three point turn at the end of sheridan road. do blake and i look really guilty about this violation of motor vehicle regulations?

 

then i drove across the state of michigan to southgate to meet julia.  i have only noticed her this year because she has a wonderful blog — journey with julia at juliakovach.wordpress.com–and we are facebook friends.  she has sometimes had trouble with agoraphobia and anxiety and has a lot of “pajama days”. . .

thirty years ago, on july 8, 1984 julia gave birth to a son.  it should have been a happy moment, but michael kovach was born and died premature.  julia got to have one moment of holding her son and then his body was donated to science.  i think julia has struggled with that experience since.

in 1993, richard paul evans published a book called the christmas box about a woman who mourns a child at the base of an angel statue.  the angel has the word hope embedded in its right wing.   it was fiction, but the  image resonated with people who are part of this club that nobody ever asks to join.

in 1995 the christmas box was made into a movie with maureen o'hara and richard thomas. when i was a kid, i had such a crush on this guy. he played john boy on the waltons. if he's reading this blog, please richard my love is true!

 

in salt lake city an angel statute, complete with the word hope embedded into its right wing was commissioned and in the michigan memorial park there is a similar angel.   this angel has been built all over the country and i got to thinking. . . . . .

every december 6, parents gather around the angel in michigan memorial park, in salt lake city, wherever they are, for a candle lighting.  and when julia first attended, well, i’ll let her tell you.

i admire julia and her writing and the way she manages to keep a positive attitude about things.  and i remembered that in going to detroit i would be meeting with f2fb friend #302 brenda jeffries, who lost her daughter raven.   i had three hours in the car to listen to yammering talk radio, a book on tape, my very exasperated gamin gps dude, and to consider how to be a facebook matchmaker.

julia is very artistic and she made this tiny little picture just for me. . . or for someone else named arlynn and i just swiped it off her kitchen counter. the picture sits next to my gamin gps. i am really really blessed in friendship.


all you need is one book — a party invitation for YOU!

i have been so blessed with this project of meeting my facebook friends–and i have been working with facebook friend #306 oj dorson in creating an ebook about the experience!  this weekend i headed for michigan and landed in coldwater.  my facebook friends molly and jeff parshall live in coldwater and i’ve visited with both of them before.  molly has agoraphobia and finds it difficult to leave the house.  she’s made a lot of progress working on herself in the past few months.  she even sent me a picture of herself at the nearby playground with her son blake!

but every personal transformation has some setbacks.  jeez, i’m a six setbacks a day and eight victories person myself.  sunday, we were thinking of going to the park as a quartet–blake, molly, jeff and me–but it didn’t work out.  molly had to return home, to her “safe” place.

having any sort of disability, illness, quirk puts pressure on everybody else in the family.  jeff is a strong, taciturn, family protective man who puts his energies into his work as a machinist and he went back to working around the house.  molly sent me and blake off to the park.  blake is a boy with a strong, generous heart and he asked if he could make a video for my blog.

we went home and he picked out eight more books!  i know that i won’t see the parshalls at the party in winnetka but i know that they are part of the creation of this special day!  and molly has no greater cheerleader than her son blake–he understands sometimes his mom can’t do things she wants to do, that he wants to do.  he loves trains and has an ambition to take a train ride.  i can’t wait for the day when i walk down to the winnetka train station and pick up the parshall family!

i am facebook friends with the parshalls.  it’s important sometimes to come out from behind our technology and spend a day together. . . .

by the way, the invitation to the party–it benefits reach out and read illinois and the guest list is quite exclusive. . . it includes YOU!!!!


who doesn’t get motivated by a new dress?

colleen is a facebook friend who sometimes has trouble with driving by herself. she set up a system after my visit this winter so that every time she faced that fear she put ten dollars towards a dress she and i had admired in taylorville's best dress shop. this is her birthday picture and she's wearing the dress. .. can i get an amen that she looks gorgeous??? and like she said, "who doesn't get motivated by a new dress?"

 

we can face adversity, fear, and adverse circumstances by treating it like a game with ourselves and that’s what my facebook friend (number 298 if we’re counting) did with her fear.  she’s now the proud owner of a gorgeous white dress that makes her look HAWT!!!! oh, and also, some pride.

congratulations colleen!!!