The Sociable Lot
Not for them the awkward discomfort suffered by many of us as we attempt to keep an astonished expression from our faces!
For the young, the social media generation, there is huge benefit to be had by growing up and growing old alongside social media. Friends and acquaintances see each other regularly online as each of us uploads another selfie, a photo of a tipsy night out, an outrageous outfit, photographs from the latest holiday and as the observer we even get to see the evening meal and the tipple of the day. Our everyday lives are posted online for each of us to appreciate.Then there’s the family pet, yes Fido is up there too, alongside its latest antics.
Social media brings other benefits for the Facebook and Twitter generation; hardly anyone loses touch, the friends from school, the ones from college and university, the work colleagues and old neighbours. Their lives are laid bare, like pages in a book for all to see, to wonder at, admire and click the emoji of their choice!
They don’t know it yet and I’m not sure they ever will, but the social media generation, the teenagers, the twenty somethings, they are indeed fortunate, privileged even, to witness their friends and associates growing old right in front of their eyes. Some might not meet for many years, or ever again, and fortunately for them, the social media generation, there will be no huge shock when the time comes for that chance encounter with a person they once knew, and someone utters “You remember so and so don’t you?” Unlike us (the older lot) they won’t have to suffer the embarrassment that envelops us as we pretend we know exactly who they are.
When the media generation smile and say hello, their first thoughts won’t be
“OMG I wouldn’t have recognised her, look at all those lines and grey hair and look how overweight she is (or he)!” But for us oldies, when we’re re- introduced, that’s exactly what happens and then the simple truth occurs, it’s when the realisation kicks in and we become aware that the other person is thinking the same thoughts as you, as you witness the same unfortunate expression on their face that you’ve undoubtedly got on yours!
I wouldn’t recognise some of my old friends but that won’t happen to the social media generation, they will know exactly what old friends look like, who married who and when. They’ll know how many kids everyone has, if any; they’ll view photos of the kids’ first day of school and they’ll see every holiday picture online. And oh my goodness, it’s so much better to witness a few holiday snaps online than it was when expected to view a whole pack of them during your coffee break, and complete with negatives should you wish to order a copy!
I’m as guilty as the rest when it comes to Facebook overload, I post updates of what I’ve been doing and I’ll take umpteen selfies before finally settling on one that doesn’t include my three chins and I even share pictures of my delightful family (as seen through my eyes) and let’s not forget the weather pictures!
So, in conclusion, I’m grateful that Twitter and Facebook came into my life, but not half as grateful as the social media generation ought to be.