(Not) the End of Social Media

C8518CA1-1B19-41E9-A705-3A96CF7EEABC_1_201_aOh, never mind me. Just practicing my Classic Watch Pose. From the press release: “Mr. Woodford’s timepiece is a Seiko Recraft automatic with an aftermarket leather band by Fullmosa, strikingly set off by a pullover/swimsuit ensemble from Maury’s Big & Tall.”

Until yesterday, I hadn’t cooked a pot of Italian meat sauce in two or three years. Donna brought her family’s version of Bolognese sauce to our marriage and taught me to make it, but any time I cooked a pot she’d accuse me of messing with the recipe, so for a long while now she’s been the sauce chef. Well, she’s away and won’t be home until the end of the month, so I decided to make a batch for myself and Polly. I served it on bucatini pasta with freshly-grated Asiago cheese and it was great. There’s a container full in the freezer for when Donna’s back. And no, I don’t mess with the recipe … I cook it just the way Donna wrote it down, and by the way the link is to the original recipe on my cooking blog, if you want to try it yourself.

What’s this I hear about the end of social media? Trying to keep up with the competition, Facebook (I can’t bring myself to call it Meta) is changing what we’ll see when we open the platform, replacing the current personalized feed page with an attention-grabbing array of TikTok-style video clips and Instagramish lifestyle posts. Our personalized feed pages will still be there, apparently, but we’ll have to click on something to get to it.

Now every time Facebook says it’s going to make a change, even the most minute, everyone says that’s it for Facebook. But it never is. For the past couple of years I’ve barely looked at my personalized feed. Instead I go straight to the top right corner, clicking on the icons for Messenger and notifications. Because that’s where the interaction with friends shows up, the interactions that drew us all to Facebook in the first place.

What I’m saying is that I already have to click on something to get to where I want to be with Facebook. I’m willing to bet there’ll be Messenger and notification icons on the top right corner of Facebook’s new main page, and I’ll continue to use the platform the way I use it now.

Messenger, especially: a few real-life (not just Facebook) friends and I are engaged in an ongoing discussion about the movies and shows we’re watching on streaming TV. Some of the same friends and I have separate Messenger groups to discuss current events and book banning. To be sure, I also belong to several Facebook groups where people I’ve never met talk about common interests, but groups tend to go down lowest common denominator holes, getting flooded with spam and irrelevant crap. Quality control seems to be easier to exercise with Messenger.

Oh, I’m also willing to bet the video clips we wind up seeing on Facebook’s new main page will be the very same ones we’ve already seen on TikTok, with a heavy concentration of nasty stuff like animal cruelty, grotesque physical deformities, catastrophe porn, and people falling into open manholes.

What’s most on my mind this week is the HOA general membership meeting I’ve called for Saturday, the 30th of July, where we’ll vote on increasing our annual dues by $200 to raise money for future road repairs and repaving. If I seem a little distracted, that’s why. Can’t wait until January, when my term as HOA board president is over and someone else can be unpopular!

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