My new favourite fucking cool thing du jour is this baby: Thatz Not Ok. Brought to you by Gawker, it is the best thing to happen to me whilst working on a Sunday, replete with the knowledge I shall have to work the public holiday Monday as well.
Aaaanyway, I’m a-gonna post some of the lovely Caity Weaver’s words of wisdom right here. Because I want to buy her a beer and find out how she is so goddamn talented and excellent and shit. And then maybe stalk her.
So here’s something that made me snort with laughter.
Avoiding Awkward Facebook Friendships, Confronting Greeks About Their Secrets, and Other Questionable Advice
What’s the policy on putting off Facebook friending? I think it makes sense to explain to someone you’ve just started seeing that you don’t want to be Facebook friends until you’ve been dating a few months. It seems less awkward than having them go nuts if something happens (i.e. I’m a jerk or they are a nutjob.) Is that okay?
Thatz not okay.
I have to wonder what kinds of Big Fucking Secrets you are hiding in your inner Facebook sanctum that you don’t feel comfortable revealing your page to a person until you’re both deeply invested in a relationship.
If you go out on one bad date with this person, after which you plan never to see them again—fine. Don’t friend them. But if you like them enough to continue meeting up with them, why wouldn’t you allow them to see your Facebook page?
“Listen, I’m perfectly happy to hang out and eat dinner with you, but I’m just not comfortable with you seeing a list of my favorite bands and TV shows this soon into our courtship.”
Is your profile picture an image of your bank account number? Have you “like”d several pro-Eugenics pages? Are all your video uploads snuff films you shot on your phone?
If so, stop doing all of that—change every single thing about yourself, for that is the only way you will ever find love—and add your new special companion. (If you would prefer to keep your horrible life a secret, place your friend on limited profile. Make sure you leave your wall and a few photo albums visible so they don’t realize what you’ve done.)
While I understand the millennial compulsion to avoid “awkward” situations at all times (“There is literally nothing worse than a brief awkward moment between relative strangers”; “I wouldliterally rather slit my wrists than say ‘Goodbye’ to someone and then find out we’re both walking in the same direction”; etc.), they are a necessary part of life. They give us fodder for stories. They help us develop neuroses. They’re what make us human, as awkward moments between animals usually result in death. (Right?)
If you refuse to friend someone on the grounds that you might turn out to be a jerk or they might turn out to be a nutjob, guess who looks like both a jerk and a nutjob right off the bat?
I’m also wondering how exactly you expect these former flames to “go nuts” on Facebook if you stop seeing them. Will they spam your wall with comments about their life is much better now that you’re no longer dating? Will they comment “O RLY?!” every time you update your relationship status? Will they continue inviting you to Farmville day after day even though you’ve told them you prefer the city life?
They’ll probably never interact with you on Facebook again. Which brings me to my final point: People you’ve briefly dated are the best Facebook friends to have.
Who better to have as a Facebook friend than someone you briefly dated? You don’t really need to keep tabs on your best friends; that will happen naturally. And it probably doesn’t matter where that girl who shared notes with you in a freshman year history seminar is living now.
The people you’ll feel most compelled to check up on are those loves that Could Have Been.
What’s she looking like these days? Oh wow, he’s gay now. I am way cooler and cuter than that new trick—a toast to me!
A friend of mine recently told me a story about how, a couple years after he and a young lady stopped seeing one another (she said she was “too busy training for a triathlon”—haha burn), a photo of her flashing an accidental crotch shot popped up on his newsfeed. I thought the anecdote was going to end with him sending her a discreet heads up that she might want to untag the photo—proof that former flames are valuable allies in the fight of you vs. the world.
Instead, the story ended like this:
“I’ll admit, I laughed. You’re ‘too busy’…having your crotch on the Internet.”
Maybe not the sweet scenario I was anticipating (he pointed out that writing her apropos of nothing to tell her everyone could see her goodies might have come off as “the creepiest message”), but certainly rewarding in a different, more vindictive way.
All of which to is to say: Stop being crazy. If the relationship doesn’t work out, you can always just unfriend someone.
I, like most urbanites, am proud of my diverse group of friends and acquaintances who come from all walks of life. I even pity those who don’t get to relish diversity like I do. Some of my friends are international, but they have lived in the states for many years and speak English fluently. Even though some of us know different languages, we all use English to involve everyone in the conversation. Recently, my group of friends has invited two Greek -American students to outings and the like. They are indeed fun to be around, but they always talk in their native language to each other, even though they speak unaccented English. My friends and I think it’s a bit rude, especially when they make side comments to themselves when we’re in a group. We’re debating confronting them about this. Is that okay?
Thatz not okay.
It sucks that, after all the effort you’ve taken to curate a beautiful United Colors of Benetton ad of friendship (always taking care to distinguish between “football” and “American football,” holding dinners exclusively at the International House of Pancakes so that no one feels left out during mealtimes, etc.), a couple Greeks—drunk on nectar, gullets stuffed with ambrosia—can stomp into town shouting spells in that demon tongue, and throw off the kumbaya vibe.
How will your social group cope with this intrusion? Will it succumb to infighting, ultimately stratifying into many distinct layers, like phyllo dough? Or will it remain a delicious blend of exotic, harmonious elements, like phyllo dough?
Yes, it’s rude to speak in a foreign language in front of other people (though not as rude as bringing down the entire Euro zone—ya burnt, Greece!). The problem, of course, is that the people who are excluded will automatically think you are talking about them, because everyone thinks they are more interesting than they are. (This is the kind of bitchy comment that would be perfect to make in a foreign language.)
You mention that you find it particularly rude when your friends make side comments to one another when you’re in a group. If the group consists of three people and two of them are laughing to themselves in another language, yes, that’s unspeakably rude. If it’s a group of, say, 10, it’s no ruder than any pair of people breaking off into a natural side conversation. There’s a sliding scale of rudeness here.
For the record, while their English may sound perfectly good to you, there’s a good chance your new friends will always be a little self-conscious about their abilities. Don’t deprive them the comfort of occasionally slipping into their native language.
If you have to know what they’re saying at all times (or because they’re doing the super rude thing of switching to Greek in very small groups), it’s perfectly fine to smile blankly and straight up asking them “What?” They’ll probably respond “I was saying…” and voilà (French for “there is”): crisis averted. Eventually, they may even get into the habit of translating for you before you butt in to ask.
If, when you ask what they’re talking about, they respond “SOME THINGS ARE SECRETS BETWEEN GREEKS,” that is odd and you should consider slowly easing them out of the friend group.