October 30, 2015 by T. Gregory Argall
I was recently searching for an old picture that I had posted to Facebook many years ago. This search led me to scroll through part of my long-forgotten online history, and I was reminded that Facebook was so much simpler in its early days. It was a different world then.
I joined Facebook in 2007; not right at the beginning but soon after. People were still unsure about it. They didn’t know if it would just fizzle out like Robert Downey Jr’s career after Ally McBeal, or if it would thrive and grow like MySpace.
Like I said, it was a different world then.
Back then, a status update on Facebook was literally that, an update on your status, your current activities and wellbeing. Beside the status update box was your name followed by “is…” Whatever you wrote in the box became a statement about yourself.
After a while, the Gods of Facebook eliminated the “is,” leaving only the ellipsis, because they realised that saying “Tim is wants chocolate” sort of suggests that Tim is sucks at sentence structure.
And thus were born the Facebook Grammar Police, a volunteer group of linguistic vigilantes who prove that the most futile method of educating people is through public mockery and social trauma.
While looking back at my early Facebook history, I found that I had apparently viewed the status update as an on-going game of “fill in the blank” and I played to win.
Here is a collection of statuses from my first couple of years on Facebook, when having twenty people on your friends list was a major accomplishment.
TGA is… whistling Dixie.
TGA is… right behind you… . . . . . . . BOO!!
TGA is… avoiding sharp, pointy things.
TGA is… adjustable for your comfort.
TGA is… misaligning his palates and bruising his chakras.
TGA is… home from the dentist and will be screaming in agony when the freezing wears off. Yeah, he’s a big baby. So, what?
TGA is… pondering bacon gravy. Mmmmmmm…
TGA is… thinking about bacon gravy again. Quick! Somebody invent the stuff! I’m hungry…
TGA is… loving Jen… She made bacon gravy. Yum!
TGA is… home from having lunch with an elf and buying a banjo.
TGA is… like, “Nuh uh!” and he’s like, “Yuh huh!” and I’m like, “No way!” and he’s like, “Yes way!” and I’m like so out of there!
TGA is… safely stowed in your overhead compartment.
TGA is… not reading that damn Harry Potter book and you can’t make me.
TGA is… invincible! Well mostly invincible… More or less… Just don’t hit me th-OOoooffff!!!! Yeah, there.
TGA is… the walrus. Coo coo ka choo.
TGA… is available in tablet or capsule form.
TGA… is a wise choice for the health-conscious consumer. No, really.
TGA… is poking you… a lot… all the way from over here… Impressive, huh?
TGA… can paddle a boat. Canoe?
TGA… is bringing sexy back… by force if necessary. He’s kind of like the bounty hunter of sexy.
TGA… spins you right round, baby, right round, like a record, baby, right round, round, round.
TGA… has two left feet and two right shoes. He’s a dancin’ fool!!
TGA… has returned his seat to an upright position and is preparing for landing. Anyone know how to land one of these things..?
TGA… is that itch you can’t scratch.
TGA… is the fifth cylon.
TGA… is the Harvey Keitel to your Terri Garr.
TGA… stared into the heart of the cosmos and saw Jell-o pudding. Butterscotch. It was yummy.
TGA… saw the Acadia Academy of Music School, another fine institution from the Department of Redundancy Department.
TGA… is… Or IS he? Hmmmm…..
TGA… is older than he was a minute ago, but not as old as he’ll be by the time you read this.
TGA… is the mischievous gleam in your eye, you tricky devil, you.
TGA… says “Any fool can multi-task. I’m omni-tasking.”
TGA… is the Carl Sagan to your Barney Fife.
TGA… is wobbling on the tip of a pinnacle balanced on the edge of a precipice… Wheeeeeee!
TGA… is practicing taxidermy on dust-bunnies.
TGA… can levitate. Really. He’s levitating right now. Trust me. Wooooooo. Cool, huh?
TGA… can’t decide which costume to wear to the new Star Trek movie… “Orion Slave Girl” or “Giant Trashbag Monster That Ate Tasha Yar.”
TGA… was mugged by his imaginary friend Binkles. Didn’t see that coming.
TGA… has been inspected for manufacturing defects.
So, yeah. There’s that.
Now that we are collectively at the point in our Facebook lives, the point where we have have “earned” our sense of entitlement regarding this free service, it’s time demand that Facebook bring back the original status update format.
Bring back the true status update.
Okay, maybe not “true” because most of that stuff was probably just made up, but you know what I mean.
And while we’re at it, there’s something else we can do on Facebook, something that has been lost to the anonymity of social media…
Try to be nice to each other.