Garden Party

facebook-privacyI went to a garden party to reminisce with my old friends
A chance to share old memories and play our songs again
When I got to the garden party, they all knew my name
No one recognized me, I didn’t look the same
But it’s all right now, I learned my lesson well
You see, ya can’t please everyone, so ya got to please yourself

–Ricky Nelson

Let’s just say that I’m not the most social wildebeest in the herd. Ya think? So when an invitation comes my way it’s a big, big decision. A really big decision. Monumental. Did I mention yet that it is big?

Of course I don’t want to go. That’s a given. That part is never open to debate. The only question is should I go? Put in an appearance, as it were. My normal procedure, if I go at all, is to keep it as brief as possible before doing The Slink.

For argument’s sake, let’s say the decision has been made. (It could happen.) What then?

The Slink is my trademark move. One minute I’m there and then. Poof. Hey! Has anyone seen Tom in a while?

I don’t believe in goodbyes at parties. It creates a commotion, focuses undue attention (I’m not a narcissist in real life) and can take 90 minutes or more. The Slink is the much preferable option.

But before I could activate the magical powers of The Slink something else happened. Something very untoward. Of course, great umbrage and acrimony was involved. Curious? Well load up the fucking Facebook. I’m sure you can read all about it.

It all started with, what I thought at the time, was a very simple and humble request:

Please do not photograph me and put my picture on Facebook without my permission.

We’re all friends here, right? If not, my ass would be miles away so it must be true. And with friends like these, who needs enemies?

The varied responses to my simple request were sublime and delightful.

Some reacted with shock. I don’t want to exaggerate so I’ll downplay it a bit and say it was as if I had just gutted their beloved dog or jammed a knife deep in their child’s eye socket. Or set off a thermonuclear device on their house.

No Facebook pictures? Yeah, right. You have got to be fucking kidding me. Unheard of! Bad form! Persnickety! This is even worse than using the wrong fork to each your salad course. What would Miss Manners say?

This is not the exact opposite of what I don't want Facebook doing to me.

This is not the exact opposite of what I don’t want Facebook doing to me. Inverted.

Wouldn’t she say something about respecting the rights and feelings of others? Har har! I think not. What good are my rights if I can’t use them to literally take a shit on your face?

Others took a more dominant posture. “Fuck you,” they said. “This is a party and I’ll do what I want. You can’t stop me.”

Wow. You really are a good friend, aren’t you?

Left with little recourse, I did the only option available to me. I did The Slink. Not just any slink, mind you, but The Slink on steroids. I was the fucking Lance Armstrong of Slink. Yes, it was a tour de farce. I am a farce to be reckoned with.

Back home, with yet another successful Slink notched on my belt, I stewed and fumed and began to ponder what had happened. What should have been a fun goodbye with a lot of friends I’ll likely never see again (because I’m leaving town in seven days) is now a pile of steaming dog poo on the trail of my memories of life.

Bastards. Nice knowin’ ya.

Literally that same night the tagging commenced. The notifications were rolling in like waves on the beach. Relentless. The Facebook pictures were progressing hither and yon. It’s so nice to be respected as a person and to really be heard. It was very, very touching how many of my friends had ignored my simple request.

It has been a week now and the pictures continue to dribble in on a daily basis. There is seemingly no end to how many digital images a single appearance of me at a party can produce.

I bragged the other day that I’m an inventor. I’d like to unveil my latest creation. It’s a small piece of technology, perhaps the size of an earring, that could take the form of eyeglasses (justice!) or a baseball cap, necklace, or even a bindi (a little red dot on the forehead between the eyes).

I haven’t thought of a catchy capitalism name for the item yet. How about something subtle like the ZuckerFucker? Yeah, that might work.

The operation of the device is exceedingly simple. The reason it must be worn near the head is because it produces a scrambling field that interferes with the process of taking pictures by modern cameras. Any such attempt will result in an extreme blur that is capable of withstanding any facial recognition efforts.

When combined with my wristwatch that emits a cell phone dampening field, one is truly ready to go out in the world and have a nice, peaceful time. It’s as close as you can get to what it might have been like before the invention of the binary bit.

Look for my new line of products coming soon to a KickStarter near you. My team of scientists are standing by. You just won’t be able to see them or contact them by phone. And that’s the way they like it.

9 responses

  1. Delete your Facebook account then. Maybe delete your face.
    No one wants to take pictures with the faceless guy.
    “Look mom, it’s me with No-Face Joe”


    1. LOL! Now that’s officer thinking. Delete my face. Why didn’t I think of that? Truly brilliant and outside the box. If we can successfully invent that I predict we will rule the world.

      The first invention on my drawing board was something I call the Facebook Bandana. It’s a piece of fabric wrapped in such a way that it covers most of the face. You might say that it “books” a “face.” Haha! Only the eyes are visible.

      The drawback to the Facebook Bandana, of course, is that is draws a lot of attention. That’s what prompted me to look for a more subtle solution.


      1. Sadly, if you delete your FB page, your pictures and links still remain. You aren’t erased. You are merely “inactive”.


  2. Maybe they wanted to take pictures of you, Tom, because you’re such a pretty boy. I’m sure you were locker fodder back in high school. 🙂


    1. If by “locker fodder” you mean that they wanted to fod me away in a locker you are correct.

      It’s okay. I got my revenge. I cumberbatched them all!


      1. You are such a Benedict.


  3. I make all my public appearances while wearing a latex mask of Mark Zuckerberg.


    1. Pure brilliance! Why didn’t I think of that?

      Zuckerberg in a strip club.
      Zuckerberg robbing a bank.
      Zuckerberg buying a copy of Microsoft Windows.

      I like it. I like it a lot. 🙂


      1. Yeah, the latex mask is probably a hit with ironic bank robbers. But let’s not get too excited. Zuckerberg lives behind replicas of all our faces.


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