August 02, 2020
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When I Can Speak Without Talking

If I'm low, I don't have to explain myself to everyone. All I do is update my status on Facebook.

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When I Can Speak Without Talking
I didn't really have to announce to my friends that my relationship was over. I simply changed my status on Facebook. Now, when they log in, they see my name with a little broken heart icon next to it saying "Meenakshi is no longer in a relationship". Sympathetic calls and messages have been pouring in and I found I didn't have to explain my general state of mind to everyone. Facebook had taken care of it for me.

I log on to Facebook first thing in the morning and keep it open all day. I use it on check on friends' photo albums, to visit a secret group I have set up with three friends, to see what people are up to via their status messages and, occasionally, I'll admit, to spy on people I'm curious about. Even my cat is on Facebook, on a feature called Catbook, where he has his own friends and his own messages.

There was a time when my cellphone wasn't working and I left a message on Facebook to that effect, only to have my internet stop working the next day. It was traumatic. I felt as though I had no contact whatsoever with the outside world. I might as well have been in outer space. Although, even as I write this I am amazed, and a little alarmed, at the degree of my involvement with—let's face it—just a clever website. The world for me has suddenly shrunk. My actions and emotions are now entirely written in Facebookese: if I don't love someone, I just key in <3, an upside-down heart emoticon appears next to their name—and they're out of my life.

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