Thursday, March 26, 2009

IKEA and Facebook

The first time I walked into IKEA, we were looking for a dresser for Austin's room.  We walked in, grabbed a cart, and started on the little walkway on the second floor.  At first, it was fascinating to see all the adorable, staged rooms, and I caught myself pondering what it would be like to live in a 340 square foot apartment in the middle of Manhattan.  Ten years ago, before my husband and bazillion children, I could picture myself being so IKEA chic.  However, as we walked deeper into the store, I felt like I was getting swallowed in the abyss.  I became so overwhelmed that I couldn't even think straight.  Even when we got to the "Dresser Section," there were so many options that I became incapable of answering simple yes and no questions.  I'm not much of a shopper anyway (I do it out of obligation - not enjoyment), so we left without purchasing anything and I felt like I was in a haze.

Sometimes I get like this with certain restaurant menus.  If there are too many selections, it's as if my mind forgot how to read.  I can't seem to zero in on one section and calmly maneuver my way through the options.

This is how Facebook is for me.  I set up an account a while ago because people wanted me to be their friend.  How flattering!  My friends (that I speak to and interact in real life) also want to be my friends (so we can speak and interact in cyberspace as well).  It was so much pressure to be popular.  So, I reluctantly set up an account, and for some reason my birthday is stuck at January 1, 1936 - which isn't entirely accurate - and my Profile Picture is still a light blue silhouette of a young man.  After the flattery wore off (and I realized that I only have about 20 cyberfriends and some people have hundreds - a reality check on my lack of popularity), those overwhelming feelings set in again.  

Now when I open my Facebook page, I feel like I'm 30 minutes into my initial IKEA experience.  All of a sudden, there are friend requests and several people commenting on different aspects of their day with several other people commenting on their comments.  I feel as if I'm at a very crowded party and I can't seem to join just one conversation because there are about 12 of them going on around me.  There are obligatory quiz's to take, Top 5 Movies, Top 5 Restaurants, Top 5 Science Museums.  Then, the endless tags.  People tagging pictures, tagging comments, tagging ex-boyfriends.  It's much too much for me.  Information overload.

And you can just forget about twittering.  We don't even have texting on our cell phones.  We still get charged 20 cents for every text.  We are so two years ago!

Moral of the Story: I am a terrible Facebook Friend, but if you want to get together for lunch and some real conversation and laughter - I'm your girl.  Let's just not meet at IKEA.  

12 comments:

Roccy said...

This is kind of hilarious. I went to IKEA ONCE. I was so overwhelmed that we left in a hurry.

I'm glad I'm not alone. Same with Facebook. I am grateful for it because I have connected with a few old friends (you!). But other than that, I ignore all the static and quizzes and garbage. I really use it as a tool to reconnect with people.

Elizabeth said...

I use facebook for reconnecting only too. I think I have 156 requests right now for various things to do or be a part of. I choose NO! I am getting a little weary of one of my friends from childhood that lists what she is making for dinner every single day. Who cares? Oh I am so rude. Oh well. I think I might have to turn back into a "blogging only" girl myself. We could send out a petition on facebook to leave facebook!! HAHA Your analogy with IKEA is a perfect one. So TRUE! I feel so overwhelmed there too.

Jana said...

LOL sometimes I feel like that on facebook too! Like I could at least use a map or something...or a little list, 1,2,3, of what I'm supposed to do.

Malisa said...

I can so understand where you are coming from. I feel much the same way about facebook and especially menus. IKEA however is one of my simple pleasures. Now when I go there, I only go for one thing or area. I know where that is and I mostly stick to it. I like that it's just different than everything else and that it begs me to look at what I own (or could own) in a different way. :)

Amber said...

IKEA! Aaarrrgghh! I've only been their once and vow NEVER to return! After we walked through every section, every display, Dallin was exhausted and ready to leave, but it still took us 20 minutes to go through the labyrinth to the checkout! And what did we end up buying? Two sets of plastic cups- easily purchased at Target!

cami said...

A-M-E-N Sister!! Facebook in my opinion, is such a waste of time and energy! These people need to get a life and stop giving everyone else a minute-by-minute blow-by-blow of their lives and start living them! Who cares that you're going to the gym, fixing dinner or having a tooth pulled at the dentist. Or endless listing-like naming the 50 states you've visited in your lifetime. Just seems so impersonal and plain stupid. This is a piece of technology I can definately do without. What ever happened to picking up the telephone to re-connect or stay connected with your friends? You know, the ones you really care about?! Enough said. Call me, let's do lunch together!

Kristy said...

Great and hilarious post! I'm exactly the same way at IKEA. I start out all jazzed up...and then by the end I just want to curl up in the fetal position and sleep. As for facebook...do what I do and just ignore all the "take this quiz, buy a green garden square, send your friends a cupcake, a piece of flair.."whatever and just talk to people I know. And lunch? Let's do it!

Jackie said...

You are so funny Emily. Never been to IKEA- I have heard that same thing. The catalog I get in the mail from there is overwhelming enough. Can't imagine what the store is like.
As for Facebook- I have been fading it out because I don't understand it either. All the quizzes and groups- I agree with you- who cares. Then it seems to be a competition of who can have the most "friends." Anyhow...lunch sounds great. (As long as it's a place that I'm a fan of on Facebook. LOL)

Jen-ben said...

I'm so offended. You don't like Facebook, or "FB" as we say it. It's like my lifeline to all people and I can't believe you don't LOVE it. You're so rude. And IKEA is my favorite store. I don't know if I can look you in the face EVER AGAIN!!!!
:)
You are such a fantastic writer...this post was perfect. It's all true. I just ignore all "requests". Come over and I'll give you a little tutorial on what's important. :)

Jen-ben said...

p.s. where are your maternity pics...HELLO!!

Paige said...

I have an IKEA story that I won't tell - but I totally felt the same way, plus their Customer Service was in the toilet & I feel like a mouse going through a maze...ugh. Can't stand it.

Menu's can get to me, too! Like as Cheesecake Factory. I don't want to offend everyone that has waited for house there but I just don't get what all the fuss is about anyway...plus there are way too many things on their menu & I have never actually eaten anything that I loved besides the cheesecake :)

Good luck with Facebook - if you want any, that is. It used to be such a time waster for me - just let Jen teach you what you really need to know - I don't do quizzes or applications or anything like that either. I just like reconnecting with old friends & looking at pictures. Don't worry, I'm not offended. I admit it can get a little out of control!

Lindsay said...

DITTO! I went to IKEA once - for 15 minutes, I could NOT handle it, I walked out. And same with the Cheesecake Factory, I COULD NOT order! I ended up getting a burrito! What the?! I NEVER even eat burritos!!! And you know how I feel about Facebook - Blech! So glad we're friends. Let's go to lunch somewhere with a simple menu...