Monday, May 20, 2013

Who are your FB friends?

She was a former co-worker who turned to the medical field and just happened to be in the operating room when I had surgery to have cancer removed from my body.

He owns and cares for my favorite piece of land that I am privileged to visit once a year.

And the only time I ever saw her in person was when she cut my hair once in college.

Taking a quick inventory of your Facebook friends can be entertaining. For most of us, the vast majority of those people can be lumped into any one of a few basic categories: Family, co-workers, high school or college friends, church friends or other groups where you connect regularly.

But for me, the fun comes in realizing how rarely you see, or have ever seen, some of your FB friends. I have a group of 10-12 women I became friends with through a website I had to manage as part of work responsibilities, and many of them I have never seen in person.

I'm friends with a husband and wife (and their grandson) who own and operate a resort I take my family to each June for a memory-making fishing vacation. It's in Minnesota, and that's the only time I see them each year.

And perhaps the most unusual: One day I saw a woman comment on a mutual friend's status, and thought the name sounded familiar. I sent her a message that went something like this: "This may be weird, but I think you cut my hair once in college. If you are who I think you are, you were high school classmates with my college roommate, and you came to our dorm room once and gave us hair cuts." I remembered correctly (a rarity, my wife will tell you), and now I enjoy seeing Sherry's postings about her life and her kids.

Facebook has a way of bringing to life the old "It's a small world" phrase. When I showed up at Reid Hospital for my surgery after being diagnosed with prostate cancer, I was pleasantly surprised to see the face of Dorothy, a former co-worker whom I hadn't seen in 10-15 years, dressed in scrubs and ready to be part of the team taking care of me.

Many of the friends in your newsfeed you see regularly -- some I sit right next to every day at work, and worship at church with every week, and I'm always thankful for Maridene and her family for the help they provided in raising our children and the good friends they continue to be.

What is the most unusual story you have about how a Facebook friend came to be?

About my health: I kicked this blog off with the intent of having it mostly focused on my new healthy ways. So where do I stand in late May? Weight is still down near my low point, and eating continues to be mostly good. Exercise? What's that? I've fallen off badly. But I did do a lot of yard work over the weekend, and ran a mile yesterday. I want to lose 6 pounds before leaving for vacation to reach a new goal, but that's just three weeks, so I don't know if I can do it.

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