Saturday, December 01, 2007

Not Another Pretty Face

Zen Master/’80s queen Belinda Carlisle once informed us: “Heaven is a place on Earth.” This week, friends, I’ve located that fabled “place.” In a word: Facebook.

What other venue allows, nay, encourages your ninth grade bully to peacefully cohabitate with your office’s IT guy? Weddings, funerals, heaven, and Facebook. You can’t play Scrabble at weddings or funerals, and there’s no sheep-throwing in heaven. Yesterday I threw a sheep at myself on Facebook, just because I could.

I resisted adding my visage to the ‘Book for over a year, dismissing it as a virtual under-21 club. “Oh mah gaw, did you see what he wrote on her wall?” twittered the undergrads in my teaching assistantship. “Soooo funny.” Like any mature B.A.-holder, I did my social networking on Friendster. Sometimes MySpace. And the Times society pages, naturally.

My new co-workers quickly Botoxed the wrinkles in my Facebook faith. “It’s great networking!” they exclaimed. “And you can turn people into zombies!” I tried to protest, but my doubt muscles were paralyzed.

Who welcomed me into the pearly gates? Not my best friend from grade-school. Not the cheerful HR lady who passed around chocolate eyeballs at Halloween. One of my first “friend requests” came from: The Other Jesse (TOJ). Toto, we’re not in Friendster anymore.

To most of my high school classmates she was just Jessie. Short-for-Jessica Jessie. Also blonde, also diminutive. No mascara in her bangs.

It wasn’t like Heathers. She didn’t hide my geometry book, and I didn’t, well, kill her. I’m not sure we shared a class. She got asked to the prom in eighth grade. Some time after that, I stopped turning around when my name was called.

(Not to sound like your junior varsity softball coach, but: there’s no “I” in Jesse. It’s cute, yes, but unnecessary -- like those homes people knit for Kleenex boxes. It certainly isn’t the “girl” version of Jesse. English words don’t have gender. Stick that in your long, fancy cigarette, Pierre!)

TOJ’s “i” blinks at me from the Facebook homepage. So far, our Facebook friendship much resembles our high-school relationship. We’re each aware of the other. We get along fine. We have nothing to say. I hope someone brings Scrabble to my upcoming 10th reunion.

That is, if the Honor Code still discourages sheep throwing.


Blogger B said...

For what it's worth, I have almost NO MEMORY WHATSOEVER of the other Jess(i)e. Except to say that if it's who I think it is, her writing in high school amounted to a large pile of excrement. (And no, I'm obviously not talking about J-Dog, or J.F.)

1:49 PM  
Blogger B said...

(Not J.McG., either. Sweet mother of manganese, there were a lot of girls with that name in your class.)

1:50 PM  
Blogger Jesseanna said...

Brian! Did you and K. get my Christmas card? Where have you been?

My boyfriend informed me that this post is a tad snarky, and he's probably right. In the words of Tiny Tim, "God bless us, every Jess(i)e."

2:59 PM  

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