Home > Blogging, Entertainment, Facebook, Humor, Nerd, Silly, Social media, Writing > Crayon mathematics: Bambi v. Sauron and “necessary evil”

Crayon mathematics: Bambi v. Sauron and “necessary evil”

I’ve just gotta think of one thing to say, I told myself. Just gotta get it out of the way so I can get on to doing things I enjoy.

My fingers were poised to type, but my brain was firing blanks.

Being on Facebook is like work, but less fun. 

My fingers remained still.

Just a necessary evil.

“Wait, what?” I said aloud to my last thought, because talking to oneself is always a good thing. “‘Necessary evil’? Since when did Facebook become ‘necessary’?”

I contemplated the question of necessity. I’d once started a Facebook page because I’d been told it was an important part of maintaining an authorial presence online. My page had grown to 9,500 likers, which was awesome, but most of those lovely likers ignored my blogs, which was less awesome. I came to feel like I was selling same-day ballet tickets outside a football game.

All of which got me asking myself to define “necessary.” I didn’t so much land on a word definition as a graphic representation:

necc unnecc wi

I realized Facebook fell much, much closer to the Star Wars prequels end of the necessity spectrum for me.

Elated, I removed other moderators from my Facebook pages and deactivated my Facebook account.

I’d already determined that Facebook was as unnecessary as it was unenjoyable for me, rendering the question of whether it was evil moot. But, hey! The only thing better than one Crayola-illustrated graph is two, so I went for it:

evil unevil wi

Personally, Facebook falls nearer the Sauron than Bambi end of the evil spectrum for me, but probably not by much.

Mostly that’s because, having realized there’s nothing necessary about Facebook as an author or an individual, it hardly feels worth including in the scale at all.

I think many of my friends, writers and non-writers alike, actually enjoy being on Facebook more than they don’t enjoy reading over the constantly changing terms of service and not-privacy. I wish them merry times on Facebook, and hope they’ll hop off long enough to occasionally shoot me an email. (Gracias in advance, mi amigas!)

And I kinda wish I could’ve had my “necessary evil” epiphany a little sooner. Like, months sooner. ‘Cause I’m gonna be honest here: my personal evil scale put me closer to Sauron than Bambi when I forced myself to Facebook. Y’all might not have noticed it, but Ba.D. definitely did.

So that’s my gift to Ba.D. and myself this holiday season: the gift of not-Facebook.

My wish for you is lots of love this holiday season and in the year to come!

Is there anything in your life that’s maybe not as “necessary” an evil as you’ve fallen into thinking?

Thanks and smooches to Ba.D. for helping me with my necessity graph. ♥

  1. December 24, 2012 at 4:09 pm

    What a gift to give yourself this Christmas, deactivating your Facebook account! While I’ve NEVER had a Facebook account, and may not understand all the nuances of this social medium, I applaud you for your decision. And, by the way, bravo on the Crayola illustrated graphs! The image of Bambi is spot on! Merry Christmas to you and your beautiful family. Hope it is overflowing with LOVE and lots of snuggles! Hugs~ Anka 🙂

    • December 24, 2012 at 4:28 pm

      Ba.D. saw me drawing Bambi and asked, “Why do you have to be so ridiculously talented?” I replied, “Talent would be if I could envision something and draw that instead of just copying what other people have created!” And yet . . . I feel a thousand times happier making a crayon drawing of Bambi than I do posting a single status (or a hundred statuses!) on Facebook. I can’t believe I fell into believing it was necessary, but I’m glad to have seen better how it fits into my life now. Better late than never, right?

      The little guy is snoring, the big guy is reading blogs next to me on the couch and overall, I just feel like this is a perfect evening! I was sad I wouldn’t be able to fly north, but now . . . now I think it’s great regardless.

      Lots of hugs and wishes for love and snuggles to you, as well! ♥

  2. OneHotMess
    December 24, 2012 at 4:13 pm

    I went to send you a Facebook message the other day to alert you to the fact that Facebook had once again changed my settings from “friends only” to “public,” but you were no where to be found. Of course, at first, I thought that you had unfriended me, which never really upsets me. Now I know that you just got smart! Good for you! Xoxo

    • December 24, 2012 at 4:32 pm

      No way would I unfriend you! I’m looking forward to reading your stuff. Every time I get a comment on your “my baby” post, I get excited to wonder how it’s coming along. I can’t wait to read it, already!

      Several times, I posted statuses saying, “I’m done with Facebook, please email me.” I kept getting tons of Facebook messages and no additional emails, phone calls or texts. As I was going through and deactivating, it hit me that making myself inaccessible there was probably the only way I was ever going to get people (including myself) to not see it as an alternative contact method.

      Always feel free to email me at email me! It was wringing my hands of those “accidental” post switches to “public” that really made me glad to be gone. And ever more glad by the moment!

  3. December 24, 2012 at 4:32 pm

    I am glad you un-friended yourself from Facebook altogether, especially since it had sucked you into being its slave. i have a FB account but mainly to peek in on a few others as they share their lives. Cute quotes from a friend, cute pictures of kids from family, etc. I occasionally comment and hit the like button–but I never change status or share or do anything else except occasionaly get annoyed at the messages that say I will be somehow guilty if i do not share, etc. I am glad you have the peace this year of being off FB–and using your crayons. Now coloring–there is an activity that is cool and can really help calm anyone down. Merry Christmas! I keep up with your blog–and love it–even if I am not as responsive as i was. Happy New Year too.

    • December 24, 2012 at 4:37 pm

      Now coloring–there is an activity that is cool and can really help calm anyone down.
      True story! We had an unfortunate encounter with some neighbors earlier, and how I felt after drawing/coloring was 1,000x better than I felt before. By the time I was done coloring, I couldn’t begin to fathom why I’d been so frustrated before. 😀

      There is definite peace in being off FB this year. I thought I’d feel guilty or weird or like I really wanted to go back, but man, that’s not the case at all! Instead, I just feel freeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

      I have your most recent blog in my reading queue. Also, I need to shoot you an email about meeting up!

  4. December 24, 2012 at 4:39 pm

    Um .. I’m gonna ask this as nicely as I possibly can. I assume the opposite from the Star Wars 1-3 is, like, chocolate ice cream? Or something OTHER than what I’m seeing? (Hey, I’m in Amish country here, I’ve spent a LOTTA time behind horses! 😯 )
    Well, looks like I AM gonna repeat myself, but what the hey – may you and yours have a very happy holiday! 🙂

    • December 24, 2012 at 4:41 pm

      Mwahaha! The opposite is poop, since it’s an essential part of life as a human being . . . but you could call it inverted ice cream, if you want. (What’s that? Probably not? Ahem!) 😀

      Happy holidays to you, too!

      • December 24, 2012 at 4:45 pm

        Well, you know, I never thought of poop as anything really necessary. But that’s why you’re the big-time blogger – always entertaining AND educational! (Now if I could just get that picture of an Everest-sized pile of poop outta my head! What a HECK of a Christmas present! :p 😉 )

      • Running from Hell with El
        December 24, 2012 at 4:51 pm

        LOL–I would have never thought of that! Glad you’re doing what you like doing, dear friend. So happy for you! And I hope y’all are enjoying the holidays!

        • December 24, 2012 at 5:01 pm

          So far, so fabulous–and about to get better with some Christmas Eve pizza with my guys! Merry Christmas, dear friend!

  5. December 24, 2012 at 7:43 pm

    I think when you STARTED your page, Facebook was a kinder, gentler place. I love that you have killed the page — which had to be difficult to do given your major numbers. I’m sure you checked all the tools you had on your tool belt before you made that decision. Collecting “friends” has never interested me, and I really should deactivate my FB page. Probably. I think Facebook has become a less friendly place for writers. Our words don’t have the same reach they once did. So what is the point then? So happy you are doing what will give you more unplugged time!

    • December 24, 2012 at 8:10 pm

      It was much friendlier! For a long time, I kept up my personal page because it was needed for the blog page; their ever shifting privacy settings made it hard to keep coming back, but I did because I really did think it was a necessity. When my personal page post default conveniently kept defaulting to “public,” a situation a couple of other friends found themselves in, I was close to throwing in the towel. But it was the whole “necessary evil” thought that freed me. And, oh, do I feel free with no presence there personal or otherwise! I want to have one home on the web, more or less, and this is it. 🙂

  6. Sheri
    December 25, 2012 at 6:00 am

    Love you, Deb~~Merry Christmas to your little family!

  7. December 25, 2012 at 6:01 am

    I guess I see Facebook as a necessary evil for keeping in touch with all my cousins and my sister back East while I’m here all alone in alien Texas (well some are in San Francisco and one is in Louisiana but most are back East, you get the picture). I wouldn’t know what was going on with them and their daily lives without it and it makes me feel closer to them. And I have close friends in New York and New Mexico that I connect with. I don’t feel so isolated and alien (living in Texas can make you feel like an alien sometimes). That’s why I choose to be on Facebook and check in once a day or so. Maybe not everyday, but often enough to find out what’s going on. I hate the “public” thing and my daughter and I had a falling out over Facebook so she blocked me but that’s okay. I see her anyway. It’s best I don’t know what she’s doing.

    • December 25, 2012 at 6:21 am

      In my case, I have frequently asked people to email me. Doing so on Facebook apparently undermined my request, and I’d fall right back into the Facebook groove, which did not help me feel more in touch with my friends and family. I missed the days where we shot off emails intended for a specific recipient or two, just for each other. Those emails felt like a lifeboat to me when I lived in South Korea and Japan. There was a period in Japan where I had no Internet; I could only receive 500-character emails on my cell phone. My BIL carefully typed out 500 characters TO ME daily in a way that helped me feel individually much less alone. Facebook doesn’t foster that same feeling in me. It’s more like shouting into the void and wondering who will shout back. I just don’t feel it enhances strong connections, and definitely not strong enough to exchange any further portion of my privacy for. BUT, all that being said, whatever connects each of us to those we love in ways that work for us? It’s got some merit.

      Your take on your daughter (and Texas!) makes me smile. I think my mom would have hated being online too much to make an account. For all she encouraged my siblings and me to learn computers, she couldn’t stand the things. 🙂

  8. December 25, 2012 at 4:41 pm

    Merry Christmas, Deb. Peace and grace in the coming year. And good for you for making a decision about FB. I have very mixed feelings about it. For now I’m still on.

    • December 25, 2012 at 5:29 pm

      All the same to you, Pat! If today is any indication of the year to come, there is a whole lot of sweetness ahead.

  9. December 25, 2012 at 7:40 pm

    Merry Christmas, Bright Blessings….you did the right thing for you. 90% of my true and real family, especially my younger siblings, nieces and nephews and close cousins are all on Facebook and this is unfortunately my only means of keeping up with them. Similarly some of my old and close friends. There are times, it makes me crazed; I bite the bullet and just let it run in the background. I admit though, I do enjoy my political debates with a small group of family and friends, it keeps my mind churning.

    I think with the changes, well I think it is going to become more difficult and many of us will start moving away trying to find some other means of staying connected to each other. We will see.

    I loved your pictures! I had to look at the first one a couple of times, then I got it and it made me smile. I adore you.

  10. December 26, 2012 at 11:07 am

    You know, Deb, during these past few weeks of being ill, I haven’t donned the FB door once. Every time I wondered if I should post a message letting folks know where I was, what was going on, I thought, “Really? Is it necessary?” And, just as you outlined here, it wasn’t. If people want to find me, they have my number. If they don’t, they won’t, and then again, those aren’t the kind of folks I want in my life anyhoo…Love ya! 😉 Great present for Ba. D!

  11. December 26, 2012 at 11:59 am

    A gift of yourself to Ba.D. What a wonderful present – for you both. Says the woman who has never clilmbed aboard the FaceBook train. A dinosaur.
    I hope that your Christmas was full magic and love, and that these important things also fill your New Year.
    And, for a change I am able to read and comment here – which is a gift to me. Thank you.

  12. December 28, 2012 at 6:40 am

    I am pondering the same choice and your words and graphics speak loud and clear 🙂

  13. January 2, 2013 at 4:42 pm

    So excited for you, Deb- you broke the bondage that’s been holding you! And keep those graphics flowing! 🙂

  1. February 2, 2013 at 6:32 am
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