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Sunday, May 29, 2022

Before I even get out of bed in the morning, I roll over and check my Facebook. While I’m in class, I keep my laptop open so I can pretend to type notes while my professor lectures and check my Facebook. When I’m with friends, I get on the Internet, so I can show them a video of a cat who wants a cheeseburger and check my Facebook.

My entire life has become a puzzle of finding out how to access my Facebook as often as possible. The little red box notification sign has become a barometer of self-worth, and when the new friend request icon lights up, I feel like a kid on Christmas morning.

My name is Justin Plemmons, and I am addicted to Facebook.

Therein lies my predicament, and I’m going without Facebook for a week just to see what happens.

Tuesday:

I count Tuesday as my first day. I log in one more time to post a status about me being offline for the next week, so nobody would think I died.

I can imagine logging on Facebook on Sunday and seeing an invite to my own funeral. I would click “maybe” because I’m coy.

They say no Facebook for a week, but that starts when I next log out. So if I never log out, I never have to leave Facebook. But then I realize my computer is set to restart in 15 minutes, and when it boots back up, it’ll be logged out automatically.

Here it goes. 7:15 p.m. Tuesday. Five days without Facebook.

You can do this Justin (I talk to myself when I’m nervous).

One week without funny status updates.

One week without funny status update comments.

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One week without pictures of my female friends boozing and wearing skimpy outfits.

I can do this.

Wednesday:

Today, I have been legitimately concerned about whether or not anybody has commented on my farewell update.

Will anybody care I’ve been gone for a week?

there be any kind of fanfare when I finally do log back on? A weirdly poignant fear of mine is that I’ll have no new notifications come Sunday.

I thought I would have been more productive without Facebook draining away at my time, but in reality, all I’ve managed to do is find other ways to dick around.

I found out my roommate had “Pokemon Snap” and an N64, so I beat it. I had some comics that I never got around to reading, so I read them.

I haven’t done any more or less homework than I would have otherwise, and my apartment remains a big stupid mess.

I don’t have an interesting enough life to fill my time with actual activity.

Also, a good thought: So much of my life is just filler. Maybe a week without Facebook will lead me to find some cool stuff to do in the real world?

Doubtful.

Thursday:

It is really hard to burn a few a minutes without Facebook. I am scheduled to perform stand up at a club in town, for which I have to leave in about 20 minutes, but these have been the most boring 20 minutes of my life. In a just world, I would be going through my friends’ statuses and thinking of witty comments to make.

Status: “Carolyn had a great time with the boys last night!”

Comment: “I’m sure you did ;)”

I could read or something, but who reads anymore?

Friday:

Today, I found myself in a weird position where I actually needed to get on Facebook for personal reasons. I thought it would be satisfying to see notifications and event invites, but it just felt cheap and weird and not at all enjoyable and cathartic like I thought it would.

However, after being on Facebook for about five minutes to send a few messages and then cutting myself off again, I found myself craving it like nicotine. There’s this weird, dull ache that’s a mix between curiosity and wanting the comfort of this old, usual habit.

Saturday:

I kept busy for almost the entire day. But when I got home around 10 p.m., I realized I have nothing to do. Facebook now stares me down from my Google Chrome most visited pages. An unblinking, uncaring master stares into my eyes and whispers, “It’s okay Justin. I won’t tell anybody.”

I close my laptop and turn on the TV. Then I get a text from a friend of mine saying he just put up pictures from this party we went to and how hilarious they are.

Crap.

My parents are on Facebook; they can’t see pictures of me drinking and being a bad christian — they’ll be stricken with grief. And my poor grandma! Her dear little heart would give out.

So I flip on my laptop and log onto Facebook and see three notifications. None of them are telling me that I was tagged in any photos. I send my friend a text message saying, “What pictures?”

He sends one back that says,”SIKE.”

I have bad friends.

Sunday:

So here I am, Sunday 8 p.m. I technically didn’t make the entire five days, but I don’t care. I gave it the old college try and I feel better for it. Logging onto Facebook to mess around for the first time, I really am disappointed. There is no fanfare. Just a little blue button above my newsfeed that says “300+.” When I click it, it fills my screen with arbitrary updates.

I realize now that I don’t miss Facebook at all. For a site that wastes so much of my time, there is little actual content to it — all the site does is turn us into nosy gossips. I didn’t make the full five days, but I feel like I was able to pretty nearly kick my Facebook habit.

My friend Danielle wants me to join a group that promises somebody will name their kid Megatron if a million people join. I click ignore.

Will there be any kind of fanfare when I finally do log back on? A weirdly poignant fear of mine is that I’ll have no new notifications come Sunday.

I thought I would have been more productive without Facebook draining away at my time, but in reality, all I’ve managed to do is find other ways to fool around.

I found out my roommate had “Pokemon Snap” and an N64, so I beat it. I had some comics that I never got around to reading, so I read them.

Thursday:

It is really hard to burn a few a minutes without Facebook. In a just world, I would be going through my friends’ statuses and thinking of witty comments to make.

Status: “Carolyn had a great time with the boys last night!”

Comment: “I’m sure you did ;)”

Friday:

Today I found myself in a weird position where I actually needed to get on Facebook for personal reasons. I thought it would be satisfying to see notifications and event invites, but it just felt cheap and weird and not at all enjoyable and cathartic like I thought it would.

However, after being on Facebook for just about five minutes to send a few messages, I found myself craving it like nicotine.

Saturday:

I kept busy for almost the entire day. But when I got home around 10 p.m., I realized I had nothing to do.

I close my laptop and turn on the TV. Then I get a text from a friend of mine saying he just put up pictures from this party we went to and how hilarious they are.

Crap. My parents are on Facebook; they can’t see pictures of me drinking and being a bad Christian — they’ll be stricken with grief. So I log onto Facebook and see three notifications. None of them are telling me that I was tagged in any photos. I send my friend a text message.

He sends one back that says, “SIKE.”

Sunday:

So here I am, Sunday 8 p.m. I technically didn’t make the entire five days, but I don’t care. Logging onto Facebook to mess around for the first time, I really am disappointed. There is no fanfare. Just a little blue button above my newsfeed that says “300+.”

I realize now that I don’t miss Facebook at all. For a site that wastes so much of my time, there is little actual content to it — all the site does is turn us into nosy gossips.

My friend Danielle wants me to join a group that promises somebody will name their kid “Megatron” if a million people join. I click ignore.

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