Living and Dying on Facebook

by Madeline Laughs

Image by Peripitus, Adelaide, Australia

Did you hear?

No. What happened?

He almost died!

Oh no!

He was in the hospital! In Intensive Care! 

Oh no! That sounds serious.

Yeah, he almost died!

He almost died? That’s terrible! How did you hear about this?

Well, he posted it on Facebook.

Facebook?

Yeah, there are pictures of him in the Intensive Care Unit with all these tubes sticking in him. It looked awful!

Someone took pictures of him in the hospital?

Lots of them. He finally got out of ICU and got a private room though. It was huge!

There were pictures of his room?

Yeah.

But you’re telling me that he posted this on Facebook, himself? How in the world could he post on Facebook if he was so ill?

He had an Internet connection! Duh!! What he didn’t post, one of his friends was posting for him. There were daily updates.

That’s fascinating.

I know! Right? He described the procedures he was having done too. Everyone was hoping for video or pictures, but maybe the hospital wouldn’t allow that.

But he’s okay now?

Oh yeah. He’s back home now. He posted his new diet. He thinks he’ll be fine.

And how do you know this?

Because, he posted it on Facebook.

Hm.

What?

I was just thinking about what this would have looked like if he had died.

What do you mean? He’s fine. He didn’t die.

Oh, I know, but what if he had?

I’m not following you.

If something had gone wrong and he died, would this be what everyone remembered him for most? These last pictures, these last posts on Facebook?

Yeah, probably. And maybe all the other stuff he’s done too.

So this is a modern day self-made eulogy, this Facebook? It would have become an electronic cyber memorial?

Yeah, I guess so.

Well, I’m glad he’s okay.

If I almost die, will you post it on Facebook for me?

Sure.

Will you take pictures of me in the hospital and tell everyone what’s going on?

Sure.

Oh, well, I dunno, maybe not. I changed my mind. Don’t do that for me, okay?

Why not?

I don’t know.  I mean, when it was happening to him I checked almost everyday to see how he was doing and it was nice having the blow by blow news and all, but…

What?

But what if he had died?

But he didn’t die.

But what if he had?

Well, then we would send flowers and a card to his family.

Is that all that’s left after someone dies?

Yes, just the grief and sorrow and the memories. Why?

Well, I just don’t know if I would want that on Facebook.

Why not?

I think I’d rather have it for real. You know, in my presence. I’d rather have my friends and family physically around me.

But he had friends there. They took his picture, they visited him, right?

Yeah.

Then what’s wrong?

It just seems kind of sad.

But he’s okay and he’s home now, right?

Still, it seems kind of sad.

Why is it sad?

Facebook.

Facebook?

I don’t want to live and die on Facebook.

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About Madeline Scribes

A writer with a sense of humor. If anyone can laugh at life, it's me.
This entry was posted in Artsy and Poetic and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Living and Dying on Facebook

  1. whine-wine-whatever says:

    Thank you. Just the kick in the ass I needed. There are those who live on Facebook, or worse, who live FOR Facebook. And while I don’t consider myself one of those, I am online every day and probably spend a cumulative hour or two yammering with FB friends or passing cat memes around. I really should be doing other things. Things that are maybe as “meaningful” as Facebook, which is to say they’re not, like chores and stuff. But at least it would feel like I’m accomplishing something. So, yeah, they do have meaning and value. I’ll be crawling out of my rut and re-prioritizing. Thanks, Madeline!

    Like

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