Saturday, February 21, 2009

On College and Facebook

Blogging about Facebook is totally lame, but stick with me: this is really a post about culture and class, only not the way you think it will be.

Facebook has exploded at me again this week, this time with Town moms and college friends. It's all freaking me out a bit, but I suppose that's life in the 21st century.

I went to college with a bunch of future Masters of the Universe, as well as a bunch of future media/politics/artsy kinds of people, many of whom you've heard of by now. One of the future Masters of the Universe friended me on Facebook quite a bit ago, and he seems, indeed, to have become a Master of the Universe. He works at a major money kind of place, where he's been since 1988, and he appears to be in no danger of losing his high-up job. He's married to the girl he met in college, now a woman with an appropriately artsy career, and they live in a wealthy suburb. He's got three boys with distinctive names, and they go places like Greece and private islands in Maine. He's a Republican. He looks exactly the same.

I don't know that this Master and I ever had a private conversation in college, but he was always there. We lived in adjacent entryways freshman year. He was good friends with my roommate, and I was good friends with his roommate, and the two of them (the roommates) were inseparable. We ate countless brunches and dinners at the same tables, and lay around in courtyards, and went to parties, and decapitated tulips in massive games of frisbee mayhem (OK, I hate frisbee, and I did not decapitate the tulips, but I did lean out my window and scream and yell as tulips were decapitated).

I grew up to be a big literary feminist on campus, and he grew up to be an ordinary rich white guy on campus, but, like I said, we were just always there, and, you know, I am quite sure that I could call him up right now, Republican Master of the Universe and all, and get him to give a whole bunch of money to some weird literary feminist cause of mine. Because that's how it was. Truly--and I can't even believe I'm saying this--the forcedly intimate diversity of the freshman dorm had longstanding effects of tolerance, acceptance, and connection (true for gender, sexuality, class, and region, though I don't know about race...), albeit effects that may not, for many of us, go beyond that intimate sphere.

And here's the other thing: it gives me enormous comfort, in some bizarre primal way, to read his wry cynical Republican Masterful Facebook updates. That there are still guys like him, doing exactly what they were meant to do, even if everything they do is the antithesis of everything I stand for and believe in, somehow makes me feel like there is stability in the world. Is that fucked up or what?

1 comment:

Lauren said...

So, I just left facebook a sec ago and this same thing is happening to me, though the Republican guy is someone I was quite intimate with, though not as much as he would have liked I'm sure. He has a lot of updates and notes and they are all the antithesis of my beliefs. I like your point of view, though. I'm adopting it.