Facebook and the Past

February 22, 2009

The great thing about Facebook is how it bridges the past and the present. Over the past few years that I have been on Facebook, I have been able to reconnect with people from old jobs, old friends from places I used to live, college buddies, high school sweethearts and even elementary school friends that I haven’t seen in almost 30 years. This experience, however, has also reminded me that some people never seem to grow up and things change less often than they should.

Is the draw to this reconnection with the past a longing for better days or something else? I have run into people from the past often enough to realize that most people fail to mature as they go through life. So if the odds are against making a meaningful connection with someone at a different emotional maturity level, why bother at all: shouldn’t the past just be the past.

Thomas Wolfe wrote, “You Can’t Go Home Again” and in many cases his work is still relevant. Life is about growth and understanding to me so when I come across people who fail to do either, it bothers me because I feel sorry for them. Granted, this is a bit “holier than thou” and not the most positive perspective I have in my life, but is it really wrong to want more for others?

Maybe what I am looking for are clues from the past to help me retrace my steps through life so I might better understand the present…maybe I am a hopeless optimist…maybe I should just leave the past in the past.

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