I, like everybody else on the planet, have found things to complain about with each successive Facebook upgrade over the last few years. One of the worst things to happen, though, was when the site began to cherry-pick your private messages, declaring some of them as “other” and putting them in a separate folder labeled as such. Granted, a lot of the “other” messages were spam or nuisances, but just as many of them were not. People soon found themselves missing out on invitations, events, and other messages simply because they didn’t know there was another folder their communications may be filtering into.
While this filter isn’t quite as bad as it used to be, it’s still a tad frustrating, and it’s still really easy to forget that it’s there. Earlier this evening, while looking at a message, I saw the “other” tab in its usual place — hidden at the top of the page and shadowed, where you’ll never notice it if you aren’t looking for it — with a note that I had 28 unread messages there.
Even though I knew most of the messages would be junk or so far out of date as to be useless, I checked anyway on the off-chance that something that I legitimately need to know about had been shunted off to that folder. And sure enough, there was junk, junk, garbage, and the occasional invite to some sort of online “event” from a writer or publisher I follow, all of which were long passed. But there was one message that perplexed me. It was from a legitimate Facebook user, not a spambot, not a corporate page, with a message that made no sense:
I must admit, this was perplexing. I don’t know this person. I don’t know who he is or what I may have said to irritate him on July 12, 2011, to invite this message. But maybe I can do a little Sherlock Holmes-style deductive reasoning and suss out what sparked this…
- This person was specifically targeting my occupation. Evidently, being a teacher is not a “real job.”
- On the other hand, this person doesn’t appear to have a good relationship with education in general.
- Am I, in fact, “too fat to”? I really don’t think so. Sure, I’ve lost some weight lately (and feeling much better, thank you), but 2011 was before I started that particular program. I may have, in fact, been “too fat to” at the time.
- “go be the loser you are…” I get that. Most people are, in fact, what they are, often to their detriment.
- “in your box of a house.” Well, this is certainly closer to being correctly written than “so your so your’re not poor anymore.” But a “box” of a house? Dictionary.com defines “box” as “A container, case, or receptacle, usually rectangular, of wood, metal, cardboard, etc., and often with a lid or removable cover.” Hmm. I suppose one could make an argument for calling a house a “box” if you consider things like doors and windows a “removable cover,” but by that definition, aren’t all houses boxes? All buildings of any kind, in fact?
Regardless, I seem to have offended somebody, and that’s not something I ever intentionally do. I like to think I’m an easygoing guy, someone who doesn’t stir the pot or cause trouble, and if someone had a reasonable quarrel with me, I’d like to address it. After all, not everybody is the master of language and grammar that I am, including some genuinely good people who may usually be calm, rational and warm human beings. If this person is among that demographic, it would be worthwhile to see what hatchet, if any, needs burying.
Then I saw the guy’s Facebook profile picture.