27 October 2011

Joyeux anniversaire

One of the best things in having your birthday known on Facebook is the number of times you have to say thanks to everybody wishing you a good one. I didn't really go and have a count - but it's interesting to see how many lives have I at least poked or scraped on the surface as well as others who has been there for a long time.

This don't count as you'd expect them to remember but it's nice nonetheless.

"No Sis, when is your birthday again?"

Family Friends
Looking through the list of people in there I kinda noticed that a lot the family friends on there are Mark's classmates or acquaintances. We used to live in St John's Wood Quarters which was about five minutes' walk from school - the entire St Columba school system was situated along the entire side of the road - kindergarten, primary and secondary!

The dudes usually hang around for lunch or just the usual lepak (and planning for the next mischief - they make great stories during get-together sessions two decades later). Some I knew from the time I were still sucking Milo from a bottle, all the way until the end of their bachelorhood. I tend to mix around pretty well with them considering the age and generation gap, perhaps because they have been around for a long time either way.

No, I'm not kidding - ask the 'European Guy'.

We spend at least some eleven years out of the first seventeen in school, so we make some friendships who last all the way to the adult days, many to the twilight year of our lives. Some names pop up from as far as primary school, others mostly from the days of secondary school. Many married with children now, only shows how times has changed and how everybody have moved on with life. Best thing is to know that social networking sites such as Facebook allows these momentarily severed friendships to be reconnected again, even if just by messages et al.

I do have Madam Sandra on Facebook - YEAH!

The next place where we spend all our lives toiling to buy the house that we will leave empty most of the time to ... toil for the money... to... pay for the house that we... will leave empty... most of the time...

This is where we'll meet the biggest variety of people whom we'll see five days a week (at least) - single, married, young, old, friendly, shy, scary, hot, arrogant, powerful etc. You can say that these will be where our first taste of 'real life' will come from as we step onto a stage populated by all sorts of people who play their role in this cinema of life - the hero, anti-hero, the villain, the extra, the prop, the fairy godmother, genie etc.

"소원을 말해봐" never looked this good.

Of course throughout those times we will meet some friends whom you will remember well, even after changing jobs for the umpteenth time - we'd keep in contact by some work-related chats or just (entertaining) rubbish to pass off time.

Acquaintances (who become real life friends)
If anything we all get to know some friends online whom we'd probably never meet, ever - all of which are either hidden behind the facade of game avatars or just guys on forums we got to know after a while. Through just about 99.9% worth of interaction via text, some become comfortable enough let others know the real person.

Introverts thrive on the Internet because they don't have to assume a different person to actually interact with people, partly due to the semi-real time nature that allows people to respond immediately or later. The scope to private message makes it possible for two people whom would probably never talk to one another in life to actually chat.

"Hi, I'm hottie95, the elf - remember me?"
Considering that the Internet could contain up to a gazillion people, it is not very uncommon that some do become real friends that we hang around to meet probably once in life, others who actually become more than just part of the list of acquaintances on the 'Friends' column.


To me personally I don't 'advertise' my birthdays simply because I believe that getting wishes people who do know or get the effort to find out is a lot more meaningful because they think it worthy of their time to say a simple happy birthday to you. I've actually had a friend who just wished me three years in a row - his messages were dated a year between each, three in succession including today. One of the best part about responding to Facebook greets are the number of 'thank yous' that I have to keep writing -  never had the urge to just copy and paste but decided not to as that would be insincere - goes to show that even the average Joe like me can connect with so many people in this flicker of a life so far.

As I close the curtain on what is a rather pleasant birthday - allow me to thank you all again for the good wishes.

Don't get any funny ideas for next year now.

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