This past weekend I attended my 20-year high school reunion but then, out of a graduating class of about 360+ only approximately 100 attended. I was not sure what happened between the 10-year and 20-year reunions and then it hit me! Yes… of course, how could I not see it, after all, I am on it non-stop and check it hourly–FACEBOOK!
If the introduction of MTV and music videos killed the radio star, then, certainly social media such as facebook has definitely killed the traditional “Romy & Michele” concept of a high school or college reunion. Sure, 10 years ago (in 2001) there were limited means of finding classmates (ie. only word of mouth) but now, some 10 years later, post-friendster, myspace, and now the era of facebook and google+, you sure can find everyone much easier. Just create a page and voila! People will find you. But, while it is easier to find everyone, because you can see daily, often hourly and minute-by-minute updates of the people you are facebook “friends” with, why bother travelling long distances, or spending $50+ for a reunion ticket? Why fly out to see them when you can see and chat with them live from your living room? These are all questions people are asking themselves as they decide whether or not to attend a high school or college reunion.
What was surprising to me about this reunion that I attended in New Orleans was that even locals did not come out but cost might have had something to do with that. In any case, it is an interesting phenomena to see – that while facebook helps us reach so many, it is also the same thing that puts a damper on things like personal meetings, high school reunions, or just getting to talk or chat with someone in person. Facebook substitutes for building interpersonal relationships because it’s easier to interact on-line but yet for some, face-to-face is no longer desired. So, video may have killed the radio star but has facebook and social media as a whole destroyed chances for face-to-face, interpersonal relationships that we used to once cherish and could not do without? Well, I truly hope not but sadly, the trend at events, reunions, and the like is proving that perhaps Social Media and the electronic age has killed what used to be … hand-written letters, phone calls, and meeting each other in-person seems to be a thing reserved for the past.
Since the Holiday Season has come and gone, there has been plenty of time to reflect on gift-giving and receiving. For example, I always give a gift card to our post master- after all, he performs a service – often, a thankless job. I like to give to the guy in my office who empties my trash and vacuums daily- he certainly appreciates the small token of my appreciation. I like to give thank you gifts to the secretaries in my office and the cleaning crew. In any case, this year I did drop off a gift for our Pediatrician’s office but we received no acknowledgment of the gift received. Same goes for the secretaries in the office. I received one card of thank you from one of the five secretaries who really appreciated my gift. I also received a thanks for the cleaning guy and the postmaster but alas, no one has even acknowledged receipt of my gift.
My motto is within a week of receiving a gift, you should at least orally or in writing thank or acknowledge receipt of the gift. To not do so, is just downright rude and will certainly ensure that you may never receive anything else in the
future- EVER! In any case, as I continue to wonder whether the pediatrician received our thoughtful gift, I continue to thank my friends and family for gifts received and thoughtful items given to the girls. A simple thank you or word of acknowledgment really goes a long way!
After three years, I am finally breaking through the curse, the dark cloud that has hung over me. I state this with sincerity as I am now a believer in the addage that sometimes, things are out of your control. You have to stand still and let destiny take its course. I always believed, over the past three years that somehow I was responsible for my happiness. Despite hitting or running up against a brick wall daily at an office where there was no joy, when I dealt with a boss who was truly insecure and unhappy, and coworkers who truly did not care about the team, I still brushed all that off, and went charging towards the goal and finding personal satisfaction and reward in all I did.
Now, for almost two weeks, I have experienced joy in my work, and felt needed at a workplace where I am valued as an individual and a team member. A series of great things have happened and each day, I gaze out of the window at the breathtaking view, I do my job with pride, and I enjoy what was once blocked by the brick wall I had no control over.
I still believe you can make the best out of any situation but I think that some situations are out of our control and we have to have faith, hope and determination to get that dark cloud that we have no control over out of our lives.