3 Years Ago Today

Did you know that on this day 3 years ago I was writing a blog post?  I didn’t know either.  Yet Facebook, Timehop, and Google Photos want to make it impossible to forget what we ate for breakfast at that super cute brunch place 6 months ago.

I’ve been earning money for the last 5 years as a social media specialist.  I’m the person who’s hyper-targeting the ad so it reaches you: the recent home buyer with a birthday in the next month who is friends with someone who just got engaged.  

So I’m confident that social media and information giants like Facebook and Google never do things without a reason.  And that reason always comes down to their bottom line, as it should.  The currency of all things internet is views, impressions, and active user counts. More Millennials sharing photos of their lattes on Facebook = better active user statistics = more advertising $$.

There’s an intrinsic motivation for social media networks to keep people addicted to sharing every mundane moment.  What better way to do it than to become your scrapbook, time capsule, and memory?  They’ll keep track of the details of your existence so you don’t have to.

But you better have a life worth remembering.

Since Timehop first introduced the concept of constantly being reminded about what happened on this day in your personal history, I’ve started to see a change in the way we take photos.  We must always snap some representative shot of what that day entailed because otherwise, there’d be nothing to reminisce over in a year. 

And if we must take a photo every day, then we must be doing something fantastic with amazing people every day to photograph.  Or at least some latte art.

But  life isn’t always #darling.  Sometimes it’s #painful and #unphotogenic.  And sometimes, we miss the real moments of life, even the gritty hard ones, when we’re constantly on the lookout to find today’s best picture.

This is just a PSA that Facebook and Google Photos and Timehop know what they’re doing.  The more they addict you to seeing a younger version of yourself every morning on your phone, the more you’ll feel the need to keep photographing and posting so you can remember THIS EXACT MOMENT next year.  Just be sure it’s actually you who is in the picture.

Dusty Old Cabinets

setting:  on my friend’s laptop in her room with the remnants of our post-homecoming dance snack (pretzels and peanut butter, goldfish, and the chips I snagged from the Gedunk)

My friend is asleep on the rug but I am most certainly awake.  More accurately, I am very full of life.  Full of the fullness of a life that is brimming with new people and ideas and memories.  I suppose every memory is a new one for a second before it gets filed in a dusty old cabinet in between my 10th birthday party and the conversation I had last week.  That’s the odd thing about my memory.  It doesn’t prioritize at all.  I can remember the large events with the same clarity as the obscure details. I can quote someone I was talking with a month ago word-for-word and recall the moment I learned to ride my bike as if both were synonymous in importance and both happened five minutes ago.

Yet I forget a lot.  Or I confuse a lot.  I mix up what one person has told me with someone else’s story.  Faces can blur together sometimes.  I might get the main framework of something right but completely blank out on the details.  I’ll remember that you had three tests and a quiz and a potentially awkward confrontation and I’ll even remember to ask you about it afterwards but have no idea what the subjects were in or who the conversation was with.

I did not intend to write upon memory tonight but since I seem to be making memories a mile a minute here, I suppose it was quite appropriate.  I will probably remember tonight, for instance.  My first homecoming at Grove City College which was quite fun and memorable.  I’m hoping I’ll remember a lot of these first four weeks here which is why I need to keep blogging so I can keep an external mental hard drive of sorts.  More reflection on college later to come.

Until next time,
Chloe of life