Friday, March 5, 2010

My Very First Blog Entry

I want to start by thanking you for visiting my blog. I assume you did so because, as my friend or relative, I forced you to. You have proven your loyalty to me. Well done.

As some of you know, I enjoy creative writing, particularly as it relates to comedy. Fewer of you know that I published a humor book, Shaneanigans, a few years ago. It's a best-seller on (relatively speaking). And even fewer of you know I'm working on a follow-up book, which I may excerpt at times here.

I have no expectations for this blog -- how often I'll post, who will read the posts, etc. But I hope you enjoy it all the same. If you're wondering where the title comes from, it's a paraphrase of a British expression that I became fond of after watching the hilarious Ricky Gervais comedy Extras.

I've decided to post below a commentary on one of my favorite topics: Facebook. Feel free to give me feedback and/or constructive criticism...but only if it's positive constructive criticism.

Facebook has some sort of unexplainable power that compels us to share every minute detail of our lives to our “friends.” Why do we feel the need to provide hourly updates on our whereabouts, our activities, our emotions? Because it’s newsworthy.

Literally. Status updates, links, photos -- they all qualify as news in the world of Facebook. They are all posted in the “News Feed.” And the most relevant items are posted under a subheading titled “Top News.” That’s right…”Top News.” The most important stories of the day that you need to know about are in this section. You don’t need to buy a newspaper or watch cable news to learn about what’s going on in your world. Just log on to Facebook’s “Top News” feed. Today’s top stories: “Mark Roberts is really tired and can use a nap.” “Fred Perez commented on Oliver Wright’s status.” “John Lilly IS TIRED OF THE SNOW AND WANTS THE WINTER TO BE OVER!!!9!!” That last story was reported by Mobile Web three minutes ago, by the way.

Facebook needs to take their “News Feed” one step further. It needs to launch a cable news network. It could provide a ticker of U.S. and international status updates. And finally, I’d be able to get the news I can really use. “Tragedy strikes in the Southwest, where eight people have died in a….hold on, we’ve received word of a breaking story here in our newsroom…Laura Robinson and Angela Thomas are now friends. Once again, Laura Robinson and Angela Thomas are now friends. We’ll send along to you more information as it becomes available.”

“We now go live to Miami, where a man by the name of ‘Scott R’ has become a fan of grilled cheese. Scott, can you tell us how this came about?” “Well, I’ve always enjoyed grilled cheese, but I’ve never had a forum where I can share my feelings on the subject with so many other people.” “What a remarkable story.” “Yeah, it’s been a pretty big day for me, because I’ve also been tagged in an album.” “Truly amazing. Thanks, Scott.”

“And now for a quick sports report: According to Jason Holliday, 'THE GIANTS NEED TO WIN THIS GAME TONIGHT. C’MON GUYS LET’S GO.'”

"That wraps things up for this half-hour of Facebook news. Next hour, we'll explore Mary's invitation to her '29th Birthday Spectacular,' and whether you should accept."