A year ago some friends deleted me from Facebook. I sent messages asking why and very awkward conversations followed. Recently I noticed another friend removed me from Instagram, and a week later, Facebook. How does one say, "Hey, you don't like me anymore?" and still sound like an adult? So awkward. So humiliating.
I wish I was above noticing these trivial things, but obviously I'm not. I've deleted people. We all have. Maybe they accidentally unfriended me? Maybe it's a Facebook glitch? What's the etiquette here? No one questions unfriending and no one gets hurt? Unfriend with a note telling people you can't stand their photos? Help me McGuinty! (And can I be your Facebook friend? I'll send a request now.)
— Your New Friend,
Friendless and Unfollowed
1 – Remember my mantra: Facebook Makes Us All 12, All The Time. That is happening here.
2 – Refer to my Aug. 29 column where I said "'Facebook accidentally deleted you' isn't a thing, don't even try that." So don't kid yourself. You've been on-purpose deleted, my (newest) friend.
Where does that leave you and everybody else? Take the high road and keep your mouth shut. What good comes from calling people out? You've done that. It was awkward. We all know we're supposed to tell people they have spinach in their teeth, but few people do it. This is the online version of spinach in your teeth. Everybody knows it happened, but it's best to just ignore it and move on. Unless you really want to make the person feel awkward and uncomfortable. In that case, go for it. But realize when you do that, now it's you being 12, m'kay?
My fiancé and I have been together for four years. Two years ago I moved to the next state to take a great job. The job takes me on the road a lot, sometimes for a month or longer, making it difficult to stay close to my man. A few months ago he moved in with me but that doesn't change how much I'm gone.
Periodic texting is our connection while I'm on the road, but there's got to be a better way! Maybe post cards? On my first trip away, a friend gave me an envelope with individual messages enclosed; one message for each day. I loved it, but I'm a girl. Would he appreciate it as much? I'd like to come up with a ritual that coincides with being away from each other for long periods. Maybe it's something we do for each other pre-sendoff, a ritual upon my return, or a series of rituals we can keep while I'm on the road. Anything to make the distance seem shorter. What should I do?
— Seeking Closeness from Afar
Gah! Just when you're not technically in a LDR anymore, you still are, eh? (Congrats on the engagement, btw!) It's good that you're working this stuff out early. I think you two crazy kids might just make it!
This will come as no surprise to anyone who knows me, but I say do all of the above. Go big. This is love we're talking about! Have cute little rituals for when you depart, travel, and return. Each of you can come up with something that feels authentic to you. When a friend was writing you those messages, that was a way for your friend to feel closer to you, not just the other way around. If writing him a post card each day makes you feel closer to your man, do it, and allow him to figure out a way to do the same. Maybe it'll be taking a picture each day of something he thinks you'd like, or sending you a stupid joke. Who knows. The point is, you each have some autonomy here to express yourselves differently and by doing so, will get to know each other better even while you're on the road.
One adorable idea is to create a shared Spotify playlist that you can both edit and listen to on your smart phones. Call it the modern-day version of looking up at the same constellations. Add songs that remind you of each other, and listen to them when you're really missing him but can't talk to him. Awwww.
I'm traveling to a foreign country for work and will be seeing coworkers I don't usually see. I want to bring a local gift that will be universally appreciated and not expensive. There are 30 people in the office so something to share would be good, and maybe a few extra goodies for my actual friends. I'd like to get by for $40 or so. I also want it to be small so it won't take up all my luggage space, not too heavy so it doesn't weigh down my bag and obviously it can't be illegal. Any ideas?
— Caring Co-Worker
Dude. Dude! Why didn't you just sign this "Goldilocks"? This is you: "Not too big, not too heavy, not too expensive, but something that shows I really care."
You're basically saying you want to spend a dollar per person. You might as well just give them the dollar, Goldilocks. Or coffee. Coffee is universally appreciated and the only thing that meets all of your other criteria. Thankfully, we have some really great locally made coffee, so you can bring them a nice assortment and stay in budget.
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