Day 3: STC’s Get KO’d and Other Cuts

Posted: January 28, 2011 in Uncategorized

Blogger’s Note: To skip to today’s cuts, skip the next paragraph

 

In my acronym post, I mentioned how one facebook phenomenon that many users (yours truly included) have adopted over the years is the friending of people who possess some semblance of fame or celebrity. If an individual has acquired enough of a public presence these days, they probably have an official facebook fan page, but long before Zuckerberg’s spiders created the fan page application, some wise facebook users had the savvy to friend people before they reached their 5,000 friend threshold (yes, there is apparently a limit on the number of friends you can have). True story: aging but still smokin hot Sportscenter anchor Linda Cohn can count me as among her her first 5,000 “friends.” 5,000 may not sound like a lot, but it is. Think about it. For 5,000 people to make the effort to friend you, you have to have achieved a legitimate level of notoriety and, indeed, many individuals of modest fame are far short of the 5,000 mark. These are the small time celebrities (STC’s) I’m talking about and these are some of the individuals who make up this round of cuts. While it is 500FF policy not to mention cuts by name, I am making an exception for two of my newest cuts, one of whom has seen time in the NFL and one of whom has seen time in the NBA. These two dudes both attended the University of Massachusetts. UMass is a 15 minute drive from where I grew up and though the schools sport’s programs have largely been devoid of relevance for the last 12 or so years, the hoops team made a legendary final four fun in 1996 when I was 10. Marcus Camby and John Calapari left for greener pastures and the team fell on hard times, but I never got over it. I still watch just about every game, often on grainy video feeds using the epic free site, channelsurfing.net. I also have friended some of the UMass greats from the last decade and while the team has occasionally achieved small levels of success, these athletes have gained very little in terms of national prominence.

 

The student body at UMass is largely apathetic about the teams and many of the remaining die-hard fans are older and probably inactive or nonexistent on the facebook streets. The point of all this is that a guy like Stephane Lasme, who broke Camby’s shot blocking record and had a cup of tea with the pre-Lebron Miami Heat only has 1161 friends. He had 1162, but alas, I’m gone. I loved watching Steph, but I didn’t know the guy personally, so what’s the point of being friends with him? Another UMass guy I just axed is Victor Cruz. He is an undrafted free agent wide receiver in the NFL who briefly made national headlines for being the first rookie to ever catch 3 touchdowns in a pre-season game (plays for the Giants). Lebron James even tweeted about it. Still, he’s only got  like 3,000 friends and I’m no longer one of them. Don’t worry Vic, I still follow you on twitter.

 

While it wasn’t easy, I also cut a quirky 7 foot center who transferred to UMass from West Virginia. He used to have a fun blog, wear boe-ties and promote charity events which featured indie rock groups. In short, presumably a good dude. His brother is in the NBA and he  currently plays in Lithuania. All of that, though, can’t conceal the fact that we just aren’t friends. We’ve never even met. A one-time Syracuse-commit who was tabbed as the next great thing in high school but who ultimately dropped out of UMass, got charged with cocaine trafficking at another school and maintained a digital presence throughout it all got the boot as well. More STC’s will surely be cut soon, but some gave me such joy as a fan that I haven’t yet developed the spine to click delete.

 

Seventeen others were cut today and they hailed from all different eras of my life. The local paper which covers UMass sports has a facebook page, but I follow it on twitter and subscribe to the actual paper online, so I didn’t need to keep it around. Gone too was a high school soccer star who went on to be a college ultimate frisbee star and who my close friend described as “a kid who was smug before I knew what the word meant.” He was a smart kid and I always sort of wanted to be friendlier with him, but I don’t think he was my biggest fan, so I don’t feel too bad trimming him from the list. Speaking of inexplicably smug, there was a girl who legitimately detested me for the entirety of high school and made no point of shielding this fact. I’ve been told she was irate when I got a lead role in the school musical, since, socially, I didn’t inhabit the drama circuit and nonetheless managed to get a big part (don’t feel bad for her; my inability to sing led to a pair of songs being cut from the musical in which I co-starred). I’ve also been told she was irate because as a middle schooler, I didn’t react well to my sister’s coming  out (sorry, sis) and she had two mothers so this was a sore spot (though considering that I shamefully tried to hide this fact about my sister when I was 13, I’m not sure how the newly cut girl got the news). By the end of high school, I was editing the school newspaper with a close friend of hers and experimenting with booze at grade-wide bonfires with other associates of hers, but no matter how much cliques fell apart in those final high school days, this one couldn’t let go of her loathing. She let it go in college after a really cool lesbian friend of hers (who I hope I don’t have to cut) went drinking with me and brought her along. I guess that’s when she became convinced I wasn’t the second coming of the Westboro Baptist Church and decided to friend me. Well, we haven’t talked since and while I”m thankful for her eventual display of tolerance, I’m still not entirely over the way she sullied my good name in the high school progressive community.

 

My dear friend went to a small Florida college known for its robust social life. I visited four times and met many people. Once, at a club near campus, I shook hands with O.J. Simpson. I didn’t friend him, but I did friend many of the other people I met at that country club of a college outside of Orlando. Two of them just got the axe, though one I just learned, attends a law school to which I have applied. Could be moderately awkward, but reports indicate that she’s something of a pathological liar, so maybe I’ll see her on campus and she’ll just tell me she doesn’t go there. I’ll just say I never de-friended her. Two dudes I went to college with and remember as smart engineers who built a a really cool beirut table have seen their final days as facebook friends. I liked both, but haven’t spoken with either since those sophomore year ‘ruit contests and one is getting married, so he seems to have resigned himself to a life of facebook irrelevance (not an insult, just a fact). Speaking of pathological liars, I cut another one too. I went to college with her and loved talking to her because she apparently doubled as a drug dealer, professional tennis player, and quadruple major. In retrospect, I actually think the myths which surrounded her collegiate existence were grounded in partial-truths. Either way, we aren’t friends, so I don’t need to know what she’s up to. Or pretending to be up to. A pathologically angry kid I grew up with and who will likely go on to become an enraged billionaire has seen his final day. While I liked him for most of my youth, my last memory of him was when he started aggressively punching himself in the chest after getting cut from the high school baseball team. He was a better player than me, but apparently, I had a better attitude…

 

Other cuts: A pair of freshman year female friends (of each other, though not especially of me), a girl I worked with at a clothing store on Marthas Vineyard one summer, a youth basketball summer camp crony, a long lost Junior Statesman of America friend who goes to a law school I won’t get into, a former student I taught, and a legendary snowboarder five years my senior who I looked up to as a little guy but haven’t seen in over a decade.

 

Total Friends Cut since day 1: 64. Total Added: 1. Total to go in next 47 days: 436. ***Totals could be slightly  off***

 

Follow along on Twitter. Add @500fewerfriends. E-mail 500fewerfriends@gmail.com with your suggestions. If you have any expertise in design/lay-out/wordpress, please let me know. I’m having some trouble making aesthetic improvements and I apologize about spacing issues; I”m looking into fixing them so that your reading experience can be improved.

 

 

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Comments
  1. I’ve read all you wrote (today, was it almost all today?) & I’m totally intrigued. Like the Biggest Loser of Facebook.

    I am thinking I must be in trouble b/c I don’t even look at my #’s any longer. But I think I’m lower than you (so far).

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