Stalking old friends and classmates on Facebook.
You added each other as friends back when you still were friends and actually saw one another on a regular basis, so this isn’t your average bitchy stalking session*. No, this is where you find out that the guy who you secretly fancied for years went to Somewhere Prestigious and is living waht appears to be a really cool and interesting life, like something out of Brideshead Revisited. Or those girls who were bitchy as hell but sure could dance really did make it as professional dancers. I’m not sure if I do this to make myself feel bad for my comparative lack of achievements, or rate myself against these people, or merely out of pure friendly interest.
And what I’ve noticed recently is that these days not only do the boys not look like boys any more, not only do they look like young men, no, I’d got used to that one – now they’re getting pot-bellied and wearing chinos and have started making tentative and bizarre creeping motions towards the big 3-0. They have blue oxford shirts and embarassing sunglasses and girlfriends who look like serious Daughter-in-Law material with neat blouses and picture-perfect maternal smiles. Meanwhile the girls I used to know you can imagine with a few more wrinkles and a more sensible haircut ten years down the line. You can imagine what they’ll look like as ‘real grown-ups’ because we’re getting to the point where that’s what we are. All that separates a lot of us from looking like we actually are thirty years of age is the haircut and the attitude. We’re graduating and we’re not ‘young’ any more. We’re all getting more heavily set, dropping the last vestiges of ‘coltish’, ‘gamine’ or ‘gauche’, filling out. Not necessarily in a fat way – some people are still as thin as rakes – just like, well, you know when you can tell a dog or a cat is or isn’t just out of adolescence? We’ve been fully adult for a few years now, but now it’s like we’re settling into that. There’s enough there that I can see the future. So, yes, I stalk people with whom I’ve in some cases almost entirely lost touch – because I can see the future, and it fascinates me, enthralls me, beckons me in… .
*although that’s fun as well – seeing whether girls who used to bully you are any less ugly now and finding to your utter delight that they’re fat/they wash their hair even less often than they used to/they’ve given birth to the ugliest baby ever (although to be fair I’ll still find it cute and probably say so becuase that’s the weird kind of person I am, saying nice friendsy things to people who used to tip my lunchbox out onto my head, because that’s perfectly normal)/they have a boyfriend who looks seriously, seriously weird/they’re living what appears to be a miserable existence in general, OH I AM SO LOVELY.