Every now and then, man that is born of a woman ceases to breathe. While this, in itself, is a natural phenomenon, the onus of serving as the official megaphone of unnatural death lies on a society that is neck - deep in traditional values and superstitious observances. The aged, the sick, and even the young whom the gods love and whose transition is supposed to be a rebirth in another dimension of life are constantly hounded by archaic principles which seem to express themselves as anti - nature.

The purpose of human life is the pursuit of happiness, and life's drama is constantly played out between the extremes of pleasure and pains being maximized and minimized at one time or the other. It is to man's credit that he is the only species that is capable of pursuing happiness, which is conceived as an ideal life that is joyous, contains achievements of love and friendship and activity, and is above all sufficient to itself. An integral aspect of the achievements of love, friendship and activity is our proclivity towards social networking, as evidenced by the exponential growth in the users of Facebook. As pointed out by this writer in a previous article, Facebook is a bridge that grants you a safe passage into the past in order to make the present more memorable and more enjoyable. And what better way of making the present more memorable than to be able to reminisce with your friends over shared experiences, and get an insight into their recent activities. Add to this the infinite possibility of making more friends from all over the globe, i.e., if you are not averse to fraternizing with strangers.

A man's friends' list speaks volumes about the person. It is like the saying goes: show me your friends and I will tell you who you are. With a miserly figure of 30 friends, spanning a period of 3 years, this writer sets a record of being the most economical with friendship. Perhaps, this is in keeping with his public declaration of excessive love for dogs from whom he claims to have learnt life's greatest lessons: abnegation of the ego, instinctual renunciation and ascetic self - torture. What a pity these canine beings can neither read nor write. We therefore have to rub our minds with persons of similar and dissimilar interests: commenting, liking and unliking comments and pictures, currying God's favour and attempting to bribe Him by adducing as petty a matter as one's good looks in a picture to His grace in our mundane responses to comments. Human beings are indeed common bipeds! All these activities take place within the confines of our walls, provided by the grace and technological savvy of Mark Zuckerberg. And it was here the author of this piece had his first baptism of fire.

What is however enigmatic about the whole operation is the fact that while we are constantly updating our profiles and changing our passwords, the thought never crosses our minds to let a close person in on our password which remains our most guarded secret till our dieing day. This in itself gives birth to the phenomenon of some of us being born posthumously. Having made no conscious efforts to make a living will pertaining to the disposal of our Facebook account in the event of our eventual journey to thy kingdom come, a deceased user's account continues to exist and the deceased's recent activity makes the headline as if he had risen from his resting place. What better way of giving a real - time user the shock of their life when they log in than to be presented with a scenario of a deceased user showing up in Facebook suggestion and status updates. Facebook! Facebook! How we wished you could really bring back dead people with status updates.

In order not to encourage real - time users to cry for the moon, there is a proviso embedded in the privacy policy of Facebook requiring the family and friends of any user that has passed away to contact the company to request that their profile be memorialized. Family or friends must fill out a form, providing a link to an obituary or other information confirming a user's death, before the profile is officially memorialized. This is done, no doubt. in order to discourage pranksters from posting obituaries of users who still have the breath of life pulsing through every fissure, rent and pore of their system.

In memory of Francis Orumwense and Roland Igbafe, two worthy soldiers and users of Facebook, who recently passed away. Rest in peace.


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