My wife and I met on Friendster back in the winter of 2003-2004. Then we moved onto MySpace, then Facebook, then Twitter. And there we finally settled, like homesteaders headed further and further west until they said, “There it is.”
Imagine where you met the girl of your dreams. It was likely a place in the real world, one that you might occasionally visit.
Now imagine that place disappearing, and the memory of it fading into the ether of history. That’s what happened to ours four years ago today.
Friendster has long been a shell of its former self, but in 2003 it was announced anything related to its current form was about to go bye-bye. Time for everyone to log into their accounts and preserve their memories, we were told. So I did.
I logged into my account for the first time since November 2006 (I’m sure this coincides with Facebook opening its doors to the non @*.edu blessed). Not much was there anymore.
Sure there were some grainy photos, but nothing I didn’t already have a copy of elsewhere.
There were connections with other profiles. A good majority of them were to people I don’t speak with anyone or even connect with on other services. They’re friends who are now strangers. It’s amazing how your social circles change in just a decade.
Finally, there were tons of messages, 118 in fact, sent by all sorts of random people — or “people” — desperate to connect online.
However, I stuck with the messages, digging for the most-important one of my life. And there it was, dated 1/14/2004. It was the first thing I ever said to my future wife:
Subject: Nice Backpack
Contents: I sense that it should be holding fish instead of markers. Either that, or fantastically-powerful fuel that powers what is actually your top-secret jet pack. Either way…howdy!
And thankfully she responded this this stranger and decided to marry him & have two beautiful kids.
R.I.P. Friendster. Thanks for helping make me the happiest man on earth.