Z: Ruffles tried to friend me.
She: Ruffles? Is she that new stripper friend of yours?
Z: No. She’s a potato chip. The one with ridges. And Ruffles didn’t really try to friend me. Ruffles just wants me to be their friend.
She: How do you know this?
Z: Because it’s so important to Ruffles that I be their friend, that they printed the Facebook logo on the back of their potato chip bag. Ruffles, as a corporate entity …
She: I don’t think Ruffles is a corporation. I think Frito-Lay is the company. Besides — as Stephen Colbert is constantly reminding us — corporations are people. They spend billions trying to develop their personalities.
Z: Fine. It’s so important to your friend Frito-Lay that I be Ruffles’ friend, that they changed the layout of their potato chip bag to include a completely different corporation’s logo.
She: It’s what all the cool kids are doing. Your friendship must be very important.
Z: Apparently. But why? Who does this? Who sees the Facebook logo on the back of their potato chip bag and thinks, “Yeah, I’m going to go friend Ruffles.”
She: It caught your eye.
Z: Only because it chapped my brain. Seventeen of my neurons slit their wrists trying to figure out why Ruffles thinks I’m going to discover that they’re on Facebook, and then rush to join them.
She: I don’t really get it. The only time I ever go from an advertisement to a Facebook page is if I can win something.
Z: But you’re on Facebook all the time. And Twitter, too.
She: Well, yeah, I do it, but that doesn’t mean I entirely get it.
She: I use Facebook to tell people about a new column or blog post or a funny thing I heard without bombarding their email, but a lot of Twitter stuff is Kim Kardashian without the short skirts — do you really want to hear from her? Or Ashton Kutcher without the pretty face. He’s adorable but let’s face it; he’s not the go-to-guy for riveting dialogue.
Z: He’s probably more riveting than Ruffles.
She: Depends on the day. Anyway, everyone is jumping on the Facebook bandwagon. I think they’re scared of missing out. A ton of ads in magazines now have the little Facebook icon and the Twitter icon, and so does everyone’s email sign off.
Z: Huh? Do we all love the ads so much, that we have to rush from the magazine that we’re reading, or the potato chips that we’re eating, to go look at more ads on the Internet?
She: Something like that.
Z: These companies are spending actual money to hire actual people to man their Facebook pages and print the Facebook logo everywhere. I’m having a really hard time figuring out why.
She: I think it’s because all the other companies are doing it, and they don’t want to feel left out.
Z: That’s what it seems like. I also found the Purina Cat Chow and the Depends Facebook pages. Is the world so bored that all we have left to do is to make friends with potato chips, cat food and adult diapers?
Z: Really? Victoria’s Secret has a Facebook page? Is it, uh, is it any good? Would I like it?
She: No. It’s ridiculous. Just a bunch of pictures and videos. Silly, right?
Z: Let’s not be too hasty.
She: Yes, dear.