What I learned from ‘The Social Network’


By Logan Short

I saw the movie The Social Network this weekend and it was everything I had hoped for: smart, witty, dramatic, realistic, blah, blah, blah.

While it delivers the story about how Facebook came to exist, it also illustrates how the pressure of success and popularity can make it hard for a person to uphold their decency. It shows how the desire for superficial success or superficial popularity can be so great that a person will do anything, even betray their closest friends, in order to obtain it.

Now I am not an expert in film theory and I’m not writing a review of this movie, but the way I interpreted it made me think that sometimes, maybe a lot of times, we forget about those who are our true friends in order to obtain a certain class or status.

No, I am not suggesting that people should lower their expectations or diminish their life goals in order to go outside and play with their buddies. I am suggesting, however, our innocence and humility is lost sometimes in the thought that the people you associate yourself with professionally will look down upon you for associating yourself with your goofy drinking buddies.

Sometimes I think the reverse can happen, where you refuse to push yourself to excel in fear that you will conform to the attitudes of your pretentious superiors and your original friends will start to resent you (watch Good Will Hunting for an example). This leaves you with a choice: to succeed, or not to succeed?

This should not be an ultimatum, and the choice should have nothing to do with your friends. A good friend should not have to be the one who sticks by your side no matter what, does exactly the same things that you do, pursues the same exact life that you want or believes in the same polarizing crap you do.

People move at different paces, especially in college. Everyone is on the same track of elementary school, junior high, high school, maybe college, then…what? This is the time and place where people are trying to find what they, as individuals, want for themselves. It’s not selfish, it’s practical, because eventually, you’re making your own money with your own stuff with your own set of daily decisions and obligations.

A good friend is someone who appreciates your time, respects you as an individual, is always honest and never has an ounce of jealousy towards you because they do not want what you have. They want things for themselves.

Everyone’s guilty of being a bad friend sometimes, but I like a friend who keeps things light, because no status, no amount of money is worth a friendship, and no friendship should require an official status or cost any money.

P.S.-That sounded like some feel-good sticker out of a vending machine, didn’t it?