25randomthingsI’m sure I’m not the only one who has logged onto Facebook recently, only to be bombarded with precisely 2,025 notifications that my friends would like to share completely random, interesting facts about their lives with me. You know what I’m talking about- those often, but not so random ’25 Things About Me’ notes that you most likely complain about, but then guiltily enjoy reading later.

If you aren’t a Facebook user (good for you), these notes come in a chain mail format. They ask the recipient to ‘write a note with 25 random things, facts, habits or goals about you’ that can be viewed by all your friends. After you carefully craft your list, you’re then to ‘tag’ 25 more friends to do the same.

There’s something about them- well, some of them – that is endearing.

When done well, the blatant honesty infused ones are attractive. The secrets revealed are fresh and thoughtful, and the humor is light and sarcastic. These notes have the potential to be undeniably good reads if the writer either utilizes a decent sense of humor or reveals something about himself or herself that is not cliché, uninteresting (sorry, I don’t care that you’re wearing purple socks right now) or irrelevant to anything about yourself (‘I’m going to see the best boyfriend ever in six hours.’ Ugh.)

When not done with good taste and discretion, these notes can become downright pesky. The more annoying ones contain the likes of ‘I’ve been to Timbuktu, the African savannah and many other places you will never be cool enough to go’ or ‘I really love music, it’s awesome.’ It comes off as bragging in this context, and no one likes pretentious people.

And, yes, we all listen to music, thanks. That is neither random nor original.

So how do you string together your list of 25 and be able to post it with your dignity still intact? Think carefully about what you choose to say and not say. Reveal something quirky about yourself. Steer far, far away from the commonplace. Make it personal, not something that can be said just about anyone at Fairfield (i.e.: ‘I always wear my North Face jacket’).

If you just can’t come up with anything creative and still must join the masses who engage in this chain, it’s safe to say that you can just be completely ridiculous. I’ve seen some lists include ‘I’m so interesting that everyone will be excited to read about my life! I’m so cool!’ and ‘I can do so many things that you can’t, including shooting laser beams out of my eyes and spider webs out of my hands!’ While slightly stupid, at least they’re funny, at least they’re random, and at least they raise a smile. That’s more than can be said for the ‘random’ fact that you happen to love working out.

Now hurry and tag 25 more people before the trend is over.

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