Tuesday, May 12, 2009

I never did mind the little things!

This past week I realized I received my Botox treatment in the nick of time, as life’s “little” annoyances definitely would have aged me prematurely. During the last 7 days I endured stress ranging from what most would view as mundane to quite significant. First my Facebook account was disabled without warning, secondly a family member ran into trouble in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and thirdly I am in the process of changing jobs.

The combination of all three had had me experience emotions ranging from anger, frustration, irritation, stress, fear to relieve. Not all these issues are resolved at present, but it had me appreciate what is really important in life!

My Facebook account was disabled on Wednesday last week. No warning messages, no explanation nothing! One day I had over 4000 friends and a fan page for my blog with 1200 fans and the next day all traces of my being was erased. It’s as if I no longer existed! Quite a few people noticed my mysterious disappearance, which made me feel kind of blessed – at least some people noticed and missed me! To me it felt like Facebook’s Super Nanny ordered me to take a time-out and go sit on the naughty chair without explaining to me what I did wrong. What makes it worse is the fact that they are also not communicating with me, and I am getting the silent treatment as well!

Oh the horror of being excommunicated from a cyber community! The shame… The isolation...

All 4000 of friends disappeared somewhere into cyberspace and I have no means of contacting them – it’s like I died a cyber death! They really should establish a Cyber Obituary for people who have experienced the same thing. At least then your friends will know of your untimely cyber demise.

The frustration of trying to contact a company that only choose to communicate with their clients through e-mails, had me yearning for the days when one could actually speak to a human being instead of getting automated responses by bots, with impersonal replies and no speedy resolution. At least some of my friends decided to take action and have e-mailed the Facebook Black Hole of Appeals and if I am lucky someone will eventually read 1 of these e-mails and reinstate my account. In the mean time I'm in exile from Facebook, isolated and forced to interact with my friends in the real world - which isn’t such a bad thing but is hell on my phone bill! The Facebook drama has taught me the value of true friendship and to never put all your eggs in 1 basket (one social networking webpage). Currently, I am suffering from Facebook withdrawal symptoms and I am wondering whether there are any support groups that I can join!

“Hello my name is Pierre and I am an Excommunicated Facebook Addict!”

Over the weekend we learned that the patriarch of our family ran into trouble in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). He was being held “hostage” there and was unable to return to South Africa. This made my Facebook woes seem quite insignificant! If there is one place in the world you never want to run into trouble it is an African country! I don’t know how many people have ever tried to contact an attaché of an Embassy or a Consulate over a weekend – it’s almost next to impossible! Being the persistent bitch that I am, and dealing well with multi-tasking, trouble shooting and getting things done I managed to get hold of someone on Sunday. The person was quite shocked that our family member was told that the Embassy could not assist him because his problem was not of a political nature. So on Monday someone was fired from the embassy, and I am sure that individual will take greater care in future not to make reckless statements due to laziness and/or apathy. We were lucky that the Embassy took swift action and secured our patriarch's safe return. The whole experience was stressful and the fear and uncertainty of having a family member in a dire situation in a foreign country and the sense of helplessness one experience is difficult to describe. It is also peculiar how one learns to what extend you will go to protect those you love when they are in danger!

They say the death of a loved one, divorce, relocating and changing jobs are the top 4 most stressful things a person can experience. I can honestly say that this is the truth. I have lived through all of these experiences apart from divorce. Currently being in the process of changing jobs for the second time in 2 years I must admit I find the process taxing.

Negotiations, paperwork, meetings, getting signatures, and dealing with Human Resource Departments are getting to point where I want to scream ENOUGH ALREADY!!!! At this stage I just want to pack my little cardboard box with my little private nick-knacks and move offices! Unfortunately, like most things in my work environment, things happen at a snails pace testing my patience. I have tried working on this virtue they call “patience”, which I seem not to have, by growing bonsai trees and orchids. The bonsai trees have died and the orchids refuse to flower! I have made peace with the fact that my career transition will take time, so I will wait impatiently for all the red tape to be completed, and grind my teeth with every delay and bare it!

With the past 7 days and the associated dramas I have come to realize that there is no use in sweating the small stuff. In life you will experience a crisis from time-to-time, some significant others mundane. Your attitude in dealing with each little blow life deals you greatly will determine the general outcome. There is a line in a movie that has become a motto for me during trying times that say “I never did mind the little things”. The most important things in my life, which I have gained greater appreciation for this week are: The safety of my loved ones; having true friends; being healthy; and being fortunate enough to have a job and being able to live a comfortable life. Everything else is just a bonus – the cherry on the cake! I urge all of us to have a good look at our own life and list all the things that we deem most important - I am sure the list will open up all our eyes as to what truly is important in life.

Till next time!

Vidur Kapur


JD said...

I think Facebook should reactivate your account ASAP! I miss you on there and will send them an e-mail as well.

Sorry to hear about the DRC,travelling in Africa is scary, or so I have heard.

Pierre said...

Thanks JD, I appreciate the support ;-) Being in exile from Facebook sucks ;-( Let's hope one of our e-mails reaches a sympathetic FB employee!

In the mean time, I'll keep on blogging!

Anna said...

Don't let the FB thing upset you, it happens to many people and they usually get their accounts back.

Love your blog, keep up the good work!

Anonymous said...

Shit happens and especially with Facebook. Facebook anyway have too many users and to few staff. They care more about the money they make than the people that use their site. So I say it's their loss, open up an account on MySpace!

auralicioz said...

Yep, those things happened in Facebook. My sister got her account banned because she did not put the correct network. Instead of putting her account under the Malaysian Network, she had it under New York. And Facebook did warn her to change it about 1 or 2 times, then boom! the account has gone.

But its nothing compared to your FB account suicide,4000 friends? and tonnes of fans? I am terribly sorry but I am sure you will figure out a way.

I'll be your new FB friend and fan =] Pass the new address around :)

Shanaz AL

Pierre said...

Thanks Shanaz AL

I don't want to create a new Facebook account and have to start over. I'd rather have my original account reinstated.

If you want to help please send them an e-mail on my behalf and ask them to reinstate my account.

You can sent an e-mail to:


and ask them to reinstate Pierre Le Roux (paleroux_jnr@telkomsa.net)

I'd really appreciate your support!

Frank J said...


I coulght a little horticultural note there. And thought I should share. We've got some orchids in our greenhouses and they have not flowered in years. Ours were so vegetatively vigorous that we had to divide them into 6 different pots. At long last, one of the pots has started to show signd of making buds. YAY!!

Your orchids will flower eventually... but they do not like to be moved around much. As a slightly 'masculine' aside, did you know orchids got their name from a percieved phallic similarity??


Pierre said...

Nice to see a comment from you again Frank J. It's been a while!

I have also divided my orchids and pampered them like babies, yet they still refuse to reward me with some beautiful flowers.

Like I said, patience is not one of my virtues, but that's why I started growing them. So I will wait...

Maybe someday (hopefully soon) they will reward me with the splendour of their immaculate flowers and it all will have been worth the wait!!!

Anonymous said...

Hey Pierre

It's really sucky that FB disabled your account :( We are trying to get FB to put you back - but I feel you when you call it the black hole of nothingness...

Hope to catch you soon!

The guy keeping his sperm for someone else ;) - LC

Pierre said...

Thanks I really appreciate all the support and encouraging e-mails! I hope to speak to everyone that is working so hard to have my account reinstated soon.

I don't think Facebook's non-response is on purpose, just think they receive so many e-mails that they are experiencing a backlog (or at least I hope that is the case). I guess persistence is the key!

Just a reminder to assist me in getting my account back please e-mail


and ask them to reinstate

Pierre Le Roux (paleroux_jnr@telkomsa.net)

Please make sure to sent the e-mail from your Facebook login account and to include both my name & e-mail address in your e-mails.

Once again I would like to thank all of you for your support - I really appreciate it!!!!

Pierre said...

At least now our my father-in-law is safely back in South Africa, my job transition seem to be progressing slowly, and I am back on Facebook. Now I just need to sort out some minor glitches with Facebook (my groups and blog fan page) and a few others in my family and career life and then the world as I know it will return as "normal"

Anonymous said...

Hi Pierre,

Ive sent the appeal :)
Hopefully you'll get your old account back!


Shanaz AL

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