Here in Perth, Western Australia it’s officially the start of autumn. It seems no one has told the weather though. A long, stifling heatwave would have any outsider feeling like it’s the middle of summer.
Soon leaves will start falling out of trees tired from a long summer of growth. The rake and leaf blower will come out of hiding to keep the yard pristine for a merry band of buyers and a host of nosy neighbours.
As much as falling leaves and leaf blowers are synonymous with autumn so is the never-ending chore of keeping friends and follower lists tidy on social networking sites. Neither job is glamorous.
Without regular maintenance gardens become messy and out of control. So do Facebook and Twitter streams.
On Twitter I regularly turn the leaf blower on spammers and folk who are only interested in pimping their eBook or affiliate programme. I clean out the gutters of my Twitter stream by unfollowing inactive accounts. With just a few minutes a day my Twitter garden is clean and tidy.
I keep my Facebook backyard in similar shape. New friends are added to lists – I have about thirty – that allow me to communicate with friends about stuff they’re interested in.
Almost all applications are blocked so my newsfeed only contains updates and news items. I don’t want leaves blowing across my front lawn and I certainly don’t want to see who’s had a psychic reading from Tara the Clairvoyant.
Occasionally I ‘hide’ a friend, a bit like I keep an old saw tucked in the back corner of my garden shed. I recently removed someone from my friends list altogether. They left a pile of spam leaves on my wall. And I take pride in keeping my wall neat and tidy.
Just like my front yard.
Best I stop writing now. I have a hedge to trim.