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Acquaintance is a noun that means personal knowledge, but not in-depth knowledge. That knowledge can be of a subject area, fact or person. For example, you might have an acquaintance with classic Russian literature. If so, how did you stay awake when you became acquainted with it? I have to struggle to make it through a couple of chapters of Russian novels without dozing off several times.

As I said before I went off on my tangent about Russian literature, acquaintances can also be people. In this case, acquaintances are people you’ve met, possibly a few times, but you aren’t close enough with them to call them friends.

The preceding statement used to be true, but is it still true in the age of Facebook? Facebook “friends” may be real friends or family members, but they can also be people you’ve never met, never will meet and never want to meet,. Yet, in either case, they are still friends in the Facebook lingo.

Thus, contrary to the normal definitions of the words friend and acquaintance, a Facebook friend can be several notches below (or possibly several notches above) an acquaintance on the camaraderie scale.

So, my question is, would you rather be an acquaintance of mine, a Facebook friend of mine, or a real friend of mine?

Did you say, “real friend?” If so, what the hell is the matter with you? It was a trick question. In all likelihood you don’t know me at all. For all you know, I could be a serial killer. (I’m not, but for all you know I could be. They exist.)

You really shouldn’t be so trusting. It’s a cruel world out there. Who knows what could happen when you trust someone like me?

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