Facetime: grasping onto my only remaining social life

April 16, 2020 — by Anjali Nuggehalli

Due the Covid-19 lockdown, my idea of hanging out with my friends has quickly switched from going out to staying in and doing social activities on Facetime

It’s around 9 p.m. when my phone dings. I don’t even have to read the text to know it’s from my best friends’ group chat asking if I’m “down to FaceTime.”

On a normal pre-quarantine evening, I had stacks of chemistry worksheets to complete, two tests on the following day and three chapters of history to read. If I ever FaceTimed someone during these chaotic days, it was for a crash course on a chemistry lesson or for homework help.

But of course, during quarantine, my workload suddenly morphed into an optional 30-minute Zoom call every other day. The downside of this new arrangement? I no longer have the chance to rant to my friends every day, whether it’s during class or lunch.

FaceTiming is the only way to truly stay connected to your friends:  Aside from the occasional “poor connection” or “paused” sign, it’s as if they’re right next to you.

The only problem with FaceTime these days is that everyone’s life is so painfully boring, there’s nothing really new to update your friends about. That is why my friends and I have come up with a variety of FaceTime activities so that we can still have a blast during these uneventful days. 

One of my personal favorites is the Chrome extension “Netflix Party.” Netflix Party allows you to watch movies or TV shows with your friends without the awkward lag. It also comes with a chat room where you and your friends can provide hilarious commentary about every scene in the movie or show, such as “The Bee Movie” or “Kung Fu Panda 2.” 

Some of my favorites that I’ve watched with my friends using Netflix Party are “All American” and “Murder Mystery.” There’s just something comforting about having a movie night with people you love — even if it’s virtual. 

Another FaceTime activity I recommend is making impulsive decisions while your friends are laughing at you from their rooms: for example, cutting bangs at 1 a.m.

Through these experiences, my entire outlook on FaceTiming has changed. A few weeks ago, FaceTiming was for getting help on homework or spilling tea with friends. Now, I’ve realized that FaceTime can also be a way to replace entertaining activities that you would normally do with your friends in person. It’s also just a fun way of connecting with the people you love spending time with, even during a time as unusual as this.

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