Do you like me?

Wait. Let me start again.

Will you like me?

Please?

Pretty please? Puuuuhleeez? C’mon. I can see you there, with your finger hovering over my post. If you just lower it a little. Yeah. Like that. A little more. There. Now press. Click. Ah, YES!

Thumbs up. And there’s the warmth flooding me. God, it feels nice.

See? I’m clicking on you. I’m liking your Instagram picture.

Yes, I do love how the puddle reflects light. Very artful. Great frame. Damn, you’re a genius. I’ll even comment.

“Love.” There.

I can see it flashing on your screen. Showing you my like. You’re welcome.

Now you feel it, right? Yeah. Feels good. I mean, gooood.

Hold on.

What? That feeling? It’s gone.

Shit.

I feel empty. Drained. But wait. Someone else just liked it. Lauren. Which Lauren?  I don’t know. Does it matter?

Whoa. Smile. She smiled! She clicked like and then smiled. She commented! “Adorable,” she said. Who can resist my dogs?

Oh man, I can see my Klout score rising. I can feel it. Getting hotter. Warmer.

I  got it up to 62 a few weeks ago. Yup. That’s me—a 62. And it came with a PERK! I didn’t use the perk. I didn’t even have time to see what the perk was. But yup . That’s how popular I am. I got a perk. Two, actually, but I don’t want to brag.

What? You got one too?

Your score is what? 72? Are you kidding me?

And how many friends did you say you had? 2,200? Holy crap. That means you’re more popular than I am. But jeez, who isn’t these days?

I don’t feel so good. You can’t see me but I’m folding my arms and staring at my screen.

What should I do? Kinda wished I smoked right now. I’d light up. But hmmm. This feels kind of empty. Lonely. What if I die alone?

I know. I know. I need to put up a new profile pic. There. I found one! Let me tweak it. I’ll add the grunge effect. Oh man, I look cool. Wait. Is this cool? Is it relevant? What if grunge is out? It probably is. I don’t care. Right? I mean, I shouldn’t. Caring what people think is so yesterday.

I’m bold. So there. Posted.

What if people hate it? What if they don’t like it.

Wait! There! You liked it! And Lauren. I guess she’s online still. And then there’s Rob and and Stephen and Laurie and someone named Cody who I can’t remember at all. (Did we go to college together?) But who cares? Oh man, they like it. They really, really like it.

I feel so good.

Except—wait. Damn.

It’s gone. That feeling.

Hey, will you like me?

Janet Kornblum is a journalist and media trainer, and she hopes you really like her.   

Illustration by Jason Reed