With new technology comes great responsibility -- and also potential for embarrassment.

With new technology comes great responsibility -- and also potential for embarrassment.

If I were more responsible, I might have avoided humiliation. Responsibility in this case would involve putting all phones and tablets out of reach in the evening, no matter how much I whine or complain.

Yes, I know you want to scroll through Facebook, I should tell myself, but you can't. Remember those times you accidentally friended a total stranger? And how those strangers instantly accepted your accidental requests, making the whole business extremely awkward?

Four. That's the number of people I've friended inadvertently. I'm sure they're all upright citizens, and how nice of them to friend someone they've never heard of, or worse -- and I mean worse from my perspective -- they have heard of me and are wondering why I'm all of a sudden so eager to take our acquaintance to the next level.

Just tell them it was a mistake, I hear you saying, but how exactly does a person do that? "I didn't mean to be friendly; can I take it back?"

I'd find this difficult to say, even electronically. For one thing, I know how I'd feel if someone said it to me.

It shouldn't be so easy, is what I say. I don't deny that I fall asleep with my phone in my hand, and somehow, someway -- how should I know exactly; I'm asleep -- my fingers press a few buttons and just like that, the deed is done.

Shouldn't there be a confirmation question, or even two, to avoid this very situation? "Are you sure you want to friend this person?" could be followed by "Really? You've never so much as mentioned her before."

That at least would alert me, or at least it would alert me if I weren't dreaming about driving a semitruck with a load of circus bears in the back.

I'm also guilty of sharing stories I had no intention of sharing. A couple of friends recently staged an intervention regarding one of these stories when we met for coffee.

Listen, they said, leaning in from either side, did you intend to share that story about the best shopping regions in the United States?

They knew, of course, that I would never so much as glance at such a story in my waking life, and the fact that it was all over Facebookland with my name on it had to mean I'd sent it off with my eyes shut. Either that, or an armed intruder in my living room made me do it.

I have to confess something else. That post wasn't the first one I shared accidentally. The first one was an idea for a game to play with your relatives on Christmas. It involved layering dozens of small gifts in a big Saran Wrap ball, which is then passed around so that one person after another can frantically peel away the wrap to get to some gifts before a timer rings.

I knew I'd accidentally shared that post, because for the next few days I got several Facebook notifications: So and so shared your post! Someone else shared your post! A third person!

I walked around during this time feeling like a person driving a little red sports car while her black sedan is in the shop. Not like myself at all, in other words.

I had become a person pretending to be a person who shared fun games on Facebook. Not that there's anything wrong with that. I just don't. If Facebook were a volleyball game, I'd be the one at the back, stepping out of other people's way when the ball comes near me.

I wish I could blame this on over-the-counter sleep aids. I've read about products that cause people to spend hours on the phone at night, talking to people in Krakow, then remembering nothing until they catch themselves speaking Polish to a taxi driver.

But I don't take sleep aids. I'm just sleepy. I'm like the monkey alone in a room with a typewriter who eventually types Hamlet. I may do nothing for hours, but sooner or later I'm going to share a story about the best regions of the U.S. for shopping.

Czuje sie tak glupi. That's how'd I'd say "I feel so dumb" in Krakow.

Write to ThisWeek News columnist and copy editor Margo Bartlett at mbartlett@ thisweeknews.com.