Tuesday, April 11, 2006

The only difference is you have integrity, I don't.

Okay, so let's just go ahead and get this out of the way: I am not a repressed homosexual--but I may as well be. What I mean is, you know how people say that homophobes only go after gay people because they are full of fear and self-loathing because they themselves are gay? Well, I'm like that--except with privacy; not so much with the gay.

I've always been secretive. Ever since I can remember, I've kept things to myself. I don't like people knowing things about me. If I thought about it hard enough, I could probably pinpoint the reason behind this, but I'm not interested in any of that touchy-feely Dr. Phil/Oprah "Remember your spirit-"type claptrap. Besides, the why isn't what's important. The point is, I compartmentalize. I have separate groups of friends with whom I have different roles. Sometimes I'm the shy one, or the loud one, or the drunk, or the prude. Regardless, I have a tendency to be kind of squirrelly.

I've kept entire relationships secret for ridiculous amounts of time for no particular reason, other than the fact that I didn't feel like talking about it (Hi Harrisonburg guy!) So basically, you get it. I like to keep things close to the vest. Privacy is one of the most important things to me. My privacy, that is, not yours.

Like the guy who calls everybody else a fag and is secretly sneaking peeks in the locker room, I tell you to stop asking me questions while trying to learn everything about you. I want to know who you're dating, who you used to date, what your job is like, who your favorite band is, the last book you read, everything. No matter how seemingly pointless. And sure, most of this is pretty innocuous, and I could probably find out most, if not all, of this information by talking to you. But if I do, then you'll know that I know these things; you'll know that I care, and I don't wnat you to know that about me.

So I'm an e-stalker. Instead of actually talking to people, I look them up on the internet. I learn little things from your messageboard posts or your blogs. I learn these things and I keep them to myself. I'm J. Edgar Hoover-ing your life, one Google search at a time.

And then there was MySpace. MySpace is something I've been struggling to understand ever since the more photographed of the Digico guys introduced it to me all, "Rivers Cuomo has his Harvard admission essays up there." MySpace simultaneously repulsed and tantalized me. MySpace pages were like blogs, but unbelievably, they had even less of an actual purpose. Some of these people didn't say anything at all. They were just kind of...there, all posting pictures of themselves in their underwear. It was basically an entire community of e-whores and stalkers; a virtual Disneyland for the self-obsessed. It was right up my alley. Unfortunately, no one I actually knew was on MySpace and Rivers' academic exploits could only hold my interest for so long.

I stayed away for a couple of years, as it's popularity continued to grow. Any time someone would talk about MySpace, I would feel kind of old, and sad, and a little bit nauseous. Then I randomly went on a few months ago and made an amazing discovery--suddenly everyone I know is on this thing. Hell, their companies have MySpace pages now.

I eagerly caught up with people I haven't seen since high school, kept tabs on guys I dated, visited the pages of friends of friends I will never meet, all without their knowledge and without telling them anything about myself--just the way I like it.

But after a while, I started to feel kind of skeevy, which surprised me, as my threshold for self-skeeviness is extremely high. I started to look at MySpace in a different light. Instead of just crouching outside in the proverbial bushes, spying on these people, what if I actually talked to them? What if I used this as a tool to keep in touch with those friends I keep on meaning to call but never do? It's the lazy man's way of giving a shit!

So here it is: The just created holy-shit-I-honestly-thought-I'd-jump-on-the-"become-a-cokehead-"
bandwagon-before-I'd-jump-on-the-MySpace-bandwagon MySpace page. Feel free to mock me. I'd do the same to you--and for some of you I already have.

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