6 Apr

Do you Google?  I do.  I Google everything.  Unless you are an aspiring door-to-door encyclopedia salesman or a licensed private investigator, you love Google.  What can I make for dinner using seasoned rice vinegar?  When did Prussia fall?  Where can I buy a cat-of-nine-tails?  Can a body really be dissolved in a tub acid?  There are so many questions and I don’t so much care whether the myriad of answers available on the internet are completely accurate or not; I just need them to sound about right enough.  And volume speaks volumes to me.

Googling isn’t just useful for planning trips and tracking your ancestry, it is my go-to stalking tool.  Oh, don’t be so shocked.  Besides, stalkers aren’t sad and lonely.  They are informed and safe.  Who hasn’t been curious about their neighbor, the new teacher at school or wondered what ever happened to that special crush from fifth grade?  Back when I was dating, Al Gore hadn’t invented the internet yet.  I had to do all of my investigative journalism through old-fashioned gumshoe work.  There was *69 (which could only tell you the last number that called you), asking friends, the white pages, alumni directories, drive-bys and the occasional hide-out in the bushes if you wanted to dig deep.  Luckily, I found my fella at a college friend’s wedding, so it was pretty easy to tease apart the story of his life before the first official date.  Forewarned is forearmed.  And luckily, in his early twenties there just wasn’t time to do much more than finish school, have an internship or two and a job.  Nothing too juicy had happened yet: no kids, no dog-fight organizing, or bankruptcy.

My hero...Google

But  if I was dating now?  Years later, it’s a whole new gig.  You can believe that if I made a dinner date on Monday for Thursday, by Tuesday I would know everything.  And I do mean everything.  It is just about impossible to keep anything private anymore.  Maybe that’s why I blog…I can beat anyone else to the punch.  Seriously though.  As much as you think that you are keeping things close to the vest by not having a Facebook account, published phone numbers or using a fake name on your account, you will be exposed.  Other people will post a picture of you from a college mixer with hunch-punch stains on your t-shirt, your elementary school is slowly scanning and publishing their archived yearbooks, your gold-level sponsorship of a local special interest militia group has been noted and celebrated in their on-line newsletter.  But better yet, there could be that wedding announcement in the community paper or maybe a piece in The Blotter about your “repeat offender” status.

I am actually more concerned when my search engine comes up empty than when it is full of underlined and bold-lettered text.  Why can’t I find you?  How did you scrub Google?  Some of my girlfriends have never married, or they have recently become single again.  I have watched enough Lifetime movies to know that if my friend tells me about a great guy whose parents have pre-deceased their meeting and his only brother just succumbed to cancer…well?  Stay away.  Or the dreamboat who always meets her at the restaurant and only uses cash?  Check, please!  What about the dude who works in Atlanta during the week, but has to fly out to “trade shows” every weekend.  Really?  Really?  With the miracle of Google, I am almost thinking that a gal legally assumes the risk of being Chloroformed, ball-gagged, bound and stuffed in a 55 gallon drum if she doesn’t Google any potential suitor, coworker or handyman.  Take a cue from town harlot, Kim Zolciak, and let your fingers do the research and click them keys.

Footnote:  After I wrote today’s blog, I decided to google myself.  Buried within my own feedback is an apparently well-known and lauded Black Panther activist and poet whose maiden name is just one vowel off from mine and we have the same last name, too.  FYI: I am not moonlighting in Tanzania under the nickname “Mama C”.  I just wanted to clear up that confusion.


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