BY BERN MORLEY
Circa 1993, I thought I fell in love. In hindsight I actually just had a big old dose of infatuation, but these things are hard to determine at the time. He was like an addiction to me. He consumed my thoughts. Only problem was, he didn’t know I existed. So I had to get creative and make sure he did.
See these days, if you want to know something about someone, you can have all the information you need in roughly 0.58 seconds. You can find out what bands they are into and “FaceStalk” them on Facebook, you can search for them on Google, check out their career on LinkedIn, find out if there are witty via Twitter and even, if you are completely desperate, see if they were in a shitty band at the turn of millennium by searching what’s left of Myspace. All of this information is yours, without having to leave the comfort of your own home.
Now, excuse me for a minute while I go all “Back in my day” but when I needed to know more about someone I was obsessed with, there was a distinct lack of Facebook or viable internet search engines available to me, and as such, I had to use the old fashioned form of stalking to investigate my interest. This involved staking out my subject’s home, doing drive-bys, getting near, yet not obviously too close to his house, preferably at night, often with a best friend as my wingman and wait for him to emerge. Not creepy AT ALL Right?
So let’s call this guy Matty, the one I was into, because, well, that was his name and I’m guessing, still is. Matty and I, after continually ‘coincidently’ finding ourselves at the same place at the same time, got talking and eventually, kind of got together. If getting together means becoming his short lived booty call then yeah, we were totally boyfriend and girlfriend. I’d sit there, happy to be in his company post shag, he’d pop on some Fleetwood Mac, pick up his book and silently will me to leave. I was pretty bad at reading signals back then.
Now, if mobile phones were attainable back then, I definitely would have received a “Look Bern, I don’t want to use you for sex anymore, please stop dropping by” text message, but they weren’t. Even a Phil Collins styled break-up by fax would have been less humiliating than coming across him macking on with some old lady at the local nightclub. I was destroyed.
For weeks, I’d sit in my room, writing bad poetry in my scented diary, listening to Fleetwood Mac, cry-singing over zealously to Sara. It truly is the best therapy for getting over what you believe at the time, is an irreparable broken heart. But I did get over him and he ended up marrying the older lady. Huh. Great for the self esteem.
It was some years later, when I had all the modern technologies available to me, that I did what every self-respecting woman does, I looked up all my ex-boyfriends on the Internet. When I say all, I mean, four. It was like a really shit version of ‘Where are they now?’
This is what my search on Matty delivered:
“Man, 28, narrowly escapes jail for Tupperware Party Stabbing” complete with a picture of a fat bald guy doing the finger to the photographer.
Bern keeps busy being a working mother of 3 children, one with Aspergers, renovating the original money pit and drinking too many coffees in the space of 24 hours. She writes beautiful and amusing posts on her blog which you can find here.
Have you ever used social media sites to look up an ex or potential lover?