Tag Archives: creepy

Don’t be Internet Creepy

21 Nov

Here is a weird thing that happened this morning. (By the way it is only 9:30am and I am already having a little bit of a stress attack due to The Internet. It is TOO EARLY for such nonsense.) So I woke up this morning to a bunch of alerts on my phone. This is normal. The following fit squarely into the “normal” category:

1. Really late text messages from people wondering if I am working or out, or from people wanting to send me hilarious gifs and messages because, I have come to realize, I am the person for a lot of people where when something funny or weird happens and they think to themselves “who would appreciate this?” the answer is Rebekah. Rebekah would appreciate it. So I get a lot of funny texts which makes me exceedingly happy. Especially when I read them first thing in the morning. Great way to start the day. For real. I am not being sarcastic. Please keep sending them. Please.

2. A bunch of emails but mostly they are bullshit, like investment advice and crap from The Central Park Conservancy, a mailing list that I never signed up for and have unsubscribed from about a dozen times, not that anyone is counting.

3. A notification of all the apps on my phone that need updates which I mostly ignore because most the apps came with my phone and they are stupid.

4. A New York Times rundown that I peruse because it is good to know the happs, even the very limited happs from the perspective of one news source.

Those things are all normal. Sometimes, though, things that are abnormal happen. Or at least slightly out of the ordinary. Those sorts of things are exciting. Here is a list of some of the things that happen overnight that when I wake up I’m like “woah! What could this be about?!”:

1. Comments on this blog. The thing about that though is that when I receive comments on this blog during the night they are usually either spam (recently a lot of the spam that has been getting through is from a junk account called “testosterone pills” and I can’t for the life of me figure out why this account won’t stop hounding me via nonsensical crap) or from the psycho lawyer who sends me mean messages from throw away email accounts when he’s wasted at like 3am on a Wednesday.

2. New blog followers and blog likes. That makes me feel good! It has been a slow-growth process but one of these days shit will get real. I believe it.

3. Twitter activity! I am not good at Twitter. I have been trying to get better at it by posting things more often and that seems to be working out okay for example the other day I made a new Twitter friend and I felt pretty good about it. We Tweeted back and forth for a few minutes. About Anonymous. It was invigorating.

4. Facebook friend requests. Okay, this is a mixed bag. I am not excited about this so much as slightly nervous. It’s like, when I click on the thing to see who is trying to be my “friend,” I kind of cringe and halfway look away, as if whoever it is is going to somehow jump out of the phone and do, well, I don’t know what they would do. Depends on the person I guess. If it was this one kid I went to middle school with he would tell me I had boogers on my nose. He always used to tell me that whether I had boogers or not. I blame him for my rather unladylike habit of wiping my nose on my sleeve.

5. Instagram things. I have been really liking Instagram. I follow NatGeo and that is really awesome. The other day they posted this video of a parasitic wasp larva that eats a spider and then takes over the spider’s web and it was totally awesome. Gross, but awesome. Also my friends do cool shit. And The Fat Jewish is on there and that cracks me up. That account put on a really fucked up joke about Anne Frank that I shouldn’t have laughed at but I did. Really hard. It made me feel bad about myself as both a Jew and a human being.

6. LinkedIn notifications. Did I even spell the site right? I don’t know and honestly, I don’t really care. And that is because I am less excited about these than any of the other things because, meh, professional networking site. What a snooze.

Anyway, so whenever any of these abnormal things happen I think to myself, “self, today is going to be a bizarre and interesting day.” And today is one such day. So this is what happened:

  • I woke up this morning and realized that I had a request on LinkedIn.
  • I went onto LinkedIn and looked at the profile and realized that I had no clue who this person was but that we do have some ‘interests’ in common, at least as far as LinkedIn is concerned, and we had two shared contacts who, as far as I know, don’t know one another. Okay! Seems legit!
  • I approved the LinkedIn contact because, really, what do I care. I don’t really use LinkedIn. Too stuffy. My photo is of me drinking a cup of coffee in Guatemala. Decidedly unprofessional.
  • I got a new endorsement from my new LinkedIn contact who somehow magically knows what I am good at? LinkedIn is so silly.
  • A few moments later I had a notification from Twitter that I had gotten a new follower. How fun! Then I realized that my new follower was none other than my new LinkedIn connection. What a strange coincidence!
  • More notifications from Twitter! A new retweet! And a favorite! Wow! What a day! Wait? Is that who I think it is? It is! My new Twitter follower who also happens to be my new LinkedIn connection.
  • I felt weird so I went on the GChatz and immediately chatted my friend and told her about all the events and she was like “cool? but maybe mostly creepy?” and then….

Me: oh my god and now he found me on Facebook! WHAT THE FUCK?!
CJ Rene: who is he?
Me: I DON’T KNOW! (I was stuck in caps. It happens more often than I care to admit.)

So then I looked at his LinkedIn page and I realized that people on LinkedIn can see when you look them up on there which is part of the reason I never use it and then I had a freak out. Because I don’t want him to know I am looking! But my friend told me that he is being creepy so obviously I would look at his page but he probably doesn’t think he is being creepy. Maybe this is normal for him? Like, a normal day like one of my normal days during which I do not connect with strangers on every social media platform I can think of. So then I thought maybe I would message him on Twitter and be like,

“Um, hey, I’m sure you’re nice and all but what you’re doing right now with the rapid-fire connecting on The Internet is really bugging me out.”

But you can’t message someone on Twitter unless you are following one another and I wasn’t following him so that avenue was closed to me. So I did the only reasonable thing, I rejected the friend request. I did that because, well, I don’t know this person and also because I don’t want to encourage him to then try and find me on Instagram. And then I felt really happy that I upped my Instagram security settings because, as my friend Emily said, “no one needs their Instagram being public.” So true. And then I started writing this blog.

There are a few points to this story. One of the points is that even when you are well-intentioned, which this person might very well be, going on a connection spree with someone you don’t know, especially someone of the opposite gender, can be seen as a little, um, weird? And also scary? Especially when that person happens to be sort of afraid of The Internet even though all her shit is on here and easily searchable, as was reenforced this morning by the aforementioned story. I guess I already really explained the other point which is that I am scared of The Internet. Like, actually terrified of it. And it is maybe good to be reminded every now and again that the things that are out there don’t just go into the abyss, they are findable and readable by all sorts of people, well-meaning or otherwise.

So that’s today. I am going to go for a run now and contemplate The Internet and my presence on it. And also wonder whether my new LinkedIn connection, Twitter follower and rejected Facebook friend is reading this blog. And if after reading it he unconnects and unfollows. Only time will tell. Stay tuned.

Can I Smell Your Feet?

13 Apr

As any of you avid readers already know, I have gotten a new job.  Well, I think I have.  I am sort of waiting for all the details to sort themselves out.  So in the meantime I have been running around like a crazy person trying to get things done.  You know, buying clothes with my friend Meredith (who totally saved my fucking life, by the way) and doing important things like having an impromptu shredding party with my friend Ben!  So, get this.  I am subletting my room while I am away to a friend, and former roommate, who is going to double as a catsitter!  I decided that the most important thing to do before his arrival was not to clean out space for his stuff in the closet but instead to shred all the paper that has been piling up around the room.  I had noticed when I was at Staples the other day that they have a shredding service and since the drawer in my shredder is jammed shut somehow I thought I would lug all the paper to Staples and have them do away with it.  But first, I had to go to Ben’s to help him out with something.  So I walked up the block with all my shreddable things, figuring I would ask him if he needed anything shredded and I could just take it with me to Staples.  So he opens the door to his building and you will not believe what happened.

Ben: So I have to show you my new toy.
Me: Oh?
Ben: Yea. Well, I already maybe jammed it but look at my new shredder!

I kid you not.  Ben was sitting in his house shredding!  And I needed to shred!  What are the odds?!  It was like, totally meant to be.  Anyway, after two hours we had over-heated the shredder and had to call it quits but we both felt totally accomplished and I felt like we were really meant to be friends, you know?  I mean, who else but a real friend would (a) be shredding when you needed to be shredding (b) invite you to shred with him and (c) play kickass tunes while shredding?!  No one, that’s who!

Anyway, none of this is the point.  The point is that while I am waiting for my job to come through I have been picking up a bar shift here and there to make some extra cash and keep myself busy.  So last night I picked up a shift and it was really fun!  The people were nice, it was chill, I did some chatting, I caught up with an old friend who I hadn’t sat down with and talked to for quite some time.  It was all really good.  Except for this one thing.  They have a creepy prank phone caller!  So there I was, behind the bar, minding my own business when the phone rang.  I answered.

Me: Good evening, (insert name of bar here).
Creeper: Mumbles something incomprehensible.Me: Come again?
Creeper: More incomprehensible mumbling.
Me: Dude, you really are going to need to enunciate a little better than that if you want me to help you with something.
Creeper: Still completely incapable of speaking comprehensibly.

I hung up the phone.  I then walked over to my coworker and told him that someone called and I couldn’t understand what the hell he was saying and my coworker said,

“Did he ask if he could smell your feet?”

I realized just in that moment that that was exactly what he had asked!  I was immediately disgusted and went on one of my “what is wrong with people?!” downward spirals.  In mid-spiral the phone rang again!

Me: Good evening, (insert name of bar here).
Creeper:  Can I smell you feet?
Me: Dude!

I hung up. Then my coworker informed me that this guy only calls when there is a female bartender working.  Like, what?!  So then I was even more grossed out cuz he is like, chilling outside maybe.  Or he lives across the street and spies with creepy little binoculars while wearing a satin robe.  I mean, if you are going to do all that at least ask everyone if you can smell their feet.  I mean, it is still a totally creepy thing to do but it is maybe less creepy when it is like an equal opportunity thing, am I right?  So I decided something had to be done.  I simply could not stand idly by and allow this weird phone creeper to keep calling, creeping people out and being a weirdo.  So I waited, patiently, for the phone to ring again and when it did I was ready!

Me:  Good evening, (insert name of bar here).
Creeper:  Can I smell your feet?
Me:  Sure.  But only if I can shit in your mouth.

And then he hung up!  I out creeped the creeper!  I don’t know if this is something that I should necessarily be proud of but, you know, I felt as though there was a job that needed doing and I was the one who could do it.  If anyone can out creep someone by using statements about fecal matter, it was this girl.  The funny thing about all this is that the people around the phone when I answered really didn’t know what was going on so all they heard was this:

Me:  Good evening, (insert name of bar here).
Silence as I awaited the response I knew was coming.
Me:  Sure.  But only if I can shit in your mouth.

And then I had a big smile on my face.  So there was a moment there where I wasn’t a woman in battle with a creeper, I was the creeper!  It was me.  Rebekah the creeper.  Obviously I cleared up the situation and we all laughed and laughed but there was a moment there where I really saw the fear in their eyes as if they were thinking

“if she would shit in the mouth of some random caller what else is she capable of?!”

I felt what it might be like to be a creeper and I didn’t like it.  I didn’t like it one bit.