Sunday, November 27, 2005

What Would You Do???

I just found out from a friend that an acquaintance from college is getting married.

That, in itself, is far less than shocking.
Here's the shocking part.

This girl is NOT unattractive.
She's not odd.
She doesn't sit home in the dark with an Atari.
She didn't have troubles making friends or getting dates.
She was what I would term "Normal".
Whatever normal is.

However, she apparently has always (who knew??) gotten in chat rooms for fun.
Not that odd.
I can see the appeal.
It's like blogging but shorter.
Now here's the odd part.

She started chatting with a guy and apparently hit it off quite well.
She added him to her friends list.
They started chatting, IMing and e-mailing each other various times throughout the day.
About a month into it, she finally gave into his requests for her phone number.
They started talking on the phone about twice a week.
They had loads in common, got on perfectly well and made each other happy for that brief time they were conversing.
She started to think she was falling in love.
He told her that he was falling in love.

He's from England.
ENGLAND. As in England, the country, across the ocean, the country.
NOT England, Arkansas (and yes, there really is an England, Arkansas).

Apparently he decided he was in love with her and he saved his pennies and flew here for a visit.
He was here for a week.
They both felt that they had fallen in love talking via email and IM and then further on the phone. That meeting just reinforced that everything they were feeling was truly REAL.

A month later, she flew there for a week.
The next thing anyone knew they were engaged.
He's moving here to be with her.
Visas are applied for and the whole nine-yards.

Now, I'm not saying this isn't off the wall . . . my first instinct was "She's marrying some guy she met on the internet??????" I wouldn't expect you guys to have a less extreme reaction. I think we all kind of lurch around a bit and think, deep down, that there was something wrong with these people if they weren't getting things done with their real lives.

And probably, a few months ago, I would have stuck with just that impression.
It would have gone no further.
But that was months ago.
Since then, via these blogs, I have met some of the most EXTRAORDINARY people.
Male and female.
I would not hesitate a second to call any of you friends.
You're all astounding and fun and wonderful and hilarious and it makes me happy to think about reading about your days and your ideas and your feelings.
I hope that you feel the same about me. . . .
But here's the question . . .

Do you think you could honestly, for a second, think that someone you met in this fashion was more than a friend? Could you start communicating with them in other avenues (I KNOW that most of us DO communicate via email as well, but that's different) and then escalate to a phone call and then to possibly more?

I'll answer first . .. I have NO idea.
I haven't been in that situation, yet.
I've thought about calling at least two of you.
Both were female (and you guys KNOW I'm not gay), but I just had such a connection. You know, those friends you meet and immediately feel like you've known each other for ages?????
I've met you wonderful people via blogging comments and some in email.
But, do I think I would want to start instant messaging you lot and then escalate to calling and what-not? Do I think I could fall in love with one of you?
Females - no way could I fall in love with you. I'm straight, straight, straight.
Males - thank God, I don't have to ask myself that . . most of you guys are married, in long term relationships or starting new dating escapades.
Until 3 hours ago, I didn't even THINK about anything more than friendships with anyone I'd met via any form other than face to face. But now I have to really think about it.

I guess I'll get back to you guys on this.
In the meantime, I would LOVE to hear your ideas . . . have any of you met other bloggers or, I guess, people you have met in some other way on the internet? Would you? Do you think it's possible to fall in love with someone you've never met face to face??


Ang said...

that is so interesting! i sometimes find myself starting to tell my real friends a story and realize it is about one of my 'cyberfriends' and realize what a geek i sound like...but i do think i have made some real friends!

On one hand I think that it would be totally interesting to meet some of you, on the other it just might be wierd... I think it is one of those go with the situation as it comes up!

Saying that, if any of you are in Taiwan...

Steph said...

Well i must be supergeeky. My last TWO relationships were with guys i met online. The first one i happened across in a chat room. I was bored, he private messaged me and it went from there. First to phone calls and then we met and had an actual relationship for eight months.

The second guy i met through a message board about Big Brother. The thing with meeting someone online is that you really get inside their head and know them on a totally different level before you meet.

Having said that. I've also met some scary, psycho mutha's online and have, for the most part, kept my online/offline life very seperate. I've met some people off message boards etc and it's rarely how you think it would be. I've seen the plus and negative side to it. It depends on the individuals involved i guess.

Eunuch said...

Yes, it's absolutely possible, but do I ever expect it to happen to me, no (anyway, that kind of stuff never happens to me). Ironically, I just had a WAY LONG AGO ex-girlfriend find me via my blog. She basically wants to start something back up - no way in hell. And even crazier, another girl basically said she wanted to date me...we've never met, talked, or anything, and I'm 12,000 miles away, in Iraq, for 9 more months!

But, to return to your question, yes, I do believe that someone could find true love, or at least a good start for a relationship via electrons.

Usually, I end up meeting people online via friends of friends of friends, hyperlinking further into the blogsphere. At least you find people with similar tastes (I never thought those profiles meant much until I started looking and comparing them with mine!!!).

Jared said...

The whole idea seems a bit weird to me. I have no problem with making friends online or even meeting up once or twice (although i've never done so myself). Falling in love, to me atleast, should envolve something other than chatting online.

There's no human interaction (however,some may argue otherwise) there's just you and the keyboard. I'm not sure I'd like to begin a wild love affair over a phone line. I need to look into someones eyes. See them. Feel their presence.

Perhaps my short life (16) is influencing my opinion on the subject.


meghansdiscontent said...

Wow! Great responses thus far!! I am not going to put up a new post for a bit because I want to see what others have to say about this topic . . and I think sometimes we get in a hurry and just read the first thing on a blog and ignore anything we might have missed. Now:

Ang - I find myself in that same situation!!! I started talking to a friend the other night about something and then realized it was about Adam and how odd would that be?? And I know what you mean about meeting others. I'm so amped to go to Australia and really want to meet some of these great friends I've made, but at the same time . .. it's a bit odd.

Steph - You are most definitely not geeky . . and since you've met men worthy of dating via internet, it just helps me put it a bit more in perspective. If my sister from another mother can do it, who am I to judge it in a harsh light???
As for the scary guys you met, hell I do that everyday in real life and rarely meet a good one. It sounds like I should open my horizons. Maybe, one day, perhaps.

Eunuch - baby (see how I threw that endearment in there???), I don't think anyone expects things to happen to them until it hits them in the face. You may be surprised by something. Perhaps Steph is your soul mate! :) Seriously though, I think you're right . . . it's possible to at least branch out via the internet, while I would never come here looking for love, I'm at least going to be more open to the possibility (whilst still keeping my skepticism).

Jared - You may be right that your age is affecting things. I think we all, as we get a bit older and see the avenues of meeting others narrowing, start to open up to ideas we would have vetoed before. God knows I am starting to look (though not internet, yet) in places for a mate that I never would have expected. When you spend your entire day working with nothing but women and children, it limits your options and you have to open new doors.

When you get out of school, particularly college, I think you'll find that you have to be a little more inventive if you haven't met that special person yet. Thanks for commenting though! I love the different perspective!

Chairborne Stranger said...

Ok, first off the manolo girl was just a fling, so quit trying to hook Eunuch up with Steph.

2nd, I would have totatlly thought it odd to meet someone off the internet and start up a relationship UNTIL I went to Iraq and started this blog, where now I'm quite popular with the virtual ladies. It doesn't seem all strange now, I'd like to meet a bunch of these people, even Eunuch, well I don't know about marriage with the ladies and all, at least not that quick.

3rd, C'mon, I think you should at least try to fall in love with one of these ladies. Steph? Or Ang? Someone. I mean, ladies are fun, right? I think they are. You won't know until you try, you know.

meghansdiscontent said...

Ru Ro Raggy, sounds like our very own Chairborne has a bit of a possessive streak. . . . Hands off, Eunuch! Our Lovely Steph belongs to Chair and Chair alone.

Though, a leapord rarely changes his spots, if he's cheated once, he'll do it again . .. Steph, maybe you should contemplate giving our handsome soldier the ole heave ho!

I guess I should have clarified: Their relationship was not quick, though looking at the post I can see where it may have seemed that way. They communicated via chat, IM and e-mail for almost a year. Phone for another 6 months before deciding to meet.

As for lady love . . . can't do it, women are nuts. Fun, but nuts. Myself included. And besides, how do you know I haven't tried to love a lady?? Hmmm . . . me thinks Chairborne shouldn't make assumptions . . and now you have a question to pester your mind for days!

Chairborne Stranger said...

Ru Ro Raggy (WTF??)??

Ok, I admit it, I'm a bit possessive, and that's a good thing. But it's touchy time right now between Stephy and I, mistakes were made, and I'm sorry for it, another pair of shoes caught my eye (Briefly, I swear!) and I've apologized and tried to make it up to her. I've even contemplated a trip to Australia to sort all of this out, but I'm afraid if I did that I would fall prey to her dazzling beauty (now that I finally got her pictures--rowr!!), and I'd probably propose, because I'm really weak-willed when it comes to women in general, and Steph in particular. Ok, there, I've professed my undying soldierly love for Steph on your blog, I'm broken and I cheated, if only she'll take me back and forgive-I mean, I'm in IRAQ, for God's sake, land of the terrorist fly and the crazy Iraqi soldier man-love-can't a man be weak for a moment or two--they were MANOLO's!!!!

meghansdiscontent said...

You didn't get the Scooby Doo reference??? Dear God Man! Where was your childhood spent??????

Trust a man to pull the "I'm in a war" card for pity. Cheaters are cheaters . . . regardless of shoe fetishes. Now, if they were Jimmy Choo's . . I might could throw my hat in with your bid for forgiveness, but Manolo's?? How cliche! EVERY man falls for Manolo's! I thought you were more than "every" man. You would have to be to be good enough for our Steph!

Chairborne Stranger said...

It isn't like she hasn't been writing other soldiers.

Yeah, don't think I don't know about her soldier flings. And then Eunuch?!?>? I mean he's in the damn Air Force for God's sake.

Honestly, what more can I do? She pulled away from me first, and I was stuck. Lonesome in Iraq.

I could've died out there!! All I wanted was love!

Boy this isn't going well at all. I'm frazzled.

meghansdiscontent said...

You can't blame our poor Stephy for boosting the morale of other soldiers. You were the only one she truly had Shoe Love with. You.

I hope you feel guilty. You've probably destroyed our dear Steph's abilities to wear Stylish Shoes from here on out. She'll spend her life in Wal-Mart sandals and $40 Nike SALE shoes from the Shoe Carnivals of the world.

And we thought you were special. You were that soldier above soldiers. Instead you have wandering eyes . . . sad, sad, sad. What a dark day.

And to think I was going to send you shoes! Actual shoes! Via air post. Something heeled and strappy and beautimous . . it's lucky I discovered what you really are.

:) Oh God, I don't know if I can keep this up, I'm falling out of my chair laughing.

meghansdiscontent said...

Wait wait . . . Airforce . .as in could possibly pilot a Stealth bomber. Hmmmm . .

Oh Eunuch!!! Dear Eunuch!! Are you out there? Care to engage in a little blogging flirtation???

Chairborne Stranger said...

My lord, now you're all over Eunuch's blog too! Crazy chicks.

I thought Stephy and I were true blue. I did. I'm sad about this. And Wal-Mart sandals! Dear Lord, no. Not that. I'm putting my foot down. What can I do to make it up to the women who are special in my life?? I'd probably go crazy if Steph even looked at a Shoe Carnival. Next you'll be telling me she's wearing fuzzy pink rabbit slippers out to go dancing.

meghansdiscontent said...

Not the fuzzy slippers!!!!!!

This has gone too far! I'm putting a stop to it! Even the mere thought of Stephy's attractive feet ensconced in such horrid foot attire makes me ill.

(This is what happens when you're on pain medication and confined to a chair for a day - - kids, don't attempt this at home - - you may forever damage a marvelous soldier's psyche)

sqg said...

Well Meghan, all I can say is that I'm happy with our affair.

And I can only hope that you are too. :)

Adam said...

I'm calling for an end to this shoe lovin' for today. Today is International 'Shoe Truce' where the world calls for all wars (little or large) over shoes to pause for one day. Any stilletto thrown in angry will be classified as a crime against humanity and will be subject to disciplinery action condoned by the Overseeing Footware Council.

Now, onto the subject at hand. I personally don't think I could fall in love with someone over the internet, mainly because I see that personal interaction as such an important part of a relationship. It's really important to find someone to bounce with, someone who has similar energy levels and whatnot. The other thing is that my finely attuned stalker-sense has yet to adapt to newer technologies. So no, I don't think it's for me.

That said though, Cara's closest workmate who we have hung out with a few times did just that. She came over from America and got married to a nice young man here. They seem very well suited and have a happy life and have cats.

When I was 17/18 I was freakin' hopeless at picking up young ladies in nightclubs and bars but I had heaps more success at uni where I could totally talk to people. For me, nightclubs were all about looks, university was about looks and conversation equally, maybe the internet is the next step and is about conversation.

Maybe it's a very good thing, I think the days where you could only meet people for lovin' if you were the hottest thing on the dancefloor are over.

Young Meghan, I think you should allow yourself to be entertained by the idea, especially if it gives you a chance to get out of AR!!!

TFS said...

Tried it. Paid the price and fucked up 2 years of my life. Never again. Never.

meghansdiscontent said...

Sqg - Ah, sweetie! You've been with me since the beginning. I was just a baby blogger and you took me under your wing. Of course I am happy with our affair! Much love!

Adam - You are, of course, the blogging police so if you call a cease fire, we must fall in line.

Hmm, don't know how much I trust the opinion of someone who has been with a super fine rockstar girl for the last three years. I think your dating skills have been dulled. The dating pool for our age group is dwindling down and we are all desperately kicking to stay afloat.

As for the idea of internet love removing me from Arkansas . . . I am always down for travel! I would much rather have the excuse of friendship than love. Expect to introduce me to the marvelous Cara someday!!!

meghansdiscontent said...

TFS - you snuck in there . . . poor baby! Gosh, does that mean your application sent to my inbox was simply a hoax??? :)

Steph said...

Holy shite! Firstly let me put to rest the rumours about me and other military type people! I have posted on one other blog, a lovely guy called Rolligun, who lists me as his mentor! BAh! He started blogging after reading my drivel. So i don't know how you got that idea CS!! Grrrr, YOU were the one chatting up the Manolo chick! Lmao! She seems nice. You should email her. Thanks for the blog lovin ;)

trueborn said...

I tried it as well, but not with a blogger, rather with one of those wonderful date sites they have out there.....
Did not go well.
The pictures, well they really match up with reality. This is very shallow of me but after meeting her I knew she was a Photoshop expert. This soured me on the whole experience. Thats not to say that love cannot happen over the wide world of the net. Why I'm certain there are people with bizarre fetishes meeting up as I speak (Some far stranger than an enjoyment of shoes). With the disintegration of our communities (not knowing your neighbor, little interaction in neighborhoods) its no mistake that people have turned to electronic means to meet other people.
I'm a sappy romantic so I believe that love can happen anywhere (except the local bars I frequent) and since thats the case, you've got to have an open mind.
Oh and Meg, I've been busy, I'll get right on that resume though....

meghansdiscontent said...

Coming at you LIVE from a Bathtub . . .

Yes, bathtub . .
Get your minds out of the gutters boys!
My friends have been ringing my cell constantly informing me that I am to stay in the tub with a mattress for the next 20-30 minutes because YES, a tornado has touched down exactly 5 miles from my house.

Five miles. Ah, there are the sirens now.

Anyway . . down to business:

Steph - Baby, none of us believed Chair's statements about you being a military blogging whore. We all know and love the flirtatious beauty you are. If these boys take it a little too seriously, pooh on them!

True - UGH! Why must people lie about who they are physically??? Do they truly think you won't discover it when you meet?

Looking forward to your resume, honey, but don't worry, I shant take it seriously! I'm cheering for your "heart on the horizon" to win out!!

Chairborne Stranger said...

Ladies, please, like Adam said, a truce! And I never called anyone a whore, let alone Steph! Ah, the agony-it's all a miscommunication. And some random Manolo chick-ah, guilt feelings, now too!

I think this just proves internet love is possible. Steph IS a flirtatious beauty and she captured my heart. Wandering eyes must be gouged out now.

Meghan, be safe in that tornado. I am still pissed at this bee's nest you stirred up too.

meghansdiscontent said...

Lies, all lies!!!

You love me and you know it!
My apologies for any plight my humor may have caused you. It was all in fun, lovey. I thought you needed to get your mind of pesky war things . . . is not a shoe fight the best way to do so??

Woe is me, attempt to do a good thing and get "pissed" at instead.

Chairborne Stranger said...

No no no, honestly, the pissed comment was just a joke (*thinking to myself-holy shit-this is just like real life! why did i ever glance at a manolo?:???*). And really, I love you too, err, not just Steph, err. Yeah, love all around-make peace not war-that's it!

Really, ok, shoe fights are fun. I'm tough-I can take it-fling one of those bad boys at me. Won't be the first time.

meghansdiscontent said...

Too late.
Too late.
Now won't you feel bad when my red sparkly shoe Dorothy-esque adorned self is carried into the abyss by this tornado? My last thoughts were of your anger . . .

Seriously though, if you guys don't hear from me for a while . . send a gorgeous man with Jose Cuervo Especial to pry me from this tub. I've now been here so long (and without power, no less - - thank God for battery powered laptops!) that I don't know the way back to my own living room.

Signed - Bored in a Tub

Chairborne Stranger said...

Tubs are nice.

Adam said...

CS, they say a good soldier isn't measured by what he can do, rather what he can endure. Millions/Billions of lesser men would have run screaming from that little firefight. Good work dude!

The Shoe Truce is still in action, people.

Young Meghan, yes, I have been saved from dating by the rockchick. But please do not forget I am surrounded by many, many, many young men and ladies all single and all in their late 20s. I've seen it all/some things.

Steph said...

lmao. CS, best you shaddap now. Lest you put your other foot in your mouth! Too funny!

Ang said...

sooo....on a different note (ironicly the note we started on)

my cousin leah was introduced to dave online, through a mutual friend. They had 4 months of msn with web cam, email, and phone calls before he decided that when she went home for the summer he was coming back to taiwan with her. year and a half later they are still at it.

ps i got the scooby reference meghan!

beachgirl said...

What the hell are you all drinkin and where can I get some?? I don't even know where to start.. I think you got your answer meg... 30 posts?? I think it's safe to say we are all friends.. AS for falling in love, I do think it's possible.. We've al talked about it, the reason we blog, sometimes it's easier to open up to strangers and then those strangers become good friends... By the way, I'm very bitter.. I want in on this flirtation!! Someone love me please!! ha,ha,ha... The fact remains, the boy I love the most doesn't love me, I should probably move on, right meg?? What was that thing you were saying about the stupid rib!!??

You all are cracking me up... CB, I hope you and steph find true love (bitterness now overflowing, boys are stupid!!

Meg-I hope you're ok... email me asap.. That's RIGHT, we've emailing and I'm not afraid to tell the world!! Now I think I've got a horrible case of the giggles...

Let's keep it going...

meghansdiscontent said...

Chair - If you're in them for an hour -- tubs are only nice with company. I had no company until after I exited said tub.

Adam - Very true, very true. I forget that in many ways you are still in the trenches.

Steph - I promise to no longer torture poor, Chair. He's got enough torture to last a lifetime after our little go. Who shall we pick on next??? True, Adam, TFS??

Ang - Thank you for getting us back on topic! You're always there for us, girl!

Beach - MISSED YOU! The fun wasn't quite the same without you. You are now firmly ensconced in the group on at least my blog! As for moving on . . . nah, stick with my Rib comment for now.

CB and Steph may honestly be true loves, only time and relocation will tell. :) ( I swear, no more kidding after that remark!! I'm relatively certain you're both ready to Uzi me to death!)

I am quite well, just rather confused at the moment. Men alarm me. If you just want in my pants, be up front about it. Don't delude me into thinking you're a good guy!

beachgirl said...

Thanks sweetie!! you are too kind... Sometimes boys can be jerks.. I better not say too much more, it might get me trouble with a certain someone...

TFS said...

Meg, the application was indeed half in jest seeing as you're on another continent and I can do that sort of thing safely without fear of anyone calling my bluff ;op That being said I will now live in constant fear of my bluff being called hehehe

That 2 line comment took 10 minutes to write. I got sidetracked reliving all the stupid shit I'd done for that girl and her family and all the crap I'd put myself through. I made some monumentally stupid decisions and almost succeded in throwing my life completely off course and down the tubes for a compulsive liar and utterly insane person. That's not an exageration by the way. That is what I will never do again, go through that. Never. I'll also never return to Western Australia because of her and my experiences there.

As for meeting someone online, I don't hold out any hope of meeting anyone at all, on or offline. I'm a "good friend" it's what I do, and what I do well.

I'm too messed up, I haven't gotten over everything that I've put myself through yet, and I'm not about to inflict all that bullshit onto anyone else.

Adam said...

Whoa dude, that's some heavy stuff right there. We all get sucked in by liars, especially because the only other choice is to stop trusting all people all the time - too hard, too wrong.

As for just being a good friend, I don't believe that you believe that will last forever but it's a way good defence until you get through that junk. Good luck dude, we're here for ya when you're ready!

meghansdiscontent said...

TFS - babe, I never truly thought any of the applications I received were in anything but jest. You guys just keep me laughing over here. I swear never to call your bluff! I wish I knew of anyway to make you feel better about your past relationship, but Adam's right, we all get sucked in by liars. I could tell you stories about my ex-fiancee that would make your hair turn white. It took me a long time to start dating again, and even now I'm probably far more guarded than I should be. Probably half the reason I am so open here and via email is because it's SAFE. Things will get better. Remember, time wounds all heals. :)

Adam - Why are your comments always so great and deep and thoughtful and mine are always too cheezy for words????

Jenni said...

I think it's possible to develop common intrests via e-mail and phone. However the real connection can never be made until you meet face to face. I once met a guy that I had talked to online. We dated for awhile. It was okay. I've never told this to a living soul by the way. My family thought I met him at a ball park. My point is to go with your gut. Don't be afraid to make a connection. The majority of people are pretty normal.