Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Google Treat

I never would have thought to Google someone before I read about it in a magazine, but after the idea was planted, I went on a frenetic Google spree. I'm admitting to you right now that I basically cyberstalked ever living person I ever knew. Okay, an exaggeration, but only slightly. It was such voyeuristic fun, and oh so addicting, that as soon as I ran out of the obvious subjects (old boyfriends, never-quite-boyfriends-but-I-wished-it-so fellas, as well as old cronies and enemies alike), I started scanning the recesses of my brain for yet more subjects for google searches. Admittedly, it was the search engine equivalent of crawling on your hands and knees in hopes that one might find just one more precious crack rock hidden in the rug, but yes, I was that bored, and that addicted.

A name popped out of the mists of past memories, a childhood playmate, and then through my fingers, in it went into the magic Google search box. To my surprise, out tumbled some very interesting information. Not only did my childhood friend have a web-presence, but she turned out to have a quite a career going, editing a magazine that was pretty well known. My old friend Lucy is somewhat of a celebrity! I was so excited and proud!

I remember how devastated I was when she and my other best pal Linda moved away from the neighborhood one after the other, over a period of a few months one lonely summer. Lucy lived across the street from us, and well I remember spending afternoons in her backyard, playing games, picking crabapples out of the old tree on the side of the house, taunting the boys who hung out in the yard next door, and swimming in the kiddie pool on hot days. I learned to climb up poles faster than most kids in the neighborhood by practicing shimmying up the metal poles on her back porch, much to her mother's dismay.

We endlessly played house, dolls, and games we made up that were born from the t.v. shows of Sid & Marty Croft. We would play "Lidsville" every damn day for weeks on end, and something we called "Spooky Boo", which was really just going down into the dark basement on rainy days and scaring the crap out of each other. Her little brother hung around with us a lot, and was a major annoyance sometimes, but he could be funny too, like the way he had of flipping you the bird with the wrong finger when he was angry.

I don't recall how I found her address, but when I was a pre-teen, I got back in touch with Lucy, and for a short period of time, we became pen pals. Our version of being pen pals was to fill out index cards with questions on them ("What's your favorite t.v. show? Your favorite group? Who's the cutest actor? Which actor would you marry?") which seemed to me to point out that not only were we both entertainment fans, but that Lucy was particularly boy-crazy at that time. I wasn't completely up to her in the boy-crazy sweepstakes yet, and I was a little embarrassed that some of the boys she seemed to be fascinated with at the time left me completely cold, so I fudged my answer to some of her questions to make it sound like I was just as enthusiastic about the same guys as she. Unfortunately, being young and probably short of attention span, we fell out of our correspondence after a short burst of activity, and we lost touch.

Now, all these years later, I found several Google entries about my old friend, which all seem to indicate that she has really gone places as a writer, and that she seems to be the same enthusiastic and articulate girl I remember all those years ago. And, to my great sentimental pleasure, I found an interview with her, in which she mentioned her girlhood crush, the same one that she mentioned to me in that index card correspondence all those years ago. Oh, how I wish I had kept those cards! For all I know, I have them squirreled away somewhere and will come across them well after their use has passed, but I would love to dig them out and mail them to her at what I gather is her new magazine home.

What a special little prize it was, after spending mindless (but fun) hours Googling people to no avail, to come across someone and find that they have become such a success. I'm sure it would be of no consequence to her after all these years, but I am strangely proud of my long lost pal's accomplishments, and thinking about all of those happy childhood memories made me smile wider than I have in quite a while. Thanks, Google.

This site is certified 38% EVIL by the Gematriculator