Life online is full of people you wouldn’t ordinarily meet walking down the street. You may pass by them while rushing off to an appointment, but you would never actually stop to talk to them. They fall into 5 categories.
Number one is the odd duck. This is the person who didn’t have many friends outside of AV club in high school, knows every original Star Trek episode by title and episode number and during a conversation will use anecdotes verbatim. They are generally great at games like trivial pursuit, but only the older editions and wouldn’t be able to tell you what’s contained in the controversial wording of the bill the Wisconsin governor is trying to get passed into legislation.
Number two is the pervert. Not your typical never looks you in the eye while talking to you, eagle eye for panty lines and camel toe kind of guy either. This is the guy who is usually married, but unfulfilled. He has fetishes, but was brought up to think they are taboo so doesn’t share them with his wife. Instead, in the privacy of his man-cave, will show his willy to whomever he can get to look at it while trying to stretch it farther than your grandmother could stretch out the leftovers from Sunday pot roast. He sometimes forays into his wife’s unmentionables drawer, not to sniff her panties, but to try them on.
Number three is the watcher. This is the guy who comes online to a video chat room, sans cam. He sits there in the privacy of his darkened room, armed with his baby oil and box of tissues and waits. Doesn’t say anything chat-worthy, but opens all the cams of the female chatters, looking for Ms. Right Now, or as a good Mormon might, a bevy of Mrs. Right Now. He has them up there, usually muting the chat room, and has his own personal orgiastic multi-screened one-off. Usually followed by the two off, three off, and on a good night might wipe out the whole box of Kleenex.
Number four is the drama queen. This person can be of either gender. This is the sad sack, the down-trodden, hates their job, their spouse, their life. Most people in this situation would seek guidance, from a spiritual source, a therapist, a good friend. Good old number four? They go online. Online they use that fount of anger and resentment and general unhappiness as their weapon. Armed with this potent arsenal they seek out groups of people, rooms of unsuspecting souls to unleash their weapons of mass distraction. Their only goal is to hide behind the anonymity of the internet to make others as unhappy as they can in order to feel better about themselves.
Number five, poor old number five. Number five just wants to be liked, sometimes even loved. They just want to feel like they fit in. Maybe they were late bloomers and don’t possess the social skills. Maybe they really are just alone and want a friend. Either way, this person will do anything to be accepted and liked. They are the wannabees. They want to be loved, they want to be popular, they want to have friends, and they want to feel like they belong. Belong to anything and anyone that will have them, and if it means being a joiner, so be it.
The internet is a wonderful invention. It has the capability to teach across boundaries, bring the world together as one, and unite those in faraway places in one voice. It has helped advance science, medicine, world democracy, and is a teaching tool that has yet to reach its full potential. They say the world is what we make it, and that each of us can mean something to more than just one person. If each of us on a daily basis gave an unsolicited smile to just one person, held the door open for the person behind us, kept the elevator door open an extra second, what a difference it might make. Maybe, just maybe, the information superhighway would be a little friendlier to navigate.