At the risk of sounding slightly psychotic, I hereby confess that I am sort of obsessed with Google. I Google everyone. Every once in a while, someone from my past will pop into my head, and I'll think, "I should Google them and see what they're up to." And I do. I find it fascinating, and also slightly frightening that so much information is so easy to find on people I haven't seen in decades. But it saddens me to think they were once so important to me, and now they're out there somewhere and I'll never know what they're doing. And then I Google, and my curiousity is satisfied.
Now, I don't mean that I actually contact them after I Google them--oh no. I simply look to see if I can find them anywhere, to see what they're up to. Old friend from college, wonder what she's up to. . .I cyber-stalked her through a fancy career that sounded fab, a big white wedding at 30 to the guy she dated (and cheated on profusely) throughout college, and then a baby and a move from the city to the country. Hmmm...they didn't use birth control for years and managed to have a baby. . .wonder if she had to have fertility treatment? It would be so inappropriate to call up after a decade out of touch and ask, huh?
My best friend from college who I lost touch with when she seemed to be "settling down" and I was still a wild child? The one who had serial long term relationships, all of which ultimately ended inexplicably because they just "knew they weren't meant for each other"? The one that I thought would be married before all of us (but shockingly, wasn't)? The one who during one of our last conversations told me that her serious boyfriend said he "wanted" to marry her, but refused to? She must've finally dumped his ass, because she got married a couple of years ago to a different, very successful man. They recently sold their house in the suburbs for almost a million dollars. She got an advanced degree a couple of years ago, but I can't find any mention of a career anywhere. I wonder if she's had kids, but no birth announcements have popped up. I'd like to call and ask. I wonder if she's had trouble, too.
Today, the urge was to Google a guy I had a huge crush on in high school. I haven't Googled him in, oh, probably a couple of years (no really--I'm not THAT much of a stalker!). We were the best of friends for years, and eventually lost touch while he was dating a woman I hated (I was SO relieved to discover that he didn't marry her). I've Googled him through a marriage in his 30's, (to a very nice girl that I actually realized I knew from high school. . .how weird is that? But hey--soo happy he married a nice girl), a baby girl two years later, and today, I discovered he has a son. Weirdest Google moment to date was when I found the hospital had posted a nursery photo of his baby boy. One click, and I was staring at a photocopy of a ghost of a memory of a boy. . .Um, I loved your dad when he was seventeen. . .which is exactly how many years have passed again, and now he has you. It takes my breath away, for so many reasons.