The night I discovered the internet.
I’m one of those prehistoric people who remember when a floppy disk actually flopped. We got our first computer when I was a sophomore in high school…an Apple IIC. My mom bought it from a chick who later became the wife of my first husband. Not that it matters.
It came with a shoe-box full of the crappiest games of all time. There was an asteroid shoot ‘em up game, a skiing game. I don’t remember anything else. I mainly used it for school…typing off reports and whatnot. It had one of those printers with the teeth. You know what I’m talking about. The paper had to be lined up like an astrological event in order to print right.
But the memory that’s burned into my cranium is the night I discovered the internet. I was dating an Agronomist at the time, and he spent a ridiculous amount of time in his lab, creating a magic formula that would make Ragweed extinct, leading to all the allergy sufferers worshiing the ground he walked on. So if I wanted to hang out with him, I came to the lab. I loved it in there. Sometimes he’d let me wear the white coat and pick up beekers for phoney analyzation.
So this one night, he was hunched over some petri dishes, totally engrossed in chemicals and I was being Chatty Cathy…which was obviously grating on his last nerve.
“Hey. Shut up and go over there….it’s a computer. Someone said you can talk to other people in there.”
Oh goodie! An activity! I sat down and was face to face with some wagon-wheel looking thing. Turned out to be Netscape. I honestly can’t remember how I bumbled my way into one of these chat rooms. They didn’t have names like “Married But Flirting”, or “I Love Feet”. They were just numbered. So I picked a number and in I came like a half-drunk cowboy talking smack.
There weren’t moderators back then. It was just mass confusion, and I was smack in the middle of it. There were Ohio State students asking to meet up in the bushes over by the Varsity Club. Which I agreed to do. I wasn’t actually going to meet them. I was merely entertaining myself. There was something funny about knowing some half-stupid med student was poking around in a bush asking if SugarBooger869 was in there somewhere.
After a bunch of rebel-rousing, I settled down to talk to some chick on the other side of the world. It blew my mind that I was actually speaking to a live human being on the other side of the planet!! I demanded to know why I hadn’t been informed of this invention! My boyfriend pointed out that I should’ve gotten a job and gone to college so that I would know the answers to these type of questions.
Needless to say, the boyfriend ran like the wind. But my computer? It’s still right here, baby. On my lap. Screw that De Beers diamond-is-forever nonsense. I’ve got a better slogan:
Boys, Men and Dogs come and go; but your computer will never leave your side and leave you feeling worthless and abandoned, forcing you to crash diet and cut off all your hair.
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