Point and Laugh

A recent LiveJournal Writer’s Block question asks LJers if they behave differently online than in real life. This is a very good, thought-provoking question.

I do indeed behave differently. Online, I get out and see stuff. In real life, I’m a hermit, hardly taking the car out of the driveway save for church, work, or grocery shopping. I have no life at all. I am definitely the disgusting sick freak your local troll warned you about.

I of course have my lack of disposable income to thank for this. This prompts me to a fresh session of soul-searching.

I am very proud of the strides I’ve taken financially in the face of a severe worldwide recession, having retired a predatory online payday loan caused by a predatory fee-based credit card, also paid off. Good riddance to both of those wallet vampires. I even managed to add a refurbished computer to my assets. Unfortunately, I did all this at the expense of any semblance of a social life. The only thing keeping me out of my mother’s basement is having neither a basement nor a living mother. I can’t think about my life without wanting to point a finger and jeer at it.

I want a life. I pray God helps me find one.

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One thought on “Point and Laugh

  1. A couple of events come to mind after reading this:

    –Last Christmas, I asked a friend of mine, who lives outside the U.S., if he wanted a holiday card from me, and he said he did. When I asked what name I should send it to, he gave me his birth name, but said it did not matter if I wrote down his fursona name. One reason he gave for that was that his real name was very common around where he lives. However, he also added that he went by both fursona and birth name in real life. That is, he considered his fursona name to be “as substantial” as his birth name.

    –One of my “sans”(non-furry) best friends e-mailed me the morning of March 14th, telling me how he had happened upon my LiveJournal site; he’s been stalking my MySpace page since soon after we first met, though he isn’t signed up at any social networking site. I quote:

    “I tried to remember what social networking site you were on and what your ‘screen name’ was…finally came to me so looked on MySpace and saw that you suggested going to LiveJournal. I read The Life and Times of Phoenix Audubon, and in particular, Darkest Before Dawn. You are such a character…and I mean that in the sweetest way 🙂 !!!!!!

    You are a very good writer….you really paint a picture with words!”
    (I’ll spare you the rest, good sir.)

    When I spoke with him over the phone the following Tuesday night, he went on to say that the way I write is identical to my manner of speech, that he could imagine me dictating the exact same words to him, and it would be just like any other conversation.

    The point I’m trying to make is this:

    When I was growing up, I had no problem lying about myself, to the point it could have been seen as pathological. Between the 4th and 11th grades, I tried to make myself seem just like the “cool” kids: act like them, dress like them, in hopes of trying to gain the adoration they possessed. But just before my senior year, I gave up the chase. I had realized that by trying to be someone I was not, I had lost who I was. So, I spent the 12th grade just being myself, and that was one of the better years of my life.

    Now, I had only discovered the World Wide Web a bit earlier, in the 10th grade, around 1998. The alternate name, “Phoenix Audubon”, predates that by about 3 years. And, to be honest, I can’t think of any time where I haven’t said or done (or rather, “emoted”) anything on the Internet that I would not have said or done in real-life…well, other than the “meesa” kick I was on in 2007, but that’s not significant. If I want people to like me, I want them to like me for me. I would not want to disappoint, or worse, anger, someone, for being anything other than what I have told them. That wouldn’t help anyone, including myself. After all, sooner or later, the truth comes out.

    Sure, I can be honest to a fault sometimes. Sure, I still have some secrets. But, in the end, really, what you see is what you get.

    “Speaking of a world not real then…”

    Now, as for a “life”, I admit I didn’t always have one. As a kid, I spent time outside running around and stuff, but once my family got a Nintendo Entertainment System, that all changed. It also didn’t help when we moved from the well-populated west Brea, to tiny little Olinda Village, which, until this millennium, was the only settlement between Valencia Avenue and the San Bernardino County Line. Mainly rich, childless couples lived there, despite Olinda Elementary being at the bottom of the hill the village rests upon, and it was a good four miles west on Carbon Canyon Road before you got back to civilization. Once I got my license at 16, coupled with being in the Brea-Olinda High School bands, I was again more social, and that continued into my brief stint at Cal Poly Pomona. In the Air Force, however, I did shutter myself in. With the blinds and curtain seemingly always drawn in my dormitory room, and my few appearances to eat at the dining hall, the joke among my fellow Airmen was that I must have been filming adult movies in my room. *chuckles*

    However, when a co-worker of mine named Will asked me to be his roommate outside of Eglin Air Force Base, I decided to go for it. Now, Will was REALLY outgoing. The guy seemed to have connections at all the hotspots in Okaloosa County, Florida, and he could have his pick of any girl he wanted. Will was often confused by how much I would rather stay home and either Watch TV, sit in front of my computer, or play video games. He would often pester me to go out with him to some club or movie or what-have-you. And you know what? I always ended up having a good time.

    When I moved back to California in November 2004, the majority of my high school friends had either moved away or could not be contacted anymore. But earlier that year, I heard a news story of a site called Meetup, where someone could sign up and find groups of people with similar interests, and they could coordinate “meetups” to get together and enjoy each other’s company, as well as whatever event was scheduled. I originally joined the general-interest “Orange County Fun Friends” group, but soon after, I found a local karaoke group. That group has changed names and coordinators through the years, but I always have these groups to fall back on if ever I need something to do.

    Because the fact of the matter is: I’ve seen too much of the outside world to just stay cooped up in my room/apartment/house/whatever for too long. Even if it’s just taking Duke for a walk down La Jolla Street, I thoroughly believe that the only people that can truly see the world in a seated position…are pilots.

    “I hope you never fear those mountains in the distance
    Never settle for the path of least resistance
    Livin’ might mean takin’ chances, but they’re worth takin’
    Lovin’ might be a mistake, but it’s worth makin’.

    Permit me to finish with this: I may have only known you for about six months or so, but nothing you have ever said or drawn has made me think of you as “disgusting”, “sick”, or a “freak”. These words have shown up time and time again, and honestly, good sir, at the risk of sounding like the critic I’m trying to silence, I have had it. I have had my own series of unfortunate events, to be sure, but I have learned to stop dwelling on them. If I want someone constantly yelling at me, I need only show up to work each morning. And, again, this is just me, but that kind of motivation DOES. NOT. WORK!

    I entreat you, good sir–please stop selling yourself short.

    “But if you never try you’ll never know
    Just what you’re worth.”

    I will pray heartily tonight that you soon find peace with yourself, and that others will tell you how much they appreciate you and what you do.

    “If someone attempts a word with you, will you mind? For how can anyone refrain from speaking? Behold, you have instructed many, and have made firm their feeble hands. Your words have upheld the stumbler; you have strengthened his faltering knees. But now that it comes to you, you are impatient; when it touches yourself, you are dismayed. Is not your piety a source of confidence, and your integrity of life your hope? Reflect now, what innocent person perishes? Since when are the upright destroyed? As I see it, those who plow for mischief and sow trouble, reap the same. By the breath of God they perish, and by the blast of his wrath they are consumed.” (Job 4:2-9, NASB)

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