Saturday, 10 November 2007

I am Loaf Man, observe my sandwiches

I've realised the most annoying thing about Facebook isn't being told that someone I dimly recall from college has a cold, twice, because the first time they spelt it wrong. It's not the hours I've wasted on Scrabble, either, because that was educational and I keep winning. It's the trundling mundanity of it all, in the face of the day-glo potential daftitude of a social-networking platform.

As this wonderfully earnest to-do list amply demonstrates, half the charm of being online is coming up with a pseudonym: your alter ego, your avatar, the other, more interesting you. A name, like that of a first pet, which will echo through time to ennoble or humiliate you in later years.* Futuristic space children wearing x-ray specs will perch on your knee and ask 'What did you call yourself during Web 2.0, Grandma?': imagine how disappointing it will be to answer 'I was Wendy JonesformerlyBooth', when the likes of malevolent_crumpet were available to you.

Except that's supposedly Facebook's USP, where one may not 'impersonate any person or entity, or falsely state or otherwise misrepresent yourself'. Yawn, boo, etc. (And aren't all those people who keep ninja-ing me misrepresenting themselves, or do I just not know my friends very well?)

Obsessing over screennames is something I got quite familiar with over the summer, when Beloved British Ed, myself, and everyone who dared to come near me had to try to rustle up an alternative one for Big Woo's central character.That's me, evidently paperless, tattooed with (mostly awful and hopefully illegible) suggestions. After weeks of pondering why she wasn't a julie_madly_deeply or a cinnamongirl, we gave up and went back to what we started with. In the process I discovered that virtually every ridiculous thing I came up with already existed on MySpace. Alas, young to-do lister, there are probably multiple SonOfBitches out there already. I bet he ended up deciding Loaf Man wasn't so silly after all...

* Starsky remains a perfectly sensible name for a goldfish. And I still applaud whoever it was who named their cat Graham 'because it was grey'.

Good to see AA Gill saying what surely everyone must think about Poliakoff. Tragically rich people, family secrets, a big posh house: time to delve back into the Big Box of Ideas, maybe?

It was a butterfly. :D Started Book Two last night. So far, it appears to be almost entirely about biscuits. And lies. I shall call it Biscuits & Lies, for I am the Mike Leigh of YA fiction.

Flailing at West Wing season 7, nearly making gingerbread men, realising that the only thing in my kitchen which would allow me to do so is a gingerbread man-shaped cutter, eating jelly babies instead. I really need to stop having such exciting weekends.

5 comments:

Jess said...

Ahaha! It was the Fishers, and Graham still lives, I recently discovered! Still makes me laugh.

Sorry about the gingerbread men. This would prob be because all your cakemaking doings are still in our cupboard from Little Person's birthday cake. Even though it is no longer the same cupboard. You can have them back, honest!

Glad to hear butterfly still fluttering, unsquished. (Crumbed?)

Jess said...

BTW - recently reread 'Nurse Matilda goes to town', which I came across in the children's library and was as mad and enjoyable as I remembered (... and all the other children were doing simply dreadful things too.).

Dull, horrible Evangeline was mocked for having a pug called 'Pug' and a canary called 'Canary' and it really stuck in my head. Which would of course be why I have screennames like 'Jess' or JessD' on the sites I use. Hmm.

Rocrastinator Extraordinaire said...

I'm amazed Grey Graham still lives: that must one resilient moggy.

Aha! Did you really move some bags of icing sugar etc with you? Bless. I shall struggle on without...

I'm so pleased Nurse Matilda has lasted: I remember loving the great long lists of awful things they did, and all the names. And her nose which was like two potatoes. Apparently that horrible-looking Nanny McPhee film that Emma Thompson did was supposed to be based on them, though I'm guessing it was a 'Dark is Rising'-esque 'inspired by' kind of thing. Oh well.

MG said...

I too spent lots of time thinking about screen names when Lovely Ed and I agreed to change that of a central character (was Jlo-babe, changed to TopShopPrincess - first name was written in 2005, oh how fashions change...)

I didn't see the Poliakoff but I can guess...I saw a funny review of something of his in "The Spectator" a year or so ago, describing the same sort of thing as yer man Gill.

When are we having coffee? I'm going to Switzerland tomorrow afternoon, but free till then.

Rocrastinator Extraordinaire said...

MG: yep, had similar trauma about whether mentioning Beth Ditto made it relentlessly 2007. And nephew pointed out that most teenage girls he knew had usernames like 'hott_babe_xxx', which made me quite happily chuck accuracy out of the window. Will 'TopShopPrincess' have to undergo a makeover for the US market, I wonder?

Switzerland, eh? Will have to do coffee when you stop whizzing about the globe like some kind of hugely successful jetsetting novelista. :P Let me know when you're back, I want gossip!