Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Catfish - The Series

One of the most interesting documentaries I watched last year was Catfish. It was the story of a guy named Nev who started an online relationship with a girl who he quickly fell in love with. Then he started to wonder why she was so reluctant to meet him in person and made it his mission to find her and discover if their relationship was real. His brother and friend filmed the entire adventure. It's a compelling story about love and friendship in the digital age.

With the success of the documentary, Nev expanded the idea into a television show. It seems that many many people have had similar experiences and were themselves dying to know the truth about people they had fallen in love with after talking with them online.

I have my own similar experience with someone I talked to for hours a day back in 2009. She said her name was Lisa. I met her through a guy who commented on my blog. He turned her on to my stuff and she left a comment on one of my posts. At that time I had very few followers so each and everyone one of them was important. I tried to connect with all of them in some way, hoping to find another like-minded traveller.

Lisa was into movies, comics, action figures and could walk the talk whenever those subjects came up in conversation. She was a hell of a researcher but could also be moody, mercurial and difficult - traits she blamed on severe trauma that she experienced as a young girl. For a time she was even customizing a Phantom action figure for me and sent me pictures of the work in progress.

I was quite content with never meeting her (she said she was from West Virginia) because of our age difference and the significant baggage she would have brought to a real world relationship.

I was just happy to know someone so interesting. There was no topic that we couldn't talk about. She was quick-witted with a wicked sense of humor. She was never boring which as you know is a trait I find very seductive. I could never finish her sentences in my head.

For eight months I never questioned that this person was who they said they were. I am not a naive person but I was seduced by the fantasy. She was tough on me, brutal at times and I learned alot about myself through her blunt honesty. She was a very good actress and knew how to engage me.

After a time I asked for her address because I wanted to send her one of my famous Canadian care packages but she rebuffed that notion. That and other subtle things was the start of my suspicions. At first I was hurt but that hurt quickly turned to fascination. What kind of person could maintain an illusion for so long? I must have reached her at some level for her to talk to me as long as she did and in the way that she did. I didn't feel like she was lying to me just to be cruel. THAT person would have given up on me early on and not continued speaking to me.

The pictures she shared with both me and Steve were eventually discovered to be from another girl's site after Steve did a bit more research. What she was saying to him and what she was saying to me was starting to differ. At first we both waved it off but eventually he and I both realized that we couldn't let it go. It was when we confronted her about her identity that everything kinda fell apart. I haven't talked to her since.

One of the reasons I never lie about myself is to insure that I never will be put into a postion where I have to disappoint someone who may develop deep feelings for me. I would never lie to someone I cared about, especially after sharing so many interesting, personal talks with them. If I was honest, then I couldn't get caught in a lie or have to remember a previous lie that I told. If you are a regular visitor to this blog you know that I am not afraid of telling you all about my faults - in fact I revel in my deficiencies as a person. I have no reason to build myself into someone I am not.

This was the picture and information that she provided from her blog, which hasn't been added to in years. In fact it was around the end of our friendship that she stopped posting at that site altogether.

Not sure what to say here (isn't that an original way to start). I'm an enigma of sorts-- young with an old soul, passionate yet apathetic, intelligent but unfocused, obsessive yet lazy, confident but unsure, quiet yet loquacious, talented but with no ambition, troubled yet grounded... I'm a lesbian and a geek, a goddess and a wallflower. I can't say I'm a nice person, but I'm not all that bad either... I'm just me

I haven't thought about her in awhile but seeing this program made all the memories come flooding back. I don't regret meeting Lisa or those early morning hours we spend typing back and forth to each other. Chalk it up to another life experience - one that I truly look back upon with some fondness.


Debra She Who Seeks said...

He/she is probably busy lying to someone new.

Kal said...

Of that I have no doubt.

david_b said...

Sorry to hear this, sir. Love is too critical for some to play with someone's emotions.

Like Lennon said in 'Love'..:

Love is Reaching, Reaching Love
Love is Wanting, to be Loved
Love is Needing, to be Loved

Jaime Hood said...

Shut. UP! I had something very similar happen to me at the tender age of 16 with some guy I met on AOL. I'm pretty sure the guy in my case though was a sexual predator. His story didn't add up after a while and I began to have serious doubts he was really of the age/background he said he was. It creeped me out so I cut ties with him. Of course, looking back I realize how stupid I was, but when you're a lonely teen and someone suddenly starts paying you that much attention and has all the right answers, you listen.

Kal said...

It could happen to you today just like it could happen to me again tomorrow. It's the validation that is so seductive. Having a partner to spar with that is on your mental level is positively intoxicating. But in the end you trust your instincts and hope not to have your heart crushed. I am terrified for kids today. They can't be educated early enough about the dangers that are out there. One of the reasons I talk so much about myself is to keep me from falling prey to the temptation.

david_b said...

Sorry, I was apparently talking on a much deeper level here...

Alyssa said...

Wow, thank you for sharing your experience! I just watched the first episode of the TV show earlier today with a gal I work with at DISH, and honestly I couldn’t believe it! I had never heard of the movie before I watched the show, so watching the episode was a completely a new thing for me. I’ve never really been into the whole dating someone online thing, but it was definitely interesting to hear your story and Sunny’s. I’ll definitely be watching the series as it progresses along, but I’m also going to have to check out the documentary. I’m intrigued, so I’m going to add it to the top of my Blockbuster @Home queue from DISH to check out in a couple of days. It’s always nice to come across movies I haven’t heard of that sound interesting enough for me to rent and not have to spend a movie ticket on. Thanks for sharing! :)

Kal said...

Anytime Alyssa. Thanks for your comment. Don't be a stranger.