Thursday, October 12, 2006
Three bloggers, three hidden identities, and three very slow reveals
- Cube 47: The Blog
Cube has been in my blogroll… and a regular read of mine… for more than a year now. Today I was shocked when she revealed in a comment at MCF's blog that she is a female woman lady of the feminine sort. That's right, Cube is a woman:
BTW I just saw your superhero drawing of me for the first time. I am touched that you went to all that trouble for me. I love everything about it except one little thing... I'm a female. Now that's one heck of a secret identity ;-)
MCF seems to have been as shocked as Wendy and I were. It's like the end of the classic videogame Metroid, when the hero, Samus, turned out to in fact be the heroine.
Of course, the question is, why were we shocked? It's not as though Cube has been pretending to be a man. She hasn't written anything particularly manly … but we assumed she was a man nonetheless. I'll leave it to the psychoanalysts to figure out what deep, dark depravity that reveals about our souls.
- MCF: MCF's Nexus Of Improbability
MCF hasn't kept us guessing about his sex, but he has hidden his name and image for two years now, and had some fun as his readers try to figure out what he looks like. Last year I attempted to unmask him, with mixed results. This week, MCF is celebrating his second blogging anniversary, and has rewarded his viewers with a couple of slightly more revealing pictures of him. One is a recent picture, although not a blatantly enlightening one. Another is a face shot, although one from 1979, when he was five years old.
The thing is, with most folks, even in pictures from early childhood there's still something of our adult visage to be discerned. Typically, I find, there is a way to make the connection between a childhood picture of a friend and the person that they are in adulthood. All you have to do is look at the picture and imagine the person you're looking at in any of the adulthood situations that they've experienced since you've known them.
With that in mind, here's my effort to help each of us better envision what MCF actually looks like. I've taken a few clips from some of my favorite blog entries of his from the past year and provided photographs of him actually in those situations, once again using just a slight bit of photo manipulation. Below you'll find clips from the posts I'm referencing, along with pictures that illustrate the clips. You can click the text to go to the original post:
“This is my first time in New York,” came the largest deluge of words, “I stayed at a hotel and I slept for two days straight. It was great with the room service and the comfortable furniture, but I got tired of it. It's hard to find the small, quiet places here. It's such a busy, bustling city, but they do exist if you look for them. Have you always lived in New York?”
Every once in a while a really fit girl might pass by and motivate me to keep pace with her, before my legs and my lungs told me otherwise and she'd leave me in the dust. Tell me that's not a metaphor for my dating experience. I was jogging through molasses, and I was an arrogant fool for even attempting to compete. It was then that I saw the sign for the one mile marker.
At lunch, standing on line in a supermarket, an elderly woman behind me kept inching her wagon dangerously close to my heels, though I had no control over the speed of the cashier or the customer ahead of me. I stepped up to pay when it was my turn, even as that wagon again stopped shy of a collision, and she began impatiently and loudly slamming her groceries on to the belt. I stepped forward and grabbed my bags after paying, and as I walked back past the aisle she shoved the wagon forward with such force and speed, it would have knocked me into a newspaper rack had I not leapt a bit.
Much like a character in the very promising new series Heroes, I found I could manipulate time as well as space. No sooner did my friend B13 and I leave Japan last week, then we found ourselves transported back to medieval times, where jousts, minstrels, archers, knights, and damsels in distress still thrived, a welcome sight for a Photo Blog Wednesday.
Dreary Sunday, woke up before afternoon,
Went outside, to see what my dad was doing.
“What up son?”
“Why's my car onna jack?”
“There's another spot to fix, another place to patch!”
“Trudat, double true, though I just got outta bed,
at least let me help you put the jack back in the shed.”
- Otis: You Know, For Kids
Otis, like MCF, keeps his real name and image a secret. The difference between MCF and Otis is that MCF lives ten or twelve hours from me, whereas I know Otis in real life. We even work at the same place.
Otis and I have had a bit of a Hatfields And McCoys war going on since he started blogging. Of course he'd dart out of the room like lightning if I got anywhere near him with a camera. He'd suspect, and he'd be right, that I'd use the picture to "out" him on the blogosphere. So snapping a picture of him has been impossible.
However, taking a picture of him has been pretty easy.
Last time I was at Otis's house I managed to sneak out with a few photographs. He was too busy arranging his Harlequin paperbacks to notice me pilfering them from his family photo album. MWA HA HA HA HA!
And so, without further ado, I'm proud to present four images of Otis to all of you who read his blog:
This is Otis's baby picture. Adorable little tyke, wasn't he? I won't speculate about his glazed eyes, but I've heard it said that he started experimenting with marijuana at an early age.
Here's Otis in tenth grade. If he looks young for a tenth grader, that's because he was accelerated to the tenth grade at the age of nine. This wasn't done as a matter of advanced placement. This was done because the kids his own age kept giving him atomic wedgies. Tenth graders, on the other hand, simply locked him in his locker, which was where he preferred to spend the day in the first place. It was a win-win.
This picture of Otis was actually taken at work. No, it wasn't the department supervisor who took the picture. And, no, that's not a cruel joke written in Sharpie magic marker on his back. That is actually a tattoo that Otis got when he was much younger. He also has an arcing tattoo across his midsection that reads "Too Legit To Quit."
This is the most recent picture of Otis I was able to sneak out of his house that day. As it just happens, I actually snapped this picture. I took this picture of Otis on his wedding day. At his wedding. During the ceremony. Those are his formal shades.
So there you have it. Truth will out.
You better tell Wendy to keep that Wedding photo albumn I made for you guys under lock and key.
What, what, what!
I'm on a psychoanalyst's couch?
I always gave my honest opinions.
Does my identity really alter all of that?
Gosh, MCF's superhero post is beginning to feel a little true to life here.
Cube never specified, and so we assumed. The cats should have been a giveaway, but then there was Star Trek references and Hillary bashing. Thousands of words aren't always worth a picture.
I'm reasonably certain you're evil enough to have posted "Otis"'s genuine tenth grade photo, and I have some doubts about the most recent image. I say the others are definitely fake. We'll see if I'm wrong, but for now I'll munch virtual popcorn and enjoy the impending Jihad.
No, no, no! I'm saying that I should be on the couch so that I can figure out why I presume someone's gender when I don't have any reason to make such presumptions. My bad!
I hope I didn't offend you, Cube. I suppose that it's just that ... and here's where I'm admitting to being kinda sexist, I guess... it's that I'm not used to hearing such well informed, conservative opinions from women. I know, I'm a bad person. I feel like a royal turd. Honestly, I really do feel like a jerk. Please forgive me, Cube?
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