Some people have useful talents, like the ability to look natural walking in heels or applying lipstick without wondering exactly where the bottom lip ends.
I have a useful talent as well. Some call it internet stalking; I call it embarrassment-feuled creeping.
I’ve always had a tendency for obsession, so in the modern age where I can scour the internet looking for the ex-wife of a semi-famous novelist to figure out what went wrong, I do.
And usually I don’t see much wrong with this. However, when I stumble on a piece of information (still in the public-sphere) that’s particularly juicy, I realize I may have taken things too far.
Jill recently read a book by an author that is one half of a marriage that she, Katie, and I had a serious crush on. You know those Instagram masters who make their lives look like a live-action Candyland? Yeah, this couple is like that. Was like that. *silent tears*
Jill noticed that in the dedications of the first book, there was a woman’s name, a name that did not belong to the author’s wife.
Jill was frantic, understandably so. She did a little preliminary research. No need to get us all up in arms if it was his wife’s nickname. It was wishful thinking. For the sake of the example, let’s say the book said “to Sophie” while the wife’s name is “Aishwarya.” There was just no way.
So Jill discovered what we all feared: the man who was one half of the cutest relationship in the world* had been married before! *by Instagram standards
Not only had he been married before, but by book two, he was dedicating his work to the other half of the cutest couple in the world. (I’ll stop with the titles.)
BOOK #1 OF A TRILOGY IS FOR WIFE #1, AND BY BOOK #2, HE’S ON SOMEONE ELSE?!?!
Jill let us know of this tragedy: “I feel like I just found out Mr. Darcy was married when he met Elizabeth.” I, of course, told her to take it back immediately because how dare she ever utter such blasphemy!
And after I was finished partially recovering from the thought that Darcy was anything other than the socially-awkward hottie of every intelligent woman’s dreams, I began to creep.
I mean, so many questions needed to be answered! How much time between relationships was there? Did he leave one wife after he became semi-well-known to book loving twenty-somethings? Did he just go around seducing nice girls and taking them as his concubines? I told Jill, “WE WILL NOT BE HIS NEXT CONQUESTS!”
I took action. After some heavy research, like finding an art show in college where his then-girlfriend was a subject, I creeped on his ex-wife. I was relieved to find that she was in a relationship with another man, and according to Facebook, her father still “liked” the author’s first book.
It was here that I realized I was in very deep and needed to pull out. I mean, it’s not like I’m engaging in illegal activity, but the fact that I have to make that clear indicates I went a bit too far.
But it’s not all so superficial. Sometimes creeping has saved me a lot of trouble. Once, Jill and I saw a cute librarian. With twenty minutes and his first name, I discovered a picture of him on his trip to the Carribean that made us both disgusted. Now, when he says hello, I give him a look that says, “I know what you did Spring Break of 2012.”
Maybe I’m good because I’m hyper-observant. Like, I’m really good at spotting celebrities, and even those who aren’t full-on celebrities. Please see Jill and I’s encounter with a Mad Men guest star, or know that just today I refrained from telling a man that I admired his work in Bride and Prejudice (because obviously I’ve memorized every person in every Austen adaptation ever).
Celebrity sighting and internet creeping are related. Jill says so: “One’s a tangerine. The other, an orange.”
Just know that a P.I. career could be in my future. I have been watching a lot of Veronica Mars lately.
Oh, and here’s a picture of my most recent fun purchase. I feel it’s appropriate for this post with so much Darcy talk.